The Cats and Patricia have recently completed another blog tour.
It’s a blast! Every day, Patricia and the Cats stopped over at a different blog site and shared stories about the writing life—sometimes from Patricia’s perspective; sometimes from the cats’ perspective. And you’ll see pictures of cute kitties. There are reviews of Patricia’s latest book, Mansion of Meows, secrets from her long path as an author revealed. Even Patricia’s cats shared in the fun. Here are some of the titles of Patricia’s guest blog posts:
“Writing With Cats, the Joys and the Challenges,”
“The Writer’s Cat—by Lily the Tabby,”
“Cats—the Author’s Pawtner,”
“A Mystery-Writer’s Confessions.”
Be sure to read about the fun and interesting journey Patricia and the Cats have taken. The first stop was at Catscapades blog http://bit.ly/1GiYcW3
Tuesday, March 10— http://www.mikishope.com
Wednesday, March 11— http://consciouscat.net
Thursday, March 12— http://www.mochasmysteriesmeows.com
Friday, March 13— http://www.sweetmysterybooks.com
Saturday, March 14— http://readalot-rhonda1111.blogspot.com
Sunday, March 15— http://socratesbookreviews.blogspot.com
The Idea Factory: Where Do Story Ideas Come From?
By Patricia Fry
Readers sometimes wonder what inspires the stories they read. What part of the author’s brain composed it? What, in the author’s life, triggered it?
When I wrote nonfiction, I chose my subjects based on two criteria—what I was interested in and what my readers wanted/needed. My books for authors are being used in many, many writing rooms and author’s offices. I often came up with the topics based on the authors’ questions I received while speaking at writers conferences, while participating in book festivals and so forth. I tried to address current needs for authors related to the publishing industry and the process of book promotion.
Today, however, I write fiction—cozy mysteries, to be exact. Well, some people call mine revved up cozies. There are thousands, if not millions, of mystery fans and a whole lot of readers who enjoy books featuring interesting animals. So, when I decided to write fiction, I developed a mystery theme with people, of course, but a main cat character who often steals the show—along with the belongings of others. You see, Ragsdale (aka Rags) a klepto cat. His “people” are Michael and Savannah—both veterinarians. Throughout the course of the stories, Rags collects an array of friends—both human and otherwise. You never know who (or what) you’re going to meet next.
I don’t think you can write a book without at least a smidge of the author in it. And astute people—especially those who know me—will see me showing up here and there in my stories. They’ll notice my passions, thought process, values, personality, and more. But where do the ideas for my stories come from?
Catnapped is the first book in the series. I wrote this story based loosely on a true story that took place in a real community in California. Neighborhood cats were going missing and, in this case, the catnappers were not coyotes or cat-haters. They weren’t scientists seeking experimental animals. These knuckleheads had a more primitive reasons for stealing cats off people’s porches, as will be revealed in this book. Of course, Rags helps solve the mystery.
In Cat-Eye Witness, I wanted to try creating a murder for which the only eye-witness was the cat. How in the world would they get the Rags to reveal the murderer? That was a fun story to write because there are so many avenues leading the reader on intriguing journeys before the actual culprit is “pawed.”
Last year, I decided I’d like to feature a cat colony and try to build a mystery around this theme. Boy oh boy did this story lend itself to a whole lot of interesting turns and twists. The Colony Cat Caper was one super fun story to create.
The Gallery Cat Caper came about when I decided to change the location of the story. I sent Rags and his people to a beach community in Southern California for a couple of weeks. But why? I asked myself—I knew my readers would ask, too. So I brought in an old college chum of Michael’s who has become a well-known artist and developed a mystery around the art gallery.
Savannah has a horse who is great friends with Rags. I thought it would be fun to feature Peaches in one of the books and The Corral Cat Caper was developed.
The latest book in the Klepto Cat Mystery series, Mansion of Meows, like The Gallery Cat Caper, takes place in a different location. This time, a mansion in San Francisco. This certainly opened up a whole new range of possibilities for our main characters and their friends.
Sometimes I wonder how many viable stories I can write featuring Rags, the Klepto Cat without the fountain of ideas running dry. In fact, when I finish a book and send it off to be published, I usually do not have another book in mind. But as soon as I sit down to outline a new story, one is very soon bubbling over and out of me into the computer. Within a few weeks, I have a very good first draft and a month or so later, a completed book. Next step is handing it over to my beta readers, then to my proofreader, and then on to my Kindle formatting person.
Bernadette Kazmarski is the cover designer. Throughout the writing process, she and I spend a lot of time going back and forth on design issues until we are both satisfied. It’s a fun and sometimes frustrating process.
See all of the books on the Klepto Cat Mystery page at amazon.com. http://amzn.to/1kAI8I2 Notice our interesting array of great covers. Order any of the 9 books for your Kindle. Currently, the first five books are also in print, with more scheduled to be published in book form.
Patricia Fry has been writing for publication since 1973 and has 49 books to her credit. Her current passion is writing The Klepto Cat Mysteries.