Friday, May 31, 2013

Author Interview with Jewel Kats



Once a teen runaway, Jewel Kats is now a two-time Mom’s Choice Award winner. For six years, Jewel penned a syndicated teen advice column for Scripps Howard News Service (USA) and TorStar Syndication Service (Canada). She's won $20,000 in scholarships from Global Television Network, and women's book publisher: Harlequin Enterprises. Jewel also interned in the TV studio of Entertainment Tonight Canada. Her books have been featured in Ability Magazine (USA) twice. She’s authored seven books—five are about disabilities. Jewel is the writer, and real-life character behind “DitzAbled Princess”—a popular reality-series comic strip.
 
Do your characters ever want to take over the story?
“DitzAbled Princess” is a reality-series comic strip diary inspired by events in my life. Sometimes, the past is referred to. Other times, it’s the present-day now. However, all of the comic strip “cast” members are actual human beings who’ve crossed paths with me. The “stars” of this strip are my family members. Naturally, some “characters” have a louder presence on the page just as they do in real life. However, since it’s my first-person account, the character “Jewel” always steals centre stage to deliver the punch line or act as the butt of the joke. Otherwise, it would become someone else’s diary!

What is your favourite food?
I absolutely love good ol’ shepherd’s pie. Yum, yum!

Are you a morning person or a night owl?
Neither! You’ll catch my brain fire up during the afternoon.

Where do you dream of travelling to and why?
You may be shocked by this, but I’ve never had a “Disney” destination experience. It’s about time that I partied with Minnie and Mickey Mouse! According to hearsay, “Disney” amusement park rides are unique in that they are totally accessible. Yay! 

Do distant places feature in your books?
I prefer to write what I know. In other words…“DitzAbled Princess” and I, share the same passport.
In regards to my children’s books, I do create Kingdoms for my characters.

Do you listen to music while writing?
I don’t listen to music while I write. However, I’ll pump myself up with music before a public relations interview. Usually, rock. It helps me feel like a powerful WO-MAN.  

Could you tell us a bit about your latest release?
“DitzAbled Princess: A Comical Diary Inspired by Real Life” is a must-have for comic book enthusiasts. Within its color-popping pages, you’ll find a collection “DitzAbled Princess” webcomic strips laid out in a graphic novel format. This popular reality-series chronicles the daily experiences of a 30-something zany, career-crazed woman with disabilities. No hurdle, person or health issue will prevent her from attending the next cosmetics sale!  

“DitzAbled Princess”--the webcomic--is updated with new episodes every Wednesday and Sunday at: http://tapastic.com/series/316.   

What have you learned about writing and publishing since you first started?
Publishing is a busy business that keeps you on your toes. You’re working before a book is written. You’re working while it’s in production. You’re promoting once the book is out in print. Authorhood is not all fun, and glam-fueled games.

Is there anything you would do differently?
I can’t turn back the hands of time, but I secretly wish I’d discovered that I wanted to become a writer before hitting my 20s. I totally envy people who’ve known their trade since childhood!

Anything you would say to those just starting out in the craft?
Write what’s in your heart. Don’t select topics based on the promise they’ll make you a lot of money. Enjoy the process of creating something, and the universe will help you out.

What are three words that describe you?                                                    
  1. Fun-loving.
  2. Optimistic.
  3. Persistent.
What's your favourite book or who is your favourite writer?
My all-time favorite comic book series is: “Betty and Veronica Double Digests” by Archie Comics.

Blurb of your latest release or coming soon book
Jewel at 33 is a Princess in her own right.
She's a fun-loving, demanding Diva who loves to shop as much she loves to write. Jewel is the apple of everyone's eye--be it her doting family, her doctor for her never-ending bowel issues, her pushy book editor and especially her frugal husband's soft spot. So, what's Jewel's weakness? Her pet dogs: Snowie and Dolly. Particularly, naughty Snowie who is known to pee wherever he fancies--including Dolly's face!
For Jewel, her physical disability doesn't dampen her spirits. Rather, it enhances them. She gets to use an unusual fashion accessory (Imagine: A hot pink elbow crutch.) She gets out of doing housework. She gets carried up-and-down stairs like a Princess a la command. Jewel may be horribly messy, terrible with numbers and a workaholic, but nobody can imagine life without her. Not that she would let them, anyway! She has a big mouth, remember?

List of previous books if any
Non-Fiction Puzzle Book for Women:
“Word Search Divas”
-Released October 2011
-Marvelous Spirit Press (Imprint of Loving Healing Press)

Books for Children:
*Cinderella’s Magical Wheelchair (Fairy Ability Tales: Book #1)
-Released August 2011
-Loving Healing Press (USA) 

*The Princess and the Ruby: An Autism Fairy Tale (Fairy Ability Tales: Book #2)
-Released February 2013
-Loving Healing Press (USA) 

*What Do You Use to Help Your Body?: Maggie Explores the World of Disabilities
-Released May 2011
-Loving Healing Press (USA)

*Reena’s Bollywood Dream: A Story About Sexual Abuse
-Released August 2010
-Loving Healing Press (USA)

Any websites/places readers can find you on the web.
“DitzAbled Princess” has a super cool line of character merchandise. For more info, please visit: www.ditzabledprincess.com
 
“DitzAbled Princess” runs as a webcomic. New episodes are uploaded every Wednesday and Sunday at: http://tapastic.com/series/316

To learn more about my children’s books, please visit: www.jewelkats.com

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