Saturday, October 26, 2013

KNTR author DAN FIORELLA in the house!


Meow, our guest today is another KNTR anthology author, Dan Fiorella!

Dan Fiorella lives in New York.  Downtown New York.  Very downtown New York.  Okay, he lives in Staten Island. He’s written for the "Prairie Home Companion" radio show, MAD magazine, All-Star Radio, “The Start of Something Big” with Steve Allen and the “Lost Cases of Sherlock Holmes 2” video game. Dan was Dear Dottie for the Weekly World News and Traveling Editor for Cracked magazine. He has a lovely wife and three wonderful daughters who read these things.  He posts on this website at and enjoys writing about himself in the third person.

R:  Meow, welcome Dan! Tell us a bit about yourself and how you became interested in writing.

I was a child of TV, old movies and comedy.  I loved sketch comedy; Carol Burnett, Abbott & Costello, the Little Rascals, Laurel & Hardy, Bugs Bunny, Laugh-In.    TV just exposed me do all these great, silly things.  I would write sketches for grade school projects and student assemblies.  They were awful, just blatant rip-offs of “Who’s on First” or Bob Newhart routines.   Once for a school oratory contest, instead of memorizing “Casey at the Bat” or “The Raven,” I did Bill Cosby’s Fat Albert routine from “Wonderfulness.”  I would write sketches or draw comics just to do it.  I had this itch and it was the only way to scratch it.

R:  How did you hear about Kids Need to Read? 

That would be via our beloved editor, Christiana Miller.  Her career path crossed Nathan Fillion’s at some point and she became aware of his charity work.  She decided that, if we were going to do this thing, they should be the recipient.

R: Tell us about your story in the KNTR anthology, LOVE AND OTHE DISTRACTIONS.  What was the inspiration?

Well, I had published my book, LOST CLAUS, on Amazon and was debating what to do next.  I’m a member of an internet BBS, Writer’s Action, and we were discussing ebooks and such (which is what inspired me to attempt it in the first place) and the idea of an anthology was first suggested.  It seemed like a nice idea but it didn’t seem to concern me.  Then they decided that there should be a theme and it would be (at the time) Valentine’s Day.  So they were kicking around title ideas.  I tossed out “Cupid is as Cupid Does” (wacky, right?) but that all set something to simmering.  CLAUS was about a crime noir detective solving a Christmas mystery.  Why couldn’t he solve a Valentine’s Day mystery?  Some ideas fell into place and next thing I knew, I was writing a short story.   So I withdrew my title suggestion from consideration and grabbed it back for myself.  My other suggestion, “Valentine’s Day Reservations” was not used. L

R:  Tell us about your comedy mystery novel, LOST CLAUS. What inspired that.

The classic Christmas movies and TV specials.  Also, a fondness for those “fish-out-of-water” type comedies.  Somehow, the idea of Santa going missing came up, and I liked the idea of a Santa story but without Santa.  Along came the thought of an outsider, someone way out of his element.  Someone needed to find Santa.  And I had watched enough Bogart and “Maltese Falcon” to recognize who that someone should be.  Thus was born the hard-boiled PI, Nick Flebber, down on his luck and willing to take any case.  And this is what falls in his lap.  And they paid up-front in cash.  Anyway, that was a screenplay.  It actually got optioned by Warner Bros. but then that all fell apart.  It sat in my drawer for await, then figured it might make a cute prose story and things kinda went from there.

R: which do you find more challenging as an author, screenplays or novels and why?

Novels, far and away.  You ever try to do a sight gag in a novel?  Or a spit take?

R: What writers would you say have made the greatest influence on your writing?
It’s an eclectic mix.  And my writing would always change and mimic who I last discovered.  But, again, Abbott & Costello (and their writer John Grant) for word play.  Wood Allen.  Monty Python.  Oh, and Joseph Heller and “Catch-22.”  It was assigned reading in high school and it just opened my mind to the fact that “literature” could be wacky and funny and absurd.  I mimicked the style in the book report I had to write for it and the concept that school work could be funny was amazing for me.   

R: What’s a must have for you when you are writing? What aids the creative process?
The Staten Island Ferry.  I’ve done so much of my writing on the commute to and from work.  Some paper, a pencil and a clear 30 minute trip before me to simply zone out and scribble away.

