MEET THE AUTHOR: KAREN DOCTER


It is a true pleasure to introduce you to my friend, Karen Docter.

Headshot Dallas300x300-Karen Docter

Karen writes two different kinds of romance novels. Romantic Suspense:Women hunted by killers…men who’d die to protect them.Contemporary Romance: Romance…with a Kick of Humor!

She’s a member of Romance Writers of America®, Colorado Romance Writers, Kiss of Death Romance Writers, and The Golden Network. She loves writing, reading, music, camping, fishing, and spending time with her family.

  1. Please tell us a little about yourself.

Let me step into my P.A. (promotional assistant) body for a moment so that I don’t sound full of myself.  🙂

Karen/K.L.’s a bestselling award-winning author, a four-time Romance Writers of America® Golden Heart® finalist, and won the coveted Kiss of Death Romance Writers Daphne du Maurier Award Category (Series) Romantic Mystery Unpublished division.

When she’s not saving her characters from death and destruction or helping them to fall in love, she loves camping and fishing with her family, reading, gardening & cooking. If she can do any of those things over a campfire, all the better! FMI: http://www.karendocter.com

Okay, so that still sounds big-headed but it might help to know that I’m sitting here in my jammies and slippers, my hair pulled up in a clip, no makeup and working on my second quart jar of iced coffee. I take my coffee seriously! Just ask anyone who knows me. Flavored coffee and books, that’s me.

I’m sitting at my computer about 12 hours a day, seven days a week. Wish it was all pure writing time but, alas, it’s not. My dream vacation is me and my laptop writing on a lanai in Maui for three months…with room service. Nothing wrong with my dream machine!

  1. What genre do you enjoy writing the most and why?

I write two different kinds of romance novels…Contemporary Romance w/a Karen Docter and Romantic Suspense w/a K.L. Docter.
My contemporaries are cute & spicy romances. I love writing about real men and women with dreams and goals that don’t allow for a relationship just so I can throw them in each other’s path…with a tickle and a smile. These are shorter books (50,000+ words) and pure fun to write, lighthearted. Life is often so tough on us that it’s great to escape into a story that we know will end happily, no matter how many obstacles are thrown in their path. If I can make a reader laugh or sigh out loud, I know I’ve done my job.

My romantic suspense novels as K.L. Docter are also filled with romance, although the dangers the hero and heroine face are intense, usually because a serial killer is bent on ending one or both of their lives before they can fall in love. These stories are longer (90-110,000 words). They’re complicated psychological thrillers and appeal to my sense of justice. Pitting my characters against the antagonist, helping them to win in the end, is as satisfying to me as if I’d brought the villain to justice myself.

Needless to say, one of my favorite TV shows is Criminal Minds. I not only enjoy watching how the BAU (Behavioral Analysis Unit) uncovers how the criminals think, but what they do to catch the killer and find justice for the victims. My stories are not as graphic, but they do tap into our greatest fears.

I use two author names so that my readers know what they’re getting. Those who enjoy romantic comedy may not particularly enjoy my romantic suspense and vice versa, although I do have many readers who cross both boundaries. I do try to work on only one genre at a time so I keep true to that genre’s expectations. But, having two personas allows me to skip to something else if I’m struggling with a story. Solutions to a problem usually percolates to the top when I’m not focusing on it, so it’s a win-win situation for me.

  1. Tell us about your latest book.

My latest K.L. Docter release is the first standalone novel in my romantic suspense, Thorne’s Thorns series about six foster brothers. Police officer Ross Thorne and his wife, Evelyn, only had one natural born son. But they also fostered five boys. All six boys got in enough trouble at one time or another, they became known as Thorne’s Thorns. The brothers are now grown. Each is strong, masculine, and making his own mark on the world. I’m throwing a little…okay, a lot…of danger their way and introducing each to the one woman they are destined to love and protect. Patrick Thorne, Ross and Evelyn’s natural born son, launches the series in Killing Secrets.

Blurb:

Some secrets are better left dead…

Rachel James’ ex-husband is released from prison determined to reclaim her and her little girl — the child is his key to controlling the James fortune. Frightened, Rachel flees to Denver with the child who hasn’t uttered a word since her daddy went to prison.

