Monday, 4 May 2015

'Men for Hire' anthology author interview

For the next few months I am featuring each of the authors in Luminosity’s anthology – ‘Men for Hire’. We start off with the lovely Michelle Roth….

Thank you, Jen. It’s wonderful to be accepted into this anthology. I'm a novelist from the Great White North (Toronto, ON). When I'm not disappearing into foreign lands, or making two perfect strangers fall in love, I'm probably curled up somewhere with a glass of wine and a good book.

In my spare time I'm typically hanging out with my awesome hubby and our two equally awesome cats. I love taking road trips to nowhere in particular, cooking elaborate meals then making other people do the dishes, and being nerdy on the internet.

Your Writing

The ‘Men for Hire’ anthology has a specific theme. That of
a firm in London run by Jennifer Archer offering ‘men for hire’ to do any job from dog walking, house sitting, DIY, chauffeuring, etc…. How did you find this theme easy (or hard) to work with?

The location was particularly difficult for me, being an American.  Though we're all speaking English, it's spoken in such a different way!  I found myself Googling a lot of different things like, “Do they call it a dresser in the UK?”

(haha! You did very well, Michelle. The answer is, “Yes, we do call it a dresser over here!)

Finding the appropriate small village within a reasonable distance from London was tough, too. I did a lot of street view on Google Maps. Really, the whole anglicizing process was the most difficult part of the story. I didn't want to stick out like a sore thumb as the “American Broad” trying to write a novel about a place she's never been to.

(I Know what you mean as I have the same problem in the other direction when I have stories for American/Canadian publishers).

This is Luminosity’s first anthology. Have you had any short stories accepted in an anthology before and tell us the title of your story in the Men for Hire anthology.

No. I was totally thrilled to be a part of this anthology. This is a completely new experience for me. My story is entitled Calculated Risk.

 ‘Men for Hire’ is contemporary MF/MFM stories (there will be a follow up anthology with MM stories later on). What other genres do you normally write?

So far it's strictly been MF Contemporary for me, with the exception of my latest full length novel. I dipped my toe into the paranormal there. It was actually pretty fun!

The stories in the anthology are all between 8-12,000 words. What is good (or hard) about writing a short story?

I was worried that I couldn't plausibly write a situation where two normal people would have sex in that short amount of words. Plus it needed to be GOOD sex, too.

As it turns out, it actually flowed pretty well. I found that I didn't add a lot of useless detail. I didn't have words to waste, so I focused on making every word meaningful. It was a great writing exercise that I enjoyed immensely!

(I found the same thing the first time I wrote a short story! J)

Tell us about the characters in your story?

Ian Starling is a handyman in his late twenties. His sandy brown hair is curly and streaked blond like he's been in the sun too often. He has gorgeous brown eyes, full lips and some really killer dimples.

Stella Whitman is a thirty-something, curvy red head with green-grey eyes. She's an artist so her appearance is beautifully bohemian. More often than not, she dresses for comfort but still manages to look beautiful.

Give us the blurb for ‘Calculated Risk’

Stella Whitman has inherited her mother's country home. When she finds it in utter disrepair, her cousin suggests that she call Men for Hire in search of a handy man. When he arrives, She's somewhat shocked to find that his deep brown eyes and rugged good looks are giving her some very inappropriate thoughts.

Despite his instant attraction to Stella, Ian Starling has convinced himself that they need to keep things strictly professional. He's been burnt before and has vowed never again. It becomes increasingly more difficult as he gets to know her, though. Then one rainy night changes everything...

About You

Although Luminosity Publishing is based in the UK, we have authors from several different countries in this anthology. Which country are you from (and name of county/state). Did you grow up there?

Let's see. I'm from all over the place. I was born in Ceiba, Puerto Rico. I moved to the US mainland as a child. I spent thirty years in Florida then moved to Los Angeles. This past winter we packed up our things and moved back east. I'm currently living in Ontario, Canada.
(How fascinating!)

When was your first book published and with whom?

My first book was published through Siren Publishing in May 2014. Just a Taste was something I decided to write for fun. I wasn't even sure I was going to finish a book and then two months after I started writing it, I had an offer to publish!

Give one thing about yourself that you would like to change?

I'm a little bit of a Type A personality. I'm usually quick to respond, early to appointments, and singly driven to do everything as soon as it's asked of me. In situations where that's not entirely necessary, I know it's gotta be annoying to deal with. I try to tone it down with little success.

Name three people you would like to be shipwrecked with (and why)?

Let's see. The guy from Survivor Man because he knows everything. My hubs, because I'd miss him too much otherwise. Then also my best friend, Angela because I'd need someone to get into mischief with.

What’s the strangest (bravest, funniest etc) thing you’ve ever done?

For the past decade, every four or five years I seem to just impulsively move to a new random location that I've never been to. First, it was Orlando, FL which was pretty tame, looking back. Then Los Angeles, California. This most recent move was to Toronto, Canada. Maybe next time I'll make that big leap across the ocean somewhere. Who knows?

(Hey, anytime you want to come and join us in the UK, you are welcome!)

Please give links of how fans can find you on the internet/buy your books.

Follow me on Twitter: @mroth_author

My books are available at:

There are links to all of the places they're sold on that page. Most are available on Amazon, Nook, Google Play, Kobo and various other book sellers.

Thank you for a great interview, Michelle. Next month I am talking to another member of the anthology, Tina Donahue.


  1. Thanks for having me. This was a blast. I fully intend to make it over to the UK at some point. Maybe not to live but certainly to visit!

  2. Enjoyed the interview! Looking forward to reading Michelle's story!

    1. Thanks, Angie. Tina will be answering the same questions next month, but with very different answers!

  3. Fabulous post, Michele and Jennifer. We absolutely loved 'Calculated Risk,' your story for the anthology.