R: What is the craziest thing you've ever done? 

Well, my family would say “trying to be a writer.”  I’m a very low-key person, bordering on shut-in.  But a while back there was a comedy club contest for the “Funniest New Yorker” and I signed up for that and performed stand-up comedy.  What was I thinking?  From that I learned that I’m more comfortable behind a keyboard than a mike.
R: What is your next project?  
Well, because I enjoyed writing “Cupid” so much, I pulled out an old story of mine and novelized it into another Nick Flebber story, SPACE CASE.  Spoiler alert: no holidays are involved!  I considered CLAUS a one-and-done, but the short story was so much fun, I thought I’d have another go.  Besides, I’ve learned that any decent ebook author has to have a series going, so I’m hoping to do a couple more as part of my new “The Nick Files” series (~Plug~).  But I’ve got so many stories sitting on my hard drive and all this independent publishing is a real delight in that they might finally see the light of day.
R: Are you a plotter or a pantser?
Pantser, all the way.  I’m a horrible outliner.  It always feels like writing the book report for a book that doesn’t exist yet.  I need a premise, the characters, some set pieces and an ending.  I really can’t start going without knowing where I’m headed.  I might end up taking the scenic route there, but I need that target destination.
R: What do you do when you’re not writing? Any hobbies or party tricks? :)
In lieu of party tricks and hobbies, I have a family.  Wife and three girls, now grown.  Along with a job, that eats up a lot of time.  Also, the dog.  I’m still a TV-holic, but even now I find myself watching classic movies over newer fare.
R: Where can we find out more about you and your work?  
Oh, I’m going to get all linky on you now!  There’s my website,, which leads to my blog and my Nick Files site.  I’m over on the Facebook and have an author site as well.  And I got one of them there Amazon Author pages.  Sometimes I’m on the subway, shouting.
R: Do you have any advice for beginning writers?

They always say “write what you know” but it’s more like “write what you like.”  There’s no way to predict the market, no way to chase a trend.  Write what you would want to read .  There’s no guarantees that it’ll sell anyway, so it might as well be something you enjoy and enjoyed doing.  And if it does sell, well, better to be stuck continuing on something you wanted to do than have to deal with something you just churned out.  Hey, that’s pretty good, I should write that down.

Just for Fun:
Night or Day?  .
Day…especially around naptime.
Dog or Cat? (answer carefully) 
Dog.  Or very canine cats.
Beach or Pool?  
Steak or salad? 
Favorite Drink? 
Favorite Book? 
Harry Potter.
Favorite TV Series? 
Saturday Night Live.
Favorite Movie? 
Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein.
Favorite Actor:
Tom Hanks
Favorite Actress:
Sandra Bullock
Dirty Martini or Pina Colada?
Pina Colada
Hawaii or Alaska?
Finish this sentence:  If I could meet anyone in the world, past or present, it would be __David Letterman__
If I had just one wish, it would be__to see that my family is provided for__
If I could trade places with anyone in the world, it would be ___me in the alternate universe where I’m fabulously successful.  Failing that, Mark Evanier._

Wednesday, October 23, 2013



Our guest today is KNTR anthology author Mark Miller!

Mark Miller has sold movie projects to Warner Brothers, been a writer/producer on numerous network and syndicated TV sit-com staffs, a humor columnist for the Los Angeles Times Syndicate, a current humor blogger for The Huffington Post, and a part of the Los Angeles storytelling community. He has also performed stand-up comedy in nightclubs and on TV. His first book, a collection of his humor essays on dating and romance, is scheduled to be published by Skyhorse Publishing in the Fall of 2014. Its title: 500 Coffee Dates: Dispatches From the Front Lines of the Internet Dating Wars. But he says he'd trade all his success away in a minute for immortality, inner peace and limitless wealth. 
And now…Mark!

R:  Meow, hello Mark! Tell us a bit about yourself and how you became interested in writing.
I grew up on the East Coast, in Rochester, N.Y. My mother was a college English professor and instilled in me a love of books, reading and writing. My father was a department store buyer of women’s furs, coats and suits, had a great sense of humor and loved telling jokes. In college, I majored in English. After graduating, I accidentally fell into doing stand-up comedy for ten years. That led to writing for TV sit-coms and later, writing humor essays for the Los Angeles Times, The Huffington Post and other publications, blogs and websites.

