Be glad in the Lord and rejoice! Psalm 32:11

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Five Questions With ... Kari Lee Townsend, author of "Tempest In The Tea Leaves"

I'm pleased today to introduce you to Kari Lee Townsend, author of the debut cozy mystery novel, "Tempest In The Tea Leaves: A Fortune Teller Mystery." 
Kari was kind enough to take some time out of her busy "release" week to answer a few questions about her writing!
Sharon:  At what age did you know that you wanted to be a writer?
Kari:  I have always been interested in writing. I started with poetry, then short stories, and then finally at age twenty with my first novel. Going to college, getting married, and having 4 kids put a damper on that for a while, but when my oldest turned one, I started up again. Although I have to say I didn't get serious until around 2000, but things didn't really take off for me until I signed with my agent, Christine Witthohn in 2006. She has been amazing. I am so lucky to have her in my corner. You truly won't find anyone who works harder in this crazy business.

Sharon:  What three important facts do you want readers to know about your new book?
Kari:  *This book is purely for entertainment. While I am fascinated with pyschics and fortune-telling, I am not one. I just do a lot of research :-)
*This book has a lot of humor in it. Everything I write has humor in some form or other. I just love fun, quirky characters!
*This book has an ongoing romance between Sunny and Detective Mitch Stone. Sigh, drool, yum-yum...I can't seem to write a book without some form of romance in it, and I just love the chemistry between Sunny and Mitch. I hope the readers will, too.

Sharon: Who are some of your favorite authors? Who inspires you?
Kari:  I adore cozy authors who write funny. Donna Andrews, Annette Blair, Peggy Webb, Tamar Myers for starters. And of course the almighty Janet Evanovich. And I want to be Avery Aames when I grow up :-)

Sharon:  What do you have coming up in the future?
Kari:  I just finished book two of the Fortune Teller Mysteries called Corpse in the Crystal Ball. That comes out in June of 2012. I am just starting on book three, Trouble in the Tarot, which comes out in March of 2013.

Sharon:  What advice would you have for anyone wanting to break into writing today?
Kari:  Never give up. It took me 14 years to sell, but then my fabulous agent landed me two 3-book deals just 5 months apart at two different houses. Don't write to the market, but be aware of it. If you see something selling well, see if it's a genre you might want to try. If you don't step out of your comfort zone and try other things, you'll never know if you will like it or not. Also, in today's world, look at all your options. I think it's smart to be in both worlds. Traditional publishing as well as self-publishing. If you have a story that has been shopped to death, then put it out there yourself. Same goes with your backlist. And then try other books with traditional publishers. Times are changing. You have to be smart, and savvy and very very brave :-) 
Sharon: Thanks for taking part - and good luck with your book release!  I know you are excited!!
Kari:  Thank you so much for having me. I am thrilled, Sharon. I am truly having the time of my life writing this series. You can find out more about me at my website www.karileetownsend.com or my group mystery blog www.mysteriesandmargaritasblogspot.com Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/karileetownsend Like my Facebook Author Page at www.facebook.com/karileetownsendAUTHOR
About The Book:

TEMPEST IN THE TEA LEAVES: A Fortune Teller Mystery

In the fortune telling business there are a lot of pretenders, but Sunshine Meadows is the real deal—and her predictions can be lethally accurate…

Sunny is a big city psychic who moves to the quaint town of Divinity, NY to open her fortune-telling business in an ancient Victorian house, inheriting the strange cat residing within. Sunny gives her first reading to the frazzled librarian and discovers the woman is going to die. When the woman flees in terror, Sunny calls the police, only she’s too late. The ruggedly handsome, hard-nosed detective is a ”non-believer.” He finds the librarian dead, and Sunny becomes his number one suspect, forcing her to prove her innocence before the real killer can put an end to the psychic’s future.

I was totally charmed by Kari's book. I love her fiesty and head-strong character of Sunshine "Sunny" Meadows, and loved the interplay between her and Detective Mitch Stone.  The story was lively and fast-paced, and will thrill fans of cozy mysteries.  I look forward to great things from this debut author!

About The Author:

Kari Lee Townsend lives in Central New York with her very understanding husband, her three busy boys, and her oh-so-dramatic daughter, who keep her grounded and make everything she does worthwhile…not to mention provide her with loads of material for her books. Kari is a longtime lover of reading and writing, with a masters in English education, who spends her days trying to figure out whodunit. Funny how no one at home will confess any more than the characters in her mysteries!
My thanks to the publisher, Berkley Prime Crime, for the review copy of this book. I was not compensated for my opinion.

Kari writes fun and exciting stories for any age, set in small towns, with mystical elements and quirky characters. You can find out more about her on her website www.karileetownsend.com and also on the group mystery blog she cohosts, called Mysteries and Margaritas, at www.mysteriesandmargaritasblogspot.com


Kari Lee Townsend said...

Awww, thanks Sharon! I just love my characters, too, and can't wait to jump into book three :-)

dollycas aka Lori said...


I love getting to know more about the authors behind their books!!

Kari Lee Townsend said...

Thanks Lori :-) I had fun. Sharon's questions were great.

Sharon's Garden of Book Reviews said...

Congrats on your Debut, Kari! And thank you for being so generous with your time! You're welcome here anytime!

Kari Lee Townsend said...

Thanks Sharon :-)

Nancy B said...

Great interview!!!!!!!