Is there one women, either fictional or real, who inspired you to write about such strong women?
Tammy: It isn’t exactly one woman who inspired me, but many, starting with Maid Marian (from Robin Hood), and the Greek goddesses, particularly Athena, who oversaw knowledge and war. Then there was a novel called MARA: DAUGHTER OF THE NILE by Eloise McGraw, which featured both a very gutsy slave girl and the real world Pharoah Hatshepsut, the only female among the great Pharoahs of Egypt (though she’s not exactly as the book paints her). Then I discovered Mary Reade and Anne Bonney, the pirates, and Molly Pitcher (Mary McCauley), who look over her husband’s cannon when he collapsed during a Revolutionary battle. Next came Helen Keller, Jane Addams (the founder of social work), and Louisa May Alcott, who not only wrote, but worked in the hospitals during the Civil War.
The woman who influenced me most, though, was Queen Elizabeth I, who survived so many perils as a child and did so much good for England. A lot of Dove is based on Queen Elizabeth.