Friday, January 7, 2011

Author Interview of Kienna Riley

Please welcome my friend and fellow Cobblestone Press Author Kienna Riley to Nocturnal Nights. She's a multipublished author, with more great works on the way. Its my pleasure to have her here today, and the opportunity to get to know her better.

Tell us a little about your writing. What type of stories do you like to write? Any characters you like to write about? Any themes you find especially inspiring?

I’m so glad you asked! I love to write about great friendships and deep emotions. I enjoy story lines such as life after divorce, strong-willed women making their mark on the world, and finding love in unexpected places. I also write tales that salute our nation’s heroes.

What is your favorite part of the writing process? What are your most dreaded tasks? Anything special you do to get through the tough parts?

Oh, the process, it’s a love/hate relationship. I go from fingers flying like mad across the keyboard, full throttle during the draft process, to twirling in my chair staring at the ceiling while revising. I was once na├»ve enough to think that all I needed was a great first draft and a fantastic editor would magically fix things for me and tell me what to change. I have no idea where I got that notion from, but that’s definitely not how it works.

But seriously, I actually enjoy each step of the writing process. Nestling into my overstuffed, cobbled together, ratty office chair and discovering my characters during the first draft is a real delight. Then, while revising I get to ask myself questions like, ‘would he really have done that?’. If not, I chop chop and come up with a revision?

It’s always fun to do a word search and find out how many times I use a certain word or phrase. My latest offender is “she knew full well”. Now I know full well that it must be stricken from my prose!

What’s a typical day look like for you? What’s your writing schedule? When you’re not writing what are you doing?

My days are filled with getting the family off to school/work as well as myself. I work full-time as a Project Manager, and moonlight as a romance/women’s fiction writer. I keep in touch with my literary peeps through facebook, twitter, my blog and texting during breaks and while at my child’s activities. So, I fit it in where I can. I’m the queen of multi-tasking, so this seems to work pretty well.

As for writing, I do so in chunks. I get an idea for a novel/scene and I get up super-early before the rest of the family does and hammer it out in my office. When revising, I print a copy, take my laptop, or read on my e-reader.

What author is your work most like? What author would you like to be more like?

It would be an honor to find an author who is most like my work ;) Not there yet. But, I do have a long list of authors whom I admire. I would love to join the ranks of Susan Mallory, Debbie Macomber, Beth Ciotta to name a few.

If I had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?

Actually, I choose my dad J I come from a blue-collar family. My mom was a stay-at-home mom and my dad, worked as a tire-builder for 38 years. He’s got the rough hands, black rubber beneath his fingernails, and sweaty clothes to prove it. But, he’s got a soft heart and when he listens, an incredible muse. Throughout my 35 years of life, he’s written poems for me and my family. I’ve kept all that I smart enough to, and carry them inside a special pouch inside my purse. I have a letter her wrote home from Viet Nam, while serving at the age of 18, along with other musings I’ve been able to preserve. Apparently, he wrote a novel when he was younger, but sadly, never tapped into his muse to make a go of it. I love it when he writes. He is my mentor, he probably just doesn’t realize it.

What book and I reading now?

Chasing Can Be Murder by June Whyte

I admire June’s fresh and sassy voice. She’s Australian, so her dialect comes through in her writing. I chuckle when I come across sayings like Fair DinkumJ The heroine is a dog trainer turned super-sleuth who finds herself trying to solve the murder of her lover. Her adventures are frisky with loads of fun. It’s a full length novel from Untreed Reads and available at many retailers, like Barnes and Noble. Two winks and shiny lip-gloss from Kienna!

What is the one thing that I most want to do that you haven’t done yet?

Someday, I will be in New York to watch the Thanksgiving Day Parade. I’ll hold my husband’s hand and embrace my son while watching some enormous balloons float above us. I’ve wanted to do this since I was watching the parade on TV. I love marching bands and street performances, so I know it will be magical. I haven’t missed a parade on TV yet, someday I will see it all live.

Please tell us about your current projects and where we can purchase it. Where can we find you on the web?

Up on the Rooftop is available now.

