Thursday, March 7, 2013

Author Interview with Kate SeRine

You've probably seen my loving reviews of Red and The Better to See You by Kate SeRine.  I've just loved the combination of all elements Kate SeRine has in these fairy tale remixes.  Amazingly well done.  So, when Kate asked me to join her tour, I jumped at it!  And the interview questions came so easily.

Please warmly welcome Kate to the blog.

M:  Hi Kate!  I’m thrilled to have you by the blog.  I’ve read both your Transplanted Tales stories and absolutely loved them.  These books are on the top of my suggest and must read lists.  You’ve blended many elements here; fairy tale remix, element of love, and mystery murder cases.

KS:  Thanks so much! I’m so glad you’re enjoying the novels!

M:  I know you mentioned it on your blog, but I’d love to ask you to share again where the idea for these tale remixes came from.  (I love the story and I think so many others will too.)

KS:  The idea for RED actually came to me during a conversation with my son. We like to have what we call “What if” conversations where he’ll ask me a question that’s totally out there and then we chat about it. The question that day: “What if fairytale characters were living next door to us?” We went on to discuss who it would be, what that Tale would do for a living, and so on. And as we chatted, I started to get a very clear picture in my head of a tough, hard-hitting version of Little Red Riding Hood — all grown up and ready to knock some heads.

M:  Now, did you sit down with a fairy tale book to find all your characters?

KS:  The first ten or so were easy to come up with. After that, I did have to grab a book from the shelf to see if there was a character I was forgetting about who would be a nice addition. I also pulled characters from literature, mythology and folklore.

Sometimes I just had a vague idea about the type of character I wanted to create but then did additional research to determine the best approach – Lavender Seelie is a prime example. She’s a “fairy”, but there are loads of different kinds of fairies, so I did quite a bit of research before settling on Lavender’s heritage.

Puck is another good example. Most people recognize Puck from Shakespeare’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, but the character of Puck actually has a long history in folklore that predates Shakespeare and is probably where the Bard drew his inspiration.

M:  I've not done much looking into Puck.  It's interesting to learn that about him.

M:  How did you decide which tales will live and which will die?  It had to be hard with the love for the fairy tales.

KS:  That’s always tough! I hate to admit it, but some characters are only there to die—especially those that are corpses from the beginning. However, there are definitely a few I hadn’t planned to kill off, but then I began to realize it would serve the plot better if they met gruesome ends. And you’d think it would be easier to kill off a villain, but that’s not always the case.

M:  With the element of Love, after reading both Red and The Better to See You I’ve noticed there is a sort of ‘spark’ that happens with their first kiss when a tale finds ‘the one’ for them.  Is this a magical Tale happening?

KS:  I think all first kisses should be magical—and if there’s no spark, then somebody’s doin’ it wrong! ;) LOL  But to answer your question, there’s not necessarily magic involved when the Tales come together, although magic does play a significant role in Seth and Lavender’s story and certainly propels their relationship forward quicker than either of them expects.

M:  Absolutely, there should be spark there if there's a kiss! LOL.

M:  For the mystery cases… from a writer aspect, how do you figure out the right amount of clue to drop as you write with knowing the ending?

KS:  That’s a tough balance and I hope I get better at it with each novel. I absolutely hate it when an author “cheats” and suddenly gives you a big reveal that makes absolutely no sense or that wasn’t even hinted at along the way. I try to be strategic about the clues as I go, but I invariably have to go back and tweak things during the editing process—especially if events take a different turn than I’d originally planned.

M:  Kate, I feel you do a great job of dropping the clues for us to come to the big reveal.  That's why I asked, it feels well balanced through the story.

M:  Do you have a favorite fairy tale?  Which one?

KS:  Oh, I have loads of favorites! Growing up, one of my favorites was the story of Rumpelstiltskin. He makes an appearance in ALONG CAME A SPIDER (which is scheduled for release in August 2013). I also really love the story of BEAUTY AND THE BEAST. Oddly enough, though, I haven’t incorporated that story into my Transplanted Tales series at all. Not sure why.

I also loved SNOW WHITE AND ROSE RED. But I always thought it was total crap that Rose Red ended up with the prince’s brother when she was the one who was out-spoken and strong-willed and actually took in the bear (who later turns out to be the prince) in the first place. She still got her HEA, I guess, but I guarantee, if I was to re-work this story it would have a totally different outcome! ;-)

M:  Hmm, sounds like you could have an idea in the works with Snow White and Rose Red there. ;)

M:  I know you are working on the third Transplanted Tales book, but how many do you have planned?

