Sophia Johnson Interview!

The Zebra Blog Party is still going strong and today I welcome the lovely Sophia Johnson! 

Please tell us about your books.always-mine.gif
The books we’re talking about today are from the Blackthorn Castle Trilogy.
Always Mine began the tales and is a time travel with a twist.
A mystic calls a woman’s soul back from modern days to relive her life as Brianna Sinclair, a ward of William the Conqueror. Only her soul travels back, so it was a lot of fun to write.  Can you imagine waking up after lightning has knocked you off your feet and you’ve hit your head, only to find yourself in medieval times surrounded by strange things? And to look at your arms and legs and realize they’re not the same?  Oh, yeah. It’s nice to see you’re nice and firm, no cellulite, but your body is totally unfamiliar to you? Hm. Come to think of it, I could stand that!

What inspired the story?
What inspired the story? My Dad. One day, when I was very small, he asked me what I’d think if I went to sleep that night and woke up the next morning a totally different girl.  A different body.  Different skin.  In a completely strange place.  I used to daydream about things like that. His question has been the catalyst of every book I’ve written.

Which of your characters is most like you?
Most like me? Really? Huh! None of them. My characters are all women that I’d like to be. Strong. Decisive. Fascinating. Brave. You think of a great adjective, and that’s how I’d like to be.  

Which of your characters would you like to switch places with? For how long?  What would you do?
risk-everything.jpgWhat’s an easy one.  Meghan in Risk Everything.  I’d love to bedevil Rolf and set him on his ears. Now if I were Meghan, I’d do exactly what she did. Flipped him off and escaped back to Blackthorn and made him grovel his knees off before I’d marry him. Only I’d wait for the baby to cry before I’d say “I do.”

What is your favorite part of being a writer?  Least favorite?
I love preparing for a new story. Picking out my characters, deciding what they look like, their personalities, where they live, their back-story and finding the perfect name for the person I have in mind. Then I’d hunt through pictures until I found someone who resembles them. The whole process of starting a tale is fun for me. 

My least favorite? *snort* Waiting for someone to buy it, of course.  No one likes rejection, and writer’s take it personally…like the editor had said something terrible about someone you love. 

Is there anything you would like to write, but haven’t? For example, any other genre you’d like to try?
Not genre. I want to eventually write the Mystic Bleddyn’s story. This will be a hard tale to tell because he’s immortal. I want him to have his happily-ever-after story with the love his life, Alana.

Who has inspired you as a writer?
Many wonderful authors. Teresa Medeiros, Julie Garwood, Virginia Henley, Sue-Ellen Welfonder, Elizabeth Lowell, Johanna Lindsey, Iris Johansen… 

What would you like to tell aspiring writers?
People will get tired of me saying this, but I’d tell them to take my favorite quote and paste it to their pc screen:  “You have to have confidence in your ability and then be tough enough to follow through,” by Rosalyn Carter.   It’s what gets you through the rejections and the waiting. midnights-bride-larger.jpg

Describe yourself in 3 words.
Quiet.  Loving.  A dreamer. 

If you could save one book from destruction, what would it be?
Jane Eyre 

What is next for you?
I’m writing a four volume series about the people connected to Raptor Castle on the southern borders of Scotland, twelfth century.  I’ve finished the first tale and am near done with the second.  Can’t wait to start the third and fourth! 

Is there anything you’d like to ask readers?
When you pick up a historical romance novel, do you want to read a book about medieval times written as a “modern-voiced” historical? Very little, if any, dialect? 

Or, do you want to get a flavor of the hero or heroine’s ancestry in their dialogs and a hint of the language of the day?  A frazzled mind wants to know! 

Thank you Sophia for that wonderful interview! 

You can learn more about Sophia and her books by visiting her website at: 

So, readers, how about answering Sophia’s questions… 

Remember, every comment left this month is an entry in this month’s great giveaway…details here…comment as often as you like throughout the month!


25 Responses to Sophia Johnson Interview!

  1. Helen says:

    Great interview Ladies these books sound fantastic some more to add to my must get list.
    As for the question I like to be there with them so their dialogue and ancestary is great for me I love a book that takes me to where the Hero and Heroine are.
    Have Fun

  2. Tamsyn Takamiya says:

    Why Jane Eyre?

  3. Danny says:

    Great interview. Ladies, I can highly recommend Sophia’s books, they are some of the best medievals I have read in long time.

    I really don’t like modern voiced historical, because they loose the feeling of the time period they are set in

  4. brownone says:

    Great interview!
    To answer the question, I don’t think I care for modern voiced historicals myself. For me, it’s kinda distracting. (I tend to overthink when I am reading….like man, they must have smelled bad because in those times people hardly bathed).

