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Saturday 23 October 2010

The Sunday Roast

Look, it's Kathryn - Crumbs! What a Catch! - A Novelist, a Co Editor/Publisher and a Blogger to Boot!

Says Kathryn, "Eddie, anyone who knows me knows I suck at titles *laughing* - my first novel had so many titles I can’t remember them all – and of course, my publishers said, “Um, we’ll title it;  STEP AWAY FROM THE TITLE KATHRYN! . . .” So I’m game for any kind of title! I like what you wrote.

And here is her familiar calling card.

Kathryn is an author, and Co-Publishing Editor of The Rose & Thorn. Her novels include: Tender Graces, Secret Graces, and Sweetie, and she is working on the final book in the Graces trilogy now. A novella-length work to be published with novella-length works of best-selling authors Sarah Addison Allen & Deborah Smith will be released winter 2011.

Kathryn lives in a tucked-in cove in Maggie Valley, Western North Carolina, where she spins tales, drinks Deep Creek Blend coffee, an occasional vodka tonic with lime, and contemplates the glow of Old Moon. She is a member of North Carolina Writer's Network, Mountain Writer's Alive in Haywood County, Backspace The Writer’s Place, and Netwest Mountain Writers, and is a sort of distant member of BR NAWW.

Sometimes she writes in the third person but she doesn’t like it, because it makes her feel a bit wonky and ickily self-important, but yet, then again, it allows her to remain distant from herself and that makes her laugh, slapping her knee. Her short stories, essays, photography, and poetry have been published in both online and print publications.

You can visit at her website: or at her blog or @katmagendie on twitter or on Facebook at Kathryn.magendie. You can purchase her books at any store, or go to the library, or from Bellebooks publishers, or Amazon Kindle, or anywhere else online—if they don’t have the book(s) in the bookstore or library, ask them to order!

Thank you for the interview, Kathryn

A very warm welcome to you and your followers

Here's the first of the standard questions. Why do you blog?

If I didn’t blog, I’d be near-completely-reclusive. I rarely leave my little log house unless it’s for an author event, or the local theater (for which GMR sometimes acts), or to go into Asheville or Waynesville to walk the downtown street.

I’ve met so many wonderful people, both in person and not in person, through blogging—it really is my ‘gateway’ into the world, a much wider world than ever I could have imagined to be in, growing up without internet and all. Like pen pals, but better (I’m dating myself!).

It’s been a way to connect with readers, too, and that’s a lovely thing. To know someone far far far away is reading my books makes me very happy.

What's the story behind your blog name?

I named my blogspot blog Tender Graces because that was my first book’s title. Looking back, I should have named my blogspot blog something more generic and put the link in my own name.

I did rename the Tender Graces blog header: Writing from my Mountain, because that’s what I do. Sit here nestled in the cove, in my little log house, with my two dogs, my ghost dog, my GMR, my shadow man (yes, I was visited by a strange shadowman! Do do do do do do do do).

(Most intriguing, Kathryn  - I'm sure we would all want to know more!)

What is the best thing about being a blogger?

Meeting wonderful people. I’ve never had a bad experience. It’s all been positive. I’ve met people, and I’ve mourned people—like the wonderful Barry Fraser who passed away recently. He and I, and his lovely wife, had become friends. Also, I find blogging relaxing because I talk in my own voice and don’t worry about deadlines or being “the author” – I am just Me.

(BlogLand - great place and great people . . . . and yes we make great friends here)

What key advice would you give to a newbie blogger?

Be yourself. Don’t try to Sell Something. I don’t blog telling people to buy my books or talk about myself and my books yackity yack yack yack blah blah all the live-long day. Be genuine and people will respond to that. People can spot a faker from a long way away.

(Fortunately there are very few 'bad apples' but there are some out there - but genuine people attract other genuine people)
What is the most significant blog post you've ever read?

I was going to list bloggers who’ve touched my life in some way but there were too many, and I was afraid I’d leave someone out, and then I started daydreaming about ice cream, but then thought how cheesecake would be even better, and there’s no cheesecake in the little log house, and what if I just jumped into my Boopmobile and went to the grocery or even better to a deli or restaurant and bought some cheesecake . . . um, what was the question?

(LOL - well I guess we shall have to rely on ESP then to get the answer to this question)

What is the most significant blog post you've ever written?

