The Magic City

The Magic City

Friday, April 24, 2015

Feline Destroyer of Toes, Rocket and Blix, Report on Debut Author Sally Kilpatrick and The Happy Hour Choir

Welcome, loyal subjects! We, Nelson J. Rocketfellar and Dietrich Bon Blixenhoeffer, Destroyer of Toes, are taking over Fuzzy Friday. You may call us Rocket and Blix. We haven’t even lived with these humans a whole year, but we have learned much about human behavior that we can report back to the feline community. We are particularly fond of our servant, The OneWho Taps. She feeds us, buys us treats, fishes our toy mice out from under the sofa, and is most likely to clean out our litter box.

What is your momma currently reading?
Rocket—She is reading all sorts of things. When she isn’t tapping on the odd folded thing, she always has a book. Sometimes we have to step over her Kindle or step between her and the book to remind her to shower us with the love and attention we truly deserve. At the moment we have interrupted Shades of Milk and Honey by Mary Robinette Kowal, Sweetwater Blues by Raymond Atkins, The Perfect Man by Cecilia Dominic, and Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. She’s also trying to read this book with almost all of the works of Flannery O’Connor, but we keep chewing on the fancy ribbon bookmark.

The most recent thing we did to get in trouble? Who, Us?
Blix—Well, *I* am a very good cat, but my sister Rocket is always into some mischief or another. She has taken to singing the song of our people in the wee morning hours, and I don’t think the humans like that. She also managed to swallow some string resulting in quite the predicament for The One Who Taps. I, as noted above, like to pounce upon unsuspecting toes, but that is the extent of my vices.

What are your observations of momma’s writing?
Rocket—Yes, well the Destroyer of Toes likes to nap in a chair beside The One Who Taps, but I prefer to waltz over her laptop keys from time to time in order to ensure quality control of her writing. Once, she spread a manuscript out by chapters on the floor. We helped her put those chapters in a new, more interesting order. Sometimes she reads aloud what she’s written. For the most part it’s pretty good, but we lay our ears back from time to time if the prose isn’t flowing properly.

What is your momma writing now?
Blix—The One Who Taps has been doing lots of revisions and edits this spring. We can tell. When she drafts she wears that blanket thing, but when she revises she paces and mumbles to herself a lot. She’s written some articles and is working on something she calls The Baptist Wife Swap. I don’t think the publisher is going to let her keep that title. I preferred the book she finished in January, Better Get to Living, and the one she’s doing copy edits on, Bittersweet Creek, because both of those have cats. Bittersweet Creek even has a cat on the cover.

Ah, Yes, Our Momma’s Latest Release and Why You Should Buy It
Rocket—We are rather fond of The Happy Hour Choir. I like to climb into the boxes of Advanced Reader Copies. Both my sister and I especially like to chew on the boxes. You need to buy the book by The One Who Taps is because then she will be able to buy us more treats and maybe more of those toy mice we keep batting under the couch and the entertainment center. We also want her to keep writing so she’ll keep getting boxes for us to chew on. Here’s a little snippet of a scene. Make sure to do the voices when you read—that’s what The One Who Taps does.

Excerpt from The Happy Hour Choir

…I was playing one of my favorites from Ginger’s old New Orleans records when he walked in.
            I had eyes. I could appreciate a superb male specimen just as well as the next person, but this guy wasn’t your garden variety Fountain patron. In his polo and khakis, he stood out like Dom Pérignon and caviar at a Yessum County High School football game. He also stood about a foot taller than everyone else in the place.
             Despite my superior powers of observation—and that while playing the piano—the guys and gals never noticed but went on playing poker and pool, laughing and clapping. Old Man MacGregor took another drag of his cigarette, and Pete Gates picked up his brother Greg by the collar, indicating they were ready for their first fist fight of the evening. Bill, of course, would serve a bull moose without batting an eyelash as long as said moose had cash. He passed the new guy a beer.
            Then Mr. Dom Pérignon looked my way, and he did one of those subtle double takes that never gets old. His eyes didn’t leave mine as he reached for the beer Bill offered him. I missed a note as I took in broad shoulders and how his bicep flexed when he reached for the bottle. A new guy in town could be just what I needed to liven up the summer.

