Debra says: Hi Kav! Thank you for visiting the Inkwell! I’m pleased to host you and show my appreciation for the important part that reviewers play in an author’s life! We’re nothing without you.
Kav replies... Thanks for asking me to stop by…and making me think really hard in order to answer your questions.
D: Ha ha! I was successful, then! So- how long have you been reviewing and how did blogging come about? For example,how did you decide on the theme for your blog or the process you'd use?
K: I have been reviewing Christian Fiction for seven years now and it started by accident. I began my blog as a way to keep track of the books I read – kind of an online reading diary with very sparse reviews meant just for me. I liked the fact that I could tag books by author, genre and subject (that’s the librarian in me.) I never thought it would get any notice! But then I got a few followers and a comment or two and it slowly grew from there.
I fleshed out my reviews and started posting them on Goodreads, CBD, Amazon and Chapters as well. It’s still a very modest blog. No bells and whistles. It’s not pretty. (I’m a technology dunce.) My focus has always been on reading and reviewing…and in the last several years, giveaways too. So I review a different book a day from Monday to Saturday and each book includes a giveaway opportunity. Sunday I announce the winners and post what I’ll be reviewing and giving away in the coming week.
Here's the Link! http://bestreads-kav.blogspot.ca/
D: I bow to your abilities! Wow. I find reviewing difficult. It's like trying to come up with a short blurb to explain a 60k story!
Besides eye-strain, what’s the best part of being a reviewer?
K: Reading Christian Fiction!!!! (Well, that’s a given, I guess.) Love connecting with fellow readers, chatting about books, sharing what new release we’re looking forward to next. And supporting authors in a tough industry. Love it when someone tells me they tried a book after reading a review that they might not have picked up otherwise.
D: Word of mouth is still the best! What’s the most difficult part of the ‘the job’?
K: So many books, so little time!!!!!!!
D: What was the last book you read that you couldn’t put down?
K: That happens to me a lot because I’m a book addict – so I’m going to say With You Always by Jody Hedlund which is sitting on my desk waiting for a review. Historical details are so fascinating…and appalling…and I cared about the characters and didn’t want to leave them hanging which meant I had to keep reading.
D: What do you do when you aren’t writing reviews and making authors happy?
K: So, funny thing is I don’t do a whole lot. I have been on disability from my job as a school librarian (and my part-time job as a college reference librarian) for several years now. I have a chronic pain condition which makes it really hard to do a lot of things. I can’t even go to the movies! Even visiting with friends in a restaurant can be debilitating. So I read a lot. And books have been my saving grace – not only for the stories I get to live through vicariously but for the online connections I make with authors and readers.
But – in my before pain life – I loved to garden for hours on end, quilt – mostly memory quilts for friends – and I was crazy into furniture upcycling. And crazy painting cast off chairs. (Think Mary Englebreit.) And I’ve always had high energy dogs that I liked to walk and train.
I’m still enamoured with all of that, but unable to do to most of it. Right now I’m working towards getting mobile enough to adopt a senior dog. And I’m very slowly (very, very, very slowly) putting together a memory quilt for my daughter out of her grampa’s old plaid shirts. I also garden…really pared down though – just ten or fifteen minute stints a couple of times a day.
D: Besides sharing ancestral names (we'll keep that a small mystery) I think it's clear we are related. Quilting, Upcycling, Gardening. This is cool! I did used to work in the library in middle school, but didn't make it a career! But you, my dear, are in a league above with all that reading. Thank God for books, right?
What would you like to share about yourself that few people know?
K: Hmmmm……it’s not a secret that I love animals but lots of folks don’t know that I raised 2 orphan raccoons in my downtown city apartment! And my parents never let me have pets when I was a kid so when I moved out on my own I kind of went overboard and had a budgie, two dogs, one dwarf rabbit, a rat, and a couple of mice all at the same time!
|This is Kav's new form of transport. DO YOU LIKE THE SHOES?|
D: I think raccoons would be fun, but busy! I'm also wondering how you got any sleep. With a crew like that, "someone" must have been making noises in the night! Aren't raccoons chatty?
What is your favorite fictional setting? Place and time? Genre’? What would you like to see less of?
K: Oh, this is hard. I’m an eclectic reader. I love historical, contemporary, Amish, Suspense even some speculative. It definitely has to be Christian Fiction and I adore romance so I prefer that to be a focal point. I have a certain fondness for Regency though. I get a tad shy of giddy when I get one of those. Oh and I love the mix of suspense and historical or Amish and suspense.