There have been emotional posts I’ve written where I was dealing with physical pain or the pain of losing my good canine friend or when my brother was ill, and people responded to those so supportively. I think when we open ourselves up with our vulnerability, people respond to you—it’s lovely lovely. However, I’ve also written posts on writing and reading—NOT ‘rithmatic—and received great responses. Are you getting the idea I don’t know how to answer the question? *teeheehee*

(You would make a great politician LOL. Can't get answers out of them either LOL)

Which two blogs would you recommend for roasting?

Oh, two is hard – I wrote out about ten of them, stopped myself, realizing I had to cut down to two. Lawd! So, I’ll just randomly choose two by the Scientific Method of: Eeny Meeny Miney Moe. So here goes: eeny meeny miney moe; grab a kitty-cat by its toe; if it scratches let it go; eeny meeny miney moe—and repeat—and the two are:

Tartitude – Jan O’Hara - She’s smart and interesting and mysterious at Tartitude.

Tim at Perception is not always reality – he’s cool and funny and interesting

(Well disciplined, Kathryn, sticking at two . . . I will write to them, but please email me with the others . . . . and I will get the 'press gang' onto them LOL)

That concludes the formal aspect of the interview but it would be nice to get to know you a little better while you are slowly turning on the roasting spit.  So while you are screaming in agony above the open fire here are a few more questions for you.

Pick three things you can't live without.

1) My Writing

2) (You think I’m gonna say sex, don’t you?

(. . . . but of course!)

Ha! Well, even if I think it, I’m not saying it – just going to pass right on over that one – ha! Hahahaha!) I’ll instead say: my mountains – because I really can’t live without nature and my mountains.

3) Friends and Family (I had coffee, but I realized I CAN live without that, I’d just be a bee-otch without it in the mornings ….wheee!)

(What a character you are!! They, the Cajun gals, warned me about you!! But great choices, Kathryn)

If we were to make a movie about BlogLand, what would it be and who would you cast in the leading roles?

*white noise white noise white noise white noise white noise white noise* --- that is exactly what happened when you asked that question. Let me try again:

*Big Arse Black Hole sucks up every image and idea*

Okay, um . . . teehee . . . I am supposed to be a writer, right? I’m supposed to be able to create images and scenes and  . . . um . . . Let me try again . . .

*zip zap twang riiiiiiiip kaboing bonkity boink bink blork blork blork*

Ergh. Okay, why isn’t this working? What’s going on here? Dang. Trying again: straiinnning my braaaaiin—

*white noise white noise white noise white noise---WHITE NOTHINGNESS SPACE*


(It's bound to be a block buster. I wonder what answers you'd give them in a job interview! LOL)

If you could live your life again who would you be, and why?

Most everyone says themselves because if you were someone else then you wouldn’t be you and then someone else would be answering this and then—um, my head hurts thinking about it. So, yeah, it’s true, we usually say we “want to be ourselves but better” – I’d like to be me, but take a few detours around some decisions I made, and that sets up all the existential doodly do dah day of “but then this wouldn’t have happened.” Dang. We’re forever lucky or doomed or some of both to be ourselves.

(I see! - neither you are I are really here, then. We are merely figments of our imagination because we are someone else in a parallel universe!  You know what!  I don't quite feel myself today! LOL)

You have been given a wonderful talent from above.  This causes you to make your mark on humanity and be world famous. In which area would prefer: a brilliant artist, a gifted musician, a fantastic singer, a charismatic leader, anything you choose, and why?

You know – I’d want my words to have some mark on humanity but I have to also admit I’ve always wanted to be a dancer—one of those strong graceful women who do all those things I can’t do. Dang. But then again, I can’t deny my passion for words and language. Still . . .

*Kat gets up from her chair and dance dance dances---la la la tee tee tee dum dum* (and no one saw her flail about and fall on her arse *sigh*)

(You are a scream and a riot!! . . . you really are! We seem to have a lot in common, Kathryn, I have 'two left feet' when it comes to dancing (and two left spoons for cooking for that matter) - I leave these things to gals like Marguerite)

If you were an ice cream cone, which flavour would you prefer and who would you most want to lick you?

