Evernight Teen 3rd Birthday Blog Hop!

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EVERNIGHT TEEN is celebrating their anniversary this month with a 3rd Birthday Blog Hop. It’s EVERNIGHT TEEN’s birthday but we’re giving out the presents with a Grand Prize of a $100 Amazon gift certificate!

EVERNIGHT TEEN books feature fresh teen fiction that is raw, gritty and real. Whether paranormal, contemporary, sci-fi or suspense, our books are about real issues and pack a strong emotional punch. You’ll find cutting edge fiction that today’s young adults can relate to and will keep you turning the pages long into the night.

I’m proud to be an EVERNIGHT TEEN author. Enjoy this tease from my book, Bad Timing – Battle of the Undead Book #2

bad-timing“If there’s someone there, you’d better show yourself. Unless you want me to cleave off your head,” I shouted. I heard a cough and saw a tall, well-built man slip from the shadows. He wasn’t bad looking, but his dark hair was styled with cement-like gel and his eyes were far too blue to be natural.

“Apologies. I wasn’t sure if you were friend or foe.” He nodded at me.

He was a vampire, probably a little younger than me.

“Who are you?” I asked.

“My dear, you are the one trespassing on my territory. It should be me asking questions of you.” He gave me a sly smile, as if he was trying to get away with something. Like he’d farted and was waiting for me to smell it.

“If this was truly your territory you’d have attacked me, not slunk in the shadows like a sniveling child.” I pulled my axe back so I held it by the handle and it rested on my shoulder.

He put his hands up; he was unarmed and laughed beneath his breath. “I now understand the Elders rule.”

He was referring to the old, no female vampires rule – misogynistic t scumbags. It was then that I got a good whiff of blood, live human blood.

“Have you got people here?”

“Why yes, we’ve collected a few to take to the Highlands. Would you like to join me for a drink?”

And he’d been openly feeding off them, great!

“No, I’ll give that a miss. Where are they?”

“In the store room, back there. They’re uninfected,” he said with a sweeping invitation with his arm. “I must say, I’ve never seen a female vampire so beautiful.”

Good grief, did he think this was some sort of date? That we would sit back and watch Dawn of the Dead whilst munching on scared survivors? What an asshat!

I narrowed my eyes and walked to the door he was pointing to. He smiled and gestured for me to open it. I did. Now I was fully aware that this could have been a trap, but even if a hundred vampires descended on me, I still had an axe to Red Queen their asses back to Wonderland.

“May I introduce myself?” he said behind me.

“No.” I stepped through the door and was hit with the smell of both old and fresh blood. I took in the large warehouse back quickly: boxes were piled high with electronics, gadgets and God only knows what other useless items, but there were also people crouching by them. They were blindfolded and roped together with a thick unforgiving plastic vine. Some were still bleeding from where he had fed off them. Some were whispering prayers in ragged voices. Some slowly pulled at their bindings, more like they were an itch than a problem. But all cowered when they heard his voice. There was a collective shiver that even caught me in its terrible wake. Whoever this vampire was, he was truly living up to monster status now.

“Here,” he said as he lifted the plastic rope and pulled the nearest person toward us, “have a drink.”

I looked at the young boy bound and blindfolded before me; he had blood all down his Simpson’s t-shirt and he’d pissed himself, probably days ago now. This was what the Highlands were going to be like, just with slightly less feeling and more order.

“My name is Ludwig. What’s yours, my blonde haired vixen?” He pushed the boy at me and I moved so that I was stood between them.


“What?” Ludwig’s eyes widened. He’d heard of me, the lack of blue hair had been what had put him off the initial recognition. If I’d looked more like my old self he’d have run from me, or attacked me in the shop. I might never have discovered his little person larder.

“Yeah, I was forced into a make under.” I smiled sweetly at him, “Ludwig, you have something on your sleeve.” I swung the axe so hard that it cleaved his arm straight off. Blood sprayed across me, splattering my face and streaking the front of my hair. Unlike human blood, vampire blood is cool, smells metallic and tastes like sea water, kind of like your blood tastes to you. Some vampires get a taste for their own kind; those were usually the ones that the Elders sent me after.

Ludwig’s look of shock was only matched by his girlish scream. He clutched at his leaky stump and shuddered. I lifted the axe again, this time to cleave off his head, but he must have regained a modicum of resolve, as he caught the axe’s blade in mid-swing. I quickly slipped my hands down the handle and, palms up, slammed it vertically so that its blade crushed against his skull. I heard a sickening crack as bone crumbled against the force. He keeled and stumbled back through the shop’s doors. I edged forward and crouched, sweeping my leg out to trip him over. Once he lay sprawled on the floor, I lifted my axe a final time and off rolled his head. It tumbled down the flat screen TV section.

The tethered humans were now desperately pulling at their bonds. I guess the big bad that had just killed their torturer was probably not someone they wanted to stick around and have tea with – better the devil you know.

I moved carefully toward the nearest boy. I gently took his blindfold from him and he blinked a few times and recoiled at my presence.

“It’s okay,” I said, hands out, palms up, “I’m here to help you. I won’t hurt you.”

The boy edged further away from me, pulling on all their ropes. He particularly dragged all of the survivors onto the floor. I suddenly had an image of me leading them like a chain of dogs through the streets. If Satan had been on a leash, he’d have died. If I couldn’t do that to a dog, I’d be damned if I was going to be responsible for leading an all-you-can-eat zombie buffet conga line.

“Look, I know you have no reason to trust me, but…”

“You’re one of them,” said the boy, looking past me to Ludwig’s twitching corpse. He must have been old; it can sometimes take a while for the magic to leave older vampires.

“We’re not all the same you know.” I stepped to his side and took a blindfold off a nearby woman, “Wait a minute, them?”

The woman gave me a quizzical look, “There’s another one. He had red hair and a posh accent; like from Downton Abbey.”

Okay, now time was of the essence. I pulled out my pink handled knife and sliced the rope between all the humans. I removed all their blindfolds and counted them: twelve.

“Right, here are your choices. You can say here and wait for Red, whoever he is, to come back and drink you dry, or you can follow me and I can get you the hell out of zombie central.”

“Zombies?” they all said together.

“You haven’t noticed the slathering zombie masses?” I asked.

“No,” said an older man, who had managed to pick up a plank of wood and hide it behind his back while I wasn’t looking.

“How long have you been in here?”

The man chose then to swing the plank at me, which I caught and crumbled in my grip. The small crowd gasped and I think they were just about to all fall onto me, when the bell at the door of the shop chimed.

“Oh no, it’s him. He came back for us.” A young girl of no more than thirteen cowered near me. I turned to her.

“I won’t let him hurt you. I told you, we’re not all the same.”

She bit her bottom lip and squeezed out a fat tear that rolled down her ruddy cheek.

“My name is Britannia. I know this is all a bit…” I struggled for the right word, “…weird, but I’ll get you some place safe. You just have to trust me.”

“So, let me get this straight.” The boy whose blindfold I’d took off first edged toward me. “You’re a friendly blood sucking demon, and there are zombies outside. But you’ll protect us? At what price, you gonna feed off and kill us one by one like your friend there?” He motioned at Ludwig’s now still body. I kicked the vampire’s corpse out of the door and into the main shop, out of the eye-line of the humans.

I didn’t have time for this. I needed to get a new radio, some food and get back to the zoo. I needed to tell Tate I was alive and for Josh and Jack to know I was on my way to them. I hadn’t even bothered to ask these humans’ names and here I was trying to protect them, while they challenged my ethical code. I was just about to give the boy what for, when a rumbling groan echoed through the store. I peered out to see a group of zombies shuffling toward Ludwig’s body. Once there, they began to rip him apart like an overcooked turkey. There were stuffing- and cranberry sauce-like substances cascading out of the yawning cracks they were making with their bare hands. I gagged and quickly closed the door.

Bad Timing is out now! For buy links, click here…

Be sure visit each stop on the BLOG HOP for more chances to WIN the GRAND PRIZE of a $100 Amazon Gift Card. You’ll receive bonus entries for commenting on each blog! For details.. http://evernightteen.blogspot.com

The Bad Timing Virtual Book Tour


 Tour Schedule

Jan 6

With Love for Books – Guest Post

3 Partners in Shopping – Spotlight

Harlie’sBooks – Guest Post

Jan 7

Margo Bond Collins – Spotlight

Cover2Cover – Top 10/Fav 5

Jan 8

Reviews by Crystal – Author Interview

Queen of All She Reads – Guest Post

Jan 9

Natural Bri Facebook Page – Spotlight

Bitten, Shifted…the not so Normal – Series Playlist

Jan 10

Liz’s Reading Life – Top 10/Fav 5

Jan 11

A Passion for Romance – YA Author Interview

Jan 12

Reading in Sarah’s Corner – Spotlight
Stormy Nights Reviewing & Bloggin’ – Spotlight

Remember to stop by and say hello!

Bad Blood-Bad Timing


Battle of the Undead virtual book tour – still time to sign up!



Battle of the Undead series on tour! Jan 6th to 12th.

You know now that monsters are real. Whether they have recently risen to reach for your flesh, or have chosen now to step from the shadows; you are surrounded by them. You also know that I am one too, but I’m all you’ve got and time is running out…”

There’s no rest for the wicked, especially in a zombie apocalypse. Britannia has used every vampire skill at her disposal to keep those she cares for safe, but with old enemies and unseen adversaries moving against her, she will have to push herself to both her physical and ethical limits to survive. Britannia is changing, but will it be for the better?

**Please note this is the second book in a series that should be read in order. **

Buy Links:   Amazon         Evernight Teen

There’s still time to be part of the tour. Sign up here through Bridging the Gap Promotions

Bad Blood-Bad Timing

Out now – Mammoth Book of Jack the Ripper Tales

61oh11chGOLOut today is the Mammoth Book of Jack the Ripper Tales which includes my short story Madame X.

Jack the Ripper as he has never been seen before . . .

Countless theories have been put forward by Ripperologists as to the identity of the notorious Victorian serial killer, but in the absence of proof how can we hope ever to unearth his real identity? How many more plausible new theories based on the known facts can the experts hope to come up with?

In this wonderful collection of newly-commissioned stories, Jakubowski has compiled an extraordinary array of fresh explorations into the identity and activities of Jack the Ripper – this time unabashedly fictional, unrestrained by the facts of the case. Contributors include Vanessa de Sade, Sarah Morrison, Betsy van Die, Alvaro Zinos-Amaro and Sally Spedding

Cumulatively, they propose numerous possible identities, some already suggested by historians, others more speculative, including some famous names from history and fiction – even Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson are on the case!

Available: hard copy, Kindle and audio book – so pop along to Amazon or your local book shop for your copy.

Book Spotlight: Sugar Skull by Glenn Dallas and Lisa Mantchev



Welcome to Cyrene, a city where energy is currency and music is the lifeblood of its young citizens. Everyone lives on the grid, and the residents of the world’s largest playground are encouraged to pursue every physical and emotional pleasure imaginable.

Vee is the lead singer of the Sugar Skulls, an all-girl band that is Corporate’s newest pet project. Micah haunts the city like a ghost after an overdose of a deadly illegal street drug knocks him off the grid. When Micah and Vee forge an immediate, undeniable connection, their troubled worlds collide.

Trading concert stages for Cyrene’s rooftops and back alleys, they have to evade vicious thugs and Vee’s possessive manager as they unravel the mysteries connected to their dark pasts. And before the curtain falls, Micah and Vee will bring the city to its knees in their desperate bid for love, home, and a future together.



Interview with Earl Staggs

Justified_Action_Cover_for_Kindle (2)Tell us about your publishing journey…

The thought of being a writer first took seed when I won an essay contest in high school. The thought lay dormant for a long time in favor of other things.  Thing like earning a living and raising a family.  When our daughters were grown and on their own, my wife and I burned our snow shovels in Maryland and moved to Florida.  That’s when I decided to give writing a serious try.

My first effort was a short mystery story.  I thought it was the best story ever written, so I immediately submitted it to a magazine.  A few weeks later, I received a rejection letter. Okay, I thought, their loss.  I sent the story to another magazine, then another, and another, all with the same result.  After a string of rejection letters, I suffered, I cried, I moaned, and I filed that story away.  Daunted but not totally discouraged, I continued writing short stories and submitting them.

Eventually, I received my first acceptance letter from The Cozy Detective Mystery Magazine for a story titled “Room Six.”  It’s funny how one acceptance can wipe out the pain of a whole stack of rejections.

Over the next few years, we moved to Fort Worth, Texas, and I placed a number of short stories in magazines and anthologies.  One of my stories even brought home a Derringer Award for Best Short Story of the Year.

Then I decided to move to the next level – writing a novel.  Remember that first story, the one that picked up those rejection letters?  One day, I pulled it out, dusted it off, and read it.  Oh my gosh!  I saw why it had been rejected.  There were so many things wrong with it I suspected someone had sneaked into my file and sabotaged it.  Either that or I had learned a lot about writing since then.  Anyway, I rewrote it, and when I sent it out this time, two magazines wanted to publish it, one a print magazine and one an electronic one.  What to do?  Fortunately. I didn’t have to decide.  Both magazines agreed to publish it at the same time.  That’s the only time I know of that a story appeared in two magazines simultaneously.

A lot of readers liked the protagonist and the premise of the story.  The protagonist is Adam Kingston, a private eye with some psychic abilities. His psychic images didn’t solve cases for him, but sometimes they provided clues which led him in the right direction.  Sometimes, they only confused him because he had no idea what they meant.  Response and feedback on the story was so encouraging, I decided to take Adam into a novel.

The title of the novel turned out to be MEMORY OF A MURDER.  It’s still available in all the usual places online and off.  I’m currently working on a sequel.  The short story that led to it, that first story featuring Adam Kingston, is “The Missing Sniper,” and it’s available in ebook form at:  http://store.untreedreads.com

What do you love about being an author?

Everything except one.  I love it when an idea occurs, when the idea turns into words that make sense on my screen, when the idea becomes a finished story I’m happy with, and I especially love it when someone likes it enough to publish it.  The one thing I don’t like is rejections letters.  Yes, I added a few more to that first batch and no matter how many times I tell myself they’re inevitable even for famous writers, they’re still painful.

If your book was to be made into a movie, who would you cast as the leads?

George Clooney and Sandra Bullock would be perfect as the leads in MEMORY OF A MURDER.  There are other actors who would fit, but those two would be my first choice.  They could also star in my second novel, an action mystery called JUSTIFIED ACTION, if they wanted to.

Vampires – do you prefer them as sexy leads or blood hungry monsters?

I grew up watching old black and white movies with Bela Lugosi as Dracula. Because of that, I can only think of vampires, zombies, or any other monster as horrible, scary creatures.  I prefer characters, even the bad guys, who are human.

If you had a time machine, which era would you go back to and why?

Probably to the mid 1800’s when cowboys with fast horses and fast guns ruled the Old West.  There was adventure, romance, lots of action, and the bad guys were dispatched with a bullet or a rope instead of a long drawn out trial followed by years of appeals.

What life advice do you wish you’d been given sooner?Mem Cover

Find what you’re best-suited to do and enjoy doing and work hard to be the best at it.

If you were a supernatural creature, what would you be and why?

A winged unicorn.  They’re sleek and beautiful, they can fly above the ugly parts of life, and if someone gives them a hard time, they have that sharp horn on their foreheads.

Where do you write best? 

There are two places.  One is at home.  We turned a third bedroom into a computer room, and I write there. I also have a part-time job driving a school bus.  That takes two hours in the morning to get the kids to school and two hours in the afternoon to deliver them back home.  In between, there are about five hours all my own. I take my laptop to work and spend that time writing in the driver’s lounge. I’ve learned to shut out everything going on around me and go into a writing zone.

What was the last book you read, and what were your thoughts on it?

I recently read Harper Lee’s GO SET A WATCHMAN.  I wanted to see what all the hubbub was about.  While I found Miss Lee to be a smooth and talented writer, not much of anything resembling a plot happened until after midway through the book, and that plot didn’t draw me in as much as I like in a novel.  It’s easy to see why her editor made strong recommendations to rewrite it.  The rewrite, of course, became TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD.

If you didn’t write in your genre, which other would you prefer and why? 

If I didn’t write mysteries, I’d probably write westerns.  Actually, when you think about it, many westerns are nothing more than mysteries in a different time period. In a western, the bad guys rustle cattle and rob stage coaches and the good guy has to hunt them down and bring them to justice just like cops go after criminals in a modern mystery.  You only have to substitute fast cars for fast horses and Glock nine millimeters for Colt forty-fives and the genres are very similar.

Justified_Action_Cover_for_Kindle (2)

I have a blog site at http://earlwstaggs.wordpress.com where I showcase my novels and short stories.

Interview with Laurie Stevens

1ed2506db573f84b66154bd81aa46e2eTell us about your publishing journey…

I guess I’m known as a “hybrid” author. For a couple of years I tried to get my first book, The Dark Before Dawn, published the traditional way. I spent months perfecting

a book proposal — even lunching with the guy who wrote a book on the subject to get his feedback. I sent queries. I hired a professional content editor.
Everything! Nothing came of it. So I put the book on a shelf and went on to write and produce a stage play.  My husband pressed me to pick up the book again, saying it was too good to abandon.
By this time my writing had matured somewhat soI took another look at The Dark Before Dawn and revamped it. One of the songwriters on the play told me a mutual friend of ours had been published by Createspace.
I thought, if he could do it, so can I. So I self-published The Dark Before Dawn and then the second in the series, Deep into Dusk. The books received excellent reviews. The Dark made Kirkus Reviews
Best of 2011/Indie. Deep won the 2014 IPPY for Best Mystery/Thriller. All told, the two books won nine awards. That got me some attention. After running a promotion that caused both books to rank in the Top 10 on the Amazon sales charts
I secured an agent for worldwide rights and she sold the books to Random House, Germany. I’m proud to say that Todes Schuld (German version of The Dark Before Dawn) comes out October, 2105. With Deep into Dusk released in 2016.  This event also got me signed with a literary and theatrical agent here in the States who now is shopping my work.
What do you love about being an author?59c2aa47b2469d6f513d46b800bda69d (1)

As I’m sure you do, Nicky, I love the process. I love how an idea takes form in my head, percolates there, and then comes the challenge to use words in the best way possible  to

convey the story. Of course, getting a good review and making those who read it happy doesn’t hurt either!

If you could have dinner with any literary character, who would it be and what would you eat?

Gosh, could I have dinner with Harry Potter? That way, we could eat anything and anywhere because all he’d have to do is wave his wand.  Since I like Noir a lot, a dinner with Chandler’s Philip Marlowe might be interesting. But I’d have to order a salad, because knowing Marlowe, he might make a snarky comment about women who eat like pigs.

If your book/ story was to be made into a movie, who would you cast as the leads?

Can I fantasize here?  Bradley Cooper, with those empathetic blue eyes of his, would fit the bill nicely for the troubled character of Gabriel McRay. Michael Fassbender would work, too (remember, there is a German version!) A younger version of Ryan Gosling would be perfect as the villain Victor Archwood.

7b7226e3902c87673b45c4b38dc45586If you had a time machine, which era would you go back to and why?

I’m in love with the 19th century. When I go into Bed and Breakfast places from the 1800’s, I always feel like I’m at home. However, knowing me, I’d probably start freaking out that no modern medicines exist.

What life advice do you wish you’d been given sooner?

I was given the advice to write, write, and only write and stop trying to fill every other shoe. I wish I’d taken that advice sooner.

If you were a supernatural creature, what would you be and why?

I’d be happy being a witch. She can fly, she’s into cooking (spells), She’s got power.

Where do you write best? 

I can write anywhere as long I’m not being annoyed by some nagging external force (use your imagination).

What was the last book you read, and what were your thoughts on it?

I’m reading “Deep Down Dark” right now -(Not to be confused as a mutation of my two books), about the 33 trapped Chilean miners.  I do like it, although I thought the buildup (taking each and every guy and going into depth about his family life) was longer than it needed to be.

I read a lot of independently published books and review them on Goodreads. I do this as a favor to independents and also because some books really are hidden gems.

If you didn’t write in your genre, which other would you prefer and why?ab46264769d85cf04f6682c728e4204a

Well, I’m about to begin a new series that is most definitely not psychological suspense like The Gabriel McRay series. I’m going to try my hand at a drama of sorts, more literary fiction than crime fiction. Why? To branch out and because the idea began to form.

Where can fans find you online?

You can check me out at www.lauriestevensbooks.com and I often update my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/lauriestevensbooks. All likes are welcome!

Laurie’s Books can be found here: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005HFR2BI

Interview with John Stewart Wynne

John Stewart WynneTell us about your publishing journey…

 Long, circuitous. Plenty of dead ends, but a few highways.  Never easy.  But worth it.  I got my start self-publishing a short story about UFOs, Bela Lugosi, teen-aged kids with plenty of hormones, all thrown together on a hot summer night in a small American town.  I called it The Sighting and it attracted praise from Hubert Selby, Jr. and a Brit publisher John Calder — he published my first novel Crime Wave in England and the U.S.  It was a literary shocker set in pre-Giuliani Times Square.
My story collection The Other World  (City Lights–book, Untreed Reads–ebook) followed — hallucinatory tales about desperate people living on the margins of existence. Dark psychological suspense pieces. Circus performers, God-fearing families quoting passages from the Bible while hiding horrible secrets, prostitutes, drifters involved in murder, a rich, cross-dressing teen-ager in love with his chauffeur.  It did indeed seem like I was writing about an “other world” — but one that was unmistakably ours.
Untreed Reads brought out the ebook version of The Other World.  I decided I wanted to write two pure horror stories which they published as ebooks as well.  The Needles Highway is about a screenwriter driving home through the California desert to L.A. from his childhood hoThe Needles Highway copy 2me in Needles.  He glances up at the driver of a pick-up truck to find a skeleton behind the wheel.  A pursuit follows.  The scary apparition appearing in the heat of the noonday sun tries to stop him from leaving the desert.  But why?  I was able to create an atmosphere of horror but add a mystery to solve.  A great challenge.  I did the same for my contribution to Untreed Reads’ horror anthology Year’s End.  Stories by different authors about a horrifying moment that happens while ringing in the new year.  In mine, A Night in the Pampas, a werewolf hides in the tall grasses and threatens a group of Air Force men on a h
unting expedition in the Argentine.  Of course, the werewolf manages to bite one of their heads off!  But it turns out he has his reasons.
The Red Shoes (Magnus/Riverdale Ave.–book and ebook) followed, nominated for 2014 Lambda Literary Award as Best Novel.  It’s a modern retelling of the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale set in contemporary New York City.  The Red Shoes are a symbol of addiction and flight – once you put them on you can’t stop dancing. The protagonist goes on a bizarre and dangerous journey through rat-infested alleys, penthouses, places of worship, decadent clubs — Is it because of the red shoes or some other reason?  It’s a long, winding novel of 428 pages and I immersed myself in it.  See, I think the best thing you can try to do is convince publishers that your voice is authentic, whatever your theme.  You can’t fool anybody.  If you aren’t into your material 100%, nobody else will be.
My publishing journey has also meant spinning myself off from fiction by writing, directing and producing audio books over the years; I was nominated for two Grammy awards and wrote The Listener’s Guide to Audio Books (Simon & Schuster).  I loved creating scripts and directing multi-cast dramas for audio, such as the Star Wars series, or producing the original Gaston Leroux novel of The Phantom of the Opera performed by F. Murray Abraham. It’s great to collaborate on projects as you can feel isolated when it’s just you by your lonesome.  Right now I’m co-writing a novel with another author; never did that before.  It keeps you on your toes.
 What do you love about being an author?
To create a different reality with each book and to develop ALL kinds of characters, never judging them.
The Other World Untreed ReadsIf you could have dinner with any literary character, who would it be and what would you eat?
Dracula.  Hopefully we’d share a bowl of fresh blood.
If your book/ story was to be made into a movie, who would you cast as the leads?
The Needles Highway would be perfect for Jake Gyllenhaal — he’d be great at portraying a man slowly sussing out the fact that he’s being pursued through the desert by a skeleton hell bent on making sure he doesn’t get home to L.A.
If you had a time machine, which era would you go back to and why?
The Roman Empire during Nero’s and Caligula’s reigns.  There was never a dull moment, always something going on.
What life advice do you wish you’d been given sooner?
Never to waste a minute thinking about trying to write something on a subject everybody tells you is popular at the moment.
If you were a supernatural creature, what would you be and why?
A ghost who could glide through walls and spy on everybody.
Where do you write best?Year
In public, in cafes.
What was the last book you read, and what were your thoughts on it?
Suspense writer Ursula Curtiss — Don’t Open the Door.  Really scary.  It made me never want to answer my doorbell again.
If you didn’t write in your genre, which other would you prefer and why?
Light comedies, it’s fun to be funny sometimes.  In fact I wish I could be all the time.
Where can fans find you online?

Interview with Katherine Clark

Clark-hi-resWhat do you love about being an author?

 Robert Penn Warren once joked that many would-be writers want to “have written” instead of wanting “to write.”  So I guess I’m fortunate to enjoy the actual writing process: the time alone in front of the blank page when I can translate what’s inside me into words and transfer that to the page.

If you could have dinner with any literary character, who would it be and what would you eat?

My choice would be the narrator Nick Jenkins from Anthony Powell’s A Dance to the Music of Time, because it’s clear this character is a stand-in for the author, who sounds like he was a delightful British gentleman as well as a literary genius.  What a wonderful—and rare—combination.  Of course we would dine at Casanova’s Chinese Restaurant.

If your book/story were to be made into a movie, who would you cast as the leads?

I’d love to see Cicely Tyson perform the role of the black midwife in the one-woman show9781611877700_med I’ve adapted from my book Motherwit: An Alabama Midwife’s Story.  If he were still alive, Philip Seymour Hoffmann would be perfect for the Capote-esque Eugene Walter of Milking the Moon: A Southerner’s Story of Life on this Planet.  (Gore Vidal wrote me that Eugene Walter was known as “the other Capote; the good one.)  And if Nathan Lane could put on a few hundred pounds, he’s the one to portray the monstrously obese schoolteacher in my novel The Headmaster’s Darlings. 

If you had a time machine, which era would you go back to and why?

I would never wish to go back in time because I rely on modern medicine.

What life advice do you wish you’d been given sooner?

Life is not a meritocracy.  The USA is not a meritocracy.  The capitalist/corporate publishing establishment in New York is not a meritocracy—literary or otherwise.  Get over it and get on with life and work as a writer regardless.

If you were a supernatural creature, what would you be and why?

I’m a huge fan of George R.R. Martin, so I’d like to be a direwolf.  Nothing is more important than protecting the remaining Starks and helping to restore order to Westeros.

9781611876376_LGWhere do you write best?

I write best on the couch in my study, with my ruby Cavalier King Charles spaniel, Cinnamon, next to me.  I also write best with freshly sharpened Ticonderoga pencils in contact with a white legal pad.  A computer which emits the hum of machinery and constantly pings with incoming email and various updates and alerts is not conducive to my writing process.

What was the last book you read, and what were your thoughts on it?

The last two books I read were The Power of the Dog, by Don Winslow, and its recently released follow-up, The Cartel.  These two novels provide a fascinating depiction of the evolution of the drug trade, the rise of the cartels, and the collapse of government institutions in Mexico, along with a trenchant analysis of the American policies, programs and government agencies which have contributed to the problem instead of alleviating it.  Oh, and by the way, both these books are a page-turning great read.

If you didn’t write in your genre, which other would you prefer and why?

I’d write crime fiction or detective novels because I think all novels are fundamentally Whodunits.  Who did what and why? is the essence of all good narratives regardless of genre, and I like how crime fiction brings the reader face-to-face with the essence of narrative. I’ve learned a lot about narrative structure and plot pacing from detective fiction.

If I had the talent and the knowledge, I’d write espionage or spy thrillers, because in these books the author can engage with important events of history and politics in a global context and also in a compelling way for the reader.  And when a spy is the protagonist, it allows the novel to explore existential issues of identity.

Where can fans find you online?

 Readers can find me on Facebook and at www.KatherineClarkBooks.com.