Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Interview with Heidi Garrett and Billie Limpin, Authors of Cupcakes & Kisses

Cupcakes & Kisses

Cupcakes & Kisses by Heidi Garrett and Billie Limpin
Paperback, 352 pages
Expected publication: December 2, 2014

One bite of her luscious cupcakes and you just might fall in love…

Nineteen-year-old Glynna Balcora’s super power is baking. A young witch, she’s lived her entire life tucked away in the quaint city of Spokane, WA with her domineering aunt and sweetheart of a grandmother. It’s not an ideal situation. Although Glynna loves her grandmother dearly, and treasures the special times they spend in their magical greenhouse, Glynna’s aunt keeps her niece on a tight leash using threats of vague enemies.

Since Glynna graduated from high school a few a months ago, her aunt’s be-home-before-dark curfew seems more ridiculous every day. It isn’t doing much for the young witch’s social life, either. With encouragement from her best friend, Glynna sneaks out one night to go to a bonfire party at the lake. There she has an unexpected encounter with Spokane’s most eligible bachelor, Ashton Bass. Glynna’s been crushing on Ashton since she was five years old. But when they share their first kiss, thunderstorms and lightning follow… and Glynna’s aunt realizes it’s time to tell the young witch the truth about who she really is.

Cupcakes & Kisses is the first book in a playful New Adult Romance trilogy. Read my thoughts, posted yesterday, about this fabulous book here.

Today I have the extreme pleasure of having both of the authors of this fun series here at The Book Bag! I asked them a few questions about how they met and what it's like to write a story with someone else. The idea of writing a book is something that I cannot even comprehend. Kudos to authors! Writing by oneself would be challenging enough, let alone writing with someone else.

Hang on to your hats, everyone! You are in for a crazy, fun ride with this interview!

Welcome Heidi and Billie! First of all, how did you two meet?

HEIDI: We met on Goodreads. Yes, really. It was kind of… Fate. (Yes, with a capital “F”!) A strong wind from the Philippines blew across the South Pacific Ocean and then up to the Northwest coast of the U.S. Mmmm… It brought the scent of: CUPCAKES!!!

At what point did writing a book together come up?

HEIDI: Billie is an awesome book blogger. I asked/begged/pleaded with her to help with the blog tour of my first Once Upon a Time Today novella. She graciously offered to interview me. OMG! It was so fun. Here is an excerpt: WARNING: We went a little nuts, and as usual, threw proper grammar and punctuation out the window, cause sometimes: YOU JUST MUST!!!!

BILLIE: Oh! I did not anticipate that Ms. Heidi really did enjoy my interview that much and got… uhhhhmm a little carried away with words?!! (which, I should not be all too surprised because this Half Faerie really… really loves to talk (or write?!) like me?! Hehe. So, since my heart cannot take cutting or editing any part of our "little" chit-chats! May I present to you Part 1 of my LONGEST INTERVIEW EVER! Lol. Okaaaaaay… Now let’s get to know Ms. Heidi Garrett on a more personal… and uhmmm fun & interesting level? And see if she can take on my challenge: One Question = One Word Answer. Minimum words?! Oh, this will be VERY interesting!

See more at: Beautiful Beautiful Blog Tour : An Interview with Author Heidi Garrett - Part One

Then Billie asked question number three! What is your strongest… and uhmm, most attractive feature? (Oh?! Maybe I should ask your husband Jerry this question? Hehe.)

HEIDI: So, I asked Jerry. Cause, you know, I want to know what he says too. He says my sense of humor. (Not my beauty, sob! I’m such a girl, lol.) Anyway, I say: “Am I really that funny?” He makes a face, like I need to go do anything but answer these questions! But I persist! “Honey, is my sense of humor really that strong?????” (Me asking, like kind of desperate and whiny, cause I’m not sure that’s such a great thing! Like is it Sexy? or Romantic? or Swoony?)

He says, “Your sense of humor is different. I think a lot of people like it.”

Then I think of Bones and Booth (You know, of the TV show on Fox) and I think about how much they make me giggle and laugh, and then I think, you know, that’s kind of sexy and hot! Hmmm… I can make him laugh and smile, and when he does, his whole face lights up… Okay! I can live with that! (No divorce! Yay!) (We can continue our Happily Ever After:D)

See more at: Beautiful Beautiful Blog Tour : An Interview with Author Heidi Garrett Part Two

So… AS YOU CAN IMAGINE, after this interview, I kept thinking about how Billie and I played off each other and how fun that was! I’d really never thought about writing a romance book before that. I write books with romance in them but not A Romance. But I kept reading Billie’s book reviews… ROMANCE!!!! And then I thought… what if we could write A Romance together? Would it be possible? Then I got kind of nervous. It’s probably like asking someone on a date: What if they say no? You hate that! What if I ask, and Billie thinks I’m crazy? Am I? Heehee. And I think, no. I’m not crazy, and if I don’t ask her, she can’t ever say YES. So I gathered my courage and sent Billie an email and my question: Do you want to write with me? Maybe a story about a sexy, sassy witch? was buried deep in a looooong email… Maybe she can’t find it? Then she can’t say NO! Uh-oh, but no YES, either. Bites nails.

Then I get a Billie’s reply, and it’s like a big HUGE PINK Yes.

