Tuesday, June 4, 2013


It is my pleasure to introduce the talented author Leona Pence today to tell us about her soon to be released novel, 

               Hemphill Towers.

 It's so nice to have you on my blog today, Leona. The little I've read about your upcoming novel sounds fascinating. A thrilling story filled with plot twists that weave through the lives of three friends as they find their perilous way to romance.
Why don't you tell us what prompted you to write the story and a little about yourself.

Well, I’m a widow with four children, twelve grandkids and two great-grandsons. I didn’t start writing until I lost my husband of forty-four years to lung cancer. The computer helped save my sanity. Life is filled with reading, writing, chatting, online pool, and being a Mentor in a free online writing course called f2k. (Fiction for 2000)
Now that I’m about to be a published author, boy have things changed. I’ve entered the confusing world of blogging, author pages, promos and marketing. It’s a bit overwhelming, but authors who have been there and done that are fountains of information, freely given. I’ve been welcomed into the MuseItUp family.
My romance novel, Hemphill Towers, started as fun between me and two online friends. We twisted our names, described a love interest, and projected ourselves back as younger career women. I was to take the information and write a short, funny story with us as the heroines. Once I started, words flowed and plot twists came in my dreams. Even after I finished it, publishing never entered my mind until friends and family kept after me.
Wow, I'm so glad your friends kept nagging you. Now readers will have the chance to read your new book. Congratulations, by the way, for the release and being welcomed to the MuseItUp family of staff, authors and great reads.
Will you tell the readers a little about the story. Whet their reading appitites a little.

This is a story of three women, best friends and executive co-workers at the JB Edwards  Agency, whose lives are turned upside down one fateful night while having dinner at an Italian restaurant.

Three women, three stories, separate yet intertwined.

Meet Stella Mason, who finally spikes her boss’s interest when he sees her in the restaurant for the first time as a woman of interest and invites the trio to his table.

Birdie Orrwell meets J.B.’s friend and client at the table, the debonair Federico Martinique of the Martinique Wineries, and he likes what he sees. Birdie is mesmerized by the man’s swarthy good looks.

Riley Saunders is told she will be in charge of the ad campaign for the Peterson Art Museum being built in Hemphill Towers. Leaving the restaurant, she literally falls into the lap of Dierk Rosenthal, a blond Adonis in a wheelchair, and later accepts a dinner  date.
 For the three friends, the road ahead is fraught with peril.
A past rape, a current forgery, a stalker sending expensive gifts, blackmail, a plan of murder and the Russian Mafia make for a dangerous, adventurous tale of romance and commitment.
Can the women survive the journey? Will they find the love they seek at the end of the road? Will they remain friends or be torn apart forever?
Oh my, talk about twists and turns, it sounds as if this story has a bit of everything. How wonderful. How about a little excerpt from the novel.
The girls followed their hostess through the rapidly filling restaurant to a table that they’d had the foresight to reserve. They were seated in a central part of the dining area which gave them a great view of those entering and leaving. They looked around and noticed the casual dress of many of the patrons.
“Stella, why don’t you remove that stuffy jacket for a change?” Riley taunted her friend.
“I will, as soon as Birdie gets rid of that prim braid.”
"Okay, let’s go to the ladies room and I'll do just that.” Birdie stood and accepted Stella’s challenge.
Riley waved them off and picked up a menu to look over while they were gone. She decided to order appetizers for all and motioned for the waitress. After choosing a sample platter of several delicious sounding Italian dishes, she relaxed and took in her surroundings.
Her eyes were drawn to a window table across the room. Riley recognized JB Edwards, but wasn't quite sure about the man seated with him. “Oh Lord, I hope Stella doesn’t freak out when she sees JB. She could go weak in the knees, or worse yet, refuse to eat.”
Stella and Birdie approached the table, both looked happy and carefree. Birdie's hair swung long and lovely behind her shoulders, and Stella, of course, was about to pop a button from the center of her blouse.
Just as Birdie started to sit, her eyes moved across the room and collided with the eyes of the most handsome man she’d ever seen. Time seemed to stand still.
Stella and Riley stared at Birdie wondering what the heck was wrong with her. Birdie finally broke free of the man’s mesmerizing gaze and hastily sat.
"Who is that man with JB Edwards?" Her hands touched her flushed cheeks.
Stella glanced their way. Her heart skipped a beat at seeing the object of her affection. "He’s a friend of JB’s, Federico Martinique of Martinique Wineries. We’ve done advertising for him. He loves good Italian cuisine and he’s probably trying out the new restaurant with JB for the same reasons we are." 
Across the room a similar conversation was taking place. "JB, Do you know who that vision of loveliness is at that table with those two other ladies?"
JB Edwards tried to look without appearing to be looking, but he recognized all three as his employees. He wasn’t surprised to see them gearing up for a new campaign, but even he was a bit taken aback by them in this setting. Stella Mason rarely ever let her guard down and Birdie Orwell looked so different that he almost didn’t recognize her.
"Well my friend,” he said. “I can tell you who they are, but I'm not sure which 'vision of loveliness’ you are referring too."
"That magnificent hair! That beautiful face! I must meet her!" exclaimed Federico.
JB called a waiter and whispered to him. The young man walked toward the ladies with his message.
“Excuse me, ladies, but the gentlemen at the window table request the honor of your company for dinner.”
Stella's heart fluttered at the thought of dining with her boss, but Birdie was so obviously smitten. “I don’t know, girls. What do you think?” Stella absently ran her fingers through her hair.
“Let’s go,” said Riley.
“I…I’m not sure I can.” Birdie’s eyes were downcast, her face still flushed.
Riley stood. “Let’s go! You big chickens. It’s time to live a little.”
I'm guessing this is when that fateful night started. What interesting plots you have in store for the three friends. I can't wait to read the novel. I understand the tentative release date is set for August of this year.
Hurry, August.
Please share a few links of where we can find more about you.
Please welcome Leona to the world of publishing. Leave a comment. We'd so love to hear from you.




