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Tag: Conversations with Barb and Jann

Home > ArchivesTag: Conversations with Barb and Jann

Get to Know Kat Martin!

June 2, 2015 by in category Blogs tagged as , , , , , , , , ,

New York Times bestselling author Kat Martin was happy to answer a few questions for our Slice of Orange readers.

 
 
Barb: Which of your characters would you like to meet in person? Why?

Kat: One I would definitely want to meet is Rafe Brodie, the hero of my new book, AGAINST THE TIDE. Rafe is smart, rugged, and savvy. Plus he is gorgeous! Another of my favorite characters is Chance McLain from The Secret, a hunky Montana cowboy. I think you can guess the reason I’d like to meet him (grin). I like my heroine Olivia Chandler, also in TIDE. She’s one of the smartest women I’ve written. Liv really has her stuff together.

Jann: What is the one thing about you that people would be most surprised to know?

Kat: I’m a hermit. Unless we are traveling, I pretty much stay home and write.

Barb: What is your favorite gadget?

Kat: I love my iPad mini. I’m a total dinosaur except for that. I’m pretty good on the mini, and I love all the info I can get. Plus I can do my email when I’m traveling.

Jann: Is there a certain type of scene that’s harder for you to write than others?

Kat: I hate writing description. Which is why I don’t put a lot in. I’m not crazy about back-story. I don’t care what my hero/heroine did in high school unless it pertains to what is happening in his or her life now. Sex scenes are difficult to write because I want them to be fresh and match the tone of the story line at that time. I love writing dialog.

Barb: Do you have any plans in the future to write another Historical?

Kat: No more Historicals for me. Actually, I haven’t written one in years. I’ve written about 22 Romantic Suspense novels (plus the ones yet to be published). I feel as though I’ve found my calling. I love writing the hunky guys in my Against books.

Jann: What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?

Kat: Getting published, staying published, writing stories people seem to want to read. Staying four weeks on the New York Times Bestseller list with Against the Sky!

Barb: If you could pick one of your books to be made into a movie for TV or the big screen, which one would you pick and who would you want to play your characters?

Kat: I’ve given that a lot of thought. I would love to see a film made of The Secret, my near-death murder mystery set on a ranch in Montana. Finding the right guy to play Chance McLain, the cowboy part??? I’m open to suggestion. Caitlin, the heroine is a little redhead. Maybe someone out there has an idea for her as well. I think Against the Wind, another cowboy story, would also make a good film.

Against the Tide

Secrets and Danger Threaten in the Land of the Midnight Sun!

Liv Chandler is running for her life. She can’t trust anyone, not even the one man who makes her feel safe-rugged charter boat captain, Rafe Brodie.

Rafe is determined to uncover Liv’s secrets, but the beautiful café owner has a past more dangerous than Rafe can guess. Something terrible is coming, and even in remote Valdez, Alaska, Rafe can’t protect her forever.

Kat will give away a copy of AGAINST THE TIDE to one lucky commenter!!!

Kat is a graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara where she majored in Anthropology and also studied History. She is married to L.J. Martin, author of western, non-fiction, and suspense novels. Kat has written more than sixty-five novels. Sixteen million copies of her books are in print and she has been published in twenty foreign countries, including Japan, France, Germany, Argentina, Greece, China, Russia, and Spain.

Kat currently resides in Missoula, Montana, on a small ranch in the beautiful Sapphire mountains. Her last nine books have hit the prestigious New York Times bestseller list. Both AGAINST THE WILD and AGAINST THE SKY, her latest release, took top ten spots. AGAINST THE TIDE the 3rd book in the Brodies of Alaska series will hit shelves in a couple weeks!

Visit Kat’s website at www.katmartin.com
Or look for her on Facebook at Katmartin/author.

 

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Conversations with Jann and Barb

February 2, 2014 by in category Jann says . . . tagged as , , , ,



              


A couple of weeks ago, Barb and I decided to take in a movie, so off we went to our local theater. We grabbed some popcorn and found our seats. We like to sit in the middle about halfway up. There were only about eight people scattered around. I love it when it’s not crowded. The lights dimmed. When the camel came on the screen reminding us to turn off our phones (Barb loves that camel), we checked our phones and settled back to be taken on a wild ride of action and adventure with the new Jack Ryan movie.
Now, I know all of us have had the experience of people who talk and text during the previews, occasionally you might hear a tune playing. But usually you get through a movie with little disturbance. Well, that wasn’t to be the case for us this time.
The movie started and the guy sitting down a few rows and to the right obviously didn’t listen to the camel. He was texting. Since the theater wasn’t full, the light from his phone really reflected. I moved my head just a little so as not to be distracted, but the older guy sitting behind and to the right of him had full view. I felt really sorry for him, but figured Jerk would finish and turn it off. That didn’t happen. Over the next thirty or more minutes he texted constantly. How do you follow a movie if you are texting all the time? He was a texting ABUSER! The guy behind him got up and left, but came back to his seat. I figured he went to tell theater management to come in and tell Jerk to stop. But no one came. About ten minutes later, the older guy did what most people would do – he asked him to turn it off.
Well holy moly, all hell broke loose.
Jerk jumped up, called the old guy names and threatened him. Then he came at the guy still calling him names. A man sitting with the woman in front of us got up and tried to get Jerk to settle down. It didn’t work. One woman ran out to get help, another man sitting with his family also got up to help. Jerk came at the old guy again and this time threw punches. Barb and I called out for Jerk to stop. I tried to find my phone to call 911, but couldn’t get it turned on. My heart raced. I wondered what to do next. The two men who intervened got Jerk off the old guy. Jerk and one man left the theater; the old guy got up and went out the exit. Barb and I sat there wondering what was going to happen next. Meanwhile the movie had been rolling along and Jack Ryan was in a high speed car racing scene on the big screen.
The movie stopped playing, the manager arrived and we gave her the details of the altercation. We each received a free movie ticket and a full refund. They started the movie again, taking it back to the point when the disturbance began.
Later that day I thought about what happened and how texting has gotten out of control. How lucky we had been. We hear about the situations in movie theaters, texting and driving, and the lives destroyed by it. But then I thought about other times people text (myself included) and wondered how it affects others. You know what it’s like to be with family and friends having a conversation and they pick up their phone to either send or answer a text while you’re talking. Or at a meeting, have you ever wondered what the speaker is thinking when they look out over the audience and see people with their heads down tapping away on their phones? They could hope we’re tweeting about what a great speaker they are. Or do we consider if we’re annoying the people around us and being rude to the speaker?
All I know is that after my experience, I think twice now before I take my phone out to text in public and when I’m with my friends and family.
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Conversations with Barb and Jann

