Author Spotlight: CaliforniaKat

This is my last banked author spotlight!

Awwwwwww….big sigh. So, this one was done months ago, but is only being posted now. Sorry. :o(

Anyhoo, this gal…wow. I love her stories! Seriously. Her Back and Forth series is absolutely one of the best fanfics I’ve ever read. Probably some of the best writing come to think of it. (Psssst….check out her mini story down below. I definitely needed some alone time after that one. Whew!)

So, tell me a little about yourself.
Well, I’m closer to 40 than 30.  I am considered the “rebel” in my family because I’m a Democrat and “liberal” when it comes to most things.  Then again, most of my “California friends” consider me to be the “conservative” one among them.  So I’m “complicated.”  I teach composition and literature at the college level, and I love it.  I have always read for pleasure, and I have flirted with writing for a while, but I never did it with consistency until about two years ago when I started writing TB FanFiction.  And I think these have been the two happiest years of my life in many ways.  It is like finding a friend who was always there—but who I’d never talked to before.

What do you do when you’re not writing?
I am usually working when I’m not writing.  LOL.  I always have a stack of student essays to grade.  The only variable is how high!  I also love to read and try to get in an hour a day.  And I like to watch television that I don’t have to concentrate on—especially “marathons.”  I love sitting down and watching five straight hours of America’s Next Top Model (guilty pleasure) or Chopped, for instance.   In fact, there’s a marathon of Project Runway on even as I type.  This kind of T.V. is perfect for multitasking.

And, of course, I hang out with the husband and cats.

Do you pull experiences from your real life into your writing?
Yes.  I cannot help it.  I most closely identify with Eric, so all of his “daddy” issues are influenced by my own, for example.  Many of my life views about love, religion, politics, etc. find their way into my work too—though I try not to be too preachy.  When I let a little of “me” in, however, the characters feel more real.

How do you come up with your titles?
Well, Back and Forth, literally came from the scene that started the story—as Sookie looks back and forth from Eric to Bill.  Come Back to Me came about because it brings back the word “back” and also hints at the major plot-point.  Inner came to me because the purpose was to look at the “inner” workings of Eric.  And “Offers” was the major subject of that piece.  I tend to like shorter titles that hint at a main theme of the story.

Ultimate girl question: chocolate or vanilla?
Swirl–on a waffle cone, please!

Besides SVM, do you have another series of books that you love or that you’d ever write fanfics for?
I have only written SVM/True Blood storied.  However, I love the Harry Potter books, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, and Shakespeare’s history plays (which I count as a “series”).  I inhaled The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo books about a month ago.

What is the best compliment you’ve received on your writing?
That something I wrote made someone “heal” in some significant way.  That my writing made someone “think.”  That my writing had become a part of someone’s day.  These are the kinds of things that have made me smile and feel proud.

Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
If you have a story you want to tell, tell it.  Don’t be afraid.  Even if no one else likes what you do, if you need to share your work, share it FOR YOURSELF.

What sort of Starbuck’s concoction would your characters order?
Let me write you a little story:

It was 11:15 on a Tuesday night.  The Starbucks was deserted, and the lone barista was resting her head on the counter. 

Eric Northman strolled up to the counter with a smirk on his beautiful face. 

“Do you have TruBlood?” he asked, his voice low and seductive.

Knowing that her panties had just become useless, the barista bit her lip to keep from moaning.  “I’m sorry,” she stammered, “we don’t carry it.”

“Pity,” Eric said.  “I was,” he paused, “thirsty.”  He turned to walk away.

“Wait,” the young girl said quickly.

Eric turned back around, his eyebrow raised in question.

“I have a break coming up in ten minutes,” she whispered.

“That is very interesting,” Eric said sauntering back to the counter.  “And why would that be information that I need?”

“I—uh,” she stammered, “well—uh—if you’re hungry, I could—uh.”  She stopped as her blush spread over her face. 

Eric inhaled deeply.  “You have A+ blood.”

“Do you like that?” she managed.

“Oh yes.”  Eric smirked.  “Today, it is my favorite.”

She found that she was holding her breath.

“Will I be getting a tall, grande or venti?” he asked as he looked at the labeled sizes of the cups next to the counter.

“Whatever you want,” she said, trying to keep from drooling. 

“I’ll see you outside in my car in,” he paused, looking at the clock, “eight minutes then.”

“How will I know which one is yours?” she asked.

“You’ll know.”  He gave her another panty-moistening smirk. 

Just then, the barista heard her manager coming from the back of the store.

Without taking her eyes off of the vampire, she asked, “Hey, Carla, do you mind if I take my break now?”

“No go ahead,” the manager answered, without looking up from the clipboard she was carrying.  “I’ll look after the register while I’m finishing the schedule.  Don’t worry.”

Eric smiled.  “It looks like you have the drink I want, after all.” 

He turned and walked out of the store.  The barista was following closely—if a bit inelegantly—on his heels.

Tell us something random about yourself.
I once worked as a barista.

What kind of environment do you write in?
Living room, television on mute(usually on a sports channel), laptop on the coffee table, music playing

OR

Composition book, sneaking moments during the work-day to write

Tell the truth. Do you ever write naked?
Yeah—I have many of my best ideas in the shower.  The jumping point for Come Back to Me came while I was showering.  The POV idea for Inner came from the shower too.  Lots of ideas come from there.  Oh—and I sing in the shower too.

Where can you be found online?
FanFiction.net:  http://www.fanfiction.net/u/2559761/California_Kat

WordPress:  http://californiakat1564.wordpress.com/

Anything else you’d like to tell?
I really have to publically thank my “virtual” sounding board Scorp (CDB33 on FF.net).  Early on while I was writing Back and Forth, I started getting reviews from this lovely lady, and soon we were exchanging emails every day.  She was the reason why I wrote Come Back to Me and Inner.  I have made a lot of wonderful “friends” through my stories, but I think that Scorp has become one of my closest friends period.  I don’t have a Beta to thank (because I don’t use one since my writing process is so idiosyncratic), but Scorp is one of the voices in my head when I write, so she’s like an “honorary” Beta.  I count on her, and my stories don’t seem complete until she has told me what she thinks.

Last chance to add anything…
Hmmm…  The only thing that I want to add is a giant thank you to anyone who is reading this AND anyone who has read my work.  It’s an honor.

 

Go read her stuff and comment and let her know how great she is. Because….she is. Like for sure. Uh huh.

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6 thoughts on “Author Spotlight: CaliforniaKat”

    1. I concur with Kelpie. Californiakat, you are a great writer, love the way you write and your humour. Your students are very lucky – and I bet your husband is too!!!!!!!!!!

      Like

  1. I just found this site and was so excited to read this interview — especially the little bonus story. I love reading about my favorite fanfic authors and I’m looking forward to perusing your past Author Spotlight entries.

    Like

    1. Yeah that’s fine if you’re confused…I’m actually kinda confused too. My husband switched over all our computer files and may have buried it in a different folder. Ill have to look. When I find it, hopefully tonight, yours will go up. Sorry darlin!

      Like

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