R:  How did you hear about Kids Need to Read?
I first heard about Kids Need to Read when it was suggested that we donate the profits of the book to the organization.

R: Tell us about your story in the KNTR anthology, LOVE AND OTHE DISTRACTIONS.  What was the inspiration?
My seven humor essays in this book deal with different aspects of my post-divorce dating experiences. This is an area generally not covered in school, so I’ve had to learn to navigate the ins and outs of the dating world through trial and error, primarily the latter.

R:  Your background is in humor.  How hard is it to be funny?
I think if you have a love and knack for something, it comes naturally and you don’t generally consider it to be hard. Singing opera or putting out fires would be hard for me. But writing comedy feels like playing in the sandbox. It’s really fun, except when I get too much sand in certain places.

R: Tell us about your new book of humor essays.
My (hopefully) upcoming book of humor essays currently being pitched to New York publishers is a collection of 55 of my humor essays about my dating experiences. It’s called, 500 Coffee Dates: Reports From the Front Lines of the Internet Dating Wars.

R: What writers would you say have made the greatest influence on your writing?
Writers who have most influenced me include Woody Allen, Philip Roth, Dave Barry, Fran Lebowitz and Steve Martin.

R: What’s a must have for you when you are writing? What aids the creative process?
I like silence or classical music when I write. And I think it helps when I’ve gotten good sleep, food and exercise. Or heroin and a dominatrix.

R: What is the craziest thing you've ever done? 
I informed my parents, after all the money spent on my college education, that I planned to pursue a career in stand-up comedy.

R: What is your next project?  
My next book is called Refrigerator Doors of the Stars. We all have a deep hunger to know exactly what  things celebrities put on their refrigerator doors. At long last, our national wait will be over.
R: Are you a plotter or a pantser?
Plotter. But while plotting, I mostly keep my pants on.
R: What do you do when you’re not writing? Any hobbies or party tricks? :)
I exercise, cook, meditate, see movies, read, participate in storytelling shows, and enjoy hanging out with my girlfriend, Gail.
R: Where can we find out more about you and your work?
Follow me on my website/blog

Follow me on Facebook

Follow me on The Huffington Post

Follow me on Twitter

See my monthly humor column on

See my monthly dating column on JDate’s online magazine, JMag:

Check out my author page at The Los Angeles Jewish Journal

R: Do you have any advice for beginning writers?
Read. Write. Love. Work. Experience life. Floss.

Just for Fun:
Night or Day?  .
Dog or Cat? (answer carefully) 
Beach or Pool?  
Steak or salad? 
Favorite Drink?  V-8 V-Fusion Light Strawberry-Banana
Favorite Book?  Woody Allen’s “Without Feathers”
Favorite TV Series?  “Seinfeld,” “Taxi,” “Cheers,” “Frasier,” “The Sopranos.”
Favorite Movie?  “Annie Hall”
Favorite Actor:  Al Pacino
Favorite Actress:  Meryl Streep
Dirty Martini or Pina Colada?
Hawaii or Alaska?
Finish this sentence:  If I could meet anyone in the world, past or present, it would be ___Benjamin Franklin________________
If I had just one wish, it would be______To eliminate disease. Or to eat for free at any restaurants I choose for the rest of my life. ___________________________________
If I could trade places with anyone in the world, it would be __The Pope, just to see what kind of comedy writing he’d do. And I dig the clothes._____

Sunday, October 20, 2013

KNTR Anthology author CHRISTIANA the hotseat!



Welcome our next writer in the KNTR anthology….Christiana Miller!

Christiana Miller is a writer, a one-time actress, and a full-time mom.

She’s worked at Williams Bally/Midway, where I wrote, directed and shot the promotional videos for INDIANA JONES AND THE PINBALL ADVENTURE and STAR TREK: NEXT GENERATION PINBALL GAME.  She’s also  written produced episodes of GENERAL HOSPITAL and GENERAL HOSPITAL: NIGHT SHIFT. SOMEBODY TELL AUNT TILLIE SHE’S DEAD is her first novel. In addition to LOVE AND OTHER DISTRACTIONS, she’s also participated in another anthology that benefits KNTR, EVERY WITCH WAY BUT WICKED. She’s currently working on her next project!

And now…Christiana!