October 2, 2012 by in category Jann says . . . tagged as , , , ,

The Power and Joy of Journaling

The other day I was going through an old childhood trunk I call my Trunk o’ Memories when I came across some of my trip diaries from the ‘60’s. My husband and I sat down, read through them and had a great laugh. Back in the day, my frugal mom would put $25 in an envelope for each day of travel, all road trips, of course. That $25 covered all expenses for me and my mom and dad, including gas and the motel. I duly recorded said expenses in the diary and some days we even had a buck or so left over to add to the next day’s envelope. The diaries brought back so many memories of the places we visited (mostly the northeastern U.S. – we were from Toronto, Canada), the ‘60’s era, my thoughts at the time, and the weather. Yes, I also recorded the daily temperature and precipitation.

I had forgotten about those diaries this summer when we embarked on an epic family road trip where I once again kept a daily diary. This time I tapped away on my iPad in my Pages app. I call it epic. Think eight people in a GMC Yukon SUV, three of them six years old and under, on a road trip up the California coast to Portland, Oregon, and back. We stopped along the way (many times), had some fun and some not-so-fun adventures, went through a lot of diapers, laughed and cried (sometimes it was me), and I duly recorded it all. Yes, including the weather.

What I’d done back in the day and now, was journaling. As I wrote in my journal before bed last night, I realized that I have always journaled. But why? Why did I feel the need to record the daily routines, the life-altering events, my thoughts and feelings, the weather? I’m sure it was not just to place these things in the historic record, to be read twenty or thirty years from now.

Remember that secret diary with the tiny key you kept as a teen, the one your bratty little brother read excerpts from to all his friends? You snatched it from his grubby hands and wrote that night,

Dear Diary,

I’m going to strangle my brother and stuff his body into his stinky gym bag!

That was journaling. Admit it. You felt a darn sight better after venting. And so, that’s why I journal. I feel better afterward. I throw down on the page my innermost thoughts, my deepest feelings, loves and hates, hopes and dreams. For my eyes only.

I think everyone knows this about journaling. But when I was researching the subject, I came across a website that listed no fewer than 100 benefits! Check it out at www.appleseeds.org/100_journaling.htm.

Here are some of my favorites: empowers, strengthens your sense of self, soothes troubled memories, creates awareness, eases decision making, measures and tracks what’s important (so, the weather must be important to me –LOL!). The list includes writing-related benefits: enhances breakthroughs, unfolds the writer in you, allows freedom of expression, enhances self-expression, teaches you how to write stories. In fact, I’ve taken some writing classes where you were required to keep a daily journal. It can actually kick-start your muse. Now we’re at 101 benefits! So, if you’re not journaling, get yourself one of those pretty journals and a favorite pen and place them on your bedside table. Make it a habit to write in it every night whatever comes to mind, even if it’s just the weather. Trust me, you’ll be glad you did.  
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Twenty-Five Meaninful Words

July 2, 2012 by in category Blogs tagged as , ,

When I was ten I entered Toronto’s “I love my daddy because . . .” Contest. The catch? Write it in twenty-five words or less. Actually, only twenty by the time you count that opening phrase of the contest’s title. When the call came that I’d won, you’d have thought it was the Pulitzer. The prize I did win was a shiny new two-wheeler.

I’ve been trying to write twenty-five meaningful words ever since. I’ve had some success, some – practice (I won’t call it failure). When I decided to write my first novel in ninth grade, a historical western romance, I felt free, unrestrained by the petty word count dictated by high school English teachers. Whee!! The words flowed, and flowed . . . And flowed. I had great fun.

Much later, I joined RWA and the Orange County Chapter. My, uh, practice continued and I thought I learned everything there was to know about writing through the chapter’s fabulous meetings, workshops, on-line classes, contests and networking. And hey, I was still having fun, even though I had to tame that unrestrained flow of words. It was not until the chapter announced its first anthology of short stories Romancing the Pages that I gave serious thought to not only counting each word, but making each word count. My story, “The Guy with the Dragon Tattoo,” started out at 2,500 words. After many edits, it came in around 2,000. Gone are most of the dialogue tags, unnecessary description and background information, and a whole lot of narrative. I had a blast writing it, too.

The experience of writing and editing that short story got me thinking about my novel-length WIP. I’m still on my first draft, but you can bet as I edit I’ll be analyzing each scene, paragraph, sentence and word to make them count. That’s what powerful writing is all about. Yes, you can write sparingly and still convey powerful emotion. Hemingway can attest to that in his book consisting of only these six words: “For sale. Baby shoes. Never worn.” My eyes tear, my heart breaks every time I read them.

I challenge Hemingway! I will now sum up the most important thing you need to know about writing in one word: WRITE!!

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