KS:  I’m currently contracted for a total of three Transplanted Tales books, but I’m certainly open to writing more if the demand is there.

M:  Well Kate, I do hope the books do amazingly well for you as they are well deserving of it and I would love to keep reading more stories. :)

M:  Where do you sneak writing into your schedule during the day?  I know you have a family and work, so has to be busy.

KS:  Oh, it’s nuts—trust me! I do almost all of my writing in the evenings when the kids go to bed and on the weekends. And I keep a voice recorder with me so I can “take notes” while I commute to and from my day job. I keep my iPad nearby while I cook dinner or when I’m doing dishes. And I take a notebook with me pretty much everywhere I go, so I’m usually working on something when the boys are at their various classes/lessons. Basically, I’ve had to become a master at multi-tasking.

The best way I’ve found to handle everything is to be fully present in whatever task I’m doing. If I take a vacation day from the office to work on writing, then I spend the entire day working on writing and don’t let myself get distracted by things I know need to be done around the house. And if I’m spending one-on-one time with my kids or my husband, they’re my focus. I try to set aside anything else during the time I’ve dedicated to them so they know how much they’re loved and valued.

M:  That sounds like great advice too.  To give yourself breaks from other things, but focus on what's at hand.

M:  Now, some Fun Questions for my first time visitors:
One question I ask all visitors… If you could travel anywhere in the world where would you go?

KS:  England.

M:  Tea or Coffee?

KS:  COFFEE!!!! Industrial-strength, please.

M:  Hahah, I'll have coffee on for you the next time you stop by.

M:  Favorite Color?

KS:  Red, Purple, Blue

M:  Favorite Childhood Fictional Creature?

KS:  Vampires and dragons.

M:  Now as an adult, what’s your Favorite Fictional Creature?

KS:  Gargoyles and dragons.

M:  Favorite Word?  (Any word at all)

KS:  Periwinkle

M:  Thank you Greatly for joining us today Kate!  It’s a pleasure to enjoy your stories and have you stop by.  I do wish you all the best with your stories.

And wish you all the best in words and pages.

KS:  Thanks so much!! And thank you for letting me stop by to chat about my Transplanted Tales! 


Kate's Bio:
Kate SeRine (pronounced “serene”) faithfully watched weekend monster movie marathons while growing up, each week hoping that maybe this time the creature du jour would get the girl. But every week she was disappointed. So when she began writing her own stories, Kate vowed that her characters would always have a happily ever after. And, thus, her love for paranormal romance was born.

Kate lives in a smallish, quintessentially Midwestern town with her husband and two sons, who share her love of storytelling. She never tires of creating new worlds to share and is even now working on her next project.

Find out more about Kate at


You can find Kate on many venues:
Learn more about her and her books.
Twitter:  @KateSeRine


Melissa (Books and Things) said...

That is exactly why I like retellings. I'm not always a fan of the ending or how the princess is portrayed. :D Can't wait to dive into these stories.

Melliane said...

Great interview! I really really need to read red, I just need more time!

Jennifer @ Bad Bird Reads said...

Awww, a convo with her son brought up the idea? That's so cute. I like What If games. Great for writers.

Great interview.

Kate SeRine said...

Thanks for stopping by, Melissa! I hope you enjoy my Transplanted Tales! :)

Kate SeRine said...

Thanks, Melliane! I'm with you--I'd like about six more hours in every day. ;)

Kate SeRine said...

Thanks, Jennifer! I just hope my son enjoys RED when he's finally old enough to read it. ;)

JezzebellJC said...

Love this interview! The "what if" is a fantastic way to get those creative juices flowing. I like her take on Snow and Rose Red for sure. Also - her favorite word Periwinkle makes me think of Professor Periwinkle on the last Halloweentown movie :D Jaclyn @ JC's Book Haven

Unknown said...

I haven't read any of her books. Both books look interesting. Her conversations with her son sound so cool. I'd like to do this if I ever have kids, what a great way to spend time with them, in a fun and creative way. It's also a great way to get ideas for new stories and characters

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Oh Melissa (B&T) for that reason alone, you will love these books. lol. Thank you for stopping!

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Oh Melliane, I hear you. I'm with Kate, I could use about 6 more too. :) Thank you for stopping.

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

I really thought that was so cool to hear as well Jennifer Bielman. I just wanted to have her share it again. :) Thank you for stopping.

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Thank you Jaclyn Canada. So glad you enjoyed this interview. :) And I'm wondering if Snow and Rose Red will come up somewhere too. :D

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Thank you Rivie Bleu, Glad you enjoyed the interview. :D