Friday, June 14, 2013

Interview w/ Karen Stivali!

Sometimes you have to lose it all to find what you really need.

Photographer Kay Turner is dealt a double whammy when she flies home for her grandmother’s funeral to find her boyfriend with another woman. Now with two losses to mourn, she retreats to her newly inherited beach house to clear her head.

Everything at the beach is familiar: the sounds of the ocean, the scent of her grandmother’s perfume—and the irresistible smile of James Margolis. The man Kay spent her adolescence pining for is every bit as charming as she remembers.

James always thought of Kay as “a nice kid”, but he feels something very different for the woman she’s become. Especially when he asks if she’d be willing to part with some of her grandmother’s recipes for his new restaurant—and they wind up sharing much more than culinary secrets.

But as their relationship deepens, Kay finds herself caught between the demands of her dream career as a travel photographer, and a chance for happiness with the one man she’s wanted for a lifetime.

Morning Karen! So nice to see you. Alright I want to hear about your new release... Then, Again. I so love foodie romances...what was your inspiration for James and Kay's story?
To be perfectly honest their whole story just came to me. No particular inspiration. I am a total foodie. Food always plays a prominent part in my books and this time I felt the need to have a character who was more than just a food enthusiast or at-home cook. Cooking is one of my passions and I worked in the restaurant industry a lot in the past.  It was very easy for me to see James as a restaurateur and imagine what he’d be doing while getting ready to open his first restaurant. Bringing in Kay’s grandmother’s recipes came just as naturally because one of my grandmothers taught me a lot of my cooking skills. Everything else just fell into place.

I really loved how food connected them. I'm gonna be a little nosy now...could you tell us 3 fun behind the scenes facts about Then, Again? Think Pop-up video style.
  • Then, Again was my November 2011 NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) project. I wrote the entire novel in 19 frenzied days.
  • The first scene I wrote was the phone sex scene. *ooOoooo that one was good*
  • Rosalie and Trixie were only supposed to be in the beginning of the book but they had so much to say they just kept coming back. They’re the most fun secondary characters I’ve ever written.
Oh my goodness. Karen Rosalie and Trixie were so much fun to read too! Okay, so, say James was going to be your personal chef for the day...what all would you be dying to try? And would you give him a hand in the kitchen?
I’d be willing to try anything James suggested and I’d be happy to give him a hand in any room of the house. (cough) Wait… that’s probably not what you meant. 
If James were my chef for the day I seriously would try anything he cooked. He’s a perfectionist when it comes to getting recipes right, so before he had me try it I know he’d make sure it was the best it could be. I’d trust his judgment and try whatever he made for me. That said, I’m a sucker for desserts, so if he made me one of his decadent sweet treats I’d probably tackle him to get it. 
As far as helping in the kitchen? Absolutely. I love to cook and bake and am always up for helping someone with any kind of culinary adventure. Plus I’d love to see him in an apron.
::snort:: Yeah not even gonna lie I was so with ya on that first part there. lol Now, a photographer and a chef are both pretty creative fields. Do you have any creative outlets other than writing?
I do. In addition to writing and cooking I am very artsy/craftsy. I was a film major in college and specialized in hand drawn animation. I do pencil sketches, pastel work, pen and ink, charcoal… and I’m very good at building 3-D models of things. In fact, sometimes I combine that with baking and make cakes, cookies or chocolates for themed parties. I’ve made a volcano cake with edible lollipop lava…a Harry Potter castle cake with chocolate bar turrets…pyramid cookies filled with gold chocolate coins. I basically just like creating things.
Oh that is so much fun! How about just a few silly questions and we'll let you get back to your creating?

favorite family recipe?
My grandmother’s struffoli (small fried balls of dough, flavored with whiskey and coated with honey----a Christmas tradition)
favorite lip gloss flavor?
Strawberry (reminds me of middle school, in a good way)
one food you could never live without?
solid or patterned sheets?
Solid. Preferably jewel tones---I don’t care for pastel colors or white.
favorite man candy?
I have to pick just one? *thinks* Nope. Can’t do it. I’ll just have to list several. Gilles Marini. Gabriel Aubrey. Adam Levine.
*thud* yeah that's, um, a good one there. Whew. Thanks for coming by Karen! Hope you have a great afternoon!!

I write erotic romance (published by Ellora’s Cave) sexy women’s fiction (published by Turquoise Morning Press) and sensual contemporary romances (published by Samhain Publishing). I can also be found on twitter attempting witty banter.

In addition to the grand prize giveaway Karen is also giving away an ecopy of one of the books from her backlist! Woot! So check out our interview and leave her some love! And don't worry. You can leave her a comment and not enter the giveaway :)

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