A Character Interview with Alexandra Galloway from POWER PLAY plus a conversation with author L. Anne Carrington!

Today we're bringing something different to Writing in the Modern Age in the form of a character interview.  These character interviews, now and in the future, should prove to be very enlightening for all of us. 

We have the pleasure of meeting Alexandra Galloway, a character from Power Play. 
We'll get a chance to talk to the author, L. Anne Carrington, in a bit, but now we have on the stage...Alex! 

Marie Lavender:  Hello, Alexandra.  Please have a seat.

Character Alexandra Galloway:  Thank you.  It's a pleasure to be here. 
Marie:  We're going to start out with some simple questions, okay? 

Alex:  All right.
Marie:  So, what is your occupation? Are you any good at it?  Do you like it?
Alex:  I’m a professional hockey player for the American Hockey Conference’s (AHC) Pittsburgh Rebels. I was spotted by Rebels captain Troy Talmadge -who’s also my mentor-during my days as an actress when I played a small part in the movie Vancouver Venus as the team member scoring an important game’s winning goal. My on-ice talent impressed Troy enough to have me signed by his agent, Glenn Collins. The original idea was to get me into the Women’s Hockey League, but Glenn thought I’d make more of an impact as the American Hockey Conference’s first female in an all-male league.  
I wasn’t sure at first if I enjoyed being part of the AHC as its sole woman player, but making friends among my teammates-Davy St. Cloud is my best friend-Troy’s never-ending support and guidance, and my amazing fan following made playing for the Rebels one of the most exciting times of my life. 
Marie: That's great!
So, what is your family like? 
Alex:  I’m an only child. My father, Quinn 'Scot’ Galloway, was born in Scotland and supported us as a groundskeeper and laborer, sometimes working three jobs at a time to keep the household going and pay for all my lessons. He died of a massive stroke when I was eighteen, leaving a life insurance policy that paid for my move to New York from Morgantown, West Virginia to pursue an acting career and supported me in addition to occasional acting gigs, none of which got me anywhere until Vancouver Venus.
My mother, Susan, abandoned us when I was only three months old. Papa never talked about her much, but people who knew her said she was immature and irresponsible for her age, not good traits for a parent. I never met her, but saw photos when I cleaned the last place Papa and I lived following his death and noticed I’d inherited her violet eyes.

Marie:  I see. 

What did your childhood home look like? 

Alex:  Papa and I moved a lot. Some houses we rented looked like barracks-like barns while others were splendid. Times were tough, but Papa made sure we had necessities such as food and clothes. I didn’t have a lot of nice things like my school classmates, but loved and admired Papa for working hard so I could have acting, singing, archery, and dancing lessons in addition to playing hockey.  

Marie:  All right. 
So, do you have any hobbies now? What do you enjoy doing? 
Alex:  When it’s not game night, I’m not at practices, or taking part in charity appearances with Rebels teammates, I enjoy researching my Scottish heritage and read a lot of books. Troy recently got me into World War II stuff and influenced me to find out more about his Atlantic Canadian roots-he’s from Nova Scotia-and Davy plays a big part in me collecting British artifacts since he sends things while staying in London with his parents each summer. Byron, Brady and I attend church Sunday mornings before practice in whatever town the Rebels happen to be playing that night. 
I speak three other languages in addition to English: Czech, German, and French, so I know exactly when Greise Faust and Troy curse in other languages and Jax Ivanka’s his dirty old man self. All three think they’re slick, but I know otherwise. I also learned American Sign Language as part of gaining versatility as an actress; while of little use then, it paid off when I taught Brian Donahue. He’s partially deaf from being injured in a Texas oil rig explosion where he worked before going into professional hockey. He’s a great lip reader but his sign language skills were almost nonexistent. Brian and I became good friends as result of me teaching him ASL; he’s the big brother I never had.

Marie:  Okay.


So, what is your greatest dream, Alex?


Alex: To help my team win another Princeton Trophy! Aside from that, I’d like to marry and have children someday with the right man, whom, by the way, I have yet to meet.


Marie:  I can certainly respect that!


Let's try something else. 


What kind of person do you wish you could be? What is stopping you?  

Alex:  I’m happy with the person I am, thanks to Papa. He prepared me well for life’s ups and downs and said I could achieve anything I wanted by putting both mind and determination to it.


Marie:  A wise man indeed. 


So...who was your first love?


Alex:  Maxim Stanley. We were together six years and played on the same midget and junior hockey teams. He always picked me flowers and beat up anyone who teased me. He was raised by a single mom, so we shared the benefits and drawbacks of coming from one-parent homes. When we were fourteen, Max and his mom moved shortly after she married his stepfather. I cried for weeks afterward!


Marie: Oh, I'm sorry to hear that, Alexandra. :(
Let's try a different question.
What's the most terrible thing that ever happened to you?