R: Hello, Christiana, meow and welcome!  Tell us a bit about yourself and how you became interested in writing.

When I was a kid, my best friends were books. When I was reading, I would be so immersed in the story, it was like I had been bodily transported into the world of the book. People could come up to my face and holler at me, and I wouldn’t hear them. I was living in the world of the book.

 Then, when I was sick, I would send my dad to the library to get me whatever book my fevered brain wanted – I wouldn’t have a title, but I could describe the story and characters to him in detail. Invariably, he’d come back annoyed, because the books I was telling him to find hadn’t been written yet.

 So, for me, writing was a natural extension of my book obsession.

R:  How did you hear about Kids Need to Read? Tell us a bit about your short in this anthology.

 I participated in an anthology for Kids Need To Read a couple of years ago. (Every Witch Way But Wicked). (note from ROCCO:  The Human did as well!)So, when a group of screen and TV writers approached me about creating an anthology and donating the proceeds to charity, I immediately thought of Kids Need to Read.

 I have a hard time writing love stories – I always have. Even as a kid, if you told me to write a love poem, I’d come up with something dark and twisted. So, my story, Love Voodoo, is a dark and twisted story about two people who get married as a result of a voodoo spell. It’s about emotional betrayal and magical manipulation.

R:  You have actress on your resume.  Which profession do you prefer, actress or writer and why?

 Writer. If you’re a writer, you don’t have to listen to some idiot telling you to lose weight or gain weight or get plastic surgery because your nose reminds them of their ex-wife. Actors put up with stuff like that all the time. Even on the theater circuit, directors can’t seem to get past their obsession with physical looks.

 When I was an actress, I went to a call-back for one of my favorite plays. The director had me perform the scene in front of all the other actresses who had been called-back. Then he turned to them and said “If any of you can come close to doing that scene the way she just did it, you’ve got the part.”

 That’s when I noticed that the room was filled with blonde, blue-eyed femmes and waifs, while I was a brunette, brown-eyed, sturdy Greek girl. That just floored me.

 Acting can be a lot of fun, and there are definitely times I miss it. I used to love auditioning, of all things. But I don’t miss the body image craziness around actors. On the plus side, I think the acting training has helped me as a writer.

 I love the feeling of being in charge of my own destiny that being a writer gives me. Especially in today’s world, where you’re no longer at the mercy of traditional publishing houses. I can reach my readers directly, without going through a middleman. That’s a wonderful thing.

 R:  You formerly wrote screenplays, and now novels. What’s the biggest difference between the two mediums?

 There’s getting to be less and less of a difference. People want the same kind of attention-grabbing openers and pace from their books, that they want from their movies.

 However, if I had to articulate the difference, I would say that writing a screenplay is like building a house. The structure is there, the rooms are staged, and everything is designed to entice buyers. But you need the actors, the director, the production designer, etc., to move in and turn it into a home.

 Writing a book is more like creating a lived-in, well-loved home from the get-go. You are the writer, the director, the actors, the production designer. A reader can pick up a book, move into the world of your story and feel right at home.

 R: What made you choose ‘quirky paranormal’ as a writing genre?

 Because that’s my life! LOL. I tend to live in a quirky paranormal dramedy filled with eccentric characters. Some days more so than others.

 R: What writers would you say have made the greatest influence on your writing?

 Janet Evanovich and Jim Butcher. I love combining humor and quirky characters with the paranormal.

 R: What’s a must have for you when you are writing? What aids the creative process?

 Silence. Or being at the office, where I don’t have any internet. I’ve had to train myself to be able to write while the world is at a dull roar around me. I prefer silence though, so I can hear the characters in my head while I’m writing.

 It’s probably why I do my best writing at night, after everyone’s asleep. It’s easier to weave magic at night. And isn’t that what stories are? A glittering web of imagination, infused with magic. Words that come alive and draw in the emotions of a reader, by spinning a web of story and characters around them.

R: What is the craziest thing you've ever done?

 How much time do you have? Probably when I unintentionally kidnapped faux-Ace Frehley from a KISS concert after-party. It’s a long story, and you can read all about it here: My Night With KISS

And here’s an answer from when I was younger:
When I was a kid, I was in a talent show, performing a monologue. But it was boring as all get out – not only was the audience bored, I was bored. So I tossed the monologue and launched into an impromptu stand-up routine. The more people laughed, the wilder I got. One of the kids in the front row was laughing so hard, he peed his pants. Then, at the end of my routine, my shoe flew off my foot and hit one of the judges in the head.

