Thursday, February 11, 2016

Celebrate Love Blog Series, with K.D. Harp’s WHAT A TANGLED WED

Well now that my unit will be outdoors over the next 4 days, temperatures have decided to drop to -40. Did I mention that they sleep out in the snow? The first night is spent in a tent, but the others in either a quinsy or some form of individual snow shelter. Yeah, no comment.

Sooo to keep warm let's turn our attention to our next author, K.D. Harp, and her book, What a Tangled Wed. Hmm, I thought that was a typo, at first, lol.
Oh, although this is a fun but short interview, we do have a character interview to share too. And since we're going to try and avoid going out in the cold, settle down to read while I fix some hot cocoa.

Do you write full time?
No. I write OVERtime. (Unfortunately, there’s no bonus pay involved.) Now does that fall into the 'midnight to three in the morning' category?

How much of your life is set aside for writing?
Too much. If the non-writing authorly chores (testing promotional sites, edits, reedits, proofing, spellchecking, yelling at my stubborn hard-of-hearing voice to text software, checking in at GoodReads, cover design, editing some more, remembering to tweet, buying emergency voodoo dolls in case of bad review, etc.,) weren’t enough, I write a lot of romantic suspense, so the basically the entire universe is research. I can’t pin a barbecue recipe without thinking about putting it in a story, or kiss my husband without trying to remember How It’s Done, you know, for a scene. (Fortunately he doesn’t get stage fright often.) Sounds like he has his hands full!

Where does the inspiration for your main character and story come from?
While nowhere near as wealthy as Pierce, my older brother was a brilliant engineer, successful enough with his crowd and drew the romantic attentions of more women than he counted upon. What A Tangled Wed was dedicated on the occasion of his marriage to the lovely Susan, the one woman who could give as good as she got, and so much more! As fate would have it an editor showed interest in another project and ‘Wed was shelved. I found the lost draft mere weeks after he died suddenly of a brain tumor. Naturally, my whole schedule was scrapped to complete it. I’d always thought of romantic comedy as being pretty lightweight on the Meaningful Writing Scale, but crafting this book helped me work through my own grief many, many times. If it can distract someone else from what they’re going through, so much the better! HUGS

How much research went into your story?
Way, way more than expected! I usually write romantic suspense, a world where authors chat about gunshot residue, poisons and body decomposition farms over lunch. Frankly, I figured romantic comedy to be a cakewalk research-wise, but ended up setting the schedule back to accommodate investigating all the ‘getting it right’ details. You’ll find pins of floral arrangements, Georgia resorts, French train tickets, luxury entertainment in Dubai, Nepalese disaster photos, the world’s most expensive and exotic aphrodisiac, a to-die-for ice cream bombe recipe, and a bunch of other stuff researched for What A Tangled Wed here: (https://www.pinterest.com/kdharpbooks/) Ooh, now that sounds like fun stuff to sift through, especially since you've gathered it all into one place for us!

What is the message behind the story?
All of my work has an underlying theme of supporting women in demanding more for themselves from their man than Western entertainment generally endorses these days. Beyonce’s on the right track with “put a ring on it”. There’s empowerment! Expect to be respected. There’s a huge difference between lust and love, and too many times women settle for being in a relationship, any relationship or a nice physical buzz and sacrifice (or don’t even acknowledge) their other needs. Set the standard to your scale. Be willing to walk out if you’re not respected, and don’t settle for giving more than you’re getting in return. That’s a foundation for a love that can last your lifetime and you deserve it!
(My publicist is afraid I’m about to jump up on your desk and start yelling at passersby. …Don’t blame her, really. I CAN get a bit het up. …I’m supposed to curtsey politely now before you call security.) Oh, no worries, I already cleared off my desk-top for you and was wondering when you were going to take this on the road.

Thanks so much for letting me share some time with you and your readers, Debbie! You are most welcome.


Tagline “Books worth reading …again.”

Blurb
Evening gowns and tuxedos embellish a hall set for romance, so their eyes should’ve met across a crowded room …but the stuffed partridge glued to her shoulder blocked his view.
Pierce Grayson, Engineering Genius, a man who repairs disaster zones as easily as most make a cup of coffee, just destroyed his only shot at True Love.
A string of hopeful Mrs. Graysons (who take the term "chained to my desk" TOO literally), make the billionaire appreciate the intelligent selflessness of gifted muralist Allison Stanford, (a woman so loyal, she humbles herself in the World's Most Ridiculous Maid Of Honor Outfit for an impish little sis with an axe to grind).
True Love is off to a good start but Pierce gambles their relationship to win a bet and messes up Big Time. Luckily, Allison’s Mema takes a shine to the lovelorn engineer and decides he needs educating on women. Suddenly the man who helps others for a living needs aid! Mema puppet masters the two young'uns into Happily Ever After before they know what hit them.
(With only minor damage).

Snuggle up and escape the craziness of modern life as you join Pierce and Allison while they navigate the insanity of theirs in this smart, clean, read suitable for all audiences from tweens to twilight years who can tolerate a smooch or two and understand Mema Knows Best.