One era I’m not super thrilled over is…gasp…the Civil War era. Might be because I’m Canadian. Might be because I’m…double gasp…not a Scarlett O”Hara fan…I dunno…it’s just not the first time period I would choose to read.
D: GASP IS RIGHT! But you are forgiven. Gone With the Wind probably started my big interest in historical fiction and history, but it's not everyone's cup of tea! We'll have to talk about the War of 1812. Later.
What’s your favorite movie to watch if you had a rainy afternoon alone?
K: I have been getting a lot of DVDs from the library and I tend to watch BBC television series over movies but one BBC movie I adored was Wives and Daughters so I definitely want to watch that again, though technically, I think it’s a mini-series made for TV. Does that count?
|Deb says...My favorite Scientist is missing from this cover!|
If you could wiggle your nose and be in your dream career, what would it be?
K: Author!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (and dog whisperer would be a close second.)
D: Author, huh? Seriously, after reading your reviews, I'm not at all surprised. Your love affair with words shows!
What piece of advice would you offer authors who are just starting out?
K: Make sure your website or blog (or both) is up to date. It amazes me the number of times I discover a new-to-me-author and I rush to their website to find out if they have other books out or when the next book is coming out and….nada. Nothing. Zilch. So frustrating.
D: Oh crud. I'm guilty of that. My website was a dud. It's actually active now, but totally self-managed and therefore fighting for priority.
Kav...ahem...ignored my question about food and dessert so I'm going to just pop this up here. Blueberry Torte. Cause I love the colors. And I love food. She doesn't actually have time to eat, because it 'eats' into her reading time!
Thank you, Kav, for hanging out and chatting and for all you do to promote Christian Fiction and authors and reading and...wildlife! It's been fun getting to know more about you, and I hope we can send more readers over to your blog.
Tea will be served with the torte and there'll be a viewing of Wives and Daughters tonight!
As always, if anyone is thinking of becoming a reviewer, we at the Inkwell would be happy to give you a start! wink wink. Have a great week, everyone! Please leave a comment for Kav. We're here to chat and talk fiction and British costume dramas and raccoon-keeping!
Hello Kav (Waving to a fellow Canadian), it's so nice to share time with you here. Wonderful interview, ladies.ReplyDelete
"Eating into her reading time"... good one, Deb. yuk yuk
Hi Anita!!!! And just to clear things up -- I can totally multi-task. I can definitely eat and read at the same time. I have a handy-dandy book holder that makes it so easy and keeps food off the book!!! (because I was a librarian and that's important!)Delete
Yes, I 'met' Kav during our release days of Austen in Austin, after seeing her name 'around cyberspace' (in a good way).ReplyDelete
I had this idea she'd do a fun interview and I'm in awe of her reading and reviewing skills!
Thanks, Debra. I love talking books and since no one around me reads Christian Fiction I have to get my chatting in by reviewing. LOLDelete
And I totally missed that food question. If I'd seen it I would have answered it for sure. Though maybe it's better that I didn't because that would take up a whole blog post. I'll answer it here and try to be concise.
Strawberry Shortcake -- made with Angel Food Cake and lots of cream. I say that because it's June and local strawberries are finally here! But any other time of year I'd say chocolate anything.
Today is my daughter's birthday, so you can guess what we traditionally have for the occasion. Luckily, she loves it, too! But, like other families, we wont' actually be celebrating it until we are all together in a couple of weeks. I usually make biscuits or we use angel food cake! But real whipped cream for sure!Delete
Chocolate is full of those all important anti-oxidents, so you do need to consider the health benefits. wink wink
Waving at Anita, too.ReplyDelete
Thank you SO much for the lovely mention of With You Always! I'm thrilled to know that you couldn't put it down, Kav! Thanks for all the work you do to promote Christian fiction! :-)ReplyDelete
Thanks for popping in, Jody! I love asking reviewers this very tough question!Delete
Thanks, Jody. And thanks for writing such awesome not-to-be-put-down stories!!!!Delete
I've also got the urge to watch Wives and Daughters again. I went through a spurt of watching every British costume drama I could find and found it. I will admit publicly that I did not enjoy "He Knew He Was Right". Kav, have you seen that one? I think it was the direct conversations with the camera.ReplyDelete
I saw trailers for it but haven't watched it. I'm totally addicted to BBC dramas now and I love that my library has the DVDs. It's hard for me to sit for any length of time so I got one of this little DVD players that you get for kids when you travel and I watch my DVDs on that so I can get up and move around and switch positions while keeping up with the show.Delete
I have Larkrise to Candleford 2 & 3 waiting for me now. Love catching glimpses of the same actors and actresses from other shows -- including Downton Abbey.
