Q & A From A Reader Lives 1000 Lives Blog

I was featured on A Reader Lives 1000 Lives Book Blog this week for my Cover Reveal and they asked me some really fun questions. Enjoy!

1) Waiting in line at Starbucks, what are you ordering? I don’t drink coffee, so my standard order is a large (I refuse to learn the Starbucks lingo – I guess the hipster in me) China tips green tea.

2) Who was your first book boyfriend? That would have to be from Scott Spencer’s book, Endless Love. They just remade the movie.

3) Last song you couldn’t get enough of? Lorde’s Royals. I can’t get enough. She has such a unique sound. Love her.

4) At this very moment, do your socks match? Barefoot. I hate shoes and go barefoot every chance I get.

5) Dog-earing: okay or unforgivable? (The folding of book pages… NOT earrings on dogs) I used to dog-ear, but when I started reading books two, three, four, or even more times, I learned to use a marker. Now I have an eReader so even better.

6) What is your super power? My super power would be able to heal myself and someone else; that way I can do all the crazy adventures I crave without the fear of permanently hurting myself and I can take someone with me.

7) Dog person or cat person? I was a cat person growing up. I loved their independent attitude and anti-social behavior. But now, as an adult, I’ve become a dog person. They’re just part of the family, loyal, fun, social, and an excuse to go to the dog park and chat up other owners. You meet the most interesting people/characters at a dog park.

8. Nickname? Too naughty to say. They’re all special, pet names between me and my husband.

9) If you had to leave one piece of advice for the next generation, what would it be? Take care of your skin. Sun damage is irreversible. Seriously, use sun screen.

10) Tell me about your best author fangirl moment! (Either one you had or one someone had with you!) Don’t have one. Yet.

11) Are the men in your stories your ideal? Do you write them based off of someone? I write my characters based on a certain personality type – usually Alphas, but I borrow character traits from a few different people, combine that with specific quirks or strengths I think a person with his specific background/backstory would have, and then finally mix in what I find attractive in a man. I fall in love with my leading man while I’m writing his story. If they don’t make my heart thud, I couldn’t expect them to do the same for my readers.

12) Do you return your buggy to its proper location after grocery shopping? Yes, I’m a total dork. After my husband and I go shopping at Costco and load our goods, I push the cart to the cart corral and he drives the car over to pick me up. We make a good team.

13) Can you leave us fans with some juicy tidbit? A secret? (WE WON’T TELL!) A pet peeve? Ooo, a secret? How about this…My book WALK WITH ME was inspired by my own fairytale romance with my husband and about half of this book was based on true events in my own life. When people say, “I could write a book about my life…” That’s exactly what I did, but fictionalized it, created characters to speak the dialogue I wanted and project the message I wanted to spread about true love. Once my characters had life, though, they started saying and doing things that I didn’t intend. In my sequel, TURN TO ME, my characters are acting in a way that I’m not completely comfortable with, but really reflects the personality I’ve created and in line with their backstory. I’ve already written the ending, but the path my characters have been taking to get there has been a little bit out of my comfort zone. I want them to behave properly and they just don’t want to, which may make for some spicy, exciting scenes.



The Writing Process Tour by Kaitlyn Stone

Last week I was tagged in Vincent Morrone’s Blog, a fellow New Adult Author, and asked to join The Writing Process Tour. It’s an interesting concept for a blog tour where you follow author to author to learn of each person’s different writing process.  I’m sure my process will evolve with time and even streamline, but to date this is the process I  follow:

What am I working on?

 I’m just finishing the final edits on my debut novel, Walk with Me, while at the same time working on the sequel, Turn to Me (Book 2 in The Thin Blue Thread Series) www.bookstrand.com.

When I sat down to write a love story inspired by my real-life first love as a tribute to our very own fairytale romance, I never thought a book would be the end result, but 80,000 words later that’s exactly what I had. I wanted to express in words what his love meant to me and how it changed me as a person, never to see or experience life the same.

