Kathy L Wheeler Returns The English Lily
Kathy was born in Presque Isle, Maine. How she ended up in Texas, Colorado, then Oklahoma is as much a mystery to her as anyone. She graduated from the University of Central Oklahoma with a BA in Management Information Systems and a minor in Vocal Music.
In the big picture, she has not been writing near as long as some of her writing cohorts, but has already completed a number manuscripts. An avid traveler, she’s been to Europe, Mexico, Canada and roams from one RWA conference to another, nationwide. She’s served several positions in the Oklahoma Outlaws RWA Chapter.
Kathy lives with her musically talented husband in Edmond, Oklahoma, has one grown daughter and one bossy cat!
Could you please start by telling us a little about yourself?
I grew up in the Dallas / Ft. Worth area in Texas. In 9th grade we moved to Boulder, Colorado. AND I was born in Presque Isle, Maine. **Sigh** someday, I’d like to go visit Maine. My uncle was a photographer for KTVT in Ft. Worth for 35 years. He had a film of a potato patch, where the whole family conspired telling me that was where I was born. I didn’t find out the truth until I was thirteen. And people wonder why teenagers are such terrors!
Please tell us your latest news!
My latest news is a fourth book in my Cinderella Series that was picked up by The Wild Rose Press — The English Lily, a historical romance set in the 1790s. It is also a Tales of the Scrimshaw Doll book. A series of which the Oklahoma Romance Writers are privileged to be a part. This is my second book with Wild Rose. The first: The Color of Betrayal is also a Tales of the Scrimshaw Doll book, but is contemporary. The English Lily was officially released on May 15th.
Do you plan all your characters out before you start a story or do they develop as you write?
I do not. They pretty much dictate most of their own actions, personality and such. At times, it’s quite annoying.
How much research do you do for your books? I sort of research as I write. And of course, as a result, I get somewhat distracted.
What are your hobbies? I have several (as an introvert. Ha!) For years and years and years, I’ve been an avid NFL fan. I’ve played fantasy football for twelve. In four leagues, no less. But over the past four years, I’ve seen my interest shift from NFL to NBA. Oklahoma City was lucky enough to acquire the Seattle Sonics, now known as the Oklahoma City Thunder. Talk about a hobby! I’ve been a season ticket holder since 2011. Last year I only missed a total of three home games—that was just regular season. I went to every single playoff game. My closet is full of rolled up t-shirts. In addition to the NBA, I love Jazzercise, reading, and traveling. Writing obviously, but I don’t consider that a hobby. I think it’s an obsession.
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I love writing when I was a kid, but did not take up again until November 2006, when I saw a Google writing prompt that said “What if Cinderella’s glass slipper fit one of her evil stepsisters?” Well, that was a story, that turned into a series. All available in print and eBooks.
Do you write full time? What did you do before you became a writer? Or Still do?
Sometimes I write full time, even though I do have a full-time day job. I am a computer programmer too. My degree is a BA in Management Information Systems with a vocal minor in music. Funny, huh?
Do you have a website recommendation for other writers?
Current Release Details:
The English Lily. Available through http://thewildrosepress.com. The fourth story in my Cinderella Series, although this one is just a character from the third book. When Esmeralda (Cinderella’s batty-eyed sister marries Alessandro de Lecce), Lady Kendra is devastated and runs away. Available 5/15/2013 http://bit.ly/1048yDp
Can you please give us a sneak peek at any of your upcoming books?
The next book in the pipeline is Lies That Bind. The third in my Bloomington Series. Would a modern day woman accept a marriage of convenience to protect the identity of her child? Kelly Mancer doesn’t want a man, but danger has a way of changing one’s mind. Alex Gentry needs Kelly, but convincing her to help him in his pursuit of a dangerous enemy who’s enamored his younger sister is not an easy task. Soon the tables turn and Kelly becomes the prey. Alex may save his sister, but at what cost?
Who is your perfect hero? And why?
This is an interesting question because I notice a definite thread in all of my stories, and that is that the hero is going to suffer trying to convince the heroine she is for him. He’d also better have a good sense of humor. He’s going to need it.
What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website? Email address? Blog? Message Board? Group?
I do have a website, a blog, email. You can also find me on The Romance Stuios.com; Coffeetime Romance, and Fresh Fiction. http://klwheeler.com; http://kathylwheeler.com; email@example.com
Do you belong to a critique group? If so, how does this help or hinder you?
Critique groups are critical, hence, the name. Every writer needs the input and whack on the head when something isn’t quite working. And good critique partners do not hesitate to give the whack just when your head is getting a tad too big. All in the name of helping out of course.
What's your favorite genre to read?
I love historical and contemporary. Mostly I love my favorite authors. Teresa Mederios; Jayne Ann Krentz; Suzanne Enoch
Do deadlines help or hinder your muse?
I think they help. I am lucky to be a part of an excellent chapter of the RWA in Oklahoma City. Last Christmas someone had an outrageous idea of doing an anthology for Christmas set in Regency England. The theme? The 12 Days of Christmas. We had 12 authors and each one took one of the 12 days. The setup was a Christmas ball set in the country. I had 5 Golden Rings. All of the authors incorporated each other’s characters. It was difficult and we didn’t have much time. But if you signed up, you had a certain day your post had to be up. It was a stretch in several different ways.
One, you had to write fast.
Two, you critiqued others stories, and they needed them back fast.
Three, you were working with others who did not necessarily know the sub genre and needed help from those who were experts.
Four, you got out of your comfort zone in a couple of different ways. Very enlightening.
At times, it was harrowing, but in the overall picture I know that I grew. I must have, I participated in the February Valentine Anthology, and the St. Paddy’s Day Anthology. Although, I am not involved in the Memorial Day one, I expect the five authors that are involved will post terrific stories. We will also be doing a June Bride series. These stories have turned out to be a great hit. The blog (http://wildokies.blogspot.com/) received over 1200 hits from Christmas through Easter. Uh. . . what was the question?
What was your first published work and when was it published?
The Color of Betrayal, through The Wild Rose Press, in June of 2012. This was another Tales of the Scrimshaw Doll in a contemporary setting. Anyone who betrays the owner of the doll is doomed. My sense of humor is somewhat twisted I’m afraid. The original title was Nose Job. Unfortunately, Wild Rose did not think the title sounded much like romance. Hee hee hee.
Lady Kendra Frazier is devastated. The love of her life just married another, and now all she desires is to be as far away as possible. Viscount Lawrie, Joseph Pinetti Gray, is facing financial ruin and needs a wealthy heiress. Luckily for him, Kendra’s impetuous nature has handed him the fortuity he requires to save his family’s downfall. But Joseph’s carefully cultivated plans come to a grinding halt when he finds himself falling in love for what should have only been a marriage of convenience. And how can an old cursed doll help?