TUESDAY TEA with May the K9 Spy and KC Frantzen
I’m excited to have May the K9 Spy and KC Frantzen with us today for tea. We’re at the dog-friendly Tea Terrace overlooking Doggie Park. May and KC volunteer at Joni and Friends Wounded Warrior Getaways, so in honor of their contributions to this organization, I’m serving a patriotic Strawberry and Blueberry Vanilla Parfait with blueberry tea. Help yourself to iced tea if you prefer. It is HOT out there! For our canine guests, we have refreshing water and special “Pooch Dog Peanut Butter Treats” from Joshua’s Pet Treat Bakery.
Take a look at May’s two books (and note the dates each will be available FREE for Kindle!) Then please join us as we chat with May and KC and enjoy our treats. (And be very sure to check below about the blog tour information and giveaway…sleuthing involved!)
My thoughts: I just finished May’s first book, May On The Way, and loved it. I laughed, I cried, I fell in love with sweet May, and I completely enjoyed her tale about how she became a K9 Spy. I love suspense, and this book has suspense along with May’s interesting point of view—a dog’s point of view! A fun read for pet lovers from ages eight and up. This would be a paw-fect book for your family to read together during the summer. I’m looking forward to reading book 2, May Finds a Way about her adventure in Paris. It is good to know that May and KC are busy writing a third book.
May on the Way: How I Become a K9 Spy
Sometimes I start with a well-thought out plan, and sometimes, me being me, things just happen. In my imagination I’m on my way, heading anywhere. Because anywhere’s better than here.
Which is why I’m staring at this latch. I’m going to escape today. I’ve been watching closely to see how they work it, though no one’s noticed.
Humans… So unaware…
Available in Kindle format for $2.99 on Amazon.com.
FREE for Kindle: July 16-20, 2013
May Finds a Way: Peril in Paris
An enterprising escape, a perilous mission…
After going astray during K9 Spy boot camp, May tries to find a way to the American Embassy in Paris.
Join her and Léonce, a feral cat, as they sniff out an evil plot leading from Benjamin Franklin’s park through the historic Passy Cemetery to The Pantheon…including a journey under the city!
Available in Kindle format for $3.99 on Amazon.com.
FREE for Kindle: July 23-27, 2013
Now for our conversation with May and KC!
SHERIDA: How did you get the glimmers of your ideas for May on the Way and May Finds a Way?
KC: It was a combo for May on the Way. Rescued from abuse, May could be a snippy little dog, but no! She assumes everyone will love her, greeting each with enthusiasm. The more we enjoyed her, the more we thought others could benefit from her story. We watched her “work” on some die-hard cat people. May insisted they offer her a pat or quick game of toss-and-fetch.
When May was about six, a friend came by, with a friend who worked in law enforcement. After meeting May and getting a good throwing arm workout, she remarked (paraphrased), “May would make an excellent bomb-sniffing dog. She is focused and small enough to go where others cannot.”
About the same time, I was about ¾ through the Christian Writers Guild Apprentice Course and was encouraged to do more with one of the lessons by my mentor, the pawmazing, Sandra Byrd.
The gleam passed from glimmer to glow and I got to work. About 5 years later, the first book became a reality.
And writers may find this humorous… I fully intended to have the Christian Writers Guild scene in the first book, and it was, but as the Sneak Peek bonus chapter for book 2! It became the basis of how May is dognapped in May Finds a Way, but really, who’d a thunk she’d have ended up in Paris?
I enjoy history and how God weaves His story throughout, so I strive to make our books full of interesting tidbits where all details are accurate. Research is So. Much. Fun!! (Yes, there was a 28 hour visit to Paris for book 2.) Plus it’s pawmazing to see how seemingly disparate events, places, actions come together as a unified whole.
Adults seem to enjoy them as much as the kids. This is why we’ve changed the series description. We used to say they are for “Middle-grade, readers 8-12 years old,” now its “Enjoyed by animal lovers 8 and up!”
SHERIDA: Oooo! Research in Paris would be fascinating! What do you do to keep your sparkle while you are writing?
KC: It depends on which phase of the writing process…
As a history major, I ADORE research. This writing gig lets me do that full-time! For example, at a recent craft fair I remarked on a gentleman’s military submarine cap and said we have a nuclear submarine in our third book. He then put me in touch with a fellow, not too far away, who was gracious enough to spend an hour and a half sharing ideas and experiences. Can’t get much better than this.
