March 24, 2016

Author Patricia Fry - Guest Post and Spotlight

I would like to welcome Patricia Fry to my blog today. She has a cozy mystery series called the Klepto Cat Mystery Series. 

Guest Post:
I’ve been writing for publication as a career for over forty years, having hundreds of articles and more than fifty books to my credit. Many of my books are designed to help other authors publish and promote their own books. I adore the process of writing. I tell people I can’t not write. And it’s true. But I’ve never had as much fun pursuing this profession as when I started writing fiction.

It was June of 2012 and I wanted to give myself a special birthday gift. Most of my same-age friends were retired by then. And I wondered, how do you retire from something you love? I decided, you don’t. You just change it up to add new dimensions of joy.

You see, I’d always been a give-me-the-facts-ma’am kind of writer. I earned my living through informational, how-to, profile pieces, and other types of nonfiction articles. I wasn’t particularly interested in fiction until clients started bringing me their fiction to edit. That’s when I realized I had a knack for helping them improve their stories and I began dreaming of someday trying my hand at writing fiction. So why not now—as a birthday gift to myself?

It didn’t take me long to decide I’d write a cozy mystery with cats. I love that sort of light reading. And I adore cats. After much thought and a few false starts, Catnapped, the first Klepto Cat Mystery was created.

Recently, I was interviewed by a Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reporter for a story on talking versus silent cats in fiction. I’ll bet you didn’t know there was such a controversy or even enough of an interest in cat fiction to create a discussion like this. Well there is. And this story landed on the front page of the WSJ.

To be clear, the cats in my books do not talk. They’re ordinary cats—some of them with rather extraordinary habits. Ragsdale (a.k.a Rags), the starring cat character in the Klepto Cat Mystery series, was patterned after my mother’s large, grey-and-white cat, Smokey. I chose him because he’s curious, funny, confident, clever, and rather creative. He’s determined to have his way, whether it’s to go outside, dump his basket of toys over for the umpteenth time, or catch a lizard. He isn’t a kleptomaniac, however and he doesn’t carry things around in his mouth like my cat character, Rags. But our kitty, Lily, does. So I’ve combined her habit of stealing things with Smokey’s personality, demeanor, and looks; and further developed Rags.

Now, while Rags has a variety of feline, canine, and equine friends, it’s the human characters that drive these Klepto Cat Mysteries. Readers seem to like Savannah, her veterinarian husband Michael, her crusty aunt Margaret, her flashy friend Iris, the sometimes cranky Detective Sledge, and the other characters who flow in and out of the various stories. But they especially enjoy the cat antics, following the mystery in each story, and experiencing the suspense. I often hear, “I sat down to read a few pages and couldn’t put the book down.”

We recently produced book number sixteen in the series, Cabin FURvor where Rags jumps out of a boat onto the back of a dead body floating in the lake one dark and scary night in the mountains. In A Picture-Purrfect Christmas, he rides a horse—with assistance, of course. While this wasn’t his idea, he goes along with the program.

How many books will I write in this series? As many as I can imagine. And then, I may consider developing a new series. For the fans who are devouring these books, I can’t see to the end of the series. So watch for a new story every three months or so.

See all of the Klepto Cat Books here: or at the Amazon page here:

A cozy mystery featuring a kleptomaniac cat. Beloved neighborhood cats are missing—the community can only guess at their fate—and Aunt Margaret’s life is being threatened. Is it because she has a clue to the missing cats or is it something more sinister? Of course, as in all of the Klepto Cat Mysteries, Rags, an ordinary cat with a most unusual habit, has a paw in saving the day. Beloved neighborhood cats are missing—the community can only guess at their fate—and Aunt Margaret’s life is being threatened. Is it because she has a clue to the missing cats or is it something more sinister? Of course, as in all of the Klepto Cat Mysteries, Rags, an ordinary cat with a most unusual habit, has a paw in saving the day.