I do too. I tell myself they have a smaller "pool" of actors in the UK, but I enjoy the fact that I can recognize many of them from other shows and then I check out IMBD to see their other credits.Delete
Thanks for inviting me to chat with y'all today!ReplyDelete
Love the graphics -- especially me with shoes and an energy saving mode of transportation. I had dreams of a dogcart pulled by a Newfoundland...serious dreams...once upon a time, but air transport is so much more practical with all the road construction going on in my city. :-)
Yes, and training a giant goose is right up your alley!Delete
Oh...and the War of 1812...you realize as a Canadian I'm on the opposite side of that one, right? LOL But yes, I do love that time period.ReplyDelete
I go to Canada for War of 1812 events and they let me in, so I appreciate that. As it worked out so well for Canadian patriotism, it seems 'all is forgiven'. If I ever have my war of 1812 fiction published, it will likely sell better across the big lake ("up north")Delete
Kav, so wonderful to read about your interests (besides books, that is!) and to learn how you got started into book reviewing. I can't even begin to tell you how much I love your reviews and even when I don't enter a comment I always read them. You have broke my pocketbook more than once with books that I would not even have considered reading (or even knew about) til I read your delicious reviews! lol FYI your blog is very pretty! What could look more enticing than heaps of beautiful book covers? :) You are appreciated very much by me and so many other voracious readers and authors alike.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Diana. Gosh, she's a marvel, that Kav! Having that many reviews on her blog is incredible.Delete
She is. I struggle just reading and reviewing one book per week, let alone six! I know she denies it, but she has to read while she sleeps. LolDelete
Well, shucks, I'm blushing. Thanks for all your kind words, Diana. I've loved getting to know you through my blog and glad I can entice you to empty that pocketbook for a good literary cause. :-)Delete
A worthy cause indeed. :)Delete
Kav! You must be famous, because I run into you all over the internet!ReplyDelete
Seriously though, you are the best reviewer! I'm looking forward to seeing your review of "With You Always." It's at the top of my TBR pile!
Hi Jan! Thanks for stopping in. I get a kick out of seeing all the books that com in Kav's mail delivery when she shows them on her FB page!Delete
Hey Jan!!!! Give Thatcher and Wynter an ear scratch from me. Oh, you must get started on With You Always -- I predict you will love it too.Delete
KAV, what a treat to see you here on Inkwell! It has been a pleasure getting to know you through your blog and Facebook.ReplyDelete
Funny running into you here, Caryl. The blogosphere is a small world, isn't it? Hugs right back at you. Happy reading!Delete
Small world for sure. Thanks for stopping in Caryl!Delete
So wonderful to read more about the delightful Kav! I love BBC shows too and grew up watching the Canadian channel (I am a Yooper by birth)! How can we help make your author dream come true?ReplyDelete
Lovely to see you here, Carrie, and wow, it's hard to keep up with all of your awards and releases! We've enjoyed hosting reviewers. It's a skill I so admire (reviewing, not hosting! hosting I can do...)Delete
Hi Carrie! I'm excited to get started in on your latest book. I've only read the first one in the series -- so I have three to catch up on, I think. They are releasing faster than I realized!Delete
As to my author dream -- I think that's on me. Had a major detour with my health, but I'm working my way back. Slow and steady wins the race and all that. :-)
How fun to find you here, Kav! And to learn more about you!ReplyDelete
And someday, Kav, we will see your name on the front cover of a book. You are very gifted with words, and often leave me in awe. :)
so true, Brenda! She's a gifted writer who 'author's great reviews.Delete
Thanks for visiting! It's nice to see you!
Thanks Brenda and Debra. Happy reading and writing to you both.Delete
Kav! You are a reviewer superstar! I don't get over to your blog nearly as much as I used to but it is always a pleasure when I do! Well done, bookish friend!ReplyDelete
Debra, I am loving your series on book bloggers! It is so much fun to learn more about all my favorite book bloggers!
Beth, I'm hoping to do two a month until I run out of questions or bloggers! It's a relief to talk to interesting people instead of trying to make myself sound interesting. (the bane of bloggers...) Thanks for stopping in and for leading us off in this series!ReplyDelete
What fun! And pet raccoons? Goodness, that must have been interesting. Living on a (hobby) farm and being an animal lover, I have a love-hate relationship with raccoons...they're ADORABLE but SUPER destructive and have killed a lot of our pets. =/ReplyDelete
A resounding YES to Wives and Daughters! <3 Molly and Roger are so perfect. The book is amazing too!
Thanks Raechel! I got a kick out of this when I saw your 'answer' to that same question.Delete