NK Chats To… Kasi Blake

Hi Kasi, thank you for joining me today. Can you tell me about your novel, The Business Engagement and what inspired it?

I started off writing for Harlequin years ago. Then I moved on to YA Urban Fantasy/Paranormal books. I love writing YA, but it was nice to write about adults for a change. The Business Engagement is Contemporary Romance, a story of two lawyers that can’t stand each other. When the story begins, they are both experiencing huge problems at work. Skylar decides a fake engagement would solve everything. I have always loved Marriage of Convenience stories. That’s what inspired me to do this book.

 

What’s your typical writing day like?

Well, sometimes I get up before dawn to start writing. But when I get up late, I catch up on emails first. I do some marketing and whatever else that needs doing. I usually don’t really start to write until evening, and then I am usually up until midnight working on a book.

 

What are the challenges you found when writing your novel?

It’s always difficult to get to know the characters well enough that you know how they’ll react in any given situation. There are just so many moving parts when it comes to writing and endless challenges.

 

Which fictional character would you like to meet and why?

From this book, it would be Grandma Dot. She’s a pistol. From any of my books, it would be Nick Gallos/Tyler Beck from Bait: Van Helsing Academy because he is a gorgeous rock star with a bigger than life persona. He tours the world killing vampires.

 

From idea to finished book, what’s your writing process like?

After I get the idea, I make a list of possible scenes. I have to check to make sure all the romance elements are there. Then I dive in. When the book is finished, I put it aside for a while and work on something else. After I’ve forgotten how the story goes, I read it as a reader would, but I pay special attention to what’s wrong. I rewrite. Then I send it out to my wonderful beta readers. They let me know all the problems they spy out, and I rewrite again. Eventually, it gets looked at by an editor. The book goes through several rounds of revisions and editing before it’s ready to go.

 

Which authors do you admire?

S.E. Hinton got me started writing back when I was in the 7th grade. Her books inspired me. I also love to read Cassandra Clare, JK Rowling, Stephen King, Sarah Rees Brennan, and Nora Roberts.

 

What’s your favourite word and why?

This is a hard one. I do say the word “awesome” probably a bit too much. When it comes to writing, I don’t know that I have a favorite word.

 

Any other advice for aspiring writers?

Write what you love. If you don’t fall in love with your characters, no one else will.

 

How long does it typically take you to write a book?

There is no typical for me. It took me 10 days to write Vampires Rule, but it took me 2 ½ years to write 4-Ever Hidden. If I buckle down, I can write a romance like The Business Engagement in 2 ½ months.

 

Do you have any particular writing quirks or rituals?

When I am struggling with a book, I enjoy some decadent chocolate. After I finish a book I go to a nice restaurant and celebrate. That’s probably about it.

 

What’s the most surprising thing you’ve discovered since you’ve started writing?

I wasn’t expecting all the difficulties that go with it… like people complaining the books aren’t free. One woman gave me two stars on Amazon because she said the books should be free. I don’t get why some people think that. I put a lot of time and effort (sometimes years) into a book. I work holidays and sometimes go without sleep to finish a book. Writers also have to pay for things like covers, editing, and marketing has become VERY expensive. Then there are pirating sites that steal our books. When I chose to pursue a career in writing, I had no idea all the obstacles I would face.

 

What are you currently working on?

I am finishing up edits on Mistress by Proxy, the second book in the Boss of Seduction series. I am also working on the third book now, The Baby Contract.

 

Which book have you read that you wish you could forget, just so you could discover it again?

I love this question because I’ve thought about this. There are a lot of books I wish I could read again with fresh eyes. Probably the number one for me at this time is The Demon’s Lexicon. Loved the surprise ending.

 

 

About Kasi Blake:

Kasi Blake was born and raised in California before moving to the Midwest as a teenager. 

Her love of books and writing presented themselves early. In third grade, she realised she could make her classmates laugh when she wrote a story about a pet mummy. She now has over fourteen books published. 

She now lives on 60 acres of farmland with cows, ducks, chickens, cats and her dog, Zoe. 

Say hi to Kasi on Twitter.

Her latest novel, The Business Engagement is available to buy now. Click to view on Amazon UK and Amazon US

 

 
My verdict on The Business Engagement: 

From her enemy to her boss. When claustrophobic Anna gets trapped in an elevator with hunky Skylar, the last thing she expects is to exit an engaged woman. But Skylar insists tongues will stop wagging when people realize she is marrying him and not sleeping with her boss.

Skylar’s father (her boss) invites her to spend Thanksgiving weekend with his entire family in Vermont, and he won’t take no for an answer. She has no clue how she will get through four days under the same roof with the sexy, arrogant Skylar. Then she discovers they expect her to share a room with her fiancé. Now what?

With her job on the line, will she also be willing to risk her heart?

Anna is on the verge of getting a junior partnership. However, some of her colleagues believe she’s only getting it because she is sleeping with a partner.

Skylar, the boss’s son, wants his family to stop giving him a hard time about settling down.

When he and Anna get stuck in the lift together, a plan is hatched and they exit the elevator an engaged couple.

Things are soon made more complicated when Anna is invited to spend Thanksgiving with Skylar and his family. Can they make it through the four days without being found out? Also, can Anna do it without falling in love with Skylar?

This was the first novel I have read from Kasi Blake. From page one, this story drew me in. There’s an ease to Kasi’s writing style and before long, I couldn’t put the book down.

There was such a charm around the two main characters, Anna and Skylar and this immediately warmed me to them. There were also moments where I wanted to shake them and tell them to talk to each other. Haha. I also loved the other characters too. Grandma Dot especially.

When they make the pact to pretend to be engaged, you know that this isn’t going to go as well as they’d like it to and how it all unfolds is compelling. There were funny moments and heartbreaking moments where I wanted to reach in and give the characters a hug.

There is one ‘steamy’ moment and even that isn’t too bad. It’s more about these two people who have the potential to fall in love, if only they would let themselves.

Overall, this novel is about love and taking chances. It’s perfect escapism and I loved it. Kasi, you have a new fan.

 

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Laura
I’m Laura. I started Novel Kicks in 2009. I wanted a place to post my writing as well as give other writers like me the opportunity to do the same. There is also a monthly book club, a writing room which features writing prompts, book reviews, competitions, author interviews and guest posts.

I grew up by the sea (my favourite place in the world) and I currently live in Hampshire. I am married to Chris, have a cat named Buddy and I would love to be a writer. I’m trying to write the novel I’ve talked so much about writing if only I could stop pressing delete. I’ve loved writing since creative writing classes in primary school. I have always wanted to see my teacher Miss Sayers again and thank her for the encouragement. When not trying to write the novel or writing snippets of stories on anything I can get my hands on, I love reading, dancing like a loon and singing to myself very badly. My current obsession is Once Upon a Time and I would be happy to live with magic in the enchanted forest surrounded by all those wonderful stories provided that world also included Harry Potter. I love reading chick lit. contemporary fiction and novels with mystery.

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