The Fantastic Blog Hop presents Karina Gioertz
Please join me for welcoming author Karina Gioertz to the HOP!!
Let’s start with our 10 questions before we sample her writing with an excerpt from LUCKY IN LOVE.
1 Who is your favorite author and what do you enjoy most about his/her writing?
I usually go with Sidney Sheldon and J.K. Rowling on this question, but today I’m going with Lauren Child. These days the bulk of my reading is done with my 5 year old and when it comes to Children’s Literature, I haven’t found many books that I enjoy nearly as much as I enjoy Lauren Child’s work. She has a fantastic sense of humor and I love how she can entertain both myself, as well as my daughter, with the same story.
2 What is your favorite book or movie?
If I’m sticking with Lauren Child, I would have to say my favorite book is Beware Of The Storybook Wolves. Have you read it? Because you should!
3 What do you find yourself inspired by the most?
Life. Life is all the inspiration I can handle!
4 Do you feel an affinity to any particular period of history?
I’m not what you would call a history buff, but I have always kind of loved the elaborate gowns of the middle ages. I blame it on my inner princess who’s still pretending she’s Cinderella …
And do you ever use elements of it in your writing?
5 Have you ever given up on a writing project and why?
Not yet, no. I’ve taken breaks, but I can’t recall ever scrapping a story for good. If nothing else, a project may get recycled into something completely different when the time is right.
6 Out of any of your own creations, do you have a favorite character?
Because she’s awesome. No, seriously though, I just love her boldness and strength.
7 What scene, out of any project that you have written, do you like the most?
8 Have you ever found yourself, in regular daily activity, thinking like one of your characters?
Sure, who doesn’t channel their characters from time to time? I mean, that’s totally normal…isn’t’ it?!
9 I was asked this once, a long time ago, so I will ask you: Why do you want to write?
I want to write because I can’t NOT write. Even if nobody ever read another word I put on paper, it wouldn’t stop the words from coming. I don’t just write to entertain others. I write because it entertains me. Because it gives me a place to go when I need an escape from reality. Because it gives me an opportunity to see people differently, to understand their motivations and see different perspectives. Because it gives me hope for the future and a path to the past. Writing isn’t just about putting down words and stringing together coherent sentences. It’s creating and exploring. It’s believing in the unbelievable and denying the facts. It’s the craziest, out of this world adventure, and it’s an indestructible safe haven. It’s not a hobby or even a job, it’s simply a part of who I am.
10 Sum up your current work-in-progress in one sentence/ or one word.
Learning to trust yourself.
Lucky In Love Excerpt from Chapter 4: Speed Dating
…“Ladies and gentlemen! Welcome. Before we begin, let me go over the rules with you. The ladies will remain seated while the gentlemen rotate from table to table. Each date will last five minutes and you’ll know the time is up, when we ring the bell. Let’s begin! Enjoy and good luck!”
And so it began. With one eye closed, I nervously waited to see who would take his seat across from me. When I saw him, I instinctively wanted to shut the other eye, too, but I didn’t. He was medium height and medium build, and in all likelihood, not bad looking. However, the blue velvet jacket he was wearing over a rather pink shirt made it hard to look at anything else. Except for maybe the hair, which had highlights and was greased back so slickly that the candlelight around the room was dancing around on the top of his head like a million twinkly little stars. My first thought was of Noah and how I would have to tell him about this. The second thought was that I could NEVER tell him about this! Regardless of the reaction I was having internally, I tried to maintain a welcoming face as the guy sat down and proceeded to make his first move.
“Hi. I’m Ron and I just wanted to ask you if it hurt when you fell from heaven, because you look like an Angel.” He grinned and I caught sight of a flashy gold tooth right there in the front. It was all I could do to keep from tackling the perky hostess who had so falsely promised a successful venture into the land of love. Since that wasn’t an option, and love was clearly out of the running, I opted for entertaining myself. One way or another I was going to have a good time.
“Hi Ron, I’m Nancy. And yes, it hurt like hell.” I threw in a Brooklyn accent. Just sort of seemed right for a girl like Nancy to be from the Bronx. Ron hadn’t been prepared for this.
“Oh…” he nervously laughed. “Well, so…so what do you do, Nancy?”
“Ron, I spend most of my day chopping off balls.” I was on a roll now.
“You what?” The color began to fade from his face.
“I’m a vet, Ron. That’s just part of the job.” It was just too easy.
“Oh, of course…So, do you like what you do?” It was a little late for a comeback, but Ron gave it a try anyway.
“Who wouldn’t?” I grinned, secretly hoping a piece of olive from my martini had somehow wedged itself in between my teeth, so that Ron might have experienced the same horror I had when he had grinned at me. Just then the bell rang.
“Nice meeting you, Ron!” I called after him, as he scurried away from my table and on to the next girl. I silently said a quick prayer for her, whoever she may have been and then braced myself for the next date.
This time, he was so utterly unsightly, it was almost endearing, but just almost. The fact of the matter was that what was most likely to blame for his unsightliness was a lacking sense of hygiene. His hair was untrimmed and oily; causing what appeared to be severe adult acne on his forehead where his hair seemed to be permanently plastered do to the excess body oils. If he had acne anywhere else on his face, I couldn’t tell because his scraggly unkempt beard covered the majority of it. Upon closer inspection, I detected what appeared to be leftovers from a turkey sandwich stuck in the matted hair below his chin, which I desperately hoped, were from a recent meal, but the general appearance of this guy suggested otherwise. His shirt was stained and smelled as though it had been retrieved from under a pair of used gym socks and I let out a small sigh of relief, knowing that I would never have to look too closely at his pants, as they were hidden by the small table we were both seated at. As he looked up at me and prepared to initiate the conversation, an onslaught of dialects and sarcastic comments came rushing through my mind. This guy was going to get it good.