More About Happy Hour Choir

From debut author Sally Kilpatrick comes a hopeful tale of love and redemption in a quiet Southern town where a lost soul finds her way with the help of an unlikely circle of friends…

Life has dealt Beulah Land a tough hand to play, least of all being named after a hymn. A teenage pregnancy estranged her from her family, and a tragedy caused her to lose what little faith remained. The wayward daughter of a Baptist deacon, she spends her nights playing the piano at The Fountain, a honky-tonk located just across the road from County Line Methodist. But when she learns that a dear friend’s dying wish is for her to take over as the church’s piano player, she realizes it may be time to face the music…

Beulah butts heads with Luke Daniels, the new pastor at County Line, who is determined to cling to tradition even though he needs to attract more congregants to the aging church. But the choir also isn’t enthusiastic about Beulah’s contemporary take on the old songs and refuse to perform. Undaunted, Beulah assembles a ragtag group of patrons from The Fountain to form the Happy Hour Choir. And as the unexpected gig helps her let go of her painful past—and accept the love she didn’t think she deserved—she just may be able to prove to Luke that she can toe the line between sinner and saint…


Indie: You can call Cat Blanco at 770-427-4848

Biography of The One Who Taps

Sally Kilpatrick lives in Georgia with her husband, Ryan, and her two children. We shall call these precious and precocious children The Hobbit and Her Majesty.
Her debut novel, The Happy Hour Choir will be released by Kensington on April 28, 2015.The Happy Hour Choir won the Duel on the Delta, finaled in the Maggie Awards for Excellence and was a 2012 Golden Heart® finalist. Sally has two other novels coming down the pike—think Shakespeare with cows (Bittersweet Creek, October 2015) and It’s a Wonderful Life in a funeral home (Better Get to Living, a 2013 Maggie finalist under the title Giving Up the Ghost).
A former Spanish teacher—because that’s what you do with an English major—Sally took an extended sabbatical when her husband gave her an application to Kennesaw State University’s Master of Arts in Professional Writing Program for Christmas 2007. (Best Christmas Present Ever!)
Sally is also the current president of Georgia Romance Writers.
For fun, Sally likes to read, write, run, and—you guessed it—sing in her church choir.

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  1. I'm rushing through my current book so I can start Happy Hour Choir once it hits my Kindle :)

    1. Heather - me too! I can't wait until Tuesday. Sally's voice is amazing!

    2. Thank you so much! I can't wait for you to read it.

  2. What a cute post! Congrats to Thew One Who Taps on her debut release.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Gail! Rocket and Blix are welcome back on the blog anytime - they are hilarious!

    2. Thanks, Gail. The cats say hello. They should say thank you for your kind words, but their expression suggests more of an "of course we're cute" sort of attitude.

  3. Great interview! Can't wait to pick up the Happy Hour Choir next week.

    1. Thanks for stopping by! Sally's writing won't disappoint

    2. Thanks, Stephanie! I appreciate that.

  4. These two sound like a handful ! Great interview and I love those book titles! Definitely going on my list!

    1. Thanks Louisa - Rocket and Blix have some cattitude!

    2. Well, Rocket was singing the song of her people again last night. *sigh* She does not understand the concept of Saturdays. Meanwhile, Blix decided it was time to play before I finished my coffee. Glad you like the titles, too!

  5. Congratulations on your debut book. It looks great. Can I ask, when did you sign your contract with Kensington? Friends and I have been discussing this of late - debut authors with contracts for paper releases.

    Thank you!

  6. Great question Mia! I have been wondering this myself. Thanks for stopping by the blog.

  7. Thanks! My Kensington story is a little funny. I actually pitched to Peter Senftleben back in October of 2010, but I wasn't agented at the time so I went to the slush pile. He was talking about first lines on Twitter back in 2013 and liked my first line to book 3. And then he asked if this was the book he had, and I almost passed out at the thought he remembered me from 3 years ago. Once I recovered, I had my agent query him with my novels and a few months later I sold all three with an option on #4. SO to answer your question. I sold in Oct 2013. Book 1 = April 2015, Book 2 = October 2015, Book 3 = June 2016. Now, that's a lot longer between sale and release than any of my past few friends, but there you go--that's my timeline.