2016 Author Interviews Blog Tours Laura Kenyon
Blog Tour: Skipping Midnight - Author Interview with Laura Kenyon
A couple of years ago, I had the pleasure of reading Desperately Ever After, a super fun book that caught up with some of my favourite Disney princesses a few years after their happily ever after. I found the idea genius so I'm over to moon to welcome Laura Kenyon today to talk about the third and last installment in this series, Skipping Midnight, out next week:
1) Hi Laura and welcome to Alba in Bookland. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Thanks Alba, and thanks so much for having me! In a few words, I used to be a journalist but reached a point where I just couldn’t ignore all the fictional story ideas flying around my head. Even though there is something to be said for the adrenaline rush of running a newspaper, I knew I’d never be able to achieve what I really wanted (to write books and raise a family) in that sort of environment. So in 2011, I crossed my fingers, got a canine writing companion, became a self-employed freelancer, and started to work on my first novel. A few years later, I published Desperately Ever After (which quickly became a Kindle Store best seller!) and entered the world of motherhood. Now I’m an author mom struggling to balance family life and the “terrible twos” with a self-guided, self-publishing literary career!
2) You're releasing the third book on your Desperately Ever After Series, which follow our beloved princesses many years after their happily ever after. What sparked this idea?
The idea actually came to me decades ago (the result of a Disney-obsessed kid growing up) and was continually fueled by life experience and shows like Desperate Housewives and Sex and the City. I loved the happily-ever-after Disney films, but couldn’t stand how quickly the characters always fell madly in love. The implication was that because they were physically attracted to each other, they were perfectly matched in every other way...and their lives were going to be filled with butterflies and rainbows and infinite happiness forever after.
Real life just doesn’t work that way. So I began to imagine what happened next—not based on the Disney movies, but taken from the original stories as told by the Brothers Grimm, Charles Perrault, Hans Christian, Andersen, and several centuries-old writers you’ve most likely never heard of. I wanted to know something the original tales never told us: how the characters felt. Could Sleeping Beauty really have fallen for a complete stranger who found her in a bed and was presumptuous enough to kiss her? Did Beast truly change when he was cursed or did he go back to his old ways after the honeymoon period wore off? How did Rapunzel fare when she got out of her tower? Did becoming queen give Cinderella the freedom she so desperately needed?
That’s why the Rapunzel in my story is a flaming martini mixed in Samantha Jones’s favorite NYC nightclub. Cinderella is far more Lynette Scavo than Charles Perrault. Belle is a nod to every literary heroine who started out making female readers cringe but steadily grew into an example of feminine strength. I used the original tales to outline their backstories (which have nothing to do with Disney, by the way), but my imagination filled in … and questioned … and rewrote … all the rest.
3) If you could change places with one of the princesses, who would you pick?
If you’re talking Disney: Belle. Even though Beast morphed into someone who resembles Fabio, that library was to die for.
But if you’re talking about the Desperately Ever After series, that’s a bit harder. The Rapunzel in my books is super fun but her heart is walled off. Sleeping Beauty (Dawn) still feels like a stranger in this century. Belle has nonstop excitement, but not necessarily of the positive variety. Snow has an amazing disposition, but some of the physical effects of her mother’s poisoned apple would just be too hard for me to bear. But Cinderella … well, Cinderella has everything—a loving, honorable husband, four energetic kids, and the admiration of an entire realm. Sure, she’s too high-strung to realize that, but I wouldn’t mind taking a spin in her glass slippers.
4) Did you have a crush on one of the princes when you were younger? Has this changed after writing about them?
Well, hands down my biggest DISNEY prince crush is Eric from “The Little Mermaid.” Don’t need to think twice about that! And he actually bears a striking resemblance to my husband, come to think of it ;)
But in keeping true to Hans Christian Andersen’s original Little Mermaid tale, the maritime princess most people know as Ariel is no longer with us when the Desperately Ever After series begins … but she is mentioned. Unfortunately, that prince drove the title character to plunge a dagger into her own heart because he married the wrong woman. So my feelings toward him changed quite a bit!
5) For anyone who is new to your writing, how would you describe it? What do you expect your readers to feel while reading your books?
Great question, and I think it picks up right where your second question left off. Let me start by saying that the Rapunzel in my story is like a flaming martini mixed in Samantha Jones’s favorite NYC nightclub. Cinderella is far more Lynette Scavo than Charles Perrault. Belle is a nod to every literary heroine who started out making female readers cringe but steadily grew into an example of feminine strength. The primary feeling of the Desperately Ever After books is FUN. So often, writing these scenes felt like sitting down with a bottle of wine and a group of my best friends. Sure, some readers will have a hard time accepting anything other than the Disney version of these centuries-old fairy tales, but anyone with an open mind will get past that and come to love these characters in a different light—in many ways a more relatable, more humorous, more human light.
Thank you so much Laura for answering all my bookish questions. I'm already looking forward to reading the final chapter of the Desperately Ever After Series.
Connect with Laura and learn more about her books here:
Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/2elUrbS
Email list: http://bit.ly/1i8K0YW
About the book:
Title: Skipping Midnight (Desperately Ever After #3)
Author: Laura Kenyon
Published: November 16th 2016
For the women of Marestam, “happily ever after" has always come with a grain of salt. Be it infidelity or aging, deferred dreams or lost love, or even the pressures of raising a family, they have always seen each other through life’s trials with laughter, wine, and a brand new take on old-fashioned chivalry. But when rage and treachery take over, everything they hold dear comes under attack.
Suddenly, the monarchies are crumbling, Cinderella is missing, Belle is harboring the secret of all secrets, Rapunzel is facing the one dilemma she spent her whole life trying to avoid, and Dawn could lose everything she’s finally learned to love. In order to save everyone and unmask the wolf in their midst, this iconic group of friends must follow a dogmatic fairy no one trusts, invoke a magic no one understands, and face a past they thought they had buried long ago.
Rapunzel, Belle, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, and the rest of Marestam’s favorite females return in this third and final novel in Laura Kenyon's Desperately Ever After series, which takes a whimsical look at our most beloved fairy tale princesses several years after true love’s kiss.
At heart, it’s a tale of ordinary women coming to terms with how their lives have turned out. They just happen to live in castles.
The final chapter in the Amazon #1 bestselling Desperately Ever After series (women’s fiction fantasy, women’s fiction humor, and paranormal fantasy). Says New York Times bestselling author Stephanie Evanovich: “Laura Kenyon makes happily ever after desperately delicious!"