Alex:  Papa’s sudden death. We ate breakfast together that morning before he went to his first job. I was called to the principal’s office during third period math and told he had a stroke on the golf course grounds. He died not long after in the emergency room. It took me a long time to recover; his birthday and date of death remain rough days for me.


Marie:  Oh, no! I'm so sorry, Alex. I know what it's like not to get to say goodbye to a loved one...(Pats her guest's hand.)


Let's try something else, shall we? 


What was your dream growing up? Did you achieve that dream? If so, in what ways was it not what you expected? If you never achieved the dream, why not? 

Alex:  I wanted to be an actress from age six. I guess in some ways I made the dream come true if one considers bit parts, walk-on roles, and being a movie extra achieving one’s dream. I can’t be totally critical, however; it was Vancouver Venus that got me into playing professional hockey, something I’d never before considered. Well, that movie role and then becoming Troy’s protégé.


Marie:  So, who is your role model, Alex?


Alex:  Call me biased if you’d like, but it’s Troy. Sure, he tends to give referees a hard time and uses filthy language (in both English and French) when things aren’t going the Rebels’ way during games. He can be a total pain in the ass sometimes, but does the title of team captain proud. He’s sweet, smart, sexy, great with kids, an excellent leader in both locker room and on the ice, gracious with fans, and doesn’t take bashing from his detractors and  media to heart.


Marie:  (Smiles.) Hmm...I see. 
Let's try another question.
Is there someone you pretend to like but really dislike?

Alex:  There are a few, but I won’t mention any names.

What is your deepest desire?

Alex:  Maybe one day own a hockey team or be a film director.

Marie:  All right.
One more question...
So, what is your greatest fear?

Alex:  Snakes. I don’t know what prompted me being afraid of them, but when I first came to the Rebels, Jax somehow found out and thought it would be hilarious to put a giant rubber snake in my locker. I thought it was real and screamed so loud I could be heard down the corridor. Jax came close to getting the shit beaten out of him by Davy, Brian, and Troy over that incident, but we all laugh about it now.


Marie:  Wow. I can't blame you for not liking snakes. (Shudders.)
Well, it looks like we're running out of time, Alex. Thank you for visiting us today. 

Alex:  Thank you for letting me visit.

Marie:  Of course! I wish you luck with everything. It was so interesting getting to know you.  (Waves at her guest as she heads off the stage.)

Now, let's shift over and get the author's perspective.  We have L. Anne Carrington on the stage today!  Hi, Lori!  
Author L. Anne Carrington:  Hi, Marie! It's nice to be here!
Marie:  (Smiles.) Welcome back to Writing in the Modern Age!  It's been awhile...
So, we just got to talk to the heroine of your story, Alexandra.  Quite an interesting character. Can you tell us a little about her?
L. Anne:  Alex is five feet tall and 140 pounds with reddish-brown hair and violet eyes. She has training in acting, vocal music, ballroom dancing, archery, and hockey (field, street, ice). Her intended ambition was to be an actress, but despite efforts made by her theatrical agent, Doris Mullens, Alex’s acting jobs were usually bit parts, walk-on roles, the chorus, or as a crowd scene extra. 
When Doris sends her on an interview for Vancouver Venus, a motion picture docudrama about the struggling Canadian Ladies Hockey League team, Alex is selected as a Venus center with three speaking lines. That role - and grabbing the attention of Pittsburgh Rebels captain Troy Talmadge when he visits friends on the set while in town for a game - resulted in a more successful career she never before considered: becoming a professional hockey player best known for breaking the American Hockey Conference’s (AHC) gender barrier when she joined the Rebels as its first female member.
Marie:  All right. 
So, what are your character's greatest strengths? 
L. Anne:  Alex is compassionate, a great listener, empathetic, a hard worker, intelligent, and has a knack championing for anyone at a disadvantage, and willing to do what it takes to help her team in any possible way.
Marie:  Okay. 
What are her greatest weaknesses? 

L. Anne:  No pun intended, but Alex sometimes tends to be bit of a rebel. One of her favorite sayings is “I’m of Scottish blood, I’m headstrong, and I like getting my way.” She locks horns with Troy Talmadge a great deal at the beginning of her career. For example, he tries to guide her to improve in specific areas, but she’s happy with the way things are.

Marie:  So, what are some of her favorite foods?


L. Anne:   To Troy’s chagrin, Alex has a love for coffee, Diet Pepsi, and peanut M&Ms. She’s been known to sneak a burger or vanilla caramel ice cream while the team’s nutritionist has her on a specific eating program and Troy wants her to work out more often than she already does. 


Marie:  (Laughs.) Those aren't so bad. 


So, what's a positive quality that your character is unaware that he or she has?


L. Anne:  I don’t think Alex realizes how strong a woman she is while being part of what’s predominately a man’s world. She initially endured disapproval from veteran Jax Ivanka, who once thought women had no place in the American Hockey Conference, let alone with the Rebels. But when Alex stood up to Jax (and they develop a flirtatious relationship afterward), the trait for standing for what she believes in benefits in many other aspects.