 I was awarded the booby prize – a hippo-shaped bank – but I loved that prize. I kept it for many, many years. It was one of my most treasured possessions. To me, it represented the most wonderful day in my life – when I made a roomful of strangers laugh.

 R: If you weren’t a writer, what would you be doing?

 I have no idea. I can’t imagine not writing. I guess I’d look for a job as a TV executive so I could still be involved in the world of creating a story.

R: What’s your next project?

 I’m working on the sequel to Somebody Tell Aunt Tillie She’s Dead. I don’t have a title yet, so may hold a contest to title the book. If anyone wants an opportunity to name a book and win some Tillie swag in the process, like my FB author page:

 Also, I’ve had a lot of TV and feature writers ask me to write a book on indie-publishing, so I may do that next. But my pet project, the one closest to my heart, is a book about what I’ve learned from my daughter.

Just for Fun:


Night or Day?  Night

 Dog or Cat? (answer carefully)  LOL. “Dogs Have Owners, Cats Have Staff.” That saying is so true! I have to say, my answer is… while I love cats, my heart belongs to… dogs. (Don’t hate me, Rocco!). (note from R:  We could never hate you, Christiana!)

 Beach or Pool? I love hanging out at the ocean, feeling the ocean breeze, playing in the waves and watching the dolphins, whales and seals. I love watching the sunset over the ocean, or the sunrise over the lake, when I lived in Chicago. But with my knee injury, I’m pretty much stuck with the pool. And since I’m not a sun person, make that an indoor pool.

 Steak or salad?  Salad. Even better -- Sashimi Salad. Nothing like raw fish. I’m sure Rocco can appreciate that. :-D (R: Exactly, as a matter of fact, Midnight Louie and I were speaking of our shared love of koi just recently...)

Favorite Drink?  Raw Harvest Coconut Water.

 Favorite Book?  The Stephanie Plum series and the Dresden Files series.

 Favorite TV Series?  Drop Dead Diva and Mike and Molly. My favorite cancelled series would be Everyone Loves Raymond and Sex and the City.

 Favorite Movie?  It’s a toss-up between Get Shorty, Murphy’s Romance and Saving Grace.

 Favorite Actor: Harrison Ford

Favorite Actress:  Melissa McCarthy

Dirty Martini or Pina Colada?  Pina Colada

 Hawaii or Alaska?  You know what’s weird? I keep setting my scripts in Alaska, even though I’ve never been there. Although my answer would be Hawaii. I love the whole island/ocean vibe.

 Finish this sentence:  If I could meet anyone in the world, past or present, it would be Emma Goldman. I wrote and performed a one-woman show abut her while I was at Northwestern. Or possibly Nathan Fillion. Especially if he was naked. <grin>

 If I had just one wish, it would be for everyone in my family to stay healthy so we could all live long, healthy, happy lives together!

 If I could trade places with anyone in the world, it would be  _______. I wouldn’t trade places with anyone else in the world. I’m completely happy being me!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013


Don't forget our Spooktacular Hop through Nov 1!
Read the blog/enter the giveaway HERE 

And now....We welcome Kylie Logan/Casey Daniels!

My guest today is author Kylie Logan, aka Casey Daniels:


Casey Daniels once applied for a job as a tour guide at a historic cemetery.  She didn’t get the job, but she did get the idea for the Pepper Martin mysteries.  Pepper works in a cemetery and solves mysteries for the ghosts there.  Pepper’s latest adventure is book #9 in the series, “Supernatural Born Killers.”  Casey’s alter ego, Kylie Logan, writes three different series.  The newest Button Box mystery is “Panic Button.”  “Buttoned Up” will be published in December.  The first book in that series is “Mayhem at the Orient Express and the Chili Cook-off series starts with “Chili Con Carnage.”  Casey lives in the Cleveland area near where the Pepper books and the League of Literary Ladies series are set.  She began her career as a romance writer and her book, “Devil’s Diamond” was nominated for a RITA award as best historical romance of the year by Romance Writers of America.



R:  Welcome, Kylie! Tell us a bit about yourself and how you became interested in writing.