“Hi, my name is Tony. I’d shake your hand, but my hands sweat when I get nervous.” He shrugged his shoulders apologetically and gave me a surprisingly confident smile, as though that would make his lack of cleanliness acceptable.
“Hi, Tony. I’m Georgia.” I opted for the Deep South this time. Then, just as sweet as pie, I continued, “And don’t worry about it, my butt cheeks do the same thing when I’m nervous. And let me tell you Tony, I am really nervous right now!” I sat back and watched as the look of horror and immense discomfort spread across his face. Hey, fair is fair.
Meanwhile, Tara was having a much better time of it than I was. In fact, while I was busy disgusting “Stinky Tony”, she was sitting across from Jason. A view I was all too familiar with and had rather enjoyed over the years.
Tara looked over at him in anticipation of what he might say, now that his golden opportunity had finally arrived, but instead of saying anything, he just sat there grinning at her.
“Oh my God, she told you!” she gasped.
“Who told me what?” he asked innocently, but it was too late.
“I can tell! I know Lucky told you, you have that annoying satisfied grin on your face!” She was pointing her finger at him in a most accusing manner.
“Oh, you mean the part about how you think I’m hot, yeah, she told me that. So, what?” He waved his hand dismissively as if to say that it was no big deal. Only it was a big deal to Tara.
“It’s embarrassing!” She was having a hard time demonstrating her outrage while trying to keep her voice down at the same time.
Jason laughed. Then he leaned over and quietly said, “Tara, I’ve been hitting on you for months, putting myself out there over and over again and every time you shot me down. Don’t you think that if anyone should be embarrassed, it should be me?”
“I don’t want you to feel embarrassed,” she replied with sudden concern.
“Oh, I don’t. Which is why you shouldn’t feel that way either. Now, I’m glad we are finally out together, but I kind of pictured our first date without all these people.” While he was talking, Jason reached out and took Tara’s hand and held it gently in his. Without her even noticing he had made his move.
“You pictured our first date? What did you have in mind?” she asked curiously.
“Well, I can’t tell you that, but I will say that it would be far more romantic than this.” He was certain that he had her hooked. Before she had a chance to respond, the bell rang again indicating that it was time for another switch. Jason however, had no intention of switching with anyone, so he simply sat there trying to ignore the guy standing beside their table waiting for his chance to have a seat with Tara.
“Um, excuse me. Your time is up, it’s my turn,” he said, motioning for Jason to move.
“Yeah, I don’t think so. Just go around me.” Jason hardly looked up at him as he pointed over to the next table, which now had an empty chair at it, but the guy wasn’t interested.
“But, that’s not how this is supposed to work.” He appeared to be moments away from a tantrum.
Jason looked at the guy and then looked at Tara.
“Fine, I got a better idea. Tara you want to get out of here?”
“We can’t just leave Lucky,” she pointed out.
“We won’t leave, we’ll just go sit at the bar. That way we can talk without the stupid bell.”
Still holding Tara’s hand, Jason stood up and led her out of the room, leaving behind a particularly disgruntled speed dater, who promptly marched over to the hostess to complain.
By now, I was on to date number three and since I was no longer frightened by the thought of encountering a possible love connection with the fish in this pond, I was relaxed and sipping ever so happily on my second martini. With my face down in my glass, I caught sight of number three’s belt buckle. I set my drink back down and looked up.
“Hi, I’m Trevor. Nice to meet you,” he said quietly, his raspy voice oozing with charm. If the sound of him was great, the sight was even better. Trevor was tall and lean, with broad shoulders and nice arms. His hair was short and styled perfectly without any signs of grease or excess oils of any kind. He had a goatee on an otherwise clean shaven face and a smile that made me want to come out of my own skin and jump into his.
“Hi, Trevor. My name is Lucky. It’s nice to meet you, too.” And just like that, my luck had changed…
Although Karina Gioertz has been writing for most of her life, it never quite registered with her as something out of the ordinary or worth pursuing, because it was so closely connected to who she was. It wasn’t until she became a stay at home mom and finally took the time to write an entire book from beginning to end, that she understood what all of those ideas she had been jotting down all those years were really for. Since then, she has written several books, including Country Girls, Lucky In Love and Blood Bound.
While writing and motherhood have become her main focus over the years, she also enjoys many other creative activities such as painting and photography. Most sunny days she can be found in her courtyard working feverishly at painting and refurbishing old furniture…that is, of course, only if it wasn’t a suitable day to spend at the beach. 😉
Karina resides in sunny Florida with her family and two dogs. Reach her at:
Karina Goertz: www.twitter.com/friedgatortail
See more from her on:
Juli Morgan: www.julipagemorgan.com
Kristen Duvall: http://www.kristenduvall.com/
Rachel Rueben: http://www.rachelrueben.com
Crimson Kildare: http://thrutheglass.net/
S. A. Hussey: http://sahussey1.wordpress.com/