My goal was to capture the essence of true love through an intriguing story and create rich, life-like characters to speak of the emotions I felt when falling in love for the first time. One chapter turned into two, and those, plus twenty-two more became a book. Once I realized my goal of actually writing a book was going to come to fruition, I wished to share my story with the world, to inspire others to believe in true love and happily-ever-after’s. Choosing our milestone anniversary as its publication date, I planned to self-publish my completed novel for my husband’s gift. What better way to tell the man of your dreams how much you truly love him, then sharing it with the world.

I admit I have always gravitated toward love stories and happily-ever-after’s, forever chasing the first love dragon. There’s nothing like the witty banter between characters, fueling their physical attraction, and the anticipation of their first kiss. Add in the push and pull from the couple’s sexual tension and the world trying to tear them apart, and you have a recipe for an exciting, steamy romance. Place the couple in interesting locations, living adventures most only dream of and the journey propels you forward through the pages. Sprinkle in danger for both the hero and heroine to combat and the courage and strength of the characters shine through.

Because I’m not a writer by training, I worked with writing critique groups to fine tune my manuscript before the planned release date of summer, 2014. As a fluke, not expecting any response, I submitted my completed manuscript to a publishing house, and a week later I was offered a contract. My debut novel, Walk with Me, a Bookstrand Romance, will be available at amazon.com in summer, 2014 and in print later this fall.

How does my work differ from others in its genre?

My Contemporary New Adult novel follows the similar formula seen in most New Adult books. A story of first love romance with the hero and heroine battling and overcoming issues from their past, all leading to the all-consuming emotional and physical connection, bonded with love and a HEA. My books are more character driven than plot driven, concentrating on the development of rich, life-like characters. I write in first person POV, and my current two novels in The Thin Blue Thread Series are all in the lead heroine’s POV.

In addition to my novels being character driven, I concentrate on portraying positive messages and coping mechanisms with dealing and working through the emotional issues presented in the character’s lives. Too many novels portray twenty-something’s as cutters, bulimics, addicts, or worse, and I choose to write about survivors who cope in ways that aren’t self-destructive.

Why do I write what I do?

I write New Adult because I’m in love with falling in love. But not falling in love with just anyone. I’m addicted to the feeling of falling in love for the very first time. What I call chasing the first love dragon. It’s that feeling of excitement and rush of emotions surging through your veins similar to jumping out of an airplane and free-falling through the atmosphere with only the faith that a thin, silky piece of fabric will magically appear and safely guide your body to earth. Add in the daily struggles as a new adult, trying to find your place in the world, and unusual external conflicts, and you have the formula for the perfect first love relationship.

How does my writing process work?

Because my books are mainly character driven, I usually start with that. I know the basic formula for my story. Girl meets boy or boy meets girl. There’s a mutual attraction, but boy or girl, or both are struggling with a cord cut too short for them to make a true connection. No matter how hard the couple stretches that cord, life interferes and blocks or stalls their unity. It isn’t until they work together and overcome these obstacles, do they fully embrace their love and live HEA. The usual first-love story. But to me what makes each story different are the characters. Who they are on the inside, their hopes and dreams, and what drives them in life? I write a two or three page character description of my main characters, including their back story and shorter descriptions, but just as detailed of my secondary characters. Once I know who my characters are, the words they say come naturally and their reaction to situations is determined by their back story. I like to use inspirations from my own life adventures to set a scene, but how the characters behave in that scene is up to them.

Next week is Kady Winter, author of Historical Fiction touched by magic.


Kady Winter is a long-time screenwriter and playwright (as Lynne Moses) whose journey into fiction began with an adaptation of one of her screenplay “passion projects.” That manuscript became the first in a young adult historical fantasy series, “The Poteet Chronicles,” and won the YA category of the Virginia Romance Writers’ “Fool for Love” contest plus finaled in the YA category of the Orange County RWA chapter’s “Orange Rose” contest. Entangled’s “Smackdown” on the Savvy Authors web site inspired Kady to launch a New Adult series in the 2013 NaNoWriMo 30-day writing challenge. That effort produced the first novel in her “Twin Birch House Series,” called “All That Shimmers.” Kady is a member of SCBWI and RWA, and is a Board Member of LARA, the Los Angeles Chapter of RWA.

Works in Progress: These are outline on my web site – http/www.kadywinter.com/my-young-adult-and-new-adult-fiction/