Friday, June 27, 2014

Interview and Giveaway 
with author Laurie Cass

Laurie and Eddie

Laurie Cass is the author of the 
Bookmobile Cat Mysteries. 

Enter using the Rafflecopter form 
after the interview for your chance to win a copy of 
There will be two winnerrs, one per book.

LKBR: Hi Laurie. It’s great to have you here!

LC: Thanks so much – it’s wonderful to be invited!

LKBR: As Laurie Cass you write the Bookmobile Cat mysteries and as Laura Alden you write the PTA mysteries. Do you have a favorite of the two?

LC:  Whatever book I’m writing is always my favorite. Well, to be more exact, it’s my favorite until the plot gets stuck somewhere, at which point it becomes my least favorite. But choosing a favorite series is like choosing a favorite child. The two series are very different, even though they’re both cozies.

The PTA series is set in suburban Wisconsin and features a single mother of two who is a children’s bookstore owner and PTA member. That main character is still finding her way after being married for twenty years to a domineering man. The storyline that arcs over the five books in the series is about how my main character learns to be comfortable in her own skin.

The bookmobile cat series is set in northern Michigan and features a confident and strong young bookmobile librarian whose life becomes intertwined with a cat she rescued from a cemetery. The two become great pals, and my main character is going to spend a lot of time wondering just how smart her cat really is.

LKBR: How did you come up with the idea for each series?

LC: Well, the PTA series was what the publishing world calls a “work for hire.” I was given a few paragraphs of outline and, from that, created a detailed synopsis and eventually the entire first book. That outline put the books in Wisconsin, gave me the single mom owning a bookstore, and set up the first victim. Pretty much everything else came out of my head.
The bookmobile cat series is my own idea, but it sprang from two sources. My editor, knowing how much I love cats, said I should write a cat book. With that in mind, I kicked around a bunch of ideas, none of which were very good. Then came that fateful day when some writer friends and I were talking about mystery series that featured libraries. Something in my brain went ‘pop’ and out came the idea of a mystery series featuring a bookmobile. With a cat.

Eddie proof reading

LKBR: When writing do you aim for a set amount of words/pages per day?
LC:  Funny you should ask! I recently completed the first draft of the third bookmobile book (BORROWED CRIME), coming to a bookstore near you in March 2015) and was just looking at my statistics. Yes, I have statistics, because I keep very careful track of my daily word counts.
From experience, I know that my first drafts end up in the neighborhood of 90,000 words. I also know that I like to have a month to edit the manuscript before I send it off to my editor. And I also know the date my contract says I have to deliver the manuscript.
So. I take those 90,000 words and look at the calendar. I figure out the day I’ll be able to start writing and how many words a week I have to write to reach 90,000 words to leave a month for editing.
In a perfect world this would all work out, but sometimes…well, it doesn’t. Most of the time, though, having a daily quota keeps me on track and motivated.
The bookmobile ladies

LKBR: Do you ever get writer’s Block? If yes, how do you work through it?
LC:  I’m not sure I get writer’s block, but every so often I’d rather scrub the bathroom floor on my hands and knees than write. And sometimes I actually do get down on my hands and knees and scrub the floors. Though this isn’t helpful for my word count, at least I end up with a clean floor. Most of the time, however, I look at the calendar, realize that a deadline is looming, and get back to work.

LKBR: Your second book in the Bookmobile Cat mysteries, TAILING A TABBY releases July 1st. Would you share a little snippet of the story with us? Maybe something not on the blurb?
LC: Sure! Here’s a fun little bit from the first chapter:
Thessie turned around and looked at the bookmobile’s shelves. “Three thousand books, right?”

A few more than that, since I’d shoved more books onto the shelves than I should have, but she was close.

“And we have what no other bookmobile has.” She tapped the cat carrier with the toes of her flip-flops. “We have an Eddie.”

“How lucky can we get?” I asked dryly.

“Mrr,” my cat said.

Thessie peered through the slots of Eddie’s plastic carrier. “He’s looking at you. I think you hurt his little kitty feelings.”

I doubted it. The three months I’d spent with Eddie had taught me many things, and the top two items were (1) A Cat’s Purr Makes Everything Okay and (2) The Cat Always Wins. Eddie was my little buddy and I loved him dearly, but he could make Machiavelli’s advice to the Medicis look like kindergarten lessons.

LKBR: You’re right! That is fun! 

LKBR: Do you have any ideas for a new series?

LC: All sorts! The problem is finding the time to work on them.
Eddie giving imput

LKBR: What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
LC:  Read! But I’m also one of those outdoorsy people. I love skiing of any variety, plus I love swimming, biking, hiking, walking, gardening – basically anything that gets me outside.
LKBR: What are three things you would like your readers to know about you?
LC: Wow, let me think about that one a little … okay, here are three things. 1) When I was young, I wanted to be a commercial airline pilot. 2) I have an incredibly poor memory. I even have a hard time remembering the names of my books. Sad, but absolutely true. 3) I don’t care for spicy food. At all. For years I tried to develop a liking for it, but I’ve given up on that.
LKBR: Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by, Laurie!
LC:  Thanks for inviting me!

