– MEET THE AUTHOR –
VR: Lexington and 42nd is the first in the Off Field Series — can you share a bit more about the characters/series and what inspired you to set the scene in American football?
KC: Lexington and 42nd is the story of an Australian girl, Emma Lexington, who gets the chance to work in New York on a twelve-month job exchange with the New York Warriors. She is assigned to work closely with their starting quarterback, Will Jensen, and the story takes off from there. Emma and Will are just the first couple in the Off Field Series. In book two you’ll meet Olivia, the feisty, determined sports reporter that has Emma’s back in Lexington and 42nd. I’m having HEAPS of fun telling her story! I definitely chose New York City before I settled on American football as the setting for this series. I suppose that’s because I loved the idea of mixing the power of professional football with the edginess of New York…what more could you ask for?!
VR: Do you have an “inside” source with the NFL?
KC: Sort of! My husband is an AFL player agent (think Jerry McGuire, just for the Australian Football League). While he’s not specifically an expert on the NFL, his knowledge of all sports is off the charts—seriously, if you ever need to fill a seat at a sports trivia night, he’s your guy. He was able to guide me through areas I was unfamiliar with and was a huge help overall. Without intending to be, Lexington and 42nd is somewhat light on football detail. Emma isn’t familiar with the sport at all, so the snippets you do see are what she learns along the way. In Olivia’s story, the football stakes will be a lot higher, not only because as a sports reporter Olivia knows the NFL inside out, but we also here from Nate as well.
VR: What do you want your reader to take away from your stories?
KC: At the end of the day, reading (for me, anyway), is all about escapism. The Off Field Series were never intended to be life altering for readers, but simply really good books that you can’t wait to get back to. I love when I get so hooked on a book that I’m genuinely annoyed when real life things get in the way!
VR: When the writing muse needs a little help, what do you do to reconnect with your characters?
KC: Throughout this whole process, I’ve had a sense that everything will work itself out. Don’t ask me why because that’s not my normal way of going about things, but it’s worked. By not letting myself get panicked about why a certain scene or story line isn’t gelling, I’ve grown to really enjoy the problem solving side of writing. There have been a few really exciting moments where out of the blue I’ve been able to see clearly where the story or a certain character needs to go and that’s a really great feeling.
VR: Taking that first step into the publishing world takes no small amount of courage. Might you share who/what convinced you to publish your stories?
KC: It was definitely a slow process for me. For a REALLY long time I viewed writing as just a hobby. My husband was the only one who knew I did it and even then, he wasn’t allowed near the laptop screen while I was writing. So you’re spot on, it takes a huge amount of courage to publish. When it became clear that I was actually going to complete the story, it made me realize that I really wanted to see things through, for no other reason than the satisfaction of saying I had done it. It was basically a step-by-step process from there and as I got through each step and the dream got closer, things just kind of snowballed…and now here I am doing this interview two days before Lexington and 42nd launches (insert panicked face here!!).
VR: What’s the best piece of advice you received regarding writing that you can share with novice writers?
KC: Learn the craft of writing. For those like me who just turn on their laptops and start typing one day, it can become this heady, obsessive thing. I got about one fifth of the way through Lexington and 42nd when I started to recognize faults in my work but couldn’t necessarily figure out how to fix them. I stopped writing for a few months and went in search of learning resources to give me the confidence I needed to keep going. There’s so much great stuff out there from books that guide you on outlining and story structure, to advice on writing techniques. Stephen King’s On Writing was a great one for me. I’m just starting out in my journey as a writer and I know there’s plenty of room for improvement with my writing. I’ll forever be studying the craft of writing.
VR: Kim – thank you for your time and congratulations on the release of your first book, Lexington and 42nd!
KC: Thank you for having me! I had a great time writing Lexington and 42nd and I do hope you all enjoy reading it.
– BUY THE BOOK –
– ABOUT THE AUTHOR –
Kim Carmody lives in Australia with her husband, in a sunny little part of Melbourne that she never wants to leave. Except for frequent trips to New York, she is happy to leave at least once a year for those.
She holds a Masters in Commerce Marketing and while she spent her younger years training to become a professional dancer, she somehow ended up working in the sports industry, where she met her now husband. Never a participant or spectator of sport growing up (she was too busy flitting around in a tutu), she has grown to appreciate, if not love many sports and eventually found herself writing about them too.
As an avid book lover from the moment she was introduced to The Babysitters Club as a seven year-old, Kim never expected to be able to call herself an author, but is beyond excited that she now can.
Lexington and 42nd is her first novel.
– AUTHOR LINKS –