I’d like to welcome Allison Tebo to the blog with an interview. Her book The Reluctant Godfather caught my eye during one of the indie Christian author sales, so when I saw the chance to read a review copy and participate in a blog tour to celebrate its relaunch, I said, “Why not?”
Enjoy getting to know her and hearing some advice to developing marketers/authors 🙂
Talk about your family and upbringing. My family is a huge influence in my own writing journey; has yours been supportive of you? Have any siblings to base your annoying characters on? ; )
I have two wonderful parents, a fantastic older brother, a lovely older sister, and a precious twin sister! I was homeschooled and brought up in a rich environment of exploration and creativity that put God first with parenting that directed me on how to see everything through the eyes of faith.
Yes, my family is a HUGE influence on my writing journey and are incredibly supportive! My siblings and I have a writers club and for the last ten years we have met nearly every Sunday to help each other brainstorm, to reach selections of our work, and to help each other along in the writing process. My mom has faithfully provided one of the dearest thing an author could ask for—objective critiquing. My dad is also in sales, and eagerly promotes my books and is always hunting for opportunities for me in my writing. I am very, very blessed to have a family that is not only so supportive, but have always guided me with unbiased criticism to guide me towards striving for the best.
Same for me!
You say you’re a sales representative. How has this helped you as you build your author brand? From your sales experience, do you have any advice for developing authors?
Yes, I am! And it most definitely has helped me in my writing journey. One advantage I feel that I might have is that I’m not so self-conscious about marketing myself. I see so many indie authors who seem almost apologetic about selling their books. This can be a rather damaging approach—unprofessional as well as lacking confidence. By necessity, I have to be pretty fearless in selling myself or whatever I’m selling—people expect it, so it’s not something to apologize for.
Being a sales person has also given me a daily dose of rejection. Writers talk a great deal about rejection, but it’s something I deal with all the time – I can be turned down as many as fifty times in one afternoon, sometimes rather nastily. Being in sales has helped me to begin to learn not to take rejection personally and to persevere.
Good advice. It’s hard to develop that thick skin.
I’ve seen a lot of fairytale retellings in indie author circles lately. What attracted you to this genre, and what about it particularly interests or inspires you?
I feel that most fairy tale retellings often focus solely on romance – romance that can get downright steamy at points. At other times, I’ve found many retellings can get disturbing and excessively dark.
What attracts me to fairy tales is a desire to put into book form what Walt Disney did with old fairy tales – extracting the good, adding a unique spin and creating a clean and fun retelling that engages the whole family. The other thing that attracts me about fairy tales are the strong messages woven through them. It seems that many people can be distracted by the glitter of fairy tales, and miss the morals. There are incredible themes of truth tucked into fairy tales.
What is your favorite author (and book) ever and WHY?
Oh my goodness me. Such an impossible question! I really have to cheat here and list my top three authors, as well as my favorite books from each other. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. The Dark House On the Moss, Reb and the Redcoats, and Enemy Brothers by Constance Savery and The Lantern Bearers andThe Silver Branch by Rosemary Sutcliff. As to why I love them—each of these books contain all the necessities to entrance me. Stupendously crafted plots, exquisitely drawn characters, lovable characters that take immense bites out of my heart—and a shiningly, glorious hopefulness. Sometimes painful, sometimes happy—always beautiful in its constancy and radiating truth.
C.S. Lewis I’m familiar with. My current favorite book of all time is That Hideous Strength. I might have to check out those others!
Where do you see yourself in five years? Still writing books? Do you have any other accomplishments you’d like to achieve?
Lord willing, I’ll be writing till the day I die! I’m not sure one lifetime is enough to unleash all the stories in my mind, clamoring to be let out. My main ambition in life is to become a successful author. Aside from that, my only goal is to follow God’s leading in my life, and be quick to follow any path He charts out for me.
A humorous and magical re-telling of Cinderella from a unique perspective.
Burndee is a young and cantankerous fairy godfather who would rather bake cakes than help humans. A disgrace to the fairy order, Burndee has only two wards entrusted to his care…a cinder girl and a charming prince.
A royal ball presents Burndee with the brilliant solution of how to make his wards happy with the least amount of effort. He’ll arrange a meeting and hope the two fall in love.
The debut novella from Allison Tebo, ‘The Reluctant Godfather’ is a new addition to the charming fairy tale tradition of Cameron Dokey and K.M. Shea.
Come back on Sunday to see my review of the story. If you’ve been hoping for a Cinderella story with a fresh ending, this might be what you’re looking for!
There’s also a GIVEAWAY:
You can connect with the author on any of these sites: