I have been tagged by a wonderful writer and person, Carol Ann Kauffman, in an Author Blog Hop. Carol Ann Kauffman is an American author from Ohio, is a retired teacher in the Niles City School district, and the author of the Time After Time series, which follows a pair of lovers through their many lifetimes together. Her novels, classified as romantic action adventures with a sci-fi/ fantasy twist, are about life, love, loss, and lunacy.
Here are Carol’s questions for me and my answers –
What are you working on now?
I just published Restless Spirits in June. It picks up where Feeling Lucky left off, but this time with ghosts instead of leprechauns! When Marilee Harper agrees to renovate an old hospital into a B&B, what could possibly go wrong? Fixtures turn themselves off and on, and old baseballs fly without help. These are the least of Marilee’s worries, however; she’s also falling hard for her boss. Then the haunting goes too far and her sweet, bookish employer, John Smith, goes missing!
Both my books, Feeling Lucky and Restless Spirits, share the same background in fairy folklore though each can be read independently. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed writing about leprechauns on a mission and innkeepers with a take-no-prisoners attitude, but they’re just the beginning of the epic battle brewing between the King and Queen of the Fairies. Shakespeare may have brought a long-standing feud to light in 1590-something with A Midsummer Night’s Dream, but it’s heating up in the modern-day Midwest.
So far, the battle is just notes on my laptop. It’s been a challenge. Already the principal characters are rejecting direction and heading off in a bent I never intended. This is what happens when you work with fairies. On the plus side, their plan’s pretty revolutionary!
Give the beginning on your WIP as an excerpt?
Book 3 doesn’t even have a title yet, so instead, here’s a taste of Restless Spirits – just in time for the beginning of school!
I ran to the front glass door and banged on it. For good measure, I grabbed the metal door handle and shook it. Inside, a middle-aged man came running out of a back office, pulling on a white coat. He pushed open the door, protesting, “We’re closed, ma’am,” but then he interrupted himself. “John?”
Hurrying over, he slid underneath John, replacing my mother who appeared rather relieved.
John actually tried to introduce us. “Hey, Bob,” he started. “This is Marilee and her mother . . .” but then he gasped from pain and the doctor frowned at him, perplexed, and shook his head.
“C’mon, Linda,” he said. “Let’s get him inside.” The doctor didn’t acknowledge my mom or me at all.
“Grab the lights, will you?” Linda, the nurse, called back over her shoulder as she helped the doctor maneuver John into an examination room on one side of the small lobby.
I could hear the doctor scolding as he flicked a light in John’s face.
“Honestly, John, that bicycle will be the death of you.”
Linda came out of the examining room and headed back around to the far side of the receptionist desk. I followed her as far as I could to say, “I don’t know his insurance information, but since this is an emergency, you’ll just have to get it later.”
The nurse eyed me impassively. Without looking, she reached behind her and pulled a file out of the rack behind her and laid it down on the countertop. It was impressively fat. “We’re familiar with John’s insurance,” Linda said, pokerfaced.
I stared at her blankly for a minute, and then asked, “Really? Well, that’s good. He needs to be checked out right away.” My hands were shaking, so I slapped them down on the countertop and nodded firmly at the nurse. Now was not the time for any sign of weakness. I had to make sure John got proper care and not some abrupt bureaucratic dismissal because it was after hours.
Linda was a pleasant-looking, middle-aged woman, not too matronly, but the look she gave me was ancient in cynicism. “We’ll try to squeeze him in,” she said sardonically and waved a hand to indicate the empty waiting room.
“Sorry,” I whispered. Reaction was setting in and I could feel tears starting to creep up on me. I shook the feeling off and straightened up, but I couldn’t keep my face from twisting or stop blinking.
Linda smiled sympathetically. “It’s okay,” she said. “He’ll be fine. What were you guys doing?” She raised one eyebrow in question.
There was open curiosity in her voice that in other circumstances would have probably pissed me off, but before I could respond, John’s muffled voice came from the examining room. “I wanted to show her the house. Ouch!”
The doctor’s response was clearer. “Hold still and it won’t hurt.”
Linda raised her chin and called out, “I thought you were going to hire someone to finish decorating and open up.”
I must have looked as surprised as I felt because Linda glanced over at me. “School’s started, so he has classes now. He can’t do both, so he has to hire someone to run the place.”
“School?” I managed.
“I teach math at the community college,” John called from the examining room. “Tell her who I am, Linda. Tell her I’m reliable.”
The nurse shrugged, a little grin twisting her lips. “We see Professor Smith regularly,” she deadpanned.
“Marilee, what if you gave him brain damage?” Mom put down the yellowing magazine she’d picked up and came up to the reception disk.
“I didn’t give him brain damage,” I protested automatically, but my stomach lurched and I was having trouble breathing. Oh God, I hoped I didn’t just ruin this guy’s career. It was bad enough that I’d actually driven over him. What if I’d really hurt the guy? The accident was starting to assume nightmare proportions. “I didn’t know,” I nearly wailed. “It was an accident.”
How is your work different from others?
Well, most paranormal romance has traditionally concentrated on vampires and werewolves. But that’s the beauty of paranormal. There’s a whole world of possibilities out there!ç
I went with fairies because I love Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. It’s classic literature about a bunch of confused lovers running around in a forest under the influence of a noxious weed! Heh, heh, heh!
When you have carte blanch from the Bard, you can’t help but embrace the fun. Restless Spirits pulls from The Tempest, but there’s still madness and mayhem, this time lost sailors wandering around a deserted island under the influence of mischievous spirits! The world of the fairies is rich and complex, leading to some wonderful plot twists!
And now I’m tagging Cassandra L. Shaw, author of Grave Robber for Hire, the story of an unusual recovery agent – Angela who can, with just a touch, travel back in time and locate lost family treasures.
As a child, Cassandra prayed she was secretly Dr. Doolittle. She loved all animals and bugs with a fierce devotion that has carried into her writing. Most of her stories, be they paranormal, futuristic, fantasy, or suspense, have humorous roles for her character’s pets. These pets are often named after her own beloved dogs, cats, horses, goats, chickens, ducks, and birds. Tina, Tit Tit, Bones, Willow, Falcor, and Asha are already in her first book, and there will be more. She’s pinky promised her pets immortality, so they will have it!
At home on her small farm in Queensland Australia, demons, monsters, aliens, futuristic worlds, sexy men, and hot sex scenes nestle happily amongst the housework Cassandra pretends doesn’t need doing.