Thursday, June 11, 2015

Books: Interview with talented Author Carol Ann Kauffman

June! Summer time and a great opportunity to pick up new books and do some reading by the pool! Let's introduce to you author Carol Ann Kauffman. Today we interview her to find out a bit more about her books and her background. What about picking up one of her great books for a lazy summer afternoon reading by the pool?


Carol, tell us where are you from and what motivates you to write?


I’m from northeast Ohio, the gray land, the flyover zone.  I honestly do not know.  It’s like eating and sleeping and other primal necessities that seem to be hard-wired into me.
Seems you were born to be a writer, so when and why did you begin writing?
With me, reading and writing have always gone hand in hand. I wrote as a child. I won an essay contest in middle school, and wrote an article for a teen magazine in high school. But college, job, life got in the way and I didn’t pick up writing as a serious endeavor again until I retired.  
That's great, reading and writing do have to go hand in hand, and I'm glad you decided to write when you retired! Do you have a favorite author and has he/she influenced your writing in any way?
My favorite authors are M.C. Beaton (Hamish MacBeth and Agatha Raisin series), Janet Evanovich (Stephanie Plum), Sue Grafton (A is for Abili, B is for…), Dan Brown, to name a few.  I love indie author Loretta Laird, whose Passers trilogy is a Tolkien-like saga of a princess and a passer, love and duty. I like an author who drags me into the book no matter how I am feeling when I sit down to read, one who can make me put everything else aside and just read.
And what do you think is the hardest part of writing?
I tend to suffer from too many subplots.  I see twists and turns at every corner. One publisher wanted to divide my novel into three separate books.  I wasn’t thrilled with the idea, so I declined.  Though a few subplots are good, too many can certainly strangle a good story. Simplifying my story line is the hardest part for me.
Definitely not an easy task. With all your experience, having written several books, what is the best advice you would give to inspiring authors?
Write every day.  Don’t let the people who haven’t succeeded squash your success.  Today, everybody’s a critic.  Do not get discouraged.  And this is a hard one: when someone is giving your book criticism, emotionally detach yourself from the book and try to glean something constructive from them. Discard the snide remarks and wrinkled noses. Find something they said that you can use to improve your craft. Someone used the term “too trashy” for one of my books.  I howled with delight! My work is not sexual explicit or graphically violent, and most rejection letters said I was too tame, for example “this is something one might find on Mary Poppins nightstand” or “use a more modern descriptive phrase for man part”, or, my favorite, “throw a few fucks in, young people say fuck a lot.” So, if you can’t find something constructive, then find something amusing.
What are you working on now?
I have a new book out with BTGN (Books To Go Now, out of Seattle, WA). It’s part of a five-book anthology called The Monday Mystery Society. It takes place in a small Ohio town, where members of the book club find more than their next favorite author. Each book in the series revolves around a mystery novel. It’s an exciting concept. My book is called Daisy’s Dilemma.
Also, Sea Witch came out in May.  Life extraterrestrial life scientist Dr. Laura Martin hires a new assistant, Dr. Scott Conner. Mayhem insures, mainly because of the mermaid/siren/monster in the basement.
And I have another installment in the Time After Time series that is due out in July, called MacKalvey House. Young American woman/older British gentleman find love and heartache.
THEN the sequel to Madison’s Christmas is due out November 1st. This one, Christmas at Star Lake, picks up almost a year after Madison’s Christmas ended, when Madison discovers the deaths of her father and best friend were murders.
Do you research different topics to write your books? What have you learned from your experience as a writer?
Oh, absolutely. For Sea Witch I had to learn the naval officer rankings and the geography of southern France. I also studies the folktales from the Nordic countries about hooked sea monsters, as well as old tales of mermaid and sirens.
The biggest thing I learned as an author was to make a table with columns and rows as you are writing, noting chapter number and title, page numbers, character POV (point of view), location, month or time of year action is taking place, new characters added, etc.  BELIEVE ME, you will save time and aggravation not flipping and scrolling to find specifics.
Where do you get inspiration for your books?
Anywhere. Everywhere. The bridal section on the newspaper. The police blotter. Lyrics from a song on the radio. Kids playing at the dog park. Something that happened to me personally. A long drive in the park. The people screaming at each other in the hotel room next door. 
Thank you so much for your time and to let us know more about you! Much success with your books and new releases! 
For more information about Carol and her books:
Carol Ann Kauffman is an author from Ohio. She is a retired teacher from a local school district, where she taught for thirty-five years. She has worked as a printer, managed a department store office, worked in an insurance agency, retail sales, and automotive. She was a Red Cross volunteer. She loves to travel; her favorite places being Italy, and Aruba, which show up in her novels quite a bit. She loves to play Bridge and to garden. She grows African violets and orchids. She loves dachshunds and trains. She is 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. 

Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/Carol-Ann-Kauffman/e/B0076OMJY8/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1382533698&sr=1-2-ent
Twitter:  @Cay47
tsu: CAKauff
Cold Coffee Café: coldcoffeecafe.com

 


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