Savannah and Aunt Margaret open the old Forster home to the Hammond Cat Alliance for a fundraiser to help rehabilitate the abused horses rescued months earlier from the catnappers. Before the afternoon is over, the funds collected go missing and someone is murdered in an upstairs bedroom. Suspicion surrounds Iris, a local waitress and Savannah’s new best friend. The only witness to the murder is Rags, Savannah’s cat. With the assistance of a cat psychic and Rags’s good friend, Charlotte (the young girl with Downs), the cat helps to “paw” the killer…but not before an attempt is made on Rags’s life. The case is solved only after Rags comes face-to-face with the killer for the second time under most unusual circumstances

Michael Ivey, the local veterinarian (Savannah’s new husband) is attacked by an enraged client and then later accused of this man’s murder. The evidence quickly stacks up against Michael, until Rags, Savannah’s kleptomaniac cat, starts digging up clues implicating the unlikely suspect. Coinciding with the details of this challenge is the discovery that the old house, which the couple purchased from Savannah’s aunt, is cursed. Is this why the couple has not been blessed with a child? Savannah’s sister Brianna comes for a visit. She teams up with the Iveys’ vet tech, Bud, to discover how to break the gypsy spell and they fall hard for each other. Will their courtship be strengthened or weakened by a frightening carjacking incident?

Rags, the klepto cat, risks his life in this action-packed story. Colbi Stanton, a popular journalist, goes missing just before turning in her story exposing unscrupulous cat hoarders. Damon (freshly out of prison and employed by the local newspaper) has a strong personal interest in her and he breaks some rules and some trusts in his search for Colbi. Is this a love connection? It’s doubtful because Colbi is a strong advocate for the feral cat population and Damon hates cats—or so he believes. Colbi’s rescue is almost too late. She needs time to heal, and her friends, Savannah and Michael Ivey invite her to recuperate in their home. Just when Colbi begins to feel safe, a body is discovered in the Iveys’ orchard and Rags (their kleptomaniac cat) goes missing. Someone in a nearby homeless camp sheds light on the mystery and Rags shares a secret of his own.

Savannah Ivey, a veterinarian out on maternity leave; her aunt Margaret, the founder of the Hammond Cat Alliance; and Colbi Stanton, a reporter for the local newspaper take on a cat colony at an old, abandoned building. Odd activity around the place makes them wonder if it actually is vacant; some believe it’s occupied by something other-worldly. When a stranger comes to town and suggests the Alliance open the old building to a fund-raiser, everyone gets involved, including Rags, Savannah’s kleptomaniac cat. He finds something that day that stirs a lot of people—both law-abiding and crooks—into action. Are the feral cats and their caretakers in serious danger? What (or who) lurks inside the old building? What secrets does it hide? And who has the key that unlocks the mystery?

The klepto cat opens a new bag of tricks in this fast-paced story. Rags, the kleptomaniac cat, becomes a therapy cat in a children’s reading program. A documentary film crew arrives to capture the cat in action. Savannah and Michael Ivey invite strangers into their home during a torrential rainstorm and learn that one of them has a sinister past. Someone is murdered, Savannah is stalked, Michael’s life is threatened, and Rags helps to solve an old mystery that’s had local authorities baffled for years. A fast-paced story with many twists and turns.

Rags goes on high alert and high adventure to help nab a horse-napper. Savannah’s horse goes missing and Rags, the klepto cat, goes into mourning. Savannah and her friends spend days on horseback searching for Peaches over miles of dense wilderness. Along with a few dead-end clues, they stumble upon Elsie, a most unusual elderly woman living under dangerously primitive conditions. Elsie harbors secrets—some of which may lead to the recovery of Savannah’s horse, but only after Rags puts his claws into the matter and Detective Craig Sledge gets involved. This story is full of sweet and evil surprises, unexpected twists and turns, and plenty of action and adventure.

Rags digs deep into his bag of tricks to bring you a suspenseful and hilarious tale. An old friend of Michael’s, whose become a successful artist, invites the entire Ivey family to his beach house. But their vacation is not all fun-and-games. It appears that someone is out to get the artist and the Iveys and their friends keep stumbling upon clues to the tangled mystery. Rags is up to his old klepto tricks, and it’s a good thing because, not only do his uncat-like antics prove to be amusing, he manages to save two lives. Enjoy some of your favorite human and animal characters as well as a few new ones, all of them giving this story a light and rich quality.

Rags, the klepto cat, shakes things up when he exposes an unlikely skeleton in the closet. The documentary featuring Rags, the cat who helps the local sheriff’s department solve tough crimes, premiers in San Francisco. Savannah, Michael and friends expect to enjoy a luxury weekend at a mansion there, but Rags has other plans. He goes exploring and goes missing. Savannah and Aunt Margaret find themselves knee deep in danger when they launch out to find him and he discovers something that shocks the community. What ghastly secret does the mansion hold?

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