July 20, 2007

Updates, 3Q with Julie Kenner, and Shocking(!) News

Man, I have enjoyed reading the *&^@&^!(^#@ ing comments. You guys are fart and sunny, as my California homegirls say to mean Smart and Funny. Note to rereaders: If you search gods in Alabama for bathroom lovin’ you are doomed to disappointment. That happens in Between.

HEY! Did you see on WOOT.com
they are having a WOOT OFF? -if you do not know what this means then you do not know Scott’s SECOND favorite blog. *cough* Every day a new DEAL is up. We got a BLUE tooth from them and a portable 2 screened DVD thing that we use to keep from eating the children on long car trips. Good deals, there on the woot. A WOOT off is where they put up a FEW of something for very little money, and as soon as they all sell, they put up a few of something else.

LAST NIGHT!....Did you see that one the deals was a refurbed DYSON for 259 bucks + 5 bucks shipping? Did you see that by the time I finished waffling and said YES YES DO IT I WANT ONE and Scott clicked the “I want one” button that they were ALL GONE and that I missed a half price Dyson by about 4 seconds? Did you then see me STOMP AROUND and USE many of Very Bad Words we discussed on Wednesday? If the answer to all these questions is YES, then A) you are creepy and b) please come get all the hidden cameras out of my house.

The goodish-bad news is NOW I can NEVER buy a Dyson for MORE than 265 bucks, or I will feel CHEATED. SO! Perhaps that will abate my avarice. A little.

BUT WAIT! Julie Kenner is back to talk about the latest in her Demon Hunting Soccer Mom series? YAY. I am pleased about that because I think she’s fart and sunny, just like you. I took one of her books in my BAG OF READING PLEASURES to the beach last year and QUITE enjoyed it. It’s Bufferiffic fun, this series, and the third one, DEMONS ARE FOREVER just launched.

JJ: What's a day in your life like?

JK: My schedule has changed dramatically over the years. At first, I was practicing law while writing and my husband was in grad school. We would both come home from work/school and write/study. Worked great :)

Then I had a baby, and life got hectic. I wrote in the evenings after she went to sleep until I could afford to quit and write full time. Then I had her in day care and would write during the day.

She has turned 5 and is in school now, but since we homeschool, she’s home with me during the day, and so is her sister, who we adopted at age three last October. So now I have two kids at home with me doing school (or preK play) during what used to be my writing time. So I’m back to writing in the evenings and squeezing it in.

Right now, a day might be:

7:30 — get up and veg in the recliner while the girls watch Curious George.

8:00 – noonish — school with the oldest while the littlest does “play school” and some speech and sign language games.

noon-1 — lunch, and I’ll usually answer emails while they eat

1-2 – any school we haven’t finished

2-5 – they play, sometimes by themselves, sometimes with me. I try to do non-writing writing stuff (emails, mailings, etc.). Or errands.

5-6 – daddy time. I write

Family time until their bedtime.

9-whenever. My writing time.

When I’m on a crazy deadline (like last week) going to bed at 2-3 is common. And I often will beg my mom to come over around lunch time once or twice a week to play with the girls so those afternoon hours can be writing time.

During those weeks we squeeze in karate, piano and speech therapy for the little one!

It’s insane, but I’m loving it.

JJ: What writers influenced your work and how and why?

JK: Stephen King — for his amazing stories, intricate plotting, and oh-so-real characters
Edward Eager — for showing magic in the “real” world
Madeline L’Engle — for strong characters in amazing realities that made me think

JJ: Your demon series is shelved as fantasy , but it has elements of mommy lit and romance and mystery. Can you explain how having a sort of HYBRID of genres helped or hurt you as you tried to market your book?

JK: Actually, I was extremely nervous when I learned it was going to be sold in as fantasy rather than as fiction. I called my editor in a panic, and was terrified that my readers wouldn’t find me. As it turns out, it was a brilliant marketing plan because the book has done well and found its audience, which keeps on growing. The romance readers have found the series (the 2nd book is currently up for a RITA award, the highest award in romance publishing) and I have gained a ton of readers (including many men) who might not have given the book a chance. The book has more of a chance to stand out (fewer “fantasy” books each month than “fiction”) and that bodes well for hitting lists, etc. So rather than a limitation, I think the placement has been beneficial. Marketing knows what they’re doing!! Also, I’ve done a few mystery cons, romance cons, and fantasy cons. The hybrid nature of the book has opened up the ways I can get my name out there. All good :)

Thanks Julie – always a pleasure to have you!

Lastly, AND BRACE YOURSELVES oh Best of my Best Beloveds, those regs who know me well, because I am about to say something you will find shocking…

I like a song.
Yes. A song.
It is a song made primarily up of MUSIC, and I LIKE it.

It is called FLATHEAD and it is by this band called something like The Fratellis that sounds like what would happen if the Pogues and the Clash had an angry baby.

Here, go watch them yodel it on You Tube.

Also by them, I like a song called the Gutterati? That there is no decent video to and which I can’t find a listen link to, but it is AWESOME.

So, dude, PUNKISHNESS is back? And no one TOLD me?
Discovering FLATHEAD led me to listen to more repunkers, and NOW….I like a WHOLE BAND. YES! AN ENTIRE BAND THAT IS CHOCK FULL OF SONGS!

They are called The White Stripes.
I like ALL their songs and I like how they SOUND and when I hear a song BY them I go, “Is that the White Stripes?” because I like them enough to recognize what they sound like. This is not UNprecedented, but it is ONE-precedented. I have not liked a whole band and all their songs and their sound since the late 80’s when I found Indigo Girls.