K: Wow, that’s a tough question because I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember.  As a kid, I wrote a few stories then majored in English in college.  At the time, I wasn’t writing any fiction.  In fact, when I graduated, I got a job doing corporate communications, writing non-fiction things like employee newspapers, speeches, brochures, etc.  That’s when I started thinking about fiction writing.  As for why I got interested in the first place, that’s easy—reading!  I’ve always loved to read and all those stories I enjoyed for so many years lured me into writing.


R:  Tell us how you conceived the idea for the “League of Literary Ladies” mysteries, and which character is your favorite so far?

K: The idea for League grew out of a conversation I had with my agent.  We were talking about books, what’s popular, what sells well, etc. and she said that books about books are doing really well.  “Where would you set a book about books?” she asked.  I explained that since I have lived in northeast Ohio all my life, there aren’t many places other than Ohio that I know about.  “Of course,” I mentioned, “there are the Lake Erie islands.”  She perked right up.  She didn’t know there were islands in this part of the world and said it would be an intriguing setting.  She was right!  South Bass Island is a fabulous place, half Key West, half historic treasure trove.  It’s the perfect setting for my Ladies!  As to who’s my favorite . . . Bea Cartwright is the main character in the books so I’d have to say she’s my favorite, but the others have their plusses, too.  There’s Chandra, the island tarot reader and New Age crackpot, Kate, the uptight winery owner, and Luella, the crusty lake fishing charter captain.  All ladies I would love for friends!


R:  Tell us about your new series, “Chili Cook Off”. Can we assume from the title that chili is a favorite food of yours?


K: I do like chili.  That’s mostly because my husband, David, makes the best chili in the whole world!  As for the series, it’s about a woman named Maxie who is called to work at the Chili Showdown (a traveling cook-off show) because her dad, Texas Jack Pierce, is missing and someone needs to sell his chili peppers and spice mixes.  Too bad her half-sister, Sylvia, is there, too, because Maxie and Sylvia have never gotten along.  But when one of the show roadies is killed and Sylvia is arrested for the murder, Maxie has to jump in and do some sleuthing.  The first book is “Chili Con Carnage” and it’s set in Taos, a town I’ve visited a few times, so that was a lot of fun.  And the traveling Showdown crew is a great cast of characters.  All in all, a fun series.


R:  Under the name Casey Daniels, you’ve also written one of our favorite series, the Pepper Martin series!  Volume 9 ended (spoiler alert!) with Pepper about to walk down the aisle….can we expect any more adventures from Pepper?


K: Even as we speak, I’m working on a Pepper novella that I’ll e-publish.  Hoping to have it online by the beginning of the year.  Will let you know for sure when that happens.  As for the wedding . . .sorry, you’re just going to have to wait and see!  I can tell you that Pepper takes a case from an annoying ghost specifically to avoid her mother who is hot to go to every bridal fair she can find!



R:  Do you have an “how I got my agent” story you’d like to share?  How did you feel when you got the call your first novel had sold?


K: I got the agent I have now by talking to a whole bunch of agents and doing a lot of thinking about who was going to be best for me and for my career.  You know, when I was looking, a lot of agents asked to see the new ideas I had, the ones I wanted to sell.  This agent didn’t.  What she said was, “Send me some of your books so I can see what kind of writer you are.”  That’s when I knew she was the one for me!


As for that first sale . . . it was back in the Stone Ages!  But yes, I do remember.  My husband was out of town and this was back before cell phones were common so I couldn’t get in touch with him right away.  I remember the first people I told about the sale were my kids who were maybe 5 and 11 at the time.  I’m not sure they understood what it meant, but they sure could see how excited Mom was!


R: What’s a must have for you when you are writing? What aids the creative process?


K: Peace and quiet!  I can’t write if there’s a TV on, that’s for sure.  Or if there’s music with lyrics playing.  I find that too distracting.  The quieter, the better, and a cup of tea doesn’t hurt, either!


R: What is one thing your readers would be most surprised to know about you?


K: A lot of people think an author’s life is pretty glamorous.  Truth is, it’s pretty dull!  I sit in front of a computer all day, every day.  Usually 5 days a week, sometimes 7 if I have a deadline looming.  This is my fulltime job and it’s a lot of hard work.  Not much glamour involved!


R: What is the craziest thing you've ever done?


