Thursday, August 8, 2019

Rest, Relax, Run for Your Life - An Interview & Giveaway

I'm happy to welcome Katherine Brown to Cozy Up With Kathy today. Katherine writes the Ooey Gooey Bakery Mystery series. Rest, Relax, Run for Your Life is the first book in the series and was released earlier this year.

Kathy: In Rest, Relax, Run for Your Life Piper and Samantha have a long weekend at a spa. Do you ever go to spas? What's your favorite thing to do at a spa.

KB: I tried to convince my husband that I should visit several spas as research for this book (didn't happen lol) but I've actually only been to one spa on a vacation in Mexico. It was complimentary which made it even better! My favorite things were the deep tissue massage and the sauna. I was very uncomfortable in the steam room because I was alone and the air was so hot I literally lost my breath at first and had to sit and work to not freak out until it felt normal again.

Kathy: The duo won the weekend after raising the most money for human trafficking awareness and prevention. Why did you choose this cause?

KB: Great question! Human trafficking is an evil crime that I believe is much more widespread than people are aware of. It is getting more attention, but the standard image in most people's minds when human trafficking is mentioned is often of third world countries or only young girls. The sad truth is that there are victims of all ages, male and female, and they can be in the most wealthy and stable of countries.

This book, though it is fiction, can hopefully help people understand the ease with which human trafficking can occur anywhere and maybe even teach someone who needs to know ways to recognize it and report it.

I first learned of human trafficking as a little girl in a church camp when they did a video about it in poverty stricken areas. As an adult, I have a friend who works in victim services (any crime victim) and she was able to show me the US statistics of this horrible crime and victims it impacts. Others should know, too.

Kathy: This book is the first Ooey Gooey Bakery Mystery. Do you enjoy baking or do you prefer to pick up your treats at a bakery?

KB: Oh, I love both! I enjoy baking very much, even trying out my own recipes on occasion, but love to go to our favorite cupcakes in my area, Treehouse Cupcakes, and devour the delicious goodies there as well.

Kathy: What's your favorite ooey gooey treat?

KB: Chocolate....cake, brownie, cake in a ice cream shake, you name it. If it isn't chocolate, it doesn't always qualify as dessert in my book.

Kathy: What first drew you to cozy mysteries?

KB: I'm an avid reader and read tons of genres but a year or so ago cozies became my addiction. For one thing, life has a way of being busy and stressful and a good cozy mystery let's you sink into someone else's problem rather than your own, usually with a big dose of humor and often a smidgeon of romance. It's the perfect combination! I went through a phase of psychological thrillers (which I can still enjoy) but cozies bring less bad dreams lol.

Loving them so much, it only made sense to start writing them when I decided to take the plunge and pursue my passion. I've always lived books, words, and writing.

Kathy: Do you write in any other genres?

KB: I've written several children's books that were still of a tiny mystery and humor bent. This year, I added another children's book, Princess Bethani's First Garden Party, that I hope to turn into a series.

Kathy: Tell us about your series.

KB: The Ooey Gooey Bakery mystery series centers around two best friends who own a bakery. I love books as pure entertainment but with this series I wanted to do something worthwhile as well which is how human trafficking became a large topic in book 1 and 2. I never planned to write more than three (not enough faith in myself) but I enjoyed the characters so much that book 4 was soon finished as well.

Kathy: Do you have a favorite character? If so, who and why?

KB: Piper is probably my favorite because she is the character I most relate to in personality quirks, even carrying a pocket knife all the time as a habit, though she definitely isn't written to be me. She is sarcastic, a good friend, and a lover of chocolate though!

Kathy: Did you have a specific inspiration for your series?

KB: Honestly, no. The idea began with wanting to write a spa mystery. I jotted notes and forgot. Months later, I found my scribbles and decided to get more detailed. When I realized they needed to win a competition, that's when I decided to use the opportunity to feature some human trafficking info. So, you see, it never began as a concrete plan.

