Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy: Rebel Elite

The Rebel Elite Holiday Hop continues with author, Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy.

ATW: Tell us a little about yourself.

Lee Ann: I’m a romance author who does a little substitute teaching on the side, married with three kids and one dog.

ATW: When did you begin writing? 

Lee Ann: I started writing stories as soon as I could hold a pencil in my hand, scribbled through high school and into college. In college I was on the campus paper staff and an editor for the literary magazine. I made history because I qualified for the honor societies in both English and social sciences, at the time something no other student had managed at my campus.

ATW: Can you tell us about your most recent publication? 

Lee Ann: My most recent is a short Christmas piece for Rebel Ink Press, Home Fires of Christmas. It’s also my last release in 2012 and my 12th this year.

ATW: How did you get the idea for the book?

Lee Ann: I imagined how it would feel to be the wife of a rock star who got left behind to keep the home fires burning, how lonely and sad. And I realized it could either be something that reaffirmed their love or destroyed it.

ATW: What was the most challenging aspect of writing your novel? 

Lee Ann: Marketing it, reaching readers.

ATW: Which authors have inspired your writing? 

Lee Ann: I’m an eclectic reader so there are many – everyone from Margaret Mitchell (Gone With The Wind was the first romance I ever read while I was still in grade school) to Frank McCourt to Deborah Smith and Nora Roberts to some of my fellow Rebel authors. 

ATW: What projects are you currently working on? 

Lee Ann: I’m currently working on a historical romance set just after the Armistace in 1918. No title yet but the next project after this one will be The Undertaker’s Wife – sometimes I start with a title, sometimes not.

If you're interested in finding out more about Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy, please visit the following links:

Twitter: leeannwriter
Facebook: From Sweet to Heat: The Romance of Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy 
Website/blog: http://leeannsontheimermurphywriterauthor.blogpspot.com
Blog: Rebel Writer: Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy http://leeannsontheimermurphy.blogspot.com
Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Lee-Ann-Sontheimer-Murphy/e/B004JPBM6I
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/list/4543214.Lee_Ann_Sontheimer_Murphy
TRR/Manic: http://www.goodreads.com/author/list/4543214.Lee_Ann_Sontheimer_Murphy


Shane promised he’d be home so she waited up wrapped in her favorite pine green robe he bought last Christmas, sipping hot chocolate and listening to Christmas carols on the stereo until she couldn’t push the tears away any longer. The old black rotary phone on the end table mocked her with silence as Lela surrendered to the sorrow she’d ignored for hours. When the grandfather clock chimed out the midnight hour, she realized her greatest fear must be reality. Shane wasn’t coming home in time for Christmas.

As she trudged upstairs in the huge old house, a Victorian beauty restored to the opulence of its youth, the stairs creaked beneath her light tread and she paused at the landing to stare north to see if she could spot Santa or Rudolph’s red nose, a habit from childhood. Lela hoped to see Shane heading her direction, headlights cruising down the street. All she saw, though, were the lights of the nearest communications tower and the lights of a lonely aircraft. Lela listened but couldn’t hear the distinctive growl of the tour bus’ engine, not even in the distance.

Just in case he made it after all, she’d left the Christmas tree lights plugged in and burning like a candle in the window, but in her heavy heart, Lela didn’t expect him. Shane wasn’t hers any longer – she shared him with the world. She’d married a young man with dreams, a guy with a voice people loved, one offering a potent combination of sweetness and sensuality. He could play a few guitar chords, enough to get by and look great on stage with a guitar in his hands. Shane’s first gigs were high school dances back when they were barely out of high school themselves. Then during college he played at a few frat parties then at a bar downtown where some guy from California heard him and liked the sound.

Everything happened fast after that and their lives took off like a rollercoaster. Life out on the road offered fun at first but when it lost the charm of something new, Shane bought the big old house in their hometown, had everything restored, and Lela stayed to supervise. Somehow she never went back on the road and Shane didn’t expect it.

“Keep the home fires burning for me, baby,” he told her every time he left.

At first she didn’t mind. Lela loved decorating the twelve room house, finding antiques and the right accents to make it into a home, their home, stamped with their style and personality. She enjoyed trying out new recipes to cook when Shane got back and baking the desserts he loved so much, but when his career really took off with a chart busting monster hit, he lived on the road and came home when he could, which wasn’t often. And Lela waited, sometimes patiently but most of all lonesome.

He still loves me, she thought as she curled up in bed, alone, her bare feet cold. She knew he did. Most nights Shane called her when the show ended and often phoned her throughout the day, quick little calls to tell her where he was or what went down around him. The florist’s van made frequent stops at their address delivering dozens of roses or special daisies or plants. Sometimes they marked an occasion – their first date, her birthday, but most of the time his cards were signed, Just because I love you, Shane.

Until now, he’d never missed Christmas at home. In past years Shane cleared his concert schedule to be back by mid-December and together they picked out a tree, brought it home, trimmed it, and went shopping arm in arm. Maybe because they grew up blue collar poor with moms who made ends meet with a lot of beans and meatloaf they gave generously. Family and friends always received beautiful gifts, things they wanted or needed, often things they’d never dreamed of owning. Shane and Lela also usually shopped for the local children’s home delivering a truckload of Hot Wheels race track sets, Barbie Doll houses, and board games, but this year, she’d done it alone, all of it.

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  1. Our reading taste matches - I never know what I'm going to pick up next - it's the 12 in 12 months and three kids that stuns me! Congratulations!!

  2. Thank you for letting us have such interesting feedback on Lee Ann's writing career. The excerpt is enticing and encourages further reading.
    An excellent and intelligent interview!

  3. Thank you, Donna and Marta for stopping by and leaving a comment. It's been a wonderful week of Rebels!


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