Friday, November 23, 2012


 Tonya Kappes, Amazon Mover and Shaker and author of the Cozy Mystery Bead of Doubt, tapped me for the blogspot THE NEXT BIG THING. I mean...whoa, what an honor!!! Especially since Tonya is an INDY Queen :) Please, check her books out on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. She has several series and is a best seller in all of them.

I am supposed to carry on the "blog love" but since a) I do not have a blog and b) that probably qualifies me as a good friend, Mary-Nancy Smith allowed me to guest blog since she is just the coolest person ever!

Thank you Mary-Nancy...and here is my Q&A session about my NEXT BIG THING due in the spring of 2013!

 What is the title of your book?

My next big thing is ”No Brainer,” the second installment in the Darcy Walker Series and follow up to “Grade A Stupid.” It will be released in the spring of 2013. At least that’s the plan unless a solar flare incinerates me between now and then.

How did you come by the idea?

Honest to God, I was eating a bag of Doritos…I get very creative when I eat Doritos. Book one was written and I needed a title for book two…came to me in one munch…along with about 150 calories of saturated fats.

What genre does your book fall under?

The Darcy Walker Series is Young Adult Fiction…mystery, suspense, intrigue, and a whole lot of will-he-kiss-me-or-not. Darcy does age in the series, though, and eventually gets a job. Thankfully, she hasn’t been pigeonholed as “just for teens” because I’ve had some awesome feedback from adult readers. And God knows, Darcy experiences a lot of things that make adults lock their doors.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters if it were a movie?

Ugh, this is HAAAAAAARRRRRDDDDD. I’ve been searching for the perfect person, and so far I like Sara Paxton and Alex McKenna as Darcy, but they’re about a decade too old. Prerequisites, though, are a prominent dimpled chin and green, mischief-packed eyes. Everyone I’m finding is too sweet….LOL! There’s got to be some bad-girl in there. Darcy’s best friend Dylan Taylor is even harder. A friend sent a picture of Robbie Amell, and he’s real close. All I know is he has to have Reggie Bush’s killer abs….

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

More of the same…ON STEROIDS. Sorry, I just realized that’s a sentence fragment. If you thought Darcy stirs up trouble in “Grade A Stupid,” “No Brainer” is going to have you popping antacids and throwing your books, kindles, and NOOKS up against the wall. Don’t send me the bill…please.

Will your book be self-published or traditional?

It will be self-published like “Grade A Stupid.” Fingers crossed it will be even more spectacular, and “Grade A Stupid” broke into the Top 100 in Teen Literature and Fiction within 24 hours in the kindle store. I can’t take credit for that and wouldn’t even try. Being INDY published, my FB friends helped me with a massive “share” campaign, and the bloggers at Promotional Book Tours put Darcy’s name in the twitter-verse and on the goodreads map. I’ve just sat around dumbfounded, thinking Dear, God, I’m living my dream. Well, I did fall facedown and beg God a couple of times…I can’t leave that out.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

“No Brainer” was written in less than six months, compliments of 180 cans of Coke.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I hope I give readers the fun of Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum Series while giving them a little bit of Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games and James Patterson as a side dish. I want readers to feel every emotion possible when reading my books. So, if someone laughs, cries, hides, or wants to become a card-carrying member of the NRA then I’ve done my jobJ.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

Darcy Walker came to me Friday, the 13th, 2008. That was a particularly crappy day—like in the crappiest of crap league—and I picked up my laptop and just started typing. Darcy “walked” right onto the page. She came to me flawed, she came to me troubled, she came to me hilarious, but mostly, she came to me “real.” To me, the best stories are the ones where the characters have flaws…like major flaws. Think Jekyll and Hyde, Hamlet, Macbeth, Achilles and his “heel.” King David, Anakin Skywalker, Rocky Balboa, the list goes on… Personally, I’m flawed. If I read of a character that isn’t…I can’t relate. Darcy and I have had a relationship for almost five years. She’s “very, very loud” in my brain, and I don’t censor her. In fact, if I try to censor her she wakes me up at night, and I reluctantly give in. In fact, she woke me up in “Grade A Stupid” and convinced me to change the ending of the story…only days before the official release. We did fight about that one…as usual, she won. It killed my formatter and me, though.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? I have a passion for people that are put together a little bit differently than everyone else—whose square-peg mind doesn’t fit through society’s round hole. Darcy is the benchmark. She’s been blessed with this super high IQ but carries some baggage that makes life a little harder for her than most. What she has going for her though is an exorbitant amount of moxie, enthusiasm, and a competitive spirit that never quits. My hope is that readers embrace their dreams, own their flaws, and take a big bite out of life’s apple pie regardless of what people may say or how they may try to remold you. I think we’re put together the way God wants us to be, and by goodness, you need to flaunt that dysfunction!

I'm attaching the Next Big Thing Torch to two amazing authors, Julie Cassar and Aneesa Price! I hope you check them out!

A graduate of Eastern Michigan University with a Bachelor Degree in Fine Art, specializing in Graphic Design, Julie has worked as a production artist, graphic designer, painter and photographer. Her pieces have been featured in both public and private art shows in Michigan and original paintings, prints and photography are available for purchase on this website. A published author, Julie writes a monthly blog, has completed three novels, has been published in Fitness Magazine, "Outdoor Athlete," and most recently published the first and second installments to her young adult fantasy series and is available in both e-book and paperback formats. In her not-so-much-free time, (after enjoying some deliciously yummy coffee concoction) you might see her running in the neighborhood, training at the gym, racing in a 5K or dancing at a local pub enjoying her most-favorite local band. Follow her Adventures of a Nobody Blog and catch up with her daily adventures and her training as she prepares to run her second half-marathon!

Aneesa Price writes romance and lives it with her university sweetheart and husband. After having surmounted the challenges of being in a bi-racial marriage in the newly democratic South Africa, she now attributes her marital bliss to purposefully added spice and passionately resolved differences. After living in a variety of cities in South Africa, the cosmopolitan city of Johannesburg is the playground that she enjoys with her husband and two daughters.

Aneesa completed her internship in counseling psychology and went on to work first as a therapist and then in Corporate Finance in on projects and in organizational change. This diversity in experience, coupled with her understanding of the human psyche, is translated into her writing through the creation of believable, flawed characters with the innate ability to overcome adversity.

She writes to give her readers the gift of experiencing the new and fascinating, something she strives for herself when she explores new places, reads, cooks with her kids or goes picking for antiques with her husband.
 She welcomes new connections so feel free to 'friend' her on facebook or follow her on twitter.