Notes from An Alien

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Tag Archives: Box of Rocks

Author Interview ~ Karla Telega, Part Two

I’ve done a number of interviews with yet-to-be-published writers and, back in February, I had great fun talking with Karla Telega. That was before her book, Box of Rocks, was published. I was ecstatic when she asked me to be a beta-reader of the book and I feel a teensy bit like one of the midwives of that novel :-) Now, I get to share her wonderful humor with you in this post-publishing interview:

Karla, what genre do you write?

My first love is humor. My first book is a mystery. Go figure.

Was there a defining moment when you felt that you were an author?

When I finished writing my first six pages, I realized that a) I wanted everyone to read it, and b) I wasn’t finished writing yet. I had no idea then that I would one day be sweating through the Shelfari help menu for two hours, trying to figure out how to add an “author” flag to my avatar.

What was your favorite part about writing a novel?

I was terrified at the prospect of making up a whole world, when I can’t even remember if I changed my underwear this morning. Turns out, that’s what I love most about writing fiction, and yes, I’m wearing clean underwear.

Are there things that you feel you could have done better?

Always. The secure writers are doing shots with honest politicians and unicorns.

What’s in store next?

Next is a humor anthology that I’m editing. My partner and I have compiled a really impressive line-up of cut-ups for the book. I’m so excited to be able to get attention for some deserving and talented humor writers. My Funny Valentine will be coming out the beginning of January, 2012. Meanwhile I’m promoting Box of Rocks, editing my humor book, and working on the next book in the mystery series. Sleeping is not an option.

How do you promote your book?

Here’s where I feel like a newbie right now. I just wrote my first press release, I’m having my first book signing Saturday, and I’m trying to figure out how to look interesting enough so that people will want to interview me. And by “interesting,” I don’t mean I can open a jar of pickles with my toes.

Can you give a short description of Box of Rocks?

At the advice of her psychiatrist, Maggie confronts her fear of failure, small designer dogs, and an uneventful future by embarking on a series of hobbies that will test the limits of good sense. From hunting a fabled Lizard Man, to panning for gold, she and her friend, Cher, tempt the fates with one ill-conceived adventure after another. In a small gold mining town, their paths cross with an archaeology student, a bumbling killer, and a hidden goldmine. It is here they learn that the first step to surviving a mid-life crisis is: don’t die.

Now that you’ve completed a novel, do you feel like you have particular strengths as a writer?

I love writing snappy narrative. I get to use all the comebacks and one-liners that I wish I could think of when I’m talking to someone. I also think I do a good job with character development. The people in my book come alive for me. I think I’m able to convey that pretty well to the reader.

What do you know now that you wish you’d known then?

Actually, I’m glad that I was naïve when I started writing. If I’d known the obstacles involved, I’d probably be stocking shelves at the grocery store right now, instead of sitting up at 3:00 AM dinking around on the computer. Did I mention the no-sleep part? Writing has been a rewarding and therapeutic ride. I can’t imagine doing anything else.

Karla, thanks, so much, for gracing us with this return visit!


For a regular dose of Karla’s unique humor, do visit her Telega Tales Blog :-)
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