So I guess she didn’t skip over that question, heehee. I think we were both over the moon at that point. Junar and Jerry had to reel us in;)

BILLIE: (Yes! I am still wearing PINK! Hee hee! ): Uhhhhmm, Excuse me, for interrupting… but helloooooo?!!!! Who am I to say NOOOOOO to that once-in-a-lifetime offer?????!! Did you know that I jumped up and down, down and up *on repeat* when I received that EPIC email?! I have to read it TEN times just to be sure I am not having one of my… uhm, PINK daydreams?! So, I read it… OH eM Gee! “Do you want to write with me?” Me: Whooopie!! *Jumps up and down, Down and Up on repeat!* See? I am NOT really excited! LOL.

THAT… is the beginning of the “FUN-NEST” (Yes! my word for Fun! Fun! Fun! To the MAX!) writing experience I had with Ms. Heidi!

I enjoyed that little interview I did with Heidi as much as she did. I guess, I love to make people not only smile but giggle or blush? Oh, I think Heidi blushed! Well, you know Heidi‘s a little… “serious” Oh! See? Did you just raise your left eyebrow, Miss Heidi?! Haha! I thought, that maaaaybeee if I “Tickle” her a bit with my, well, not-so-serious questions, she’ll… loosen up? Ohhhh! Don’t give me that look, Ms. Heidi! You DID loosen up? I swear, you giggled? Oh, are you laughing?! MISSION ACCOMPLISHED. LOL.

How did the process itself work? Did you write alternate chapters?

HEIDI: I decided up front: Billie is in charge of romance. She also took over names, heehee… Ashton, Tatiana, Lorriene, Leif… and don’t forget Archimedes! Awesome names. I think she came up with Glynna’s name too, but our heroine’s final name, came out of a typo… I think:) There are four BIG ROMANCE scenes. Billie wrote the first draft of each one. Plus, she wrote a lot of the first scene with Ashton and Lorriene!

We had two secret weapons when it came to developing our characters and our plot. (Should we share them? Hmmm… maybe we should keep them TOP SECRET!!!) Facebook Chat and our Super-Senstive-Carefully-Guarded Pink Collaboration document!

BILLIE: Secret Weapons huh?! Oh Don’t forget, Miss Heidi… Our PINK SPELL! Susan, We are PINK witches… ssshhhhh… that’s a well kept secret… *whispers*… and now we are casting our “fool-proof-all-goodness” woodoo-voodoo! *whoosh whoosh* NOW… you are under our SPELL… everything we say, YOU agree.

… Our cupcakes are yum yum? YOU nod.

… Our book is… mmmm… yum yum? YOU (still) nod. Oh! You nod!! See?! You have just been spelled!

Okay, I need to be “ serious” for once!!! Because Miss Heidi’s giving me “ The Look”! Heehee!

The truth is, I am so thankful for the INTERNET! Though, mine here is soooo turtle slow… snail slowwwww… Slowww… sloooooow… but that did not stop us from passing our PINK draft back and forth… until, we’re at the last chapter! It’s like, Poof! Magic?!

Talk about the logistics of making it a seamless story.

HEIDI: Ooh… That’s one of those things:) There is a magic when Billie and I pass back-and-forth a written document. She writes something and I’m like: OMG… I have to play off that. Then I write something, and she has to add something special… make it bubble! Other than that, it’s about the same as any book. The writing itself has to be revised for mechanics and continuity after the first draft is written. Our editor, Vince Dickinson also played a significant role in putting on the final polish.

BILLIE : Agree with everything Heidi said. I think we, working together, just clicked. We’re “writing soul mates”. Heidi inspired me to push more… that I can do more, and I learned a lot.

Writing with her is not like “writing” at all. It’s like, we are conversing/talking to each other as good friends. And you know what’s the best part? We can goof around, have fun (talk a lot about cupcakes and all the sweetest goodies!)… and yes! No pressure whatsoever. We go where that flow takes us.

Would you do it again? I know this is to be a trilogy, so it must be working.

HEIDI: Yes, we will be doing it again when we write Cupcakes & Chaos!

Oh YES!! I agree with everything you said! And I now have this crazy compulsion to like PINK! 

Thank you both so much for being here today and answering my questions. I understand now why I loved this book so much. Your wonderful senses of humor and the way you two just gel together in your craziness comes across in the book and make for a great read. I look forward to reading more of this fabulous series!

About the Authors

Heidi Garrett is the author of the Daughter of Light series, a fantasy about a young half-faerie, half-mortal searching for her place in the Whole. She's also the author of the contemporary fairy tale novella collection, Once Upon a Time Today. In these stand-alone retellings of popular and obscure fairy tales, adult characters navigate the deep woods of the modern landscape to find their Happily Ever Afters.

Heidi is collaborating with Billie Limpin to write The Magic Cupcake series, a special blend of magic, romance, and humor.

Heidi was born in Texas, and in an attempt to reside in as many cities in that state as she could, made it to Houston, Lubbock, Austin, and El Paso. She now lives in Eastern Washington state with her husband, their two cats, her laptop, and her Kindle. Being from the South, she often contemplates the magic of snow.

Connect with Heidi

Website | Facebook | Pinterest | Newsletter

Billie Limpin lives in the Philippines where the sun always shines and people always smile!

A hopeless romantic inside and out, when Billie’s not swooning over a book boyfriend (which she often does!), you’ll probably catch her daydreaming (over a fictional character!). A reader by heart, and now a writer for the first time, she’s thrilled to put her daydreams into written words.

Connect with Billie

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

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