Interview with Katt Anderson and Pam Watts Harris

I have a special treat today: Two interviews for the price of one! Katt and Pam co-wrote Smoky Mountain Brides, which released this fall.

Kyla Porter and Becki Hunley had been friends since childhood. They had gone to church Christmas-Brides (2)and school together and had graduated from the University of Tennessee. They parted ways when Becki moved to Nashville to enter the country music field while Kyla continued her education in veterinary school and eventually moved to northern Mississippi to practice veterinary medicine.

Scarred by a tragic ending to a relationship, Kyla finds it hard to trust any man, even the handsome teacher she meets at Graceland, who seems too good to be true. Becki finds the perfect man for her, a handsome doctor she meets at church, and both she and Kyla become engaged within a few months of each other. They had always dreamed of being each other’s maid or matron of honor when they married, but their plans are in jeopardy when their wedding dates are in conflict. Will they be able to solve their dilemma, or will their dream die?

What will readers find uplifting about Smoky Mountain Brides?

Katt--This is a simple love story, or my part was. I wanted to show people how you find true love when you never expect to. Becki had waited to find a Christian man instead of getting involved with a more world-wise person. She had made up her mind early to marry a Christian, even if she had to wait. We also wanted to show the deep friendship between Becki and Kyla.

Pam–That it is possible to overcome hardships and heartbreak, and that there are still good people in this world.

Is it harder or easier to co-write a book? Why?

Katt–Pam kept me in check. When I’d slow down, she was there to encourage me to finish the book. We started this a couple of years ago with four people, but I’m glad Pam and I held on and wrote it with the two of us.

Pam–Harder, because you have to make sure your story-line aligns with the other writer’s.

What is your favorite family Christmas tradition?

Katt–We don’t usually have the family in for Christmas, since both of my grown children have other family. When we do have our Christmas, everyone comes to our house for breakfast. It’s a traditional country ham, gravy, biscuits, eggs, and apples. Sometimes I’ll make a couple of German coffee cakes. They are a yeast bread with lots of almonds and sweet stuff.

Pam–I don’t have a favorite, I enjoy it all!

What do you do to beat the winter blues?

Katt–I usually don’t have winter blues. We try to get out during the winter and watch the eagles on the rivers and lakes. I try to enjoy each day that God gives me.

Pam–Exercise is my antidote for almost everything. Whether it is power walking or using weights and a stepper at home, I find that if I exercise, my mood improves along with my energy level.

What is next for you both?

Katt–I’m writing a cozy mystery, Nothin’ Shady Happens in Shady Valley. Shady Valley, Tennessee, is where my husband grew up. It’s almost as far as you can go in Northeast Tennessee, between Virginia and North Carolina. It’s secluded and beautiful. We were there in October and I asked someone about internet. It wasn’t very strong, but we did have cell service in places. My writer’s mind began working. So, here goes-Daisy McQueen inherits her grandmother’s farm in Shady Valley. She finds a dead body in the cranberry bog on the farm. There are real cranberry bogs which probably came down during the Ice Age and had no place to go and stayed. I’m working on it and it is a lot of fun, but I have to be careful and make Shady Valley a place everyone wants to see. I’m excited about it.

Pam–I am working on a teen book and also trying to come up with a romantic suspense. My full-time job is keeping me super busy right now, but I am thinking about the books even when I’m not actually writing.

Thank you, ladies, for answering my questions and letting us get to know you a little better! That German coffee cake sounds delicious! And I can’t wait to see what you each come up with next.

Kathy Cretsinger writes under the name of Katt Anderson. She lives in Kentucky with her IMG_8079 copyhusband of fifty plus years. They have two grown children, four grandchildren, no cats or dogs, but a few squirrels who live around the walnut trees. When not writing, you’ll find Kathy people-watching, reading, enjoying her flower garden, going to activities her grandchildren are involved in, or helping authors with their manuscripts. Kathy also speaks at writer’s conferences. She and her husband, Jerry, are owners of Mantle Rock Publishing LLC. You can visit her at www.mantlerockpublishingllc.com.

Book_Head_ShotPam Watts Harris is a former journalist, banker, and current educator who writes historical and contemporary fiction for females of all ages. She also works as an editor for Mantle Rock Publishing of Benton, Kentucky. A native Tennessean and past Arizona resident, she uses her personal experiences and observations to create characters that reflect the southern and western cultures with which she is most familiar. When she is not working or writing, she enjoys traveling, fitness activities, being outdoors, and of course, reading. You can connect with her on Facebook.

I’ll see you next week when Donna Schlachter returns to visit with us as her alter-ego, Leann Betts. Thanks for being here!

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