Thursday, October 30, 2014

An Interview with the Protagonist of Arrowstar

Talk Show Interview with Star Lance

The host of the radio show, “Lou Grant’s Bookshelf” interviews antiques store owner and historical novelist, Star Lance from Mineral City, Arizona.

Host:  Welcome to “The Bookshelf,” Ms Lance

Star:  Thank you for inviting me, and please call me Star.

Host: I understand you have just released a new historical novel. Would you tell our listeners a little bit about it.

Star:  Yes, my second historical novel, The Storm Women just launched in October. This novel further unravels the mystery of why there are no men buried in the Storm family’s cemetery plot up behind the church in Mineral City, Arizona. The women buried there have fascinating histories, and this novel picks up each of their lives beginning with Margaretta Storm way back in 1857 San Francisco. It also explores the beginnings of rock & roll in 1950’s Los Angeles and brings each of the women’s lives into sharp focus. Readers will learn what it’s like to travel from San Francisco, California to Mineral City, Arizona by stagecoach. In addition, they get to attend a burlesque show in Tombstone and see the ghost town of Pearl come back to life.

Host: What drew you to the town of Mineral City when you were considering moving out West and where exactly is Mineral City?

Star: I saw an ad in the back of Women of the West magazine encouraging tourists to visit the old Weaver Gold Mine in Mineral City. It had just re-opened after a small vein of gold was discovered in what was thought to be a worked-out mine. For some reason that little ad stuck in my head. Maybe it was the idea of someone striking it rich by unexpectedly finding gold that drew my interest. Anyway, I started keeping an eye out for any other news about this small western town. And what was your second question?

Host:  Where is Mineral City located in Arizona?

Star:  Oh yes, it’s just a bit south and about 75 or 80 miles east of Tucson, not too far from the town of Safford and smack in the middle of horse and cattle ranchland.

Host: Why did you decide to buy the contents of the Bobby Flint estate for your antique store?

Star: When the following month’s issue of Women of the West arrived, I naturally looked to see if that ad was still running. When I found it, I noticed a smaller ad next to it advertising an estate sale along with a name and number to call.  After talking to the person who was managing the sale, I really got the itch to follow a dream my husband Max and I had talked about for years.

Host: And that dream was?

Star:  Our dream was to retire to some small town out west and open an antique store to keep ourselves busy. I was already working part time restoring items for an antiques dealer, so I knew a little bit about the business. To pursue that dream on my own following Max’s death seemed like a good way to recover from the debilitating grief I was experiencing.

Host:  What inspired you to write The Storm Women and A Train Robber’s Tale?

Star: A friend of mine suggested I make provenance tags for some of my antiques and that got me back into writing after years of not pursuing the career in writing I’d planned when I graduated from Indiana University. I soon realized that Arrowstar, my antiques store wasn’t going to make it if I didn’t supplement its income. My very good friend Kat Abbi suggested I write a book about Bobby Flint to make up for the store’s shortfall. I was extremely lucky to have my first book picked up by a publisher. Actually, I owe a great deal to my agent and another friend who referred me to him.

Host: What are you writing now that The Storm Women is finished?

Star:  I’m thinking of writing about some of the famous people who have lived in the area around Mineral City like Tom Mix for instance to name just one.

Host: I’m sure our listeners will be eagerly awaiting its publication. It’s been a delight having you on our show. Come back again when you finish the next book.

Star: It’s been my pleasure to be here, and I’ll definitely be back to talk about my next book. Thank you for the invitation!

Host: And that’s “Bookshelf” for today. This is your host Lou Grant wishing you as always: a good book, a comfortable chair and a radio to keep you company.

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