K: Oh my!  See above.  I’ve done plenty of fun and wonderful things, but I can’t think of anything crazy I’ve ever done.  Not anything I want to make public, anyway! 


R: What do you hope readers will most take away from your writing?


K: A few hours of relaxation and a couple laughs and characters they care about and stories they remember.  That’s enough for me!

R: Are you a plotter or a pantser?

K: I am definitely a plotter.  I work from an outline and to get that outline, I work for weeks and weeks, starting with an idea, adding to it, over and over and over.  I eventually end up with 20-30 pages broken up into chapters.  I don’t always know how something’s going to happen, but I know when it’s going to happen within the book.  To me, this is important, especially for mysteries.  They need to be logical and the clues need to lead to a conclusion that’s believable, surprising yet when the reader thinks about it, completely expected.  I can’t do that by the seat of my pants.  I need to safety net of an outline.

R: What do you do when you’re not writing? Any hobbies or party tricks? :)

K: To have party tricks, one must have parties!  I don’t do much partying, but I do have hobbies. I’m a knitter and a weaver.  I am a beekeeper (I have two hives and harvest about 8 gallons of honey every year).  I like to explore old cemeteries.  Of course, I love to read and I like doing things with the family.  I have two dogs, a Jack Russell named Oscar who came here as a foster dog 11 years ago and has never left, and an Airedale named Ernie.

R: Where can we find out more about you and your work?

K: You can check either of my websites:

Every 5th of the month, I also blog over at Killer Characters

And the Wednesdays I remember that it’s actually Wednesday, I blog over at:

Both Casey and Kylie also have Facebook pages so readers can find me there.


R: Do you have any advice for beginning writers?


K: Oh my, yes.  Plenty!  First of all, remember that nobody just wakes up one morning, decides they’re going to be an author, sits down and does it.  Like everything else, there’s a learning curve to writing.  Unfortunately I think a lot of people try writing once or twice, think they’re not very good at it, and give up.  It doesn’t work that way!  Writing takes practice.  And this business takes patience.  It’s not for wussies, that’s for sure.


R: If you weren’t a writer, what would you be doing?


K: I love history and research and volunteer at my local county archives. If I wasn’t a writer, I’d love to be an archivist.


R: What are you working on now?  What sort of adventures can your readers look forward to in your various series?


K:Lots going on.  Right now, “Chili Con Carnage” (Chili Cook-off #1) has just come out and I’m working on book #2, “Death by Devil’s Breath.”


In February, League of Literary Ladies #2 will be out.  It’s “A Tale of Two Biddies.”


And I’ve got a new series coming.  Haven’t started writing the first book yet, so I’m going to keep that info under wraps.


Then there’s the Pepper novella, of course, and a short story I want to write, and (long story!) the treatment for a TV series.  Always too much to do and not enough hours in the day!



Just for Fun:

Night or Day?  Day

Dog or Cat? (answer carefully) Dog

Beach or Pool?  Pool

Steak or salad?  salad

Favorite Drink?  A nice Reisling

Favorite Book?  Too hard to answer!  Maybe “Lord of the Rings.”  Or “The Game of Kings.”  Or a million others!

Favorite TV Series?  Sherlock Holmes

Favorite Movie?  Casablanca

Favorite Actor:  Can’t say I have one.

Favorite Actress: Ditto

Dirty Martini or Pina Colada? Pina colada

Hawaii or Alaska? Alaska, but not in the winter

Finish this sentence:  If I could meet anyone in the world, past or present, it would be King Arthur___________________

If I had just one wish, it would be to travel the islands to the north and west of Scotland._________________________________________

If I could trade places with anyone in the world, it would be absolutely no one.  The grass is never greener and things are pretty fine right where I am. _______

Thank you for a great interview!

Kylie will be giving a copy of ‘Chili Con Carnage’ to one lucky reader!  Just leave a comment below with your email address to enter. The winner will be chosen at random using  For extra entries, you can:

Friend Kylie/Casey on Facebook

Friend the Human, Toni Lotempio, on Facebook

Follow moi on Twitter @RoccoBlogger

Tweet, FB or post about this interview contest on your blog (3 extra entries!)

Be sure to list all that you’ve done in your comment! Contest ends midnight, Oct. 20!Good luck, meow!\
Next up: More Love and Other Distractions authors!