Yesterday I introduced you to Victoria Pinder (link), one of my roommates for Barbara Vey's Reader Appreciation Weekend (link). Today I introduce you to my other roommate, Tess McFionn:
Tessa McFionn has called Southern California home for most of her life, growing up in San Diego and attending college in Orange County, only to return to San Diego to work as a teacher. When not writing, she can be found at Disneyland with her husband, as well as family, friends or anyone who wants to play at the Happiest Place on Earth. A proud parent of a precocious cat and two still living house plants, she also enjoys hockey, reading and playing Words With Friends to keep her vocabulary sharp.
Kim: San Diego - home of Comic Con and Navy SEALs! What is your favorite sight, sound, and smell?
Tessa: Comic Con and the SEALs. Too funny. Yeah, I've been involved with the Con for many years now and actually do know a couple of former SEALs, thanks to my hubby. Wow. My favorites, huh? Sight would have to be the glorious sunsets we get here so often. I love to see the sun over the water, it is just beyond words. And even though I'm by nobody's stretch of the imagination a beach girl (I look like a ghost - thank you to my 75% Irish and 20% Swedish blood - the 5% St. Regis Mohawk just wasn't enough to give me any coloring), but I just love the sound and the smell of the ocean. I even have a recording of the crashing waves on my phone if I get lonely. Whenever I smell the ocean, all I can think of Coppertone suntan lotion. LOL! It's true! Blame it on summers during high school.
Kim: I am intimately familiar with Florida's Happiest Place on Earth, Disney World! What is your favorite ride at Disneyland?
Tessa: Awww. I'm so jealous. My bucket list is to hit all the Disney parks. So far, I've only been to Disneyland and California Adventure, but it's a start. Dang, favorite ride. That is really tough, but I'd have to go with the Haunted Mansion for the main park and the Tower of Terror in California Adventure. Hubby and I have annual passports so we're there usually once a month.
Kim: Thank you for teaching! What have you learned from the classroom that you can apply to your second career in romance writing? What are your students reading for pleasure?
Tessa: Well, thank you. It's quite a thankless job, but I just love it. As for what I've learned...PERSEVERE!! I tell my students every day that if you want to succeed, you have to be willing to work for it. Nothing worthwhile is easy. Also, I tend to find "teachable moments," those little surprises that lead to something great, and that's what I feel this second career is. Wow. My students read everything! They're high school students, with an artistic bent, so you can see kids with the typical "The Fault in Our Stars" and the next kid is reading manga. They are really amazing that way.
Kim: Tell us about the SPIRIT FALL - what inspired it?
Tessa: Damn. Well, that has a two-fold beginning. The first was my own moment of looking over that ledge. I'm being completely honest. I was not in a really good point in my own head and was crossing Laurel Street bridge, where we find our heroine, and I stopped and looked over the edge. Then, this idea just sprang into my mind and when I got home, I started writing. And writing and writing and writing. As for my hero, I have just always loved the idea of a hero, someone who sweeps in and saves the day. So, I decided to create my own imaginary savior.
Kim: What's next for Tessa McFionn?
Tessa: What's next? Well, I have my second installment done and the third is in the works. But I tend to be fickle with my muse. He's been telling me I need to branch out, so I have a high fantasy and a sci-fi on my To Be Finished list as well. I figure I'll keep telling the stories as long as the voices in my head have their say in the matter.
Mahalo, Tessa, for joining us today! Funny that I'll be bunking with two teachers - Tessa and Victoria - oh, I'll share the nitty gritty after the weekend! Meanwhile, I am giving away a digital copy of SPIRIT FALL to one randomly selected commenter:
After a year-long depression following the murder of her fiancé, Siobhan Whelan stands on a bridge, tormented by unending nightmares, one step away from jumping. Only the kindness of a seductive stranger brings her back down to earth. But the handsome stranger is more than meets the eye, and soon Voni finds herself thrust into a strange new world.
For seven hundred years, Malakai Vadim has shouldered the mantle of Guardian Warrior. But a chance encounter with the tormented beauty brings him face to face with his destiny. His nemesis, Dmitrius Konstantin, has been feeding Voni’s grief through nightmares, wanting her and her untapped powers for his own. As Kai learns of his foe’s deadly interest, he must solve the riddle of Voni’s tortured dreams while holding his growing desire for her at bay.
Too bad the enemy Rogue Warriors have other plans. Now, along with fellow Guardian Eamon McClearon, Kai must venture into the In-Between, the enemy’s powerbase, to save her soul as well as his own. But can his love be strong enough to save them both?
To enter the giveaway,
1. Have you visited any of the Disney parks? My family has visited Disney in Florida, France, and Japan. And the Disney resort in Hawaii!
2. Comments are open through Saturday, February 21, 10 pm in Baltimore.
3. I'll post the winner on Sunday, February 22.
Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City
|Disney's Aulani Resort in Ko Olina, Hawaii|