  5. Minna says:

    I don’t care for modern voiced historicals, either.

  6. Billie Jo says:

    HI Sophia!

    I like the voices of old. They should go with the characters setting. I am not picky about my historicals being correct but do enjoy learning some of the time era that it is placed in.

    Billie Jo

  7. ThatBrunette says:

    Yea! Another Jane Eyre fan! Have you read THE EYRE AFFAIR by Jasper Fforde? A must read for Jane fans.

    I was intrigued by your answer to “Which of your characters is most like you?”. Just by completing a book, you can be described as one of your ‘great adjectives’

    As for historicals. I like a little local flavor but, too much makes it seem like a foreign language. Not only has the vocabulary changed in the past 1000 years, so has the sentence structure. Look at some of the speeches in Jane Eyre. We don’t speak that goodly no more.

  8. Jane says:

    I prefer a modern voiced historical with very little dialect because it’s easier to read and understand. I know it’s not authentic, but it makes the book more receptive to the reader.

  9. Fedora says:

    Hi, Sophia! Thanks for the great interview–I think it’s neat how your dad’s question has inspired so much of your work since then! How amazing to know that one’s words can have such a long-reaching impact!

    As for voice in historicals, I agree with ThatBrunette–I like a bit of “local”/timely flavor, but not so much that I can’t understand it readily. I guess I’m just a wee bit slow that way 😉

  10. JSL says:

    I’m with Jane more on this one. I don’t really enjoy reading Medieval books – possibly because the dialogue is too distracting. We’re not used to it, and sometimes authors make it a bit too clunky for my tastes. I do appreciate authenticism in dialect but only if it flows well. And that goes for every genre.
    ThatBrunette – the end of your comment cracked me up. I used to antagonize my sister by saying “I drive *real good* right?” 😀 Double negatives really bother me too.

  11. Sophia,
    As a Medieval writer, I’m taking notes here. Me, personally, I like a wee bit of brogue. I feel it puts the reader in the time and place, but also agree a little goes a long way.

    I confess the first time I picked up Hannah Howell, I struggled initially to get through the dialect, but once I got used to it, I absolutely loved her voice. She is one of my all time favorite writers and I never miss any of her books.
    Enjoy the rest of your day! 🙂


  12. peggy says:

    historical it makes story seem more real to me

  13. Virginia H. says:

    Great interview, I guess you could say I like to get a little of the dialogue of the times, but not to much, it makes the book more real to me. If it has to much of the dialogue then it makes the book harder to read to me. A little goes a long way.

  14. Cherie J says:

    Great interview! I want to savor the time period so I feel dialect is important to include.

  15. Jen H says:

    What a great interview. I must say your inspiring authors are some of my favs. I’ve been reading Lindsay and Johansen for years! Not to mention the others. Thanks for sharing with us all! Jen 🙂

  16. Pam P says:

    I like a bit of dialect, but not too much where it can get a bit confusing and pull you out of reading, wondering what was said, though you do tend to pick it up easier if you read a lot of them.

  17. Amelia says:

    Great interview! I haven’t read any of Sophia’s books. I guess for me I would like to get a flavor of the hero or heroine’s ancestry in their dialogs.

  18. tasha t says:

    nice interview!!!!!love your book covres

  19. Thank you so much for the answers to my question and the comments. This was a fun interview, so Jennifer gets credit for that. It’s good to know so many of you are reading tand following through with your posting.

    Now, back to finishing another tale…

  20. Jennifer Y says:

    Thanks everyone for stopping by!

    And thanks again Sophia! Sorry I wasn’t around yesterday…I am pretty sick 😦 Bad hostess I know, but I am going to try to be better.

  21. Maureen says:

    I don’t mind a little dialect but if it’s hard to read then it gets in the way of the story. I don’t like modern phrases in historicals but other than that I’m not too picky.

  22. Glenna Day says:

    I like a little of the historical dialect just not too much of it. 80% modern and 20% historical maybe? LOL I guess it depends on the story line and what is happening in the story.

  23. Sue A. says:

    Great interview! I have a hard time reading a book using a heavy dialect, so I’m not a fan of going too authentic. And it’s difficult to follow a story if I have to look the words in a foreign language dictionary all the time.

  24. Cindi Hoppes says:

    I loved this author interview! I like to here a somewhat correct dialect. Maybe, with names or simple phrases. Thanks for asking…..Cindi

  25. Nathalie says:

    The language of the day can be hard to understand, but a word or two can be a nice touch.

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