Editing and rewriting is a joy for me too, mostly… Once words are on the page, you can tinker. Blank pages are fairly difficult for me. I’ve morphed into a “planster” – a hybrid of pantster (writing by seat of the pants) and a plotter (plotting each scene). I’m just on book 3 so my style is still developing.
But the sparkle in any project has to be May herself. She is always near as I write and occasionally reminds me to take a break and toss the ball, even though she just celebrated her 13th barkday on June 13, 2013!
SHERIDA: Yes, I can just see from May’s website photos and her pawmazing adventures, that she is a sparkle girl! A treasure! Beyond family, friends and your writing career, what jewel of a moment has God placed in your path during your life’s journey that you would like to share with us?
KC: The Lord has graced me with an entire box of jewels. We do a fair amount of traveling and one of the highlights has to have been visiting Salto Angel (pronounced SALTo anHEL), also known as Angel Falls in Venezuela. I’d wanted to see it since World Geography in elementary school. Had to wait until my 40’s but it was worth it on soooo many levels. You haven’t lived until you spend a wedding anniversary under a pole tent in hammocks with about 30 others. When one shifts, all hammocks on your pole swing. What an experience…
Seriously, it was an amazing adventure into La Gran Sabana. Once you fly into the small airport, you board large canoes (with motors) and go upriver for hours. Incidentally, the river is the color of root beer, no animal sounds… But the flora is spectacular. Upon arrival at base camp, you offload luggage and follow the guide, scrambling up the side of the tepui for several hours. Just a couple of minutes before we got to the observation area, the Heavens opened and we were absolutely drenched.
We managed to retrieve only one photo. My husband snapped it of me standing on a rock holding a red anniversary rose, mists of Angel Falls in the background. That has to rank right on up there!
SHERIDA: Wow! What an experience! My husband was born in Venezuela, but left when he was six-weeks old. He’d like to visit sometime, and we’ll put Salto Angel on our to-do-list of adventures. And now to ask May a question! What jewel of a moment in your spy adventures would you like to tell us about?
MAY THE K9 SPY: Miss Sherida ~ I’m wiggling my whole self! You saved best for last! BOL!
There are so many things I could mention but then, they’re classified.
The best thing I can say is, no matter how dark things look, there is always hope. Opportunity is on the way, and usually when and where you least expect it. Like when Dad and Mom rescued me from the evil Rukan. In real life, it happened pretty much the way we tell it in my first book. Things were bleak but the Creator had a plan that I was unaware of. I thought He’d forgotten about me but not at all. He’d already set into motion events that took me away from that awful caged existence, into a pawmazing home and now… I’m a K9 Spy and author of a series of books! (I try to humor Mom and say she’s the author but… she’s just the transcriptionist. She has to type, since I have no thumbs.)
Thank you for your thoughtfulness to include me and my FURiends with the dee-licious fresh water and pawmazing pet treats. Yummo!
And now, hint-hint – it’s past time for toss and fetch, don’t you agree? *prance prance* Here’s my ball! Let’s go play!
I adore answering questions, and Mom does too. We’ll be at the ready to chat whenever you like.
Thank you again for asking us to be with you and your readers today!
SHERIDA: It’s been so interesting to hear about your rescue with the reminder that God has a plan for us all. Thank you so much for joining us for tea and water. Now May and I will head to the doggie park with her ball for a bit of exercise. Be sure to find out about May the K9 Spy’s Scavenger Hunt with the information given below and check out the link for Joshua’s Pet Treats for your FURiends!
Check out the rules and join May the K9 Spy’s Scavenger Hunt at May’s Blog Tour HQ!
May also has a “Lucky 7 Rewards for Reviewers” drawing happening this month! Grab a copy of the book(s), submit your review(s) on Amazon.com, and enter to win super cool prizes. Details can be found in May’s latest newsletter, or contact May’s publicist at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the Author:
KC Frantzen learned to speak critter at a young age. She and her husband volunteer with a variety of projects, including the Joni & Friends Wounded Warrior Getaway. They enjoy traveling just about anywhere, which helps formulate ideas for May the K9 Spy. The family lives in the country hills of middle Tennessee with two Arabian horses and several rescue dogs, including the real May.
Learn about Joni and Friends Wounded Warrior Getaways at www.joniandfriends.org.
Learn about the special doggie treats at www.Joshuaspettreatbakery.com.
A FINAL NOTE: I fell in love with suspense and mystery novels when my sixth grade teacher let me read her treasured Nancy Drew books. That is when I wrote my first story, Mystery of the Diamond Mountain Men, filled with romance and treasures! What mystery novels do you enjoy? Please leave a comment! Thanks for joining May, KC and me for TUESDAY TEA!