Hello, everyone! This is Quinn Anderson, author of the Murmur Inc. series, and I'm here to share some inside information about, Hotline, coming out October 31st. Stay tuned to hear about where I get my ideas, writing comedy, and how I went "undercover" as a sex worker to research my novels. Leave comments on the tour posts for a chance to win a $10 Riptide Publishing gift card!
Zack never intended to become a phone sex operator, but with half a college degree and a smart mouth, his options were limited. It helps that he has a knack for thinking on his feet and a willingness to roll with whatever his clients throw at him. Sure, he gets his fair share of creeps and unconventional requests, but it pays the bills, and he’s in no danger of breaking his one rule: never fall for a client.
Until a man named “John” starts calling, and Zack finds himself interested in more than a paycheck. It’s not just that John has money, or that his rumbling baritone drives Zack wild. He’s everything Zack isn’t: educated, poised, and in total control of his life.
A twist of fate brings them face-to-face, and now that they’ve seen each other—and spent an unforgettable night together—they can’t go back to the way things were. A sex worker and a trust fund brat . . . It’s like Romeo and Juliet, but with less stabbing and slightly fewer dick jokes. Hopefully they can pull off a more successful ending.
Guest post with Author Quinn Anderson...
Who are your all-time favorite fictional characters?
I don’t know why I picked this question to answer; I must be some kind of masochist. There are far too many wonderful characters out there for me to possibly choose my top ten favs. I’m going to try to pick characters that inspire me to write or to make my own characters more complex.
1) Buffy the Vampire Slayer – Buffy Summers is a study in the importance of characters being allowed to be both tough and girly. No one doubts that Buffy can kick ass, but her interest in traditionally “feminine” things like hair, makeup, and boys don’t make her any less of a badass, or any less of an interesting character. But I don’t just love Buffy because she wears pink. She also had this gravitas that says “I’m the girl who’s gonna save the world, and I’m the only one who can do it.” I love her sacrifice and her ability to drop a terrible pun in the face of certain doom.
2) Katara from Avatar: the Last Airbender – I could write a dissertation on the importance of Katara of the Southern Water Tribe, but I’ll try to keep this brief. She’s one of my favorite characters of all time for turning the girl-healer trope on its head. Back in the day, it was common for fantasy stories to have a band of male fighters and then one girl . . . who was the mage/healer. Thankfully, we’re putting those days behind us. Katara starts as a fighter, and then becomes both a healer AND an even better fighter. Also, in a later episode, she teaches us that it’s okay to not forgive people, and I can’t even express how important it is that a fourteen-year-old girl in a kid’s show delivered that message.
3) Zuko from A:TLA – hands down, the greatest villain-to-hero redemption arc of all time, exquisitely crafted over the course of three entire seasons, from the very first episode to the finale, with just the right amount of story. It didn’t steal focus from the main narrative or overshadow the main character. Zuko is proof that side characters are as important to world building as the world itself, that family isn’t always blood, and that it’s important to examine why you want the things that you think you want.
4) Toph from A:TLA – You can probably guess at this point what my favorite show is. Ah, Toph. What can I even say about Toph? I feel like Toph is the girl character who’s easy to like, because she’s a snark master and has more masculine-coded attributes, unlike Katara, but as much as I’ve raved about traditional girly-girls, I gotta give a shout-out to Toph, one tough twelve-year-old who helped save the world and did it while coated in a “healthy layer of Earth.” And, most importantly, she did it with a disability: she’s blind. Not only was she one of many important disabled characters on the show, but she was never defined by her disability, she didn’t “overcome” it, she wasn’t particularly inspirational, and she wasn’t shy about bringing it up.
5) Uncle Iroh from A:TLA – So I realize at this point that this list is being dominated by Avatar but this is the last one, I swear. Uncle Iroh was a popular character with just about everyone who watched the show. He was a quintessential wise old man with a dash of Gandalf’s badass power and Mr. Miyagi’s skill. He was also wholly unique, a much-needed father figure in a show inundated with lost children, and utterly heartbreaking. But in a good way, I swear.
6) The Cabbage Merchant – Just kidding.
6) Ella from Ella Enchanted – Ella was the first fictional character I really fell in love with. I love her spirit and her bravery and how weak and self-centered she was at times, but also totally willing to give up everything when it mattered. She was enduring, as was her story. I already have a couple of literary tattoos, but I definitely plan to quote her at some point. She had a lot of shining moments.
7) Harry Potter from Harry Potter – It shocks me that most of the world is a Potterhead, and yet if you ask people who their favorite character is, not that many choose the eponymous Boy Who Lived. I loved Harry from the moment I cracked the spine on the Philosopher’s Stone (AKA the Sorcerer’s Stone.) It wasn’t just the Wizarding World that sucked me in. I loved experiencing it through the eyes of an abused little boy who escaped neglect and found magic, friendship, and bravery beyond compare. Even when he grew up, he never failed to be a character I wanted to be with until the bitter end.
8) Jim Moriarty from BBC Sherlock – I went through a down-and-dirty Sherlock phase, and I attribute a lot of my growth as a writer in the past few years to my participation in that fandom. And Moriarty was a big source of inspiration for me. I doubt there will ever be another character with about thirty minutes of screen time who affected me as thoroughly and deeply as this one, to the point where when I think of him, I still smell chlorine from the pool scene where he was introduced. And I wasn’t even there.
9) Shiro from Voltron: Legendary Defender – SPACE DAD! No, but seriously, Shiro is a great character. I liked him in the 1980s Voltron anime, but the new Netflix reboot breathed life into this very stressed single father and his four space children. Plus, he’s a Dorito of Chris Evans proportions, and a woman needs some imaginary eye candy every now and then. If you understood any of this, you spend too much time on tumblr.
10) Jessica Jones from Jessica Jones – She’s a piece of shit, in her own words, and I love her for it. There’s something really enjoyable about a character who makes no effort to be a good person, at least by traditional standards. She does the right thing and fights the bad guy, but ask her for a dollar on the street, and she’ll tell you where you can shove it.
Quinn Anderson is an alumna of the University of Dublin in Ireland and has a master’s degree in psychology. She wrote her dissertation on sexuality in popular literature and continues to explore evolving themes in erotica in her professional life.
A nerd extraordinaire, she was raised on an unhealthy diet of video games, anime, pop culture, and comics from infancy. She stays true to her nerd roots in writing and in life and frequently draws inspiration from her many fandoms, which include Sherlock, Harry Potter, Supernatural, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Buffy, Marvel, and more. You will often find her interacting with fellow fans online and offline via conventions and tumblr, and she is happy to talk about anything from nerd life to writing tips. She has attended conventions on three separate continents and now considers herself a career geek. She advises anyone who attends pop culture events in the UK to watch out for Weeping Angels, as they are everywhere.
Her favorite television show is Avatar: the Last Airbender, her favorite film is Tangled, and her favorite book is Ella Enchanted. She can often be spotted at conventions, comic shops, and midnight book releases. If you're at an event, and you see a 6'2'' redhead wandering around with a vague look on her face, that's probably her. Her favorite authors include J.K. Rowling, Gail Carson Levine, Libba Bray, and Tamora Pierce. When she's not writing, she enjoys traveling, cooking, spending too much time on the internet, screwing the rules, finding the Master Sword, guided falling, consulting for the NYPD, guarding the galaxy, boldly going, and catching 'em all.
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To celebrate the release of Hotline, one lucky winner will receive $10 in Riptide credit! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on November 5, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!