Thursday, August 31, 2023


I want to thank Kelly Thomas for taking the time for this interview!


I'm a true romance junkie. I love romance! I love reading romance books; I love writing romance books.

I love everything about romance.

I have a sign above our door that reads: 'and they lived happily ever after.'

It's more than just my motto! ;o)

When I was single, my friends would ask me if I was 'looking for Mr. Right?'

I would shake my head and reply, 'No, I'm waiting for Prince Charming. He's just taking his time showing up.'

Well, he at last did show, and you guessed it, we fell deeply in love.

I've now been happily married to the love of my life for quite a few years.

My handsome husband is the inspiration for all of my lead male characters!

We currently live in Jacksonville Beach, Florida, as we love the sand and the sun.

I'm also an avid gardener and love to cook. So, lo-and-behold, many of my main characters do too!

I tend to write very early in the morning or late at night... depending on when the mood strikes me or when I find my inspiration.

My husband has gotten used to me saying, 'just one more line...'

My sister’s joke that I've been writing stories since I was a teenager, and now I've finally been able to write them down!

I am finally pursuing my passion!

When and how did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I would make up romance stories while I was a chubby teenager in high school. 

I wrote a romantic comedy play for a local theatre group and my dad went to the play. The next day he sat me down and told me he was proud of me. He made me promise that I would do something with my writing. He asked me how I came up with the funny jokes and lines in the play. (He was dyslexic and had a hard time reading books). 

I guess you could say that was when I promised to do something with the stories in my head. (Love you, Dad!).

Did you have any influencing writers growing up?

My mother loved reading romance stories. Grace Livingston Hill and Emily Loring. They were definitely NOT steamy. I read her books over and over again and then starting reading other books and authors. Linda Howard is a favorite of mine.

Are any of your characters based on people in real life?

No. All of them have characteristics of people I know. Like all the main male characters have a bit of my husband in each of them.

Where do you draw your book inspirations from?

My mind. I get a basic idea then just go with it. The books write themselves as the characters develop in the story.

Do you have a basic outline when starting a new story or do you let the characters lead the way?

I have tried so hard to use a basic outline and it just doesn’t work for me. Too restrictive. 

I just begin to write, and things or plots develop as the characters develop and get to know each other. The characters lead the way.

When you are picturing the characters in your book, do you have a cheater photo for inspiration?

No. I picture them in my mind always. That is why the cover books currently have only a strong male jaw line. 

I think each woman has a different idea of what handsome is. I don’t want to mess with that.

Many people read as a form of escape and relaxation. What is your favorite way to sit back and relax?

I was always an avid reader. Lately, I don’t have time to read, my writing the books have taken the place of reading a good book.

Now, I spend time in my garden to ground myself and try and get out of the stories that are always in my mind.

Who are your favorite current authors to read?

Linda Howard for contemporary romance. Julie Garwood for those Scottish Lairds.

What are your favorite books by others?

I love paranormal romance about animal shifters, but don’t have a particular favorite author. I just love the idea of ‘fated mates’.

Do the locations in the stories have any meaning to you?

Yes, I live in Jacksonville Beach, FL and all of my stories are based in Jacksonville. 

In this way my characters go to all of my favorite restaurants and talk to their (my) favorite servers. I even mention the pizzeria that I visit often. 

I have Jaxson and Maggie going to the Jacksonville Zoo and got to mention all the renovations the zoo has planned. 

Another couple attend Springing in the Blues, which is an annual Blues Music Festival that my husband and I try to attend every year. It’s really fun to talk about the things that I love about our city.

Do you write in single or multiple POV?

Male and Female POV in each book so far.  As I develop as an author and my plots become better, I would love to share the bad guys thoughts. Shiver!

What do you find to be your best research tool?

Google! With In Too Deep, I had to research how fast someone could freeze to death if locked in a commercial freezer. It wasn’t pretty!

Do you write under a pen name? Also, do you write under more than one name?

Yes, I write under a pen name. When I was in grade school I fell in love with Conan the Barbarian comic books. I was embarrassed to receive them in the mail, so I subscribed for them under the name of Kelly Thomas. 

While other authors struggle to find the perfect pen name. I knew exactly which pen name I would be using.

What genre do you write and why is this your preference?

I read other genres and would like to try my hand at paranormal romance. But I always come back to Contemporary Romance as that’s real life. It’s not fantasy. I like creating a HEA that is real and attainable.

Tell me something about yourself outside of writing. Jobs, accomplishments, family, quirky trait...what led to you being you?

Being a chubby teenager, I would watch all the pretty cheerleaders and popular girls going on dates and having boyfriends. I would daydream a lot about finding that someone special who would love me for being me. Love me as I was with all my faults.

If you are a duo writing team, how do you share the writing process?

It’s just me. I do ask my husband or sister for their opinion of my plots and always ask them to read my books first. Before anyone else.

What advice would you give to an aspiring writer?

When I wrote that first play. I had a friend (who was a boy) read it and he said it wasn’t very good. 

I put the play down for about six months then picked it up one day and read it and thought. He’s wrong. It is funny and its good. 

I then finished the play and when a short play was needed (for free!). I volunteered my play and then it was performed on the stage.

How do you deal and process negative book reviews?

It can be tough to not let it affect my writing or take it personally. I write for the readers, not just myself, so I want to know their thoughts. Good or bad. 

We all like different things. Books, stories, and characters are no acceptation. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. So feedback to me is welcomed and encouraged.

What is the most difficult part of your writing process?

Editing! I suck at grammar. And sometimes when I’m typing so fast - to get the story down as it comes to me, I make so many typos its embarrassing.

What do you need in your writer’s space to keep you focused?

Well, I’m such a daydreamer that I can get lost in my head in a crowded room or when my husband thinks I’m watching a movie with him. Instead I’m making up another story in my head.

What is your naughty indulgence as you are writing?

Coffee and chocolate. They are so decadent and I always want more!

If you could spend a day with another popular author, whom would you choose? And why?

Linda Howard. I have loved her books forever. I would love to sit down with her and find out how she comes up with her plots and mysteries, as they are always so good and vivid.

What is your schedule like when you are writing? Do you have a favorite writing snack or drink?

LOL! That goes back to the naughty indulgencies:  Coffee and chocolate.

Do you listen to music when you write – what kind of music is your favorite?

No. I tend to like to sit quietly and focus on getting everything down right then. That’s why I main write in the early mornings or late at night.

Have pets ever gotten in the way of your writing?

No, our dog passed and I miss her so much we haven’t gotten another one.

What is your kryptonite as a writer? What totally puts you off your game?

If I start writing something that doesn’t fit with the characters. It may start off correctly, but then go down a path I don’t think fits. I’ve had to take out an entire chapter because it didn’t seem to fit the characters.  

Have you ever killed off a character that your readers loved?

No. I’m too new as an author. I like HEA so very few good people will die in my stories.

How do you celebrate after typing THE END?

I get up and do a happy dance and then my husband will say “Looks like you finished your book? Let’s go out and celebrate.” As he will finally have my full attention… for a little while.

I hope you enjoyed this interview!

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