What fun to interview live wire mystery author Vicki Batman, who just released a new book in her Hattie Cooks mystery series. As her bio notes, her stories are full of humor and romance. She has sold many award-winning and bestselling romantic comedy works to magazines and most recently three humorous romantic mysteries. Below are her responses to my questions, a description of her new release, and her contact info.
I know you just had an exciting book birthday on February 22. Can you tell us about your new release and the inspiration behind it?
Temporarily out of Luck is the third book in my Hattie Cooks mystery series. I began writing Hattie adventures when a friend played a driving game and asked, “Write the opening of a book using the word window.” I had nothing. Went home, and the words flowed.
Did you always know you wanted to be a writer?
When #1 son was around two, I confessed to Handsome how I wished I could write like Dick Francis. I took a long time to try. Maybe I had to live a bit. I wrote poetry for a long while. Wrote, produced several newsletters.
How long did it take you to realize your dream of publication? What was your first published work?
My first published work was a racy short story, “I Believe.” I wrote a book first, but it had hit a bad spot and I needed a break. After reading a friend’s short stories, I got the bug and wrote a lot of those.
How much of your plots and characters are drawn from real life?
Oh Lordy, people say and do a lot of extraordinary things—all fodder for a book. Those things really up the characters in a book.
You’ve described yourself as an “author of sassy fiction.” Is that pretty reflective of your own personality? Authors you especially enjoy reading?
After a friend read a story, she said it was sassy—that stuck. Plus, my parents always said I was sassy, but probably not in a good way. LOLOL. I like Jill Mansell, Marian Keyes, Sophie Kinsella. Now, Felix Francis. Carl Hiassen. Long time ago, a friend said I was funny. I had no idea.
Do you consider yourself a plotter or a pantser? Or something in-between?
We know a book has: a beginning, middle, black moment, and an end. Those elements are engrained. That said, I am a plotser and write linear to hit the elements of a story. A friend uses the term “plotser:” plot(ter) + (pant)ser = plotser.
Any special time of the day or night that you prefer for writing?
Most days, I begin around 9:30 (after a workout and breakfast). I take care of business, then get down to writing.
Any favorite snacks for your writing time?
I need to AVOID snacks. I do take a break for some chocolate, a cold drink, or nuts. I’m soooo trying to be good.
Has it been a challenge to combine your busy writing career with your family life?
When I began, my boys were of an age when they didn’t need me as much. My challenge has been Handsome! He had cancer six months after I began which threw me into a tailspin. But I set a date of January 1 after his treatment ended and got back to work. Over the years, he’s faced corrective surgeries that were very intense. I decided not to pressure myself and do the best I could.
I know you started out writing short fiction and then moved to writing novels. Looking back, what do you wish you’d known about writing that you know now? And what advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Who knew how much the publishing industry would change? It is a constant adjustment. Join a group that will nurture you and write! write! write!
When you’re not writing fiction, what do you enjoy doing? Any special interests or hobbies?
I love to Jazzercise, do yoga, take long walks, read, stitch needlepoint or embroidery, and play mahjong.
Anything else you’d like to tell us about yourself and/or your books—or questions I didn’t ask that you wish I had?
Here’s my semi-secret secret: I was Miss Oak Lawn Moped.
About Temporarily out of Luck: Great job. What man? And murder. Newly employed at Wedding Wonderland, Hattie Cooks is learning the industry from a woman she greatly admires. When her former brother-in-law is found dead in his luxury SUV, all fingers point to Hattie’s sister, who is planning her own I Dos.
Detective Allan Wellborn is caught between a rock and a hard place—Hattie’s family and investigating the murder of a well-connected Sommerville resident, the same loser who was once married to Hattie’s sister. Determining who’s the bad guy—or gal—isn’t going to be easy and sure to piss off someone.
Can Hattie beat the clock to find out who murdered Tracey’s ex before she is charged with the crime and her wedding is ruined?
Find Temporarily out of Luck at: https://www.amazon.com/Temporarily-Luck-Hattie-Cooks-Mystery-ebook/dp/B08T7YSSRJ/
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/author/vickibatman/
Email: [email protected]/