Contractor Patrick Thorne wants nothing to do with another of his parents’ charity cases. He failed his own wife so abysmally she took her own life as well as his unborn son’s. After two years, it’s time to concentrate on the bid he’s won and the saboteur trying to destroy his construction firm.

There is no room for trust in either of their hearts. But trust is all that will untangle the secrets that dominate their lives, free a little girl of her silent prison, and save them all from a serial killer who stands too close.

  1. What do you have coming out in the future?

 

I have a full length contemporary romance, Satin Pleasures, and a novelette (17,000 words), Catch That Santa, out now.

I’m about to introduce readers—you’re the first 🙂 to hear—to my new matchmaker series which centers around police officers and a handful of Italian mamas on a mission to ensure no single cop goes unwed. If these officers think police work is challenging, wait until the Merry Lane Matchmakers get them in their sights!

The first book is titled Cop On Her Doorstep and will release in the next month. The subsequent three stories are in various stages of planning, but I hope to release them all by December. There are at least another dozen titles in this series, so these matchmaking mamas are going to be busy!

Join my Alerts Only Newsletter mailing list—NO SPAM, new releases/alerts for Karen/K.L. Docter only—so you don’t miss a thing! It’s the button below my blog subscription at http://www.karendocter.com. Of course, you can subscribe to my blog, too. I wouldn’t mind!

  1. From where do you draw your inspiration?

 

Everywhere. I may seem quiet when you put me in a room full of people but I’m watching everything, ferreting away little tidbits of characterization, mannerisms, speech patterns, etc. Yeah, I’m a real party animal! 🙂 I get ideas from articles, conversations, television, radio, songs, etc. Once I get the kernel of an idea, it’s just a matter of time before I flesh out the rest of a story.

My contemporary romance, Satin Pleasures, was inspired by a real life event. Our family had moved to San Francisco right after the devastating earthquake in 1989 that collapsed bridges. One day, I had to cross the Bay to get to a writing meeting. There was a major accident that closed the bridge, and I was stuck in the middle with a fear of earthquakes and heights preying on my mind. I got through the next two  hours watching the people around me, and what I saw is almost exactly what I describe in the first scene between the Dan and Tess. Of course, the h/h weren’t anywhere but in my head. But they were fully formed, their stories launched by the time I drove of that bridge.

I draw inspiration from so many places that I currently have over 70 contemporary and suspense books waiting in my TBW (to be written) file, with more added all the time.

  1. Do you ever base your characters on real people in your life?

Since I pull characters and stories from all over, technically that answer is yes…and no. I do make it a point not to people my stories with anyone who would recognize themselves. We all share traits, but mix those traits up? The combinations are endless. None of my serial killers are real people in my life—thank goodness—but they, too, can have traits I’ve observed and twisted into something…more.

  1. What kind of books do you like to read?

I read across the genres. Contemporary and suspense, of course, because that’s what I write. This can sometimes be a challenge when I find myself analyzing the story elements. For pure pleasure I also read Historical, Regency, Paranormal, adventures, spy novels, mysteries, SciFi, Time Travels, Futuristic, and fantasy. Ah, to have more time to read!

  1. How have your real life experiences influenced your writing?

Who we are as a person today is influenced by everything we’ve experienced up to that point. One of the reasons why each writer is different and has their own style is that no two people will experience the same thing in the same way, so their approach to their writing will reflect those differences.

When I was ten years old, I decided I wanted to be a policeman after an incident in my neighborhood that made me very aware of the injustices in the world. Life experiences and my personality didn’t lead me down that path, but now I dispense justice in my romantic suspense novels.

  1. How did you come up with the title of your book?

I love coming up with titles! My title grounds the story. If I don’t know what it is, I simply can’t write the book. It’s that simple. Killing Secrets is about secrets. Secrets that are kept. Secrets that are revealed. Secrets that can kill. Catch That Santa is about a man and a woman chasing after their grandparents, one of which is dressed like Santa, who have run off to Las Vegas to get married. Satin Pleasures is a bit of an anomaly. The hero of that story was opening a new lingerie store called Satin Pleasures. I set that story aside for a while and, when I pulled it out to publish it, I discovered that there was actually a new online lingerie company with the same name. They’d trademarked it in the meantime. I had to change the name for Dan’s store in the book, but I was able to use the title because it was referring to the heroine’s love of satin. Cop On Her Doorstep is about a policeman showing up on the heroine’s doorstep where he’s not welcome.

