Monday, June 15, 2015

author Kym Roberts visits ROCCO!


Meow! My guest today is author Kym Roberts!

Three career paths resonated for Kym during her early childhood: a detective, an investigative reporter, and…a nun. In high school her path was forged when she took her first job at a dry cleaners and met every cop in town, especially the lone female police officer in patrol. From that
point on there was no stopping Kym’s pursuit of a career in law enforcement—even
if she had to duct tape rolls of coins to her waist to meet the weight requirements to be hired. (Yes, she really did that!) Kym followed her dream and became a detective that fulfilled her desire to be an investigative reporter, with one extra perk—a badge. Promoted to sergeant Kym spent the majority of her career in SVU. She retired from the job reluctantly when her husband drug her kicking and screaming to another state, but writing continued to call her name, at least in her head.

Kym: Hi Rocco! Thanks for taking time to interview me, a man in a tuxedo is hard to turn down;)

Meow, thank you Kym!  Tell us a little about your background – how did you get into writing?

Kym: I started writing in high school. I wrote my first romance novella inspired by golfer Severiano (Seve) Ballesteros when golf was so not cool for a teenager to watch. And although I still have the story, it is one I will keep as a memory of a youthful crush on a very hot guy ;) Once college started, my social life kind of took over, then my career dominated every minute of life for me. A year before I retired, I began to write again.   

You were a detective for many years – what was that like?

Kym: Frustrating. Rewarding. Heartbreaking. Breathtaking. You name it, I experienced the emotion. We worked 28 day shift rotations that are hard on your family, but I also think it’s the best type of arrangement with your spouse. You don’t see him/her for a month, cause they’re working the opposite hours you are, but then when the rotation comes around, making up for time lost is very good;)

The cases can haunt you and consume you, there’s a balance you have to achieve, if you don’t the job will eat you up and spit you out. Then when you reach retirement you find yourself divorced with kids you don’t even know and a future that is full of loneliness. My husband and I worked hard at that not being our fate.

You write books you describe as “romantic mysteries” and “cozies on the edge”. Tell us a bit about them.

I love a good mystery, but I love a happily ever after even more. Because of the violence I’ve experienced, my cozies are a little more graphic, and my mouth is seldom totally clean. My humor can be raunchy at times and the relationships tend to be more involved—I like to focus on the bond between couples.  

Tell us about your latest release.

I have one release coming later this summer, Dead Right There, A Malia Fern Mystery. Set on the island of Kaua’i, DRT is told with a flavor of Hawaiian folklore that touches on the paranormal. Malia is a young surf instructor who works part time at Private Kaua’EYES Investigations as a gofer, yet somehow she’s always in the midst of a murder mystery. This time, she’s trying to help one of the investigator’s brother with a shady past that is somehow tied to the death of an unidentified victim that Malia may know very well. Malia is also in a very personal struggle, she’s in love with two guys, one her parents would love for her to marry, and his cousin whom she can’t get enough of. She’s torn between perfection and imperfection, but the question remains, which cousin wears what label?

How do you construct your plots? Do you outline or do you write “by the seat of your pants”?

I kind of do both. I think of who my victim is, how s/he died and how it relates to Malia. Then I run with it and let the characters do the talking. Once I have a couple chapters under my belt, I’ll start mapping out the investigation. But like I said, I like a good mystery. Most of my suspects surprise me in the end and I have to go back and add clues into the story once it’s finished. For me to say I know who the suspect is on page one, isn’t going to happen with any of my books.

Which do you consider more important, plot or character?

You’re one tough kitty, Rocco! That’s a difficult question to answer definitively. In every series I’d have to say the characters are more important, but if the plot doesn’t work, readers won’t pick up the second book, so the plot better work!

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a writer and what inspires you and keeps you motivated?

The biggest challenge is finding the time to write! Working from home is difficult no matter what the job. The dishes, the laundry, the cleaning, the house projects, the kids, the car maintenance you name it, if you’re at home someone (namely the person working out of the home) thinks you need to be the person to get all those things done.

When my mom was terminally ill, I found Janet Evanovich. She made me laugh despite the long days of avoiding yet waiting for the inevitable. We spent hours at the hospital and I read to my mom. Whether she heard me or not, I’ll never know. I’d like to think she was laughing at Stephanie Plum’s antics along with me. Through that time, I introduced my sisters and my dad to Stephanie. My dad got a kick out of grandma Mazur and I really believe Janet’s writing helped my family recover. Janet inspired me to make people laugh in the face of tragedy, when love and laughter are the only things that keep you going.

Do you have an “How I got my agent” story you want to share?

Rejection after rejection after rejection. And then finally with the recommendation of two of my friends, Kim Lionetti with Book Ends took me under her wing! She liked my writing, but recognized my need for polish as well. Fingers crossed for the project she’s got on her desk!

What are you working on now and what are your future writing plans?

I’m currently working on a romantic suspense, Flirting with the Devil, A Noble Pass Affaire Novella that will come out in September. It’s written in third person like my romantic suspense novel Handled By Officer. To say that a novella was difficult for me to write is an understatement, but I like the way it turned out.

What is a typical workday for you and how many hours a day (or week) do you devote to writing?