 Excerpt:
As if wriggling her way over a high window ledge weren’t enough, a familiar and determined moist muzzle now hung over Allison’s backside as the horse sniffed and whinnied at the storm. Its warm neck and chest spooned her, pressing Allison’s back and head against the interior wall while the rest of her dangled helpless; upside-down and growing damper by the second. Grunting louder, she squirmed inside a bit more (somehow, without popping the pushy creature in the nose with her flailing feet).
Nosey unabashedly nuzzled Allison’s hips and behind, then nipped her fanny, bruising flesh.
Allison yelped before cringing at the volume of her outburst, sure to catch the attention of anyone nearby. (Not that she was in any position to see them at present.) Her leg jerked in response, sending a loafer flying into the cosmos. A sudden deep, aching, pain in her gluteus maximus added to the fun.
At least it can’t get any worse.
She writhed forward against the window sill and the water bottle stashed into her front pocket ruptured and spewed. She felt the sodden cling of her shirt, and dropped toward the brick floor, chin first. She managed to slow her descent with a quick grab at the horse’s legs. The rest of her slunk safely inside, (and temporarily out of snacking range of the horse), but still wedged vertically between the creature and the wall.
Blood rushed to Allison’s head, heralded by a constant pounding with each beat of her heart.
At least no one’s around to witness this fiasco.
‘Whoa’ means stop, but how do you tell a horse to go in reverse?
“Nice horsey. Back up, please.” More than a bit breathless, Allison’s hopeful instruction fell on deaf ears.
Instead, Nosey pressed harder against her and leaned toward the shrubbery for fresh greens.
Essentially imprisoned hanging upside down, Allison braced her hands against the floor to support some of her weight and watched the water dripping from her hair start to pool on the brick. Somewhere high overhead, graceful gothic arches, the color of aged bourbon, spanned the building and supported a stately slate roof. Twin rows of hardwood stalls stood like silent sentries down its length, enlivened by the smell of fresh hay and the soft nickers of their well-bred residents. At the moment, if she cocked her eyes up high enough, Allison got an up close and personal view of the underside of one immaculately-groomed mare. She relaxed her gaze, noting the high polish of reflected light on the horse’s hooves as she tried to think.
Wait a second. It’s raining cats and dogs. That’s not sunlight shining on her hooves. It’s--.
A pair of boots walked into her line of sight. A man spoke to the horse in French before familiar dark hair dangled from his head as he turned upside-down to investigate the stable intruder. His grin hid behind the line of the mare’s underbelly, but merry eyes betrayed the amusement beneath his sexy tone. “Bonjour, mademoiselle.”



Reviews
“Absolutely loved it! The story line kept me reading until the end!”
 “It's rare that I actually laugh out loud mid-read. Kudos to K.D for accomplishing that! (My seal-like bark of laughter was quite startling).”
 “A little bit of everything all rolled into a great story!”
“…a smashing good job”



Author Bio
Native Atlantan K.D. Harp enjoys world travel, volunteering, and educating non-Southern folk about the appropriate use of the phrase "Bless his heart," the original meaning of which has NOTHING to do with sarcastically calling someone a sucker or dimwit, and is properly used to imply an empathetic 'there but for the Grace of God' sentiment.
Bored and dismayed by the trend in fiction to equate genuine love with the pale imitation of lust without personal investment, K.D. portrays people of character engaged with a world that lacks it. When they do it without losing the physical passion and sense of humor God would give to them, it's a total win.
The Georgia State University B.B.A grad volunteers with her local police department, has no patience for dumb protagonists, and true to form, most of her female leads will MacGyver their way out of a situation whether it's jury-rigging a flamethrower with kitchen supplies or finding new uses for a fire extinguisher to escape an inferno. K.D.'s been recognized by such international competitions/organizations as an American Christian Fiction Writers’ GENESIS semi-finalist, placed 4th in the Hook. Line & Sinker! Awards, and listed on the “Most Popular Authors” list on Goodreads!)

Sample, softcover and kindle book purchase links can be found at:

 CHARACTER INTERVIEW
We’re here with Annie Garner, septuagenarian, day trader, cross-stitch fanatic and more recently, matchmaker extraordinaire to score a never printed before behind-the-scenes look at What A Tangled Wed. Tell us Annie,-.
All the smart folk call me ‘Mema’, Sugar.
OK…. Mema, what made you decide Pierce was a good match for your granddaughter Allison; his looks, his intellect, his philanthropic endeavors, or all that cold, hard cash?
Definitely his physique.
His lean body? Chiseled jaw? Those searing dark eyes?
No, he’s tall enough to reach the top cabinet and I’ve had a stash of Snickers going stale up there ever since the stepstool busted.
I see. And er, did he retrieve them for you?
Of course he did! The boy might hobnob with ambassadors but he’s been raised right. …Even bought me a step stool afterward, which was mighty thoughtful and liked to kill the whole deal with Allison, but he grows on you.
(winks) Like a fungus?
Careful young’un! The boy’s my grandson-in-law now. My kind can train fire ants to nest in yer nose, you know.
My apologies. Did you have any advice for Pierce or Allison as they travelled on their journey together?
What? Like tipping your porter or saving some paper napkins in case yer stuck in one of those pay bathrooms stocked with little wax paper squares?
No, ah, I meant their romantic journey.
Well sure! What’s a Mema for?
What did you have to say?
As I understand it, Miz Brown don’t intend to let us take over her whole website here. In a nutshell, if you’re lookin’ for True Love, never underestimate the power of keeping yer knees together.
Is that some sort of isometric exercise?
I can tell you need some one-on-one tutoring, Sugar. Let’s put that wrinkly shirt back in the tumble dry, shall we? In the old days, they’d say something like “Why buy the cow if the milk’s free?”
Free milk? Is the farmer trying to start a new dairy?
We’re talkin’ about genuine, last-your-lifetime l-o-v-e here! What does startin’ a dairy have to do with anything?
I’m still trying to figure out the isometrics.
(sighs) If they ever needed prime evidence against survival of the fittest, you’re it, Sugar.
Prime evidence! Thanks, Mema!
Please, call me Annie.

(Find an assortment of Pin, Tweet, and Share friendly quote graphics from Mema on the What A Tangled Wed page at http://www.kdharp.com)

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