Friday, May 6, 2016

#MMBBR #Showcase Last Dance at The Savoy by Kathryn Leigh Scott @kathleighscott

Title: Last Dance at The Savoy: Life, Love and Caring for Someone with Progressive Supranuclear Palsy
Author: Kathryn Leigh Scott
Publisher/Date: Cumberland Press, an imprint of Pomegranate Press, Ltd. (April 16, 2016)
ISBN: 978-0-9862459-2-3 | 334 pages, trade paperback | $15.95
ASIN:  B01BJ7DQBW | ISBN: 978-0-9862459-3-0 | 223 pages, Kindle | $9.99
Genres: Nonfiction | Health and Fitness | Caregiving
Available on Amazon:
Twitter: @kathleighscott

Q.  What inspires your writing?

A. “What if?” is the seed from which ideas sprout. My imagination is the tool I use as both a writer and an actor. Once I get an idea I walk around with it for a while and let it germinate, grow a few tendrils that I want to watch expand. I jot notes as more ideas occur and soon I have a synopsis, a story with a beginning, middle and end. That’s when I begin writing in earnest, using the synopsis as my template. Can you tell I grew up on a farm? There are seasons to writing and I often find myself thinking in terms of sowing, cultivating, harvesting and going to market.

Q.  What is your favorite thing about being an author?

A. Finishing a book is the best! Starting a book comes in second, but beginning each new chapter is just gruesome for me. I know what comes next, but launching into it requires considerable thought. Once I see it unfold in my mind, I write what I see play out. Such a lot of my acting process informs my writing: I need to see, hear, feel, smell and taste it before I can express it.

Q.  What is the toughest part of being an author?

A. Recognizing that it’s time to harvest and go to market is tough. I’m always rethinking, going for another draft. I know those are “farm” terms, but I feel the same as an actress. Wrapping a scene and moving on to the next setup is tough, too... you always imagine you have another, better take in you. But as a writer, you don’t have a director/producer calling the shots. I look to my trusted/beloved lit agent to say, “That’s it, I’m submitting.”

Q.  If you could not be author, what would you do/be?

A. I’d be a spy, perhaps a detective. I’m a graduate of the FBI citizen’s academy because law enforcement and investigating the criminal mind fascinate me. Acting and writing seem to fill the longing.

Q.  What would the story of your life be entitled?

A. “If Not Now, When?” It’s also the title of my blog and I will someday write the memoir. Almost everything I’ve done in my life has been a leap of faith... how else does one make the jump from Minnesota farm girl to Bunny at the New York Playboy Club? All of my life experiences inform my writing as it does for all writers... and what I don’t know about, I race out to experience.

Q.  What is your favorite book of all time?

A. I loved the “Betsy, Tacy, Tib” books of my girlhood, a series written by Maud Hart Lovelace, a local Minnesota author of what are now called YA books. They fired my imagination, made me dream and spurred me on to write. I love Dickens, Mark Twain, Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie, among the many great storytellers I admire, but the Lovelace books are very dear to me.

Q.  Which character from ANY book are you most like?

A. Wouldn’t I be provocative to say Madame Bovary? Actually, I most identify with the women on the Left Bank of Paris in the 1920s, Karen Blixen, Martha Gelhorn, Amelia Earhart, etc. -- women who catapulted into adventure and threw caution to the wind. If only... but I’ve done my best.

Q.  What character from all of your books are you most like?

A. Meg Harrison in Dark Passages and Meg Barnes in Down and Out In Beverly Heels ARE me! They speak with my voice (I tend to write funny) and both deal with the hand they are dealt much as I would.

Q.  Which of your books was the hardest for you to write?

A. Last Dance at the Savoy: Life, Love and Caring For Someone With Supranuclear Palsy was tremendously difficult emotionally because the “someone” was my husband, Geoff Miller, the founding editor of Los Angeles Magazine who was diagnosed with this prime-of-life disease that afflicts some 20,000 Americans. I kept a daily journal during his illness and used it as the template for the memoir, which made writing the book possible. There were so many times when I had to leave my desk and take a walk in the garden, aching with longing and the pain of missing him. Yet, how grateful I am that I can share what I know of caregiving for someone with a progressive neurological disease.

Q.  Which of your books was the easiest to write?

A. Dark Shadows: Return to Collinwood was the easiest because I appeared on the very first episode of this Gothic soap and remain close to all of the cast mates. Writing about the five decades of the show kids “ran home from school to watch” was great fun.. it was my first acting job and now we’re celebrating our 50th anniversary June 27, 2016.
Q.  When reading your books I am always moved by the strong female relationships you create, are they based on relationship experiences you have had?

A. As they say, some of my best friends are women! The relationship between Meg and Donna in the Jinx Fogarty mystery series is a joy to write... their sassy exchanges not unlike those I have with my close girlfriends. Believe me, it’s not all “boys and clothes”... we speak on an intimate level of mutual experience and caring, but with great humor and compassion. I wrote the nonfiction The Bunny Years about my experience working as a Bunny in the New York Playboy Club in the 1960s, interviewing some 300  former Bunnies who worked in the Clubs all over the world during a 25 year history. Was that ever fun! And those women are still close friends.

Q.  What is your favorite season?

A. All. I have to choose? Why? They all come with their own beauty and enjoyment.

Q.  Tell me something funny that happened while on a book tour or while promoting your books.

A. A reviewer thought The Bunny Years was a children’s book.
Q.  Are you working on something new?

A. Yes, I am finishing what I hope is the final draft of September Girl – a story of redemption about a woman who visits a former lover from a relationship that ended bitterly, costing her a child and the life she’d hoped to live. Believe me, there are buckets of humor in the telling of this story.

Q.  Anything you want to say to followers of this blog or those that are just stopping by?

A.  Please dip your toes in my books, read a sample and join my readership... I welcome you!

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