Kathy: What made you decide to publish your work?

KB: There was never any question that publishing was my end goal from the moment I opened a blank page in Microsoft Word. I've wanted to be a "real writer" since I was in elementary school. I even looked into publishing companies as a teenager but I didn't have the money to pay for creating a book in what I now know were vanity presses that you use to print a limited number of books, not really effective to print and sell them. I knew what I wanted to do but it took me much longer to figure out the how. Thankfully, I've stumbled into some amazing author groups the past few years and have been learning how to make my childhood dream become non-fiction!

Kathy: If you could have a dinner party and invite 4 authors, living or dead, in any genre, who would you invite?

KB: Jane Austen, Jana DeLeon, Catherine Coulter, and Alexandra Ripley.

Kathy: What are you currently reading?

KB: One Book in the Grave by Kate Carlisle

Kathy: Will you share any of your hobbies or interests with us?

KB: I love to read - I know, shocker. I dabble in small sewing projects every once in a while and do hope to learn to make a successful quilt eventually.

Other than that, I'd say being with my family is my biggest hobby and I travel as often as possible to the beach. If I'm ever a bestselling author (wink) and can afford the tickets, I want to add traveling to Ireland or Italy as travel is something I enjoy.

Kathy: Name 4 items you always have in your fridge or pantry.

KB: Water. Butterscotch or dark chocolate chips. Peanut butter. Protein powder.

Kathy: Do you have plans for future books either in your current series or a new series?

KB: I do. The going has been slow but I've actually just begun a spinoff series about Gladys, a secondary character in the Ooey Gooey Bakery mystery series, because so many of my readers mentioned they wanted to know more about her. I hope at least book 1 of the Adventures of Gladys series will be released in 2019.

I may add to the Ooey Gooey Bakery mystery series but at the moment no specific storyline has sprung to mind.

Kathy: What's your favorite thing about being an author?

KB: The writing itself. I love the vast possibilities as I weave words together on the page. It isn't always as easy as I want it to be but when the words flow and the characters take off, it is delightful and fun. I've caught myself laughing out loud as I type, hoping my readers will live the same nugget of humor as I do.

I have to say though, an unexpected bonus I've found that I truly treasure is the community and camaraderie with other authors and the sweetness of having readers reach out to you or come back for more because they actually liked those pages you've poured months into writing.


Rest, Relax, Run for Your Life (Ooey Gooey Bakery Mystery) by Katherine H. Brown

About the Book

Cozy Mystery 1st in Series 
Independently Published (March 1, 2019)  
Paperback: 280 pages
Piper and Samantha are in heaven. Well, close. After winning a contest to raise the most money for human trafficking awareness and prevention, Piper and Sam are rewarded with a long weekend at the O Heavenly Day Spa. When mysterious notes start appearing everywhere, things get uncomfortable. When spa treatments go awry it is starting to get dangerous. A threatening message in Piper’s closet convinces Piper and Sam that they have to find out who is behind all of these disasters before someone gets hurt. Is it Broussard the stuffy concierge? Gladys, the sweet old lady who decided to join them for the weekend? When the smoke alarms go off and the spa erupts into panic, the chaos separates the friends and Piper stumbles into trouble. Will her friends be able to help her in time?

About the Author

Katherine Brown is a Texas girl, a lover of books, and a weaver of words. Her first official publication was of two children’s books in 2017, which has now grown into five books of the School is Scary series; however, she likes to think her career as a writer started when she sold her parents newsletters of articles about school and poetry for fifty cents per copy as a pre-teen. Married to a wonderful husband and mom of a smart, spunky stepdaughter, Katherine enjoys spending time with family and reading as many new books as she can get her hands on. Her YA series, the Ooey Gooey Bakery Mystery series, is ramping up in 2019 with book 1 released in March and book 2 was released June 1, 2019.

About the Author:
Amazon Author Page
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Purchase Link - Amazon

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