Teeheehee – My good side says to say GMR (my husband) but my naughty side says—oh, wait a minute here . . . ha! I’m not telling – you almost did it, Eddie, you almost made me tell my secret crush! *hahaha* I’ll never tell! But, while we’re on the subject, instead of ice-cream, I’d like to be Gelato! Any flavor of Gelato –richer, creamier, and more intensely flavored!

(Shucks - your Dr Jeckyll is stronger than your Mrs Hyde.  I must work on the question again LOL)

Describe in one sentence your perfect day

My editor calls to tell me I’ve received a glowing review from New York Times, then Oprah calls and says I’ll be on her book club, then I win a life-time supply of cheesecakes that are delivered to my little log house once a month (any more than that and I’ll die of sugar coma, haw!), and What’s that? They want to make a movie of Tender Graces or Sweetie? And I’m going to walk the red carpet but first I get a huge-arse make-over and get to keep all the products . . . why thank you!

Then I hop on a plane (because there isn’t TIME in this perfect day – it is a very long day you know - ) and I fly to visit my son, daughter in law, and new baby granddaughter and then I fly to see my best good friend Angie, and then while I’m at it, I have coffee with my fave blogger buddies, and then on to Texas to see my mom, dad, nieces, and brothers, and then I am hungry, so I fly to Italy and Spain and Greece and then Morimoto’s restaurant to sample this and that and the other, and finally finally, I come back home and lie in my own bed, let out a big old dog on the porch sigh, and don’t even care what the next day brings, not one bit. Ahhhh.

(Just like a normal day then!)

Tell us a little about your novels.

The Graces Sagas are southern fiction, or Appalachian family sagas. Virginia Kate travels from South Louisiana back to her childhood home in West Virginia to release her momma’s ashes. While there the ghost of her Grandma Faith urges her to the attic to retrieve “mementos.” Virginia Kate then storytells her and her family’s lives. The first book, Tender Graces, is VK’s childhood memories. The second book, Secret Graces, deals with VK’s growing up and her marriage and its demise. The third book, not yet titled (see above—teehee), brings things full circle.

Sweetie is an Appalachian/Southern novel set here in Haywood County North Carolina. Melissa is the narrator—she befriends Sweetie, a mysterious mountain girl who has a strange “affliction” that no one in the town understands—Sweetie thinks the “mountain spirit” gave her special powers when a granny woman delivered her (the moon reflects in her eye, the wolf howls all night); Sweetie’s mother thinks Sweetie was cursed by God because of the mother’s “sin.” It’s been called a “haunting” book—the ending may be the reason for that.

I admit I completely suck at synopsis. People can go by my website at and read up on the book blurbs . . . if they want to!

(Thanks, Kathryn)

What was your most embarrassing moment?

OMG! I have so many! I was always a klutz (see dancing above), but I also used to put my foot in my mouth all the time, or do things just to get a laugh even if it made me look like an idiot! Although, I have learned to think before I speak or do so my embarrassing moments are fewer than they used to be—fewer, but alas not gone. *sigh*

(Eventually we all 'activate brain before activating tongue' - well mostly LOL)

. . . . and if you are really brave, if you awoke to find you had changed gender what would be the first and second things you would do?

Oh – now Eddie – this is dangerous territory for me – because I have an over-whelming curiosity and that curiosity takes me places that, well, teeheehee . . . lawd! Um . . . okay, the second thing I’d do is write down everything I was thinking as I went through my day so that when I was a woman again I could see just what the hell goes on inside a guy’s head!

(So you agree that something goes on in our heads, then!! Well, that is what I can progress LOL.  I can just hear the feminine ripple of laughter spreading across BlogLand.  But as a man you might have made a mistake and written it down wrongly. After all you wouldn't be able to multi-task now you are a man, would you? LOL . . . . and when you change back into a woman you might say, "What the hell is all this crap about?"  So your experiment would fail - miserably wouldn't it? LOL)

OK - you've done your bit, Kathryn. You can sit down in your chair with a glass of wine and it's your turn to ask me a question.
HAHAHA~ I want to ask you the question you just asked me – if you changed gender what would be the first and second things you’d do! It’s just too rich a question not to turn back to you.

