AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT: TONYA KAPPES
Tonya Kappes is sharing some insight in a new series of hers with the bunnies of Joyfully Reviewed….
The Ladybug Jinx, the first novel in the Grandberry Falls series.
Tell us a little about The Ladybug Jinx including what inspired you to write it.
I grew up in a small town and LOVED it. I left after college and moved to a bigger city. I still call it home, and realize how much growing up in a small town really did impact my life.
When you start writing, do you already have the story plotted out or do you let the characters dictate what will happen?
Oh, I never plot! I let those characters move into my apartment head and let them hash it out. Every day I learn something new from them.
What inspired you to write in your genre? Is this the genre you started writing in or have you morphed to this one?
I’ve always written in the women’s fiction with romance genre. I love a good lesson and a little romance wrapped up in a tidy little book. But I also write humorous cozy mystery and it’s something I’ve morphed into.
Do you have a favorite character you have written?
Yes! I think most authors do. My favorite would be Aunt Grace in my debut novel, Carpe Bead ‘em. She had a lot of life lessons wrapped up in her quirky world.
Who was the toughest character for you to “get right” that you have written so far?
In my new Grandberry Falls series, the story is told in the hero and heroine’s point of view. Getting into the male mind was really hard for all three novels in the series. Thank God I have a great husband and four teenage boys to pull from!!
Do you draw inspiration for your characters from real life? Any fun stories you could share?
I have to say that in my debut novel, Carpe Bead ‘em, I had a real Aunt Grace who really did dye her poodle pink that she did steal from someone. She was a hoot and writing a character based on her is my way of thanking her for being such a fun part and memory of my life.
What do you find the hardest part of writing?
Time. There isn’t enough time in the day!
Name one thing that your readers would be surprised to know about you.
I go to Mcdonald’s everyday and order a large diet Coke with extra ice in a stryofoam cup. They know me and when I start talking they tell me to pull around before I finish my order. They even have dog treats for my dogs, and if my dogs aren’t with me, they send dog treats home with me.
Do you have a guilty pleasure?
Taking a twenty-minute nap every day at 2pm:)
What do you need before you start writing? Anything that is just a must have or the creative juice don’t flow?
Red Hot candy and Diet Coke from McDonald’s.
Does music influence your writing? If so, do any of your stories have a theme song?
I don’t listen to music unless I’m in the car…
If your story was optioned for a movie, who would play your characters?
In The Ladybug Jinx, my hero would be Ashton Kutcher.
Where were you when you got your first contract? Who did you tell first?
I was getting my hair highlights at my salon. I told my hair dresser.
How old were you when you read your first romance book?
Fifteen! My mom’s Harlequin!
What is your favorite genre to read if you have time?
If you could co-write with another author who would it be?
I have co-authored a non-fiction book about marketing and promoting, The Tricked-Out Toolbox~Promotional and Marketing Tools Every Writer Needs will be published in January with author Misa Ramirez.
How do you pick your characters names?
Oh, my! Depends on if they are good or evil. I always give a shout-out to a couple friends, and secondary characters I use name generator. The name has to fit the character..
Do you prefer the love at first sight approach or a steady growth throughout?
Love at first sight! That heart flutter!
If you still have one of those pesky day jobs what is it?
I’m a Child Developmental Therapist. I have the honor of working with children birth to three years old that have developmental delays.
What are you currently working on, and what else is in the wings?
I’m currently finishing the third book in The Grandberry Falls series, Never Tell Your Dreams Before Breakfast. I have a cozy mystery, Splitsville.com, coming out in August.
What is your reaction to people who say one of the following…”Oh you write romance, I thought you were a real writer”, “Romance isn’t a real writing career” or the ever popular “Oh, one of those books”?
You know, I’ve never ever had someone tell me that. I get a lot of questions about money….go figure….
Where can readers find you?
The Naked Hero (www.thenakedhero.com)
The Writer’s Guide To E Publishing (www.thewritersguidetoepublishing.com)
And for the silly side – What is your favorite type of chocolate?