Kendra Leigh Castle is a RITA award-nominated, multi-published author of contemporary and paranormal romance. Raised in the far and frozen reaches of Northern New York, where her love of curling up with a blanket and a good book came early, she penned her debut novel as a Navy wife living in the Nevada desert. Since then, she has managed to continue working in her pajamas while moving around the country. Kendra currently makes her home in Maryland, where she lives with her husband, three children, and a menagerie of pets. She drinks too much coffee, stays up too late, and loves to hear from her readers, who make this crazy job worthwhile.
First off, can you tell us a bit about you?
Sure! I’ve been a working author for nine years now, with fifteen (soon to be sixteen) published books and a handful of shorter pieces that have appeared in Harlequin anthologies. A lot of that has been paranormal romance, though my current series is small town contemporary. That was a big jump for me! I’m also a busy mom of three kids and a Navy wife, which is a job all on its own. We live in Maryland now, which has been wonderful since I’ll always be an east coast girl at heart.
Did you always want to be a writer?
Not exactly. I always wrote—poems, short stories, you name it—but I wasn’t a very confident child and it never occurred to me that I might be good enough to make a career of it. Still, wanting to write a book was always in the back of my mind. I kicked the idea around for a long time, and when we got stationed out in the Nevada desert, it seemed like a good opportunity to sit down and give it a real shot. It hasn’t always been easy, but I’m very glad I did!
What kind of writer are you? Panser or Plotter?
I’m a pantser. SUCH a pantser! I know plotters, and I am in awe of them, because my brain just doesn’t work that way. If I know everything that happens from the start, I’ll get bored. Instead, I find my way through a story in relative darkness…it lets me have those “A-ha!” moments that keep me going. It also makes me want to tear my hair out on a semi-regular basis, but by now I’ve just accepted that this is the way I work. It’s messy, but productive.
Where do your ideas come from?
I’m not sure, honestly. I think I’m just wired this way—I wonder “What if?” about all sorts of things. I always had an active imagination, and writing provides me with an outlet for it.
A la Twitter style, can you describe your book (or series) in 140 characters or less.
Carefree baker and town bad boy overcome their pasts to learn that going from friends to lovers is the sweetest chance they’ll ever take.
What are some of your favorite kinds of stories to read?
I’ll pick up anything that catches my eye, but I love to read fantasy. I’m just finishing up Jacqueline Carey’s Kushiel trilogy, and it has everything I like: a vibrant world, fascinating characters, and a strong heroine. I’m also a big A Song of Ice and Fire fan (Game of Thrones is back on TV soon, WOO!), which I love even when it makes me want to throw things.
Do you have a favorite book and if so what is it?
That’s like picking a favorite child. I can’t! My keeper shelf has things on it like Stephen King’s The Stand, Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series, and of course, Harry Potter.
What are the scenes that are the hardest for you to write? Why?
This is going to sound funny, but the sex scenes are the hardest for me to write. They take at least twice as long as everything else! I breeze through the run-up and the aftermath, but the scene itself…not so much. I think some of the reason why is that I want each of those scenes to feel natural and be different from each of the other ones I’ve written, and, I mean…there are only so many ways to describe how the act itself works, you know? So it requires quite a bit of thought. I figured out a long time ago that this means I’m definitely not cut out to write erotica!
If you could have dinner with any three authors, who would you choose and why?
I’d choose the authors I mentioned having on my keeper shelf: Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, and JK Rowling. They all build the most amazing worlds in their heads and then manage to get them down on paper, and I’m in awe of the way each of them uses language. I don’t know that I’d do much talking—I just want to listen to them all talk shop!
Last question, are you working on anything right now?
I’m actually taking a short breather right now, as I’ve just this week turned in the edits for A LITTLE MORE LOVE, which is the last Harvest Cove book and will be out in September. After I catch my breath, I’ll be coming up with something new…it’s always an adventure!
I’m always looking for new things to read, so: what is your favorite book, and why?
The author of One of These Nights returns to Harvest Cove for a brand-new sweet and sexy romance...Nothing’s sweeter than a chance at true love...Larkin O’Neill refuses to let anything stand in her way. Despite a troubled upbringing, she’s created the life she always wanted, surrounding herself with close friends and opening the bakery of her dreams. But the free-spirited baker is blindsided when she falls hard for the local bad boy. She knows that she should stay away, but the sizzling attraction between them is just too tempting...Shane’s love 'em and leave 'em ways have left him a persona non grata in Harvest Cove. But when Larkin bursts into his life, the handsome lawyer can't think of anywhere he'd rather be than by her side. She’s the first person in a long time who believes there could be more to him than meets the eye. Now he’s determined to prove to Larkin that he’s worth taking a chance on—and prove to himself that he’s the kind of man she deserves.
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Up For Grabs:
- 1 Signed copy of Come on Closer
- I’m always looking for new things to read, so: what is your favorite book, and why?
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Special thanks to Kendra Leigh Castle for sponsoring this giveaway.a Rafflecopter giveaway