Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Welcome, Pat Casiello

Welcome to From the Pages, Pat. It's great to get a chance to know you, and introduce you to my blog readers. Pat is part of the sister team that writes a K.M. Daughters.

How did you celebrate your first contract?

With a gloppy, delicious tropical drink in the downtown area of Universal Studios, Orlando, Florida. We were there on a “sister trip” for fun when we received an email from Nicola Martinez, Sr. Editor at The Wild Rose Press offering us a contract for Jewel of the Adriatic. Seated in an amphitheater-like attraction called The Eighth Voyage of Sinbad an email came through on Pat’s cell minutes before the stage show started. Pat related to Kathie, “We sold our book!!!!!!” And a canon went off on stage.

What kind of food do you like best?

We are unanimous! Lou Malnati’s Chicago style deep-dish pizza. Kathie votes for sausage and Pat votes for the Lou’s special (sliced tomatoes, spinach and three different cheeses – as if one isn’t enough!).

Can you tell us anything about what you’re working on now?

We just finished final galley approval of Beyond The Code of Conduct, 2nd in the Sullivan Boys series and are into the first draft of the 3rd book in the series, working title Capturing Karma. We also just launched our first manuscript contracted to Sapphire Blue Publishing, a contemporary romance, Past, Present and Forever, available in digital formats.

Tell us a little bit about your book, please.

We have three books available now: our debut novel was published in print August 2008 - Jewel of the Adriatic, an inspirational romance set in a fictional Adriatic village where millions believe the Mother of God appears daily to three visionaries.

The first book in our Sullivan Boys romantic suspense series, Against Doctors Orders followed in October 2008. NYT Best Selling author, Brenda Novak says: “Watch out! The Sullivan boys are a force to be reckoned with. Against Doctors Orders packs a punch and keeps you turning the pages.”

Set in suburban Chicago, sexy homicide Detective Danny Sullivan meets bossy ER doc Molly Jordan when he’s brought to her ER with a bullet wound. While the Henna Housewife Killer targets red-headed victims, Danny works to stop him despite the distraction of irresistible Molly.

Our third book, is a contemporary romance, Past, Present and Forever, available in e-book only through Sapphire Blue Publishing. Unaware they share the same goal, Lizzie and Jack motivate Jack’s brother Charlie out of his despondency after the death of his wife. Lizzie and Jack both understand loss. Liz was jilted by her fiancé the same day her parents died ten years ago. Jack’s mother abandoned her small sons to life with a father who never recovered from the separation. Now Liz faces the man who destroyed her at a college reunion, with Jack as her companion instead of Charlie who engineers the covert substitution. As they collide in the present can they overcome their pasts and find forever?

Is there anything about you that would surprise your readers?

Kathie can play the drums and Pat can speak Spanish, neither can do the other.

If you had the choice of being stranded on a desert island or lost in a huge city, which would you prefer and why?

We both choose lost in a huge city, preferably together. So many opportunities for adventure, so much to see, maybe even people to meet along the way. We were in Paris once together and decided we wanted to visit the Eiffel Tower. Our hotel was miles away. We love to walk and talk together – the genesis of every story plot and character discoveries. We figured if we could see it – and the Eiffel Tower is hard to miss – we could find our way to it. We succeeded at the end of a meandering, hilarious time together.

The question most readers want to know but never get the chance to ask, do you ever write in your pajamas?

All the time. Probably most of the time.

What circumstances led you to writing?

Kathie was addicted to Silhouette Romances when her boys were babies, an addiction she shared with our Mom. She decided to try her hand at writing series romance and produced several manuscripts. Perhaps the “writing bug” is hereditary because our Dad wrote several children’s books (we self-published them in a three-book volume Three Wishes by Michael Lynch) before he died when we were teenagers. Kathie encouraged Pat to attempt to write a book and when we joined Romance Writers of America we each had separate manuscripts we wanted to hone. At an RWA national conference in Reno, Nevada, Kathie suggested we write as a team and the author wannabe K.M. Daughters was born.

How many books have you written? Do you have a favorite?

We have written five books together and contracted them all in 2008. (Our 6th is our WIP) The most recent contract is for the inspirational romance, Rose of the Adriatic, the sequel to our debut novel. Perhaps it’s because it’s the most recent or because of the special nature of the story – a visionary who speaks daily with the Mother of God falls in love with a doctor who comes to her village to discredit her claim that she receives heavenly messages – but we are truly in love with this story.

You’re in an Italian restaurant. What do you order?

Pat is married to Nick Casiello – she knows her Italian menus. A wonderful bottle of Italian red wine from the village of Montepulciano in Tuscany. First roasted red peppers topped with melted white cheese and maybe grilled Portobello mushrooms topped with parmesan cheese for appetizers. A tomato Caprese salad – beefsteak tomatoes sliced with a layer of mozzarella cheese and fresh basil , next. For the pasta dish rigatoni with broccoli, red peppers and mushrooms tossed with olive oil, Parmesan & pine nuts. For the main entrée grilled halibut and roasted veal loin. Side dishes -roasted potato wedges and green beans tossed with olive oil and garlic. For dessert an ice cream bomba. All served family style and brought at leisurely pace one course at a time. The meal should take hours. And might involve another bottle of wine.

Is there anything else you would like to share with us today?