After eight years of separation due to a military enlistment, Caleb Gannon steps off a ship and right back into Sailor Walters life. The two meet at Senorita Lita’s, the Mexican restaurant Sailor inherited from her uncle, where Caleb pitches in and chisels away at Sailors bah humbug attitude.

Sailor grew up as a child of the military. When Sailor and Caleb were younger, they dreamt of a life together, until her father died in valor during a combat mission, altering their future plans indefinitely. After the break-up, Caleb did the one thing Sailor couldn’t forgive, he joined the military.

The Prince at the Corner Bakery will be available from Untreed Reads in February or March.

Lillian Grace Duncan knows she’s in for a long night when a much needed girls-night-out begins with a wedding ring burial. Hers. She’s worn the ring as a chastity belt for her heart for two years since her divorce. Lilly’s best girlfriends host the funeral hoping she will move on with her life.

As owner of Mom by the Minute, a handy-mom agency, mother of twins and a hormonal fifteen year old (what girl isn’t at that age), Lilly balances work and single motherhood like a trapeze artist.

When a new client, Mrs. Teabrugge, an eighty year old widow with only one living relative, falls ill and enlists Lilly’s services to prepare her estate and donate her husband’s treasures to charity, Lilly is forced to work alongside Mrs. T’s nephew, Jagger Davis, a thirty-something southerner who returns to his northern roots to care for his ailing aunt.

Freed of her wedding ring and empty hopes for a marriage that once was, Lilly lets her hair down, enjoys nightlife with her girlfriends, shotguns some margaritas, keeps a few secrets, and falls off the wire for THE PRINCE AT THE CORNER BAKERY

I’m also working on two WIPs. One, a sequel to The Prince at the Corner Bakery, and two, a paranormal novella set in the foothills of the Great Smokey Mountains.

You can also find me on the web at

Blogging at

And you can follow me on twitter @LiteraryBlonde

If you could be any paranormal creature, what would you be?

So, before I answer, let me just say that I am terrified of ghosts and the supernatural! But, I love to watch and read the genre. I found a quiz online that answers the “paranormal creature you will be after you die!” The result? An angel, beautiful, kind and lighthearted. It says that I will love the sunshine and have a unicorn for a pet! I’ll take it ;)

Thanks so much for being with us today Kienna. Its an honor to have you. Kienna has also been kind enough to offer one free copy of her holiday novel Up on the Rooftop to one lucky commentor. Drop her a quick hello and be entered in to win this great new release.


Brenda Hyde said...

Cool interview-- I noticed you write in chunks like I do. I'm sure it's because of having kids. My word, my ten year old gets on a talking streak and can go on and on and that point I can't write until she takes a break. *snicker*

Sarah J. McNeal said...

Lovely interview Kienna. I wish you all the best.

Kienna Riley said...

Hi Brenda, Sarah,
Thank you both so much for stopping by. Yes, chunky writing works for me. Glad to hear there are others out there as well. Best of luck to you both.

whitley gray said...

A nice interview.
Some day I hope to master the 'get up before everyone else to write' thing.
Your books look good. Always enjoy finding a new author to read!

Kienna Riley said...

Thank you Whitley. Getting up early is very difficult, sometimes I make, sometimes not. But, when I do, it's grand!!! Thank you for stopping by. Best wishes in the New Year.

She said...

Interesting interview! I like the pride you show in your dad. Your books sound good.

Anonymous said...

What a great, heart-felt interview. Your comments about your father's writing are inspiring.
Liz Arnold
Message to Love
The Wild Rose Press

June Whyte said...

You've made my day, Kienna. Thank you. Someone from the other side of the world is actually reading my book and enjoying it. It's an amazing feeling. Thanks for the 'two winks and a shiny lip gloss'thumbs up. You're reading 'Chasing Can Be Murder', now I'm off to buy 'Up on the Rooftop':)

June Whyte

Kienna Riley said...

Hi Liz,
Thanks so much for stopping by! Yes, both of my parents mean the world to me, I'll always remember where I came from. I appreciate your kind words.

Love, love, love that you stopped by. I am still enjoying your novel and spreading the news because it shouldn't be missed. Best of luck!

Kienna Riley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.