I'm so excited to be a stop on the
book tour for
Linda O. Johnston
and her new book
BAD TO THE BONE
Book 3 in the Barkery & Biscuits Mysteries
Veterinary technician Carrie Kennersly, owner of the Barkery & Biscuits bakery for dogs, is reluctant to sell her recipes to pet food manufacturer VimPets. Jack Loroco, a VimPets representative, assures Carrie that it would be a great opportunity to grow her business. His promising new relationship with Carrie’s friend Billi Matlock doesn’t hurt his cause.
But the budding romance takes a bad turn when Wanda Addler, another VimPets employee, sets her sights on Jack. After threatening to ruin Jack’s career if he doesn’t give her what she wants, Wanda is found dead. Jack and Billi are put at the top of the suspect list, and Carrie is doggone determined to rescue them from a life behind bars.
An Interview with Linda O. Johnston
LKBR: Thank you for being here today!
LJ: Thank you so much for having me!
LKBR: Please tell us a bit about your book/series.
LJ: My Barkery & Biscuits Mysteries are about Carrie Kennersly, a veterinary technician who always wanted to be her own boss. When a friend who owns a bakery has to leave the town of Knobcone Heights, California, Carrie buys it and turns half into a barkery where she bakes and sells the healthy treats for dogs she developed as a vet tech, while also keeping the other side open to sell people treats. She also keeps her vet tech job on a part-time basis. And somehow, people start being murdered in Knobcone Heights. The first time, Carrie is the main suspect so she has to figure out whodunit. After that, her friends keep getting accused, so she has to help them, too.
Carrie also owns a wonderful dog named Biscuit, and lots of other dogs are featured in the series as well.
LKBR: How did you come up with the concept for this series? How about the idea for this installment?
LJ: At the time I came up with the idea for the series, there weren't many stories where pet food was the featured theme, but lots of cozy mysteries involved people food. As a dog lover who's also a writer, I enjoyed the concept when I thought of it--and ran with it.
My current release, BAD TO THE BONE, involves a guy who's been attempting to get Carrie to sell a recipe or two for her pet treats to the large pet food manufacturer where he works. He appeared in the first and second stories, and it seemed natural for him to wind up being a murder suspect in this one.
LKBR: Do you have a favorite character in your book/series?
LJ: Of course I like and admire Carrie. I really respect veterinarians and vet techs. I also am impressed with people who create and cook food. I don't do much of either.
LKBR: Is there a certain type of scene that’s harder for you to write than others? Love, action, death, etc?
LJ: Not really. I've been at this for a while, and I also write romances so most scenes tend to come to me when it's time to write them.
LKBR: In your writing, have you ever used experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
LJ: I always kid around about writing mysteries and being able to get back at people who've harmed me in some way by putting their counterparts in stories. And I have done that at least once...
LKBR: When you’re in the process of writing/creating a book, do you use a computer, typewriter, dictate, or use pen to paper?
LJ: I started writing on a computer years ago and continue that as my method today--although my subconscious mind often comes up with ideas at odd times so I put pen to notecard to make sure I don't forget them.
LKBR: Do you have any writing quirks or rituals that you do before, during, and/or after writing a new book?
LJ: I suspect I'm quirkier than I'm aware of, but my rituals are very writing related. I always have to plot on my computer using the "plot skeleton" I've developed over the years, then, from there, create a synopsis that I work from while I'm writing the story.
LKBR: What does your family think about your writing? How important is their support?
LJ: Everyone is quite supportive--although my husband has read only one of my 45 published novels, and I doubt that my grown sons have read any. But no one gives me a hard time about my disappearing into my office to write, either.
LKBR: Who/What inspired you to write your first book?
LJ: I'd always loved reading and tried writing my first story as a child: a sci fi story with a girl and boy who traveled in space. Eventually, when I started practicing law, I also decided it was time to follow up on my childhood dream, and I began getting up an hour earlier than everyone else in my household to have writing time. My first published fiction was a short story published in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine and it won the Robert L. Fish Memorial Award for best first short story of the year. That, of course, inspired me to keep writing... and eventually I also started publishing novels.
LKBR: What was one of the most surprising thing(s) you learned when trying to get your first book published?
LJ: It's not easy--or at least it wasn't then, when the only way to do it was to submit to established publishers. But one thing I learned then and still adore now is that there is a very supportive community of other writers out there, in all genres, and the writers I've met all help one another succeed--or at least provide willing shoulders to cry on.
LKBR: What book are you reading?
LJ: Right now, I'm reading, and enjoying, A Perfect Obsession by Heather Graham, since I received a copy at the California Dreamin' romance conference I recently attended. Otherwise, I'd probably be reading another cozy featuring dogs!
LKBR: Do you have any advice for aspiring cozy writers?
LJ: Yes! Keep writing, and be sure to join writers' groups in the genres you prefer. As I mentioned before, the community of writers is very supportive and can help you determine the best way to get published when you're ready.
LKBR: Where can readers go to learn more about you and your books?
LJ: Please visit my website www.LindaOJohnston.com for links to all my books, including my new one BAD TO THE BONE. Also, next month my eighth Alpha Force paranormal romance will be published by Harlequin Nocturne, and its link is there, too.
Additionally, please come visit me at www.KillerHobbies.blogspot.com on Wednesdays, on the Killer Characters blog on the 18th of each month, at A Slice of Orange blog on the 6th of each month and at the InkSpot blog on the first Monday of each month... and friend me on Facebook! And I do pop up often at chats, blogs and more on Writerspace.
LKBR: Thank you so much for letting us get to know you better!
LJ: And thank you again for inviting me!
Two lucky winners will receive an print copy of
BAD TO THE BONE
Winners will be chosen after May 21
at the end of the tour
Enter using the Rafflecopter form at the end of this post.
Giveaway open to USA only.
This giveaway is through Great Escape Book Tours, not Lisa Ks Book Reviews.
I was born a writer. I can't remember a time I didn't write, though my earliest scribbles, while I was in diapers, were not decipherable even by me. Later, I saved ideas for school assignments and awaited opportunities to write them. My first attempt at an epic, when I was eight, was a science fiction story so incredibly precocious that, if I could find it, I'm sure I'd find a new calling as a writer. Well, maybe not. Still, it was a start: the story of a young boy and girl who together explored the universe.
That's something else: I was also a born romantic. Nearly all my fiction involves a romantic relationship. No wonder I wound up writing romance novels!
I have also always enjoyed solving puzzles, which led me to write suspense into all of my stories, too, no matter what their genre or subgenre.
I stopped writing fiction in law school -- confusing cases and boring briefs left little time for pleasure. But, I couldn't stay away. Soon as I could carve out time early in the morning before work at my first law job, I wrote for fun once more. Cathartic! In my first finished -- and as yet unpublished -- mystery, I killed off a law firm's senior partner.
I am additionally a member of the Mystery Writers of America and International Thriller Writers. I live in the Los Angeles area with my husband and my Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Lexie and Mystie.
As always, please leave a comment and