Oh Bum!! I might have seen that one coming!!  I might just go back to sleep and hope it was all a bad nightmare! I'd have to embark on a whole new mindset like peeing sitting down but making sure the seat was parked in a down position.  However I suppose I would do these:
First - I would go into mourning for a long lost friend LOL
Second - I would get to know myself much better LOL

Well, Kathryn, that has been a real hoot!! Thank you for being such a great sport and for your interview - I feel rather like a hurricane has hit the place LOL
We'll conclude by 'taking a gander' at you blog screen - glad one of us can 'put their feet up'.

Thank you Eddie - what fun!
Today's Sunday Roast with "Writing From My Mountain" is the 138th
in a weekly series of interviews with bloggers from around the world.
This interview will feature in The Roll of Honour
for all published Roasts. To view press  HERE


  1. Eddie, you have been working on your blog. I like the new look. Nice colors and easy to read, clear letters. This is one of the best roasts ever, so lively and full of zip. Kathryn is so full of personality it would be impossible to ignore her, much less her talent. All I can say is WOW.

  2. Thank you 'Techie' - much appreciated and I agree Kathryn is an ace.

  3. TechnoBabe - now i'm buh-lushing *teeheeheehee* *grin*

    I am here in Oregon visiting my son, DIL, and Lil Boop-and reading this, I see that was a part of my "perfect day" - so, isn't that wonderful that I am enjoying a perfect day while reading about my perfect day :-D

    Thank you Eddie for this fun roast! But I'm feeling a little sunburned *laugh*

  4. A year ago, I came to Twitter kicking and screaming but so glad I did because I met Kat at a writer's chat. I read her blog and she is just as wonderful there as she was here!

    Thank you for "roasting" her.

    Is there any corn bread?

  5. That was great, meeting an accomplished writer. I will have to look up your books, Kathryn.
    I was very interested to see that you live in a valley thats named after me!
    Enjoyed the interview Eddie and Kathryn.
    Maggie X

    Nuts in May

  6. Excellent roast as always. Eddie, do you realise you drive some of us mad!
    Your grasp of this blogging lark is phenominal.(Spelling, I know but too late at night to look it up!) Seriously, I take my hat off to you, Well done, long may you blog. 'Geriatrics of the world, unite.'

  7. One of your readers was kind enough to mention Kat's generous plug, so I'm here and I'm wowed.

    You've done a wonderful job of capturing Kat's effervescence, Eddie. (If I may call you that.) Wonderful to see how you two people can play off one another when both feel safe!

  8. What a delightful roast! I'm happy to meet Kathryn here! I'd be a happy hermit myself...just staying at home and enjoying my little nest. I can tell Kathryn has a wonderful sense of those sound effects!

    Thanks, Eddie!

  9. fantastic roast Kate! your blog is always so much fun to visit and have read "Tender Graces" and couldn't put it down. plan on reading the others also.

    thanks Eddie!!

  10. Eddie, thank you for the chance to visit with you and Kathryn. I'll not rest until I find out who her Secret Crush is. (Kathryn, maybe that will be your date at next year's Manor Ball, eh?) Great fun, this roast.

  11. Hi Y'all - poking my pea-head in here a minute while lil NOrah Kathryn is asleep and son is on his computer --- y'all are making me grin :-D --- t'ankee for the wonderful comments

    (and I won't tell my secret crush - no no no - I sure won't -hahahahahahaha!)

  12. HA, the first thing she would do it go pee standing up.
    The second thing would probably stick a tampon in it to make it stop leaking HA HA HA.

    Great interview and quiet the guest to interview.

    The third thing she would probably do is run to GMR to see who was bigger.

  13. Another blogger who is new to me. I do like these roasts so much as I get to find out about so many different types of people.

    Kathyrn you had me at the point where you got distracted by icecream and cheesecake. What a quirky roast, lovely to meet you. Well done Eddie.

  14. Walker - a little near the mark methinks! Hope no-one takes offence. I'm sure none intended.

  15. I am ROFL and have to say that this was the best roast, yet, Eddie! I am a long time follower of Kat's blog and books and she is absolutely the best! Such a talented writer and a wonderful friend, as well! Loved all of her answers and I think that you have met your match in the humor department, cher! Kudos to both of you, mon cher amis, on a job well done! Cheers!