Laurie Cass grew up in Michigan and graduated from Eastern Michigan University in the 80’s with a (mostly unused) Bachelor of Science degree in geology. Currently, Laurie and her husband share their house with two cats, the inestimable Eddie, and the adorably cute Sinii. When Laurie isn’t writing, she’s working at her day job, reading, yanking weeds out of her garden,
 or doing some variety of skiing.

Want to learn ever more about Laurie? 
Check out these links.


Book Beginnings on Fridays is a meme hosted by Rose City Reader

I'm doing two Book Beginnings on Fridays this week. The first is from
TAILING A TABBY by Laurie Cass. 
Book 2 in the Bookmobile Cat Mystery series.
Release date: July 1, 2014

Once upon a time, I'd imagined my adulthood would include a  bright purple bicycle, a daily dish of ice cream, hair that would do whatever I wanted it to, and lots of book. 

Fast -forward to my present age of thirty-three. These days, my bicycle was a silvery-green, my ice cream had turned into fruits and vegetables, and my black curly hair still refused to obey any command I gave it.

I glanced into the small round mirror above the windshield and grinned at what I saw behind me. At least I'd gotten the books part right. 

My second pick is from
BEAGLEMANIA by Linda O. Johnston.
Book 1 in the Pet Rescue Mystery series.

I am not a killer.

At least not a killer of animals. I save their lives whenever humanly possible, especially pets. Their soul purpose on this earth is to love and be loved, like perpetual children.

People are something else.

The Friday 56 is a meme hosted by Freda's Voice

Since I already used TAILING A TABBY for my Friday 56 a few weeks ago
my Friday 56 this week is also from
BEAGLEMANIA by Linda O. Johnston.

He had barely left when the door opened again. The man who walked in wasn't wearing a uniform. Or maybe he was -- a suit, dark, with a blue-striped tie. And a frown.

As always, please leave a comment and let me know what you think!
Also, become a Follower of my blog by clicking on the
 link in the upper right hand corner of this page.


  1. Looking forward to this one...

  2. Would love to win Lending a Paw since I already have the 2nd book and love that it has cats.

  3. Love the bookmobile. Wish we had one, but I do visit the library nearly every week.

  4. Sounds interesting. As she says - there aren't any books about bookmobiles. Will give you a lot of room for new settings for murders.

  5. What could be better than pets and mysteries? These books sound awesome and glad I learned about this author!!

  6. Love the narrator's voice in Tailing a Tabby...thanks for sharing. Here's mine: “ MR. CHURCHILL’S SECRETARY”

  7. I want a bookmobile here too, I'd make sure they'd never go broke :P

    Thanks for sharing!

    My BB and 56

  8. All of these books sound delightful! Thank you for introducing me to this author.
    Here's the link to my Friday post: INTERIOR DESIGNS.

  9. Love the idea of a library on wheels and with a cat. Would be even better if we had one in our neighborhood. Enjoying petting a cat while choosing a great book. Looking forward to the mystery!! Ronnalord(at)msn(dot)com

  10. What a lighthearted introduction! I will most certainly look into this :) Oh and my daily dish of ice cream turned into a daily cup of iced coffee :)

    Sparrow's BB & Friday 56

  11. I didn't realize that Cass had written the PTA mysteries as well. I really enjoyed the one I read and I like concept of the cat/bookmobile. The beginning sounds interesting so I'll definitely have to add this series to my TBR. The 56 is interesting as well. I'd like to hear more about the man in the suit!

  12. They both sound fun.

    Love the cover of Tailing A Tabby.

    THANKS for sharing.

    Silver's Reviews
    My Book Beginnings

  13. A frown isn't good. If it's a uniform, it makes the situation worse.

  14. Recently read Lending A Paw and loved it. Looking forward to the next book.

  15. i love the idea of bookmobiles, esp. with a cat! this series sounds like a lot of fun!

  16. Sounds like a fun series, cats and books, what could be better?

  17. I enjoyed this blog post, learning about the author!

  18. I love cats and books and have been wanting to start the Bookmobile series.

  19. I love cozies with cats---and Eddie seems like he'll be a real winner.

  20. Thank you everyone for stopping by. And for all the wonderful comments! Remember to come back tomorrow for my chances to enter!

  21. I like the PTA mysteries and I'd love to start reading the bookmobile series.

  22. I have looked at these books before but as always you make them even more enticing!. Love your blog.

  23. I love cozies that involve cats...have these on my TBR list already!

  24. I grew up using the bookmobile during this summer . It was such a treat for me. The cat bookmobile series is next on my list to read!

  25. When we are in Las Vegas I go to a book store that has a resident cat. I enjoy visiting with the cat while I am shopping. However, I miss the cats that have moved on over the years. RIP Merlin

  26. when I was a kid the bookmobile was a life saver during the summer.
    going to have to start this series.

  27. Great new series to add to my TBR list

  28. I really enjoy the bookmobile series. Thanks for writing it. I'll check out the other series, too.

  29. I'm excited for the opportunity to have a chance of winning either of these books. How can you go wrong with a cozy mystery that has cats, books, or both involved in their plot. Also excited with the idea of a book including beagles too. Robin Coxon,

  30. The bookmobile/kitty series sounds so fun!!

  31. Great interview, looking forward to reading both series, when I get caught up.

  32. Thank you everyone for the awesome comments! And thank you for visiting my blog. You all keep me going with your support.