We always dreamed that the most joyful, ecstatic moment on our writers’ journey would be when holding a book we wrote in our hands, marveling at its existence. Yes, those moments are thrilling! But we discovered far greater joy when a reader we’d never met wrote us or wrote a review for us because she loved our book. Or when a reader contacted us from our website concerned that she’d “missed” the release date of Beyond The Code of Conduct because she loved Against Doctors Orders and can’t wait for the next book in the series. These are truly dreams come true.

Thank you for joining us today, Pat. It's been a pleasure having you here.

For more information, Pat's website is

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Welcome, Candace Black

Welcome, Candace! It's so nice to have you here today.

Can you tell us anything about what you’re working on now?

I started about four projects at once and finally decided to finish one. "Kindertransport" will be out August of '09"Clown College" and "Forgotten Bathory" will be submitted as soon as they are tweaked."Clown College" is a YA/inspirational or sweet romance. I like a variety of things so my genres sometimes overlap."

Forgotten Bathory" is about Elizabeth Bathory's illegitimate daughter. It could be categorized as suspense or historical.

I am also working on a book about Straight Inc, also a YA that I hope to make a series. Due to legal stuff I will have to change the title probably to "the program" or "DRABS: Drug Rehab and Behavior Specialists" -- eek, don't like that title. This organization was closed in the 1980's for child abuse.

Where do you write?

I am trying to do the bulk of my writing at the computer. I used to write longhand, then type and copy/paste pieces together like a puzzle, very time consuming. I have sticky notes in the bathroom and the car in case an idea or dialogue line hits. (there's a joke in there somewhere)

How many books have you written? Do you have a favorite?

I have written a baby book that is gathering dust and a midlist I have trouble placing. It was written in the memory of my husband's brother. He died of cancer at age 5. I called it "Wishes". I wrote six pieces start to finish but only have one published so far. I have a queue of other stories waiting patiently to be written. No favorite yet.

Where did you get the idea for this story?

History. For every point of view lies a different story. Kindertransport was inspired by a random computer search. I had never heard of the transport and I was surprised to learn some don't consider these children to be technical holocaust survivors. I did some research on Grafeneck castle and the outline came flying at me.

How do you juggle all of life’s other demands with your writing career?

Organization is my goal for '09. I have to write everything down. I keep a calendar and lists so I can at least get the most important stuff done.

How did you meet your significant other?

His best friend was married to my best friend. I walked in her house one day, she wasn't home and I met Rusty. he was curious as to why I just barged in without knocking. I said "hey there," and teased about my friend knowing better than to not be there at my beck and call. He's used to my sense of humor now.

Do you have a pet?

It's weird, I'm allergic to some cats but not others. After adopting two adorable kittens who nearly put me in the ER I tried to adjust to having a dog ( I borrowed my nieghbors to see if i was allergic) then I had the chance to adopt peachcup, an American short hair. no problems! which was good as she had kittens 3 months later. I now have her and her daughter, Freya. no allergy problems.

Do you believe in extraterrestrial beings?

God seperated Heaven from the Earth, so would Angels be considered extraterrestrial? I will say yes, its a big universe and I see no reason why humans would be the only creatures in it.

Is there anything about you that would surprise your readers?

My humor. I love humor in all forms, high brow, sophomoric, slap stick, dry. I love the Addams Family. I tend to parent the way Morticia does. My son was shooting targets and I actually told him "darling, move that target away from the window, why don't you play with the machete for a while?" ( he is 16 and we have weeds growing over the fence). We both laughed after I said it. We tease each other. laughter is important to us.

If you had to choose another profession, what would it be?

I would take care of newborn babies and their moms. Once I thought babies were something you put up with until they got to be fun. (defined as over four), but after having one, I realize how smart they are. Heck, they are fluent in a foreign language in less than four years! Nurture them, feed their curiosity and learn together! Raising children is an awesome experience.

Is there anything else you would like to share with us today?

I'm a Star Trek fan from way back! Spock has been my role model, he taught me how to outsmart bullies by giving them no reaction. (except for the one time I was suspended for fighting. oops a bit of Klingon seeped through.) We are an incredible force for good. Don't be afraid to let your light shine.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. I have enjoyed getting to know you. Congratulations on the release of Kindertransport.

Readers, Candace has graciously offered to give away a copy of Kindertransport, which releases on August 7th from The Wild Rose Press. Every comment is an entry in the giveaway, so comment away and check back to see if you're the lucky winner!

A blurb:

I filled a syringe with morphine.

Could innocent blood ever be washed away?Would my hands ever be clean again if Icontinued on this course? The gas would make themchoke, gasping for breath as life was strangled to nothingness. Morphine would make them euphoric,and an overdose would put them to sleep, peacefully,with no pain. A sleep from which they would notwake, but they would be safe from the evil thatawaited them otherwise.

I filled the second syringe. I thought of each child as I punctured the rubber stopper, the needle sucking up the lethal fluid filling the tube. LittleWilhelm. My treasured leader of the pack. The braces on his legs never stopped his imaginationfrom soaring. Lara. An artist’s soul expressed with the one good hand she had. Art reflective of thebeauty living in her heart. The twins. Isn’t intelligence measured with creativity? I would sorely miss their energy.

My hand slipped, and the needle grazed theknuckle of my thumb. I swore and bit my lip. Perfect. I’ll kill myself before I get a chance to euthanize my children. Then, after I enter Heaven’s gates, if He lets me inside them, God can tell me I am an idiot and a murderer.

I rubbed my shoulders. They hunched with an invisible weight that made my back ache.

For more information, check out Candace's website