  16. l love seeing friends here but equally new bloggers to me are interesting and eye opening thanks Eddie

    here is moannies new blog

    saz x

  17. Enjoyed the interview - I'll ave to go have a look because I typically love novels set in my area.

  18. Hi Eddie, You've been busy with another great interview and a very nice new look for you blog. Thanks for spot lighting Kathryn this week. I'm off to look around her blog.

    Have a great week! jj

  19. Great interview - really must go and check out her blog as soon as I can.

    138 Roasts - gee, a lot happened in the 13 months I was away!

  20. Love her sense of humor and thanks Eddie, for introducing me to another great blogger that I'm about to start following!

  21. Ah, very much a favorite of mine. Wonderful lady, with a bright sense of humor, fantastic writing chops, and a good word for all. Well done, Eddie!

  22. Kat, now I'm hungry for cheesecake too! :) Great interview!

  23. What a sense of humor!!!! This was one of the best, Eddie!!! What a team the two of you made!!! Kat seems like an absolute jewel!!!! I will have to visit her!!!! Thanks for a terrific roast, Eddie!!! And now, I'm slipping off to my work again... ;-)) Hugs to you both! Janine

  24. Now my face is really red . . . teeheeheehee .... *grin* Thank y'all for your nice words and visits and Et Cetera . . . I'm enjoying my Oregon visit, but will be visiting you all soon ....

  25. Once again, Kathryn, thanks a bundle for the roast and the fun. Please amil me with 'oodles' of people who might like to do this - the more the merrier.
    btw Where's Angie? She is conspicuous by her absence LOL.
    Some great 'guys' have commented as you can see - and I thank you all for your comments to make this a successful feast!

  26. Hello! New follower, fellow blogger, and a fan of Kat Magendie :) Such a great interview - thanks for posting.

  27. Oh my God, this was fantastic! just sooo funny! I agree with others, def the best since I started reading them, and that includes my own roast!!
    I'm off to visit Cat now,right now!
    Well done Eddie!

  28. Aww, garsh, Kat! Wish ya coulda loosened up just a bit here. LOL! Great roast, Mr. Eddie. (And it reminded me that i owe you some Tootsie Pops! Please drop by and leave me your mailing address again. Sorry --- the ugly cyber gremlins that look like flying monkeys, ate the first note.)

    Kat - Great answers and peek inside that twirly whirly brain of yours. Made water come up in my eyes when I read about your perfect day. *sniff*

    Hugs to all the good people and bloggy friends I see here. I'm waving and sending you all good thoughts. HOpe to be back on regular blog visiting routine soon! I miss y'all. ;)

  29. “he’s cool and funny and interesting”, wow, I’m not sure how much of that is true about me, but I’ll happily take all the plaudits I can get. The cheque is already in the post to my good friend ‘Thryn, everyone calls her Kat so I just had to be different.

    Fantastic roast by the way, I wasn’t aware she had done this, but I very much enjoyed reading it a lot as you guys seem to have a great rapport to boot. I look forward to reading future roasts on those lucky enough to be featured here. Speaking of which I’m very honoured with the offer as a possible future roastee, but truthfully I very much doubt I’d be anywhere near interesting enough nor deserving to be on such a pedestal just yet.

    My biggest accomplishments to date range from spending the first 16 years of my life entirely sober before I (legally) touched a drink; walking on water… usually the frozen kind & ignoring drug dealers, unless I need something.

    So with no manuscripts on the works or anything remotely as impressive as your recent roastee, all I’ve really got to show for is a blog which I maintain not nearly often enough, sometimes neglected for weeks\months on end when time doesn’t always allow [or when inspiration is a little thin on the ground to be more precise] & a twitter page updated on my daily commutes on the tedious public transport of Manchester to & from work at the corduroy factory [one can never have enough corduroy].

    I’m very flattered by ‘Thyrn’s recommendation so let me know should you still want to proceed even after my revelations above [they may or may not some light embellishing there, force of habit], but in all honesty I think they’re far more deserving folks out there at this moment in time anyway, I’m working on earning my stripes now that my name is out there.

  30. Kathryn's Roast has produced top notch gravy! Never mind cheescake... :)

  31. Tim - I agree with Kathryn you will make a good roast so you have been outvoted LOL. Email on way.

  32. Jinksi - thanks for you comment and glad you liked the gravy LOL


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