Those 70 plus books I mentioned in my TBW folder? They’re all titles, and I know exactly what kind of man, woman, or story it’s going to be.

  1. Is your book a stand alone or a series?

All of my books are stand alone books, even if they’re part of a series. I want my readers to find a happy ending and a resolution at the end of each book. It frustrates me to get to an end of a book and discover I have to read another book to get my resolution, so my readers will never get that from me. My Thorne’s Thorns series is tied together through six foster brothers raised by Ross and Evelyn Thorne. Each one will have their own story within that series. Readers can start with the first book or the fifth (when I get them all released). Same with my new Merry Lane Matchmakers series. The tie-in between these books is the group of women who will “encourage” matches for a bunch of police officers, one at a time.

  1. What is the hardest part of the writing process for you?

Editing. Not because I can’t edit. I was an editor in another life so I’m good at it. Too good, maybe. The hardest part of writing for me is to keep the Type-A editor inside me from bogging me down as I write. In other words, my internal editor has twelve inch talons embedded in my shoulder, and she just won’t shut up and let me write. She’s sitting here right now cleaning up this interview as I answer these questions, the cheeky thing!

I used to be a hardcore pantser (someone who writes by the seat of her pants). The more I learned about my craft, the bossier my editor became. I write a lot slower now because I’m reworking the same scene over and over until I feel like I can move on.

  1. What is the easiest part of the writing process for you?

Conflict. I make my characters work for their HEA (Happily Ever After) in all of my books and, in the case of my suspense, I can be especially mean to my characters. Serial killers are not nice guys, you know! I love getting into the heads of all of my characters and make them as believable as possible.

  1. What is your preferred writing environment?

I finally finished my office the way I like it. It’s in the walk-out basement so it has windows and southern exposure. I’ve painted it a beautiful Emperor’s Gold and surrounded myself with my collection of dragons and Asian paintings and screens. I smile every time I walk into the room. If it’s cloudy outside, I turn on my tract lighting and it feels like I’m sitting in sunshine.

When the weather’s nice, I sit in the garden patio with my laptop, an easy thing to do now that I’ve got a docking station and am down to one computer. Of course, I have three monitors that are always turned on so I guess I didn’t trim down on my equipment. Which means I do my best writing outside…fewer distractions. 🙂

Thanks for taking the time to fill out the questions!

Thank you for having me on your blog today, Jacquie. I had fun answering your questions, and it’s always great to meet new readers. Happy Reading!

Killing Secrets

BLURB:

Killing_secrets(1)SMALLER(2)

Some secrets are better left dead.

Rachel James’ ex-husband is released from prison determined to reclaim her and her little girl — the child is his key to controlling the James fortune. Frightened, Rachel flees to Denver with the child who hasn’t uttered a word since her daddy went to prison.

Contractor Patrick Thorne wants nothing to do with another of his parents’ charity cases. He failed his own wife so abysmally she took her own life as well as his unborn son’s. After two years, it’s time to concentrate on the bid he’s won and the saboteur trying to destroy his construction firm.

There is no room for trust in either of their hearts. But trust is all that will untangle the secrets that dominate their lives, free a little girl of her silent prison, and save them all from a serial killer who stands too close.

(A Thorne’s Thorns Novel)

Satin Pleasures

BLURB:

satin_pleasures300x400

Bustiers, Birds, and the Blues…

Dan McDonald walked away from the American dream, a life full of money, glamorous women and power. Now nothing can lure him back into the corporate death trap. Except….

Dan’s scheming aunt snares him into opening a lingerie shop in Tess Emory’s shopping mall. Tess is everything Dan has vowed to avoid…sexy, smart, and obsessed with work.

Tess is determined to make her life a success and right the wrongs of her past, no matter the cost.

They’re both going to discover that true love breaks all their rules.

Links to Karen’s website, blog, books, etc.

Website: www.karendocter.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/karen.docter

Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5754902.Karen_Docter

Twitter: @KarenDocter

Book Bench for Romance Lovers FB Group: goo.gl/UizOxd

Satin Pleasures by Karen Docter:
goo.gl/KWPkVV

Killing Secrets (A Thorne’s Thorns Novel):
goo.gl/b241cp

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