Today I’m happy to welcome Deborah Blake to the blog. She’s answering a few questions and telling us more about her upcoming release. Please help me welcome Deborah!
Featured Author Q and A:
Can you tell us a little bit about your writing: What genres do you write? Do you prefer to write one genre over another?
I write in a number of different genres. I started out with paranormal romance and urban fantasy, wrote a couple of contemporary romances, and now I’m writing cozy mysteries. Plus I have over a dozen nonfiction books on modern Witchcraft, a tarot deck, and an oracle deck. I like all these genres, although I confess I miss writing paranormal romance, and I’d really love to do a romcom. Most of my books have some humor in them, no matter what the genre.
What is your newest/upcoming release? Tell us about the book and series.
My cozy mystery series started with Furbidden Fatality (February 2021) and Doggone Deadly (November 2021), and the third book, Claws for Suspicion, will be out in May 2022. The series revolves around a woman named Kari who uses her fluke lottery winnings to save a rundown shelter after she rescues a small, bossy black kitten and finds out there is no place to take her. There are lots of cute dogs and cats (especially little Queenie, who is based on my beloved cat Magic, who I lost a few years ago), a quirky cast of sidekicks, and of course, the occasional murder. The series was actually inspired by a local rescue operation where I got two of my four current feline overlords.
What is your favorite thing about the Coastal Magic Convention?
I love the casual, friendly atmosphere and how much fun it is. I’ve been to a number of conventions, and this one really stands out for the way authors and readers mix and mingle, and the joyous atmosphere. (Plus, of course, there’s the beach!)
What inspires you to write your current book/series?
The last couple of years have been tough on most of us, and like many folks, I’ve been turning to lighter, less intense reads. So when I decided to start a new series, that was what I wanted to write. When my agent suggested I’d have a good voice for cozies, I kind of thought she was crazy, because I’d never written a mystery. But once I realized I could do a fun series full of animals, and maybe give readers the “comfort food” books I’d been seeking out myself, it really inspired me to create this series.
If you could be any paranormal/supernatural being, what would you choose? Why?
Well, I’m a Witch. Does that count? (Snort.) I’d actually like to be the kind of witch I wrote about in my Baba Yaga paranormal romance series. You know, the kind that could work real magic with the snap of a finger. Not that I’d turn anyone into a toad or anything. (I would. Really I would.) Then I could use my power to help people, and also maybe keep the chipmunks from eating my garden.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be? Why?
Healing. I actually do energy healing, but it isn’t exactly a superpower. There are so many people who suffer from health issues I’d love to be able to fix.
Do you use real or fictional locations in your stories? What kind of research do you do for the setting?
Both. It depends on the story. I tend to take real locations and then fictionalize them. For instance, many of my stories are set in upstate New York where I live, but the towns themselves aren’t real, although they may be inspired by real places. If I write about a place I haven’t been, I try and use someplace where I have a friend who can not only share her firsthand knowledge, but also catch any mistakes I make. I’ll do online research (like the Baba Yaga and Broken Rider books set in Monterey Bay and Minnesota) to find out the basics of the locale and specifics I need for the story, but I try to tap into the personal experiences of someone who lives there to really get the feel of the place.
Coffee or Tea? Mocha ☺ (I like coffee best with chocolate in it.)
Beach or Pool? Beach! It’s my happy place, although I don’t get there often.
Mermaids: real or fictional? Fictional, alas, although probably based on sea creatures.
Cozies or police procedurals? Cozies, for sure. I can’t take dark these days, and much prefer light, happy reads.
Cats, dogs, pigs, or other? I’m an official crazy cat lady (I have four at the moment), although I love dogs and most other animals too.
THANKS so much for playing along, Deborah! Now let’s learn more about her upcoming title:
Kari Stuart is roped into helping out at a dog show–but soon finds she’s bitten off more than she can chew when her best friend is framed for murder in this new Catskills Pet Rescue Mystery.
When the woman who is supposed to run the local dog show calls out sick, dog groomer Suz is asked to take over. But it’s too much for her to handle by herself–especially with the president of the kennel club, Olivia Weiner, criticizing her at every turn–so she calls in her best friend, Kari Stuart, with the promise that Kari can set up a fund-raising and kitten-adoption station at the show.
A long and stressful day goes from bad to worse when a local breeder’s body is found in the supply tent, with Suz’s signature purple-handled shears embedded in her chest. Kari doesn’t think for a second that her friend is capable of murder; the police aren’t so sure. But trying to run a dog show and investigate a murder at the same time is like herding cats, and Kari will have to rely on the rest of the Serenity Sanctuary staff to keep things running smoothly while she–and her beloved and clever kitten, Queenie–sniff out the truth.
Book Title: Doggone Deadly
Author Name: Deborah Blake
Pub Date: November 16, 2021
Series: Catskills Pet Rescue Mystery #2
Genre: Cozy Mystery
About the Author:
Deborah Blake is the author of the Baba Yaga Series from Berkley (Wickedly Dangerous, Wickedly Wonderful, Wickedly Powerful), as well as the Broken Rider Series, and the Veiled Magic series. She has also published eleven books on modern witchcraft with Llewellyn Worldwide, along with a tarot and an oracle deck. When not writing, Deborah runs The Artisans’ Guild, a cooperative shop she founded with a friend in 1999, and also works as a jewelry maker, tarot reader, and energy healer. She lives in a 130-year-old farmhouse in rural upstate New York with various cats who supervise all her activities, both magical and mundane.