I don’t really have a typical day. Remember all those chores that tend to get in my way? ;) But I usually write/edit a couple hours a day. I also go back and forth between stories. When one isn’t working, I go on to a different one and then come back to the other.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done?

I’m not a wild child. I’ve always been a by-the-book type personality. But wanting to be a cop more than anything else in the world, pushed me over the edge. I passed every aspect of the hiring process, except one hurdle. To get on the PD I had to weigh 110 pounds. I weighed 97lbs and only had a week to put it on before the cut-off for the next class. I drank protein shakes, lifted weights, ate two Big Macs a meal and still couldn’t gain. I ended up duct taping rolls of pennies to my waist and wearing a baggy shirt to go step on the scales. By the time the academy started, they changed the policy and everyone who made weight with some to spare, was on a strict diet to lose the pounds while I was good to go. Now, I couldn’t get to 110 lbs. if I tried! And I’m not talking about gaining weight. ;)

What’s one thing your readers would be surprised to find out about you?

I don’t read any one genre and stick to it. I read almost everything and I especially love to read historical romances. It’s one of few genres that I don’t find myself getting caught up in the believability.

What question do you wish interviewers would ask? (And what’s the answer?)

LOL, Rocco I’ve been interview by so many reporters that wanted ‘the’ scoop on a crime, I’ve spent most of my adult life wishing interviewers wouldn’t ask that question! So to answer what question would I like for interviewers not to ask, it’s simple: Why did the victim do or not do this? If a victim could Monday morning quarterback their actions, do you really think they’d put themselves in the same position to be victimized? Our society can be too quick to judge. We’re all full of stupid mistakes, some of us have just been lucky enough not to suffer any consequences. 

 Where can we learn more about you and your books?

You can visit my at my website www.kymroberts.com or my Pinterest page https://www.pinterest.com/kymroberts/

Just for Fun:

Night or Day?  It still changes for me every 28 days like shift work.

Dog or Cat? (answer carefully)  All animals. I grew up with dogs, but when I got my own apartment I started a blended family of dogs and cats. Strays find me. We’ve had several other pets over the years as well.

Beach or Pool?   Always the beach.

Steak or salad?  Steak, unless it’s a Cobb salad.

Favorite Drink?  Coke

Favorite Book?  Any Janet E book.

Favorite TV Series?  The Tonight Show with Jimmie Fallon, does that count as a series? Along with Hawai’i Five-O, Scandal, Vikings, and Battle Creek.

Favorite Movie? The Rundown with Dwayne Johnson 

Favorite Actor: Dwayne Johnson of course ;)

Favorite Actress: Sandra Bullock

Dirty Martini or Pina Colada? Frozen Amaretto Sour ;)

Hawaii or Alaska? Hawai’i of course, it’s my home away from home. Although I thoroughly enjoyed Alaska in the summer.

Finish this sentence:  If I could meet anyone in the world, past or present, it would be? Joan of Arc

If I had just one wish, it would be:

To see people laugh and enjoy life more.

If I could trade places with anyone in the world, it would be:

 I’m totally content with being me, if I could make myself a more patient me that would be great ;)

Thank you Rocco and Toni for your hospitality and generosity.

Kym


Thank you for a great interview, Kym!

You can find Kym at:



Facebook: Kym Roberts author

Instagram: KymRoberts911

Twitter:@kymroberts911

Fresh Fiction: The Cozy Corner http://freshfiction.com/pages.php?id=cozy

Kym will give away an e-copy of Dead On Arrival, A Malia Fern Mystery to one lucky commenter! To enter, leave your name and email address in the comments section below! 

For extra entries, you can do any or all of the below:



* Follow my blog (+ 1 point)
* Follow me on Twitter (+ 1 point) (Link: https://twitter.com/RoccoBlogger)
* Tweet about the contest (+ 1 point)
* Friend me on Facebook (+ 1 point) (Link: https://www.facebook.com/ToniLotempio)#!/

* Mention the contest on Facebook (+ 1 point)
* Mention the contest on your blog (+ 1 point)


Winner will be chosen at random using random.org.  Don’t forget to mention all you’ve done in your comment. Contest ends midnight, June 18! Good luck!






12 comments:

  1. Yet another winning interview, Rocco.
    I really like the covers. They are rather Gauguin-like in their island quality.
    The stories sound good, too!
    We are FB friends and I've linked this to FB
    I visit you regularly
    I don't tweet or have a blog
    libbydodd at comcast dot net

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  2. Thank you! I love my covers as well, they were done by the awesome Susan Coils of Custom Covers. Love her work!

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  3. I am not commenting to win a copy of the book as I already have it. I just wanted to say "thank you" to Rocco for interviewing one of my favorite authors.

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  4. Thanks so much. Robin L. Coxon, robeader53@yahoo.com

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Robin, good luck!

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  5. Sounds interesting, a cozy that's not so cozy.
    I follow through email and FB. Thanks!
    frybbe@gmail.com

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    1. Boundary pushing is the name of my game ;) Good Luck Laura!

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  6. I follow your blog. Bobbipad@gmail.com

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    1. I appreciate you stopping by during my guest post Barbara! Have an awesome weekend!

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  7. I love cosies with attitude but a Hea!! As a civilian in law enforcement I love reading about law enforcement (private and police) in other countries!!

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    1. Thank you for stopping by Nicola! That tiara of yours has a special place in Malia's world!

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