I a terrified that I may be experiencing personal growth.
I will work hard to bud nip it, never fear.

Posted by joshilyn at July 20, 2007 9:26 AM

I'd never heard of The Fratellis before this. I like that song a lot! I can't say I love the video. The background girls were like a cross between '40's Vargas pin-ups and the "Addicted to Love" girls from the '80's and I'm not so sure that's a good thing. But the song? GOOD song!

Posted by: DebR at July 20, 2007 9:52 AM

Do not feel bad about the waffling and the missing of the Dyson. I waffled and missed an iRiver on Woot last night. We can sigh in much mutual sympathy now.

Posted by: Casey at July 20, 2007 9:54 AM

I really like the White Stripes, too. I especially like their new song "Icky Thump". I don't know how you feel about retro country, but a couple of years ago Jack White coproduced an album with Loretta Lynn called "Van Lear Rose." It is awesome -- kind of country, kind of rock-y, and it's got a lot of great guitar. I don't love every song on the album but my fave song is called "Portland Oregon." That song rocks out.

Posted by: Leandra at July 20, 2007 9:56 AM

Okay, so now I will be beaten to death, but I just found out something you might like on Amazon's Friday sale... Err, a $299 refurbished Dyson...


Hey, at least I'm not providing the link and being a TOTAL enabler!

Posted by: Casey at July 20, 2007 10:00 AM

try Jack's other band, The Raconteurs.

Posted by: Catherine at July 20, 2007 10:46 AM

I love the The Fratellis! My 16 year old son turned me on to them and keeps me abreast of good newish, not so main stream bands. Folks you don't regularly hear on the radio. Check out the Kings of Leon also. Some great music!

Posted by: Michelle at July 20, 2007 11:10 AM

I just want to say to Julie Kenner that you must be freaking amazing. I cannot believe your productivity with that schedule! Way to go. Now I will have to go try all the demon books from pure awe.

Posted by: Laura Florand at July 20, 2007 11:28 AM

I want to know how that girl didn't pop out of her Bustier?

Posted by: Cele at July 20, 2007 12:14 PM

I know. I know. I must be in the Dark Ages here, but what, praytell, is a Dyson?

Posted by: Trace at July 20, 2007 12:14 PM

Yay you! I heart The Fratellis too, 'specially Flathead, Whistle for the Choir and Chelsea Dagger.

Posted by: Melisa at July 20, 2007 12:23 PM

White Stripes. Makes sense. Jack does music the way you do books. And I mean that in the very best way. You are both so pretty. ;+)

Posted by: ZaZa at July 20, 2007 12:54 PM

So funny, I just downloaded the White Stripes new album (can I still call it an album?) a couple of days ago. Love them!

Posted by: heidi at July 20, 2007 1:05 PM

That girl in the red dress has, um, large "tracts of land".

Posted by: Heather Cook at July 20, 2007 1:13 PM

Like the song, but when I read "what would happen if the Pogues and the Clash had an angry baby", my first thought was the Drop Kick Murphys! Now THEY sound angry (here's a bad-audio live version on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lJjeWOqASYI)

Posted by: Brigitte at July 20, 2007 1:46 PM

Laura Florand: you will LOVE LOVE pink fluffy hearts LOVE the Adventures of a Demon-Hunting Soccer Mom!

My best buddy and I are hooked on Julie Kenner -- The Givenchy Code is pretty good too ;-)

Thank you so much for doing the 3Q's, Pretty Tulip! I'm working on a spreadsheet of all of the books you mention, either in the 3Q's or off-hand, and I love being able to add new ones to it!

Posted by: Beth at July 20, 2007 1:49 PM

Oh, yeah, and the White Stripes rock!

Posted by: Beth at July 20, 2007 1:50 PM

Okay. . .my husband is just impressed that someone else has heard of The Pogues.

Posted by: Roxanne at July 20, 2007 2:14 PM

Ya know, I think it's time I got into the White Stripes. (Interesting tidbit I just found from itunes... the song "We're Going to Be Friends" from the Curious George Soundtrack, by Jack Johnson? Whom I also love, btw- is on the White Stripes 2001 album White Blood Cells. WTF!)

Posted by: jenn at July 20, 2007 2:30 PM

Oh, and Joss? Girl, you gotta get you an iPod.

Posted by: jenn at July 20, 2007 2:31 PM

I like the Fratellis too. Their songs make me bounce. And Yay! for the Drop Kick Murphys!! We need more of them 'round here, they're on our List To Get. Yep, it seems punkishness is back. Just heard a new one recently that my five-year-old picked up on right away (he likes the punkishness too)--http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tLM9TRUNkLk
by My Chemical Romance.

Can't vouch for the video--I'm just listening. And the song appears to contain some cussin', for those who like to know. :-)

Posted by: amy at July 20, 2007 2:32 PM

Sorry, don't care for that type music. But the iPod is a great idea for "listening to books!" Driving, cooking, doing laundry, Dyson-ing the floors, books on iPod are great!You can still get work done and "read" at the same time!

Posted by: Rhonda at July 20, 2007 4:49 PM

We have Julie Kenner in our "Urban Fantasy" section (yes, the mystery bookshop has an urban fantasy section. Because I said so.) next to Yasmine Galenorn and Charlaine Harris, and she's doing marvelously there. So YAY!

Musically, I'm still stuck on the Go Girls. Go figure.

Posted by: Fran at July 21, 2007 12:44 AM

Dear Josh you are the fartiest of all {:>

Posted by: pam at July 22, 2007 7:20 PM