  1. Nice interview Leona. Congrats on your book. It sounds wonderful.


  2. Thanks, Patricia, I can't wait until its release date. I'm glad you stopped by.

  3. Thank you Lorrie for hosting me on your wonderful blog.

    1. The pleasure is mine, Leona. I hope you return when your book is released. I can't wait.

  4. I had the pleasure of watching this story unfold, I am one of the family members who urged her to have it published. When it is released and you get to enjoy it you will see why I am so proud of Leona and her writing.

  5. Thanks Barb! I love my family cheerleaders.

  6. Replies
    1. Thank you very much for your comment. I appreciate you stopping by to read my post.

  7. One of my favorite aspects of The Hemphill Towers is the friendship between the three women. Knowing the background story between you and your friends, makes that aspect even more special. I can't wait until the book is released and I can get a copy for my Kindle. :)

  8. Thanks, Von, I'll be glad when you can get that copy too.

  9. What a great extract, Leona! I can't wait to read on. Am looking forward to your release date!

    1. Thanks, Helen, I'm glad you stopped by. I can't wait for my release date.

  10. Wow! Sounds great. Congrats Leona, and thanks for sharing Lorrie!

    1. Thanks, Mary, I love a good, Wow.

      Glad you stopped by.

  11. I love sharing novels with readers, Mary and All. I can't wait for the release of this one either. Not to hurry my old age along, but 'hurry August' so we can get our hands on this one.

  12. Hey, ladies! It's great to see you both here! Leona, many congrats on the upcoming release of Hemphill Towers! I can't wait to read it come August!

    1. Thanks, Lauren, good to see you too. I can't wait for you to read it.

  13. What a great interview, and what an intriguing set of protagonists. Now I've had a glimpse of these and the elements of the plot I can't wait to see how they all weave between each other and what outcomes are produced by the resulting dynamics. I'm very excited at the prospect of starting the f2k course tomorrow and could not wish for a better mentor than Leona. Thank you for sharing this with us, Lorrie.

    1. Thank you, Kev, I'm glad you enjoyed the interview. Looking forward to you being in my classroom too. Your humor will liven it up.

  14. Joyce Hertzoff/MumJune 4, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    Leo, your book sounds intriguing.

    Great interview.


  15. Thanks, Mum, can't wait for you to read it.

    Are you excited about this session of F2K? I like the smaller classrooms, mine has sixteen as of this morning.

    Thanks for stopping by.