Monday, August 24, 2015

Author Interview: Kalan Chapman Lloyd

I am so excited to feature my interview with the talented author, Kalan Chapman Lloyd. I've shared a couple photos of her book, These Boots Are Made for Butt-Kickin' on social media and thought my fun readers might enjoy getting to know the author behind the book! 
Alright, Ms. Lloyd, tell us a little about yourself and your background:
I'm a Jesus-lover, wife, mother and writer/attorney. In that particular order. I grew up in a small town on a farm and now I live in a big city (and go back to the farm most weekends. ;-)). I believe in the power of a good pair of cowboy boots. They can change your life.

What were you like in school?
Super bossy and very nerdy. I had fun friends by the grace of God and because they took pity on me. They also must have at least respected my skills because they elected me class president twice. I'm still super bossy and very nerdy. Ask my friends.

Which writers inspire you?

Faulkner, Hemingway, Janet Evanovich, Amy Impellizeri, Eudora Welty, Mary Kay Andrews, Emily Giffin, John Grisham. I love lawyers turned writers.

Who inspired the character Lilly Atkins?
When I started, Lilly would have been my alter ego, doing all the things I wasn't brave enough or stupid enough to do. Righting wrongs that otherwise couldn't have been fixed except in a literary sense. She has since become more than her own person. I now waffle some days between high-fiving her and saying "you go girl!" and patting her on the head and saying "bless your heart." I love Lilly like a sister. And wish I had her hair. She has excellent hair.

Any tips on how to get through the dreaded writer’s block?
Read. Always read. Listen to music that you can envision the characters listening to. Watch music videos. Paint, redecorate, dance. Anything "creative" that can spark something. I always feel that creativity begets creativity, so find another outlet that gets the juices going. But at the end of the day, you gotta just sit and write. Even if it's just one good sentence a day. Because another sentence will always come. But you have to commit to it.

Who are your favorite authors?
Oh my, this list could go on and on. So many. Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Judy Blume, Janet Evanovich, Dixie Cash, Mary Higgins Clark, John Grisham, Margaret Mitchell, Harper Lee, Carole Radziwill, Ronda Rich, Cathy Pickens, Adriana Triguliana, Tilly Bagshawe, and on and on.

Tell us about the cover/s and how they came about.
Best question ever. I wanted the covers to be authentic. I remember myself as a young reader, when I was "in" a book, I would always keep coming back to the cover to sort of authenticate a character or a scene. I wanted to make sure the cover really told a story too. I conned all my friends (all who in some way inspired something in the series) into posing as cover models. They all have boots on, because each title has "boots" in it. For These Boots Are Made for Butt-Kickin', we literally tromped through cow crap in very expensive clothes and jewelry to get these shots. So everyone you see on the cover really could be a character in the book! You can read more on my I also wanted it to have a very Southern feel, so in researching fonts, I tried to get close to the font used on the Southern bible, Southern Living. That font is special (and expensive!) but I found that something close really gave it that feel. And I wanted my name to have meaning too, so we found a font that closely matched my handwriting. The covers are a labor of love! And I love that my friends are now famous!

How do you relax?

What? What's that look like? Just kidding. I have a one year old and two year old, and I have found that turning everything off and tuning in to them is very calming. I also get energized by other creative outlets, so even though I'm not "tuning out" flower arranging and cooking really make me relaxed. And reading. I love an hour in the sun with a good book.

What is your favorite book and why?
"My Life In France" by Julia Child. I only discovered this book about five years ago, and have literally read it ten times. I think it's because Julia Child's narrative makes the story just leap off the pages. I didn't really have an idea of Julia Child, except in a peripheral sense, until I read the book. I also love her story and her message, which is basically, get up off your butt and do something. I like to think that she and Lilly have that in common.

What is your favorite quote?
"All's fair in love and cowgirl boots." ;-)

What is your favorite movie and why?
Gone With The Wind. No other explanation needed.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Oh gurrl. You don't even know how bad and good life is going to get. You don't even know. Buckle up. And get over yourself. And that pixie cut right after your wedding? Just no.
Which famous person, living or dead would you like to meet and why?
Julia Child. See above. I've actually had some famous encounters over the years, but I think I'd fangirl over her.

Isn't she SO FUN?! I loved her book and now I just looove her. 
If you'd like me to send the copy I read of her book, comment below and I'll get it in the mail to you! 

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