Marie:  Will readers like or dislike this character, and why?


L. Anne:  I think many readers will love Alex, especially those raised by single parents. There are times she has a lapses in judgment (e.g.: getting drunk with Jax following another verbal battle with Troy) and others where she takes initiative (e.g.: teaching Brian sign language), has little shame of who or what she is, and going the distance for her team.


Marie:  All right.
Well, now that we have a real taste of Alex Galloway, we have a few questions for you as well as the author.

What first gave you the idea for
Power Play?

L. Anne:  I developed a love for hockey about two years ago through my significant other. Many who read my work know most of my genres is sports-based fiction-specifically professional wrestling-but I wanted to go in a different direction while staying in sports fiction. I figured why not try writing a hockey-based novel with a twist?

Believe it or not, some people would like to see female NHL players; as a matter of fact, it happened for a brief period in the early 1990's. Manon Rheume, an Olympic silver medalist goalie in Nagano for the Team Canada women's hockey team, was goaltender for the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning during its 1992 and 1993 preseasons. So the idea of women in the NHL may once again become reality in the not-so-distant future.


Marie:  Interesting!

What is your writing style like, Lori?  Are you a pantster or a plotter?

L. Anne:  I’m for most part a plotter. I love doing character portraits and developed what I call ‘sketch notebooks’ for each novel I’ve written. I’ll have visions as to general story ideas, the characters’ appearances, personalities, quirks, etc., and additional thoughts that immediately come to mind. The Power Play sketch notebook was loaded with random thoughts before being fit into various parts of my manuscript.


Marie: Great!

So, I’m throwing this one in for our aspiring writers.  Did you come across any specific challenges in writing Power Play or getting it published?  What would you do differently the next time?  

L. Anne: Not really. I’ve had books published since 2010, and watching a lot of hockey games played a role in getting the book written. Developing personalities for Power Play’s characters was actually fun.


Marie:  Well, it sounds like a great book!

It was such a pleasure having you here on Writing in the Modern Age, Lori. We hope you can come back sometime!  :) 

Readers, I hope you all get a chance to pick up a copy of this awesome book!
Power Play is set for release by Palm Tree Books in late September to mid-October of 2015, with Kindle and paperback editions on Amazon, and paperback through Barnes and Noble and expanded distribution channels.
Here is the blurb for Power Play.
Alexandra “Alex” Galloway had lifelong ambitions of acting on Broadway, television, or in movies. Despite versatility in a wide range of regional dialects, stunt work, singing, ballroom dancing, archery, and field, street, and ice hockey, she has thus far been limited to an endless string of film extra and uncredited roles.

Alex’s small part in an underdog women’s hockey team film catches the eye of a visitor to the Vancouver set while in town for a game – Troy Talmadge, star and team captain of the American Hockey Conference’s Pittsburgh Rebels.

Dazzled by her on-ice flair, Troy appoints himself as Alex’s mentor. He urges his agent to take her on as a client and signed to a Women’s Hockey League contract, but the agent has something far better in mind: having her drafted as the AFC’s first woman player, specifically to the Rebels.

Will Alex survive the pressures that accompany her newly-found professional hockey career…or does it slowly freeze much as her previous stint as an actress?

About L. Anne Carrington:


L. Anne Carrington is an award-winning Amazon bestselling author, freelance writer/journalist, and radio show host whose previous work covered topics from fiction to news stories, human interest features, and entertainment reviews. She wrote The Wrestling Babe Internet column for seven years, a former music reviewer for Indie Music Stop, former book reviewer for Free Press (an imprint of Simon and Schuster), and pens several other works which appears in both print and Web media. One of her freelance articles, An Overview of Causes of Hearing Loss and Deafness, was bought by Internet Broadcasting Systems, a company that co-produced NBCOlympics.com for the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens and the 2006 Torino Winter Olympics in addition to being the leading provider of Web sites, content and advertising revenue solutions to the largest and most successful media companies.

In addition to her acclaimed novels in The Cruiserweight Series and nonfiction wrestling bestseller Billy Kidman: The Shooting Star among works of both fiction and nonfiction, Ms. Carrington hosts The L. Anne Carrington Show on Spreaker Radio.

She spends time between Pittsburgh, PA and Tampa, FL, continuing to write.



Coming Soon (Book one in the Power Play Series):









Books in The Cruiserweight Series:





Other Books:



Once again, I want to thank the talented L. Anne Carrington for stopping by with her character, Alex! It was lovely to have you both here!

Until next time, readers, and in the meantime, as always, happy reading!   :)



Featured Post

A Character Interview with Dillon from MOUNTAIN BLAZE, plus a conversation with author Debby Grahl!

Today we're bringing something different to Writing in the Modern Age in the form of a character interview. These character interviews, ...