Saturday, March 8, 2014

Introducing H.K. Sterling

Please give a warm welcome to author H.K. Sterling who has their first book out at Breathless Press, A Taste for Killing.

Is there a genre you’d like to write?  Is there one you’ll probably stay away from?  Why?
I have yet to do my science fiction/speculative fiction/romance shorts book. That is the one I am salivating to do. I love writing very out there and science fiction is one of the genres that lets you do that.

You probably won't see me doing any historical pieces. I have lots of respect for authors that do, but it's just not my thing. Also, I don’t tend to write fantasy- paranormal maybe but not true fantasy with elves or other types of creatures. I tend to write about real people in everyday life, but who are then cast in extraordinary or paranormal circumstances. To me, I like to write (and read) something that I believe could actually happen, with just a little stretching of reality as we know it. I might even have non-humans in my book but in a believable basis.

Please tell us about your newest release and where the idea came from.
My newest release is called "A Taste For Killing."  This is the first in a series. The series is called "Chasing the Taste" and the second in the series has already been accepted for publication. It's called "Chasing the Taste" because everyone in the books, hero or criminal is after something. They aren't satisfied with their life in one way or another so they are always chasing after that one elusive element they think will make their life perfect.  All the books are called "A Taste of –". For example, the sequel to this is called "A Taste for Danger."

I honestly have no ideas where my ideas come from. I can say I tend to go dark if I don’t tone myself down and I have a bent towards anything covert. I find those easiest to write and I love twist and surprise endings.

What kind of research did you do for this book?
The kind where I thought for the first time, "Wow, this is what writers mean when they say their internet history could get them in trouble."  LOL I can't give away exactly what I had to look up as it would be a spoiler, but it wouldn’t look good in my internet history.

If this book was made into a movie, who do you see playing the main characters?
Oh, cool question. Well, there are two main characters and these two will be in all the books, though at times one may dominate the book while the other plays a more supporting role. Both of the characters are detectives. Let's see....I think James Spader is an awesome actor and he can go dark too, he might be good for the male detective. The male detective is about ten years older than the female and he can have some darker moments unlike the female. I love writing anti-heroes! James might be too old now though. Let's say a little bit younger James Spader. The James Spader from Boston Legal. LOL  Actually, now that I thought about it a little more I would cast Michael Weatherly (from NCIS). He's the right age and highly underrated as an actor. He can go from dark to light to poignant to comedy- whatever you throw at him. He'd be perfect for the male detective.

The female detective is a woman of today but she has self-confidence issues so you will see those come out from time to time. However, she grows, both in this book and through-out the series. For her, I could see Natalie Portman or maybe Charlize Theron.

How do you come up with characters names?
My other pen name used relative's names but that was a one time/one series thing just for fun.  For me, sometimes the names are random, something I feel suits the personality; sometimes they are metaphorical, and at times I just need a name and look around for inspiration to find one that fits.

What do you do in your free time?
What little free time I have I spend with my husband.

How much of your own personality bleeds into your characters?
None.  All of this comes from my head.

Do you have a list of movies like me that you are itching to see or have seen? What about ones coming up? Any that draw your eye to it?
My husband and I are old now LOL we don’t go to see movies much. We rent them on TV (when we can ever agree on one). I tend to like oddball movies. But I also like good thrillers, for example RED and its sequel. Also, like the rest of the world, I loved the Harry Potter movies. They have no age to them.

You are hosting a dinner party. If given the chance to invite characters from other series, who would you invite?
Hmm, I would arrange an arena and line up the Harry Potter Cast against the Twilight cast and see who came out alive.

If you only had twenty dollars in your pocket, what would you buy?
If I only have twenty dollars, I'm not buying anything. However, if I have money at all and go into a bookstore, I never leave without buying tons of books. I have to hide my credit cards from myself if a bookstore trip is coming up. And then there's Amazon... the handy book crack anytime you want it. Oy

Of all your heroes that you’ve written, is there one that you love above all?
Well, there's one under my other pen name that I like but he has a lot more development to go through in that series so my favorite would probably be the male detective in this series. You see him more in the sequel, "A Taste For Danger."

What’s the most interesting way you got around a plot problem?
I lie down and close my eyes and let my mind go free and the answers always present themselves.

If you owned a bookstore, what book would you make sure was in stock?
All the odd little interesting ones that get overlooked! And books that I think other people should read because they are great. For example, all of Madeline L'engel for kids.

What is next for you? Anything you want to mention?
This book, "A Taste For Killing" comes out then I have an accepted short called "Eyes Only" that will be coming out soon. I am excited about that one. Then the sequel, "A Taste For Danger" should come out this year too and I'm excited about that. Then there is the science fiction book I plan to write, but first I am finishing the sequel in a New Adult series under my other pen name. Oh, and I also am one of six people that started up and are putting out a new magazine called Innovate. We just put out our second issue today. I also write poetry and that comes out in magazines from time to time.

I have to say I am looking forward most to the covert books. I'm really into writing those. Hopefully the audience will be too!

A Taste for Killing by H.K. Sterling
Romantic Suspnse
Breathless Press
Available at  Amazon / ARe / Publisher

Mystery and Romance blend together when competing detectives Carolyn Woods and Jack Heart find they are surrounded by murder on every side.

Mystery and Romance blend together when competing detectives Carolyn Woods and Jack Heart are both hired to solve the murder of Pete Wallace, only to realize they are working the same case. To complicate things, Carolyn and Jack have an on again-off again relationship. Then there is Evan Jones, a handsome architect— but he's also a suspect. Can Carolyn manage to solve the case as more and more murders pile up? Will her relationship with Jack hinder their investigations? And what about Evan Jones? He seems like the perfect man, but could he actually be the murderer? One thing is for sure: someone close to both Carolyn and Jack has A Taste For Killing.
Teaser excerpt:

He had six-pack abs, and I wanted to feel the carbonation. This one dressed like the stereotype of a construction worker, down to the handkerchief he used to wipe sweat off his forehead. I don't know if he or the hot day brought it out, but sweat poured off of me too. He had no interest in me as a person, though. I was invading his territory. Still, I enjoyed the view. For my part, I knew my clothes looked crappy. I didn’t have to wear uniforms anymore, but my street clothes, well they were very—street. So there I stood, a turd in the sun in front of this Adonis. Oh well.
He pointed to a small trailer up a muddy hill. The supervisor I asked to see apparently stayed in there. Stayed, as in never left. Great. Mud. Now I'd be a dried turd in the sun. Adonis went back to digging and I started the trek up the hill. At least I came with boots. Steel toed.
Once I made it to the trailer, I heard an argument going on inside.
"Look, I don't care who you are. The plans are publically filed. Go get them yourself!" yelled someone.
Then I heard a voice I knew. Calm, cool, subversive. "Is there any reason you're being so difficult? A man did die on your watch."
An encounter I hadn’t planned on. Well, at least not until later tonight. I knocked loudly on the door and with my sweetest voice said, "Hello, boys. Am I interrupting something?"
"Great," groused the supervisor. "A party." He appeared to me like another stereotype, puffing on a cigar over a fat jowl line and rotund stomach that threatened to overturn the small desk he was behind. I guess there's a reason for stereotypes. He looked about four hamburgers away from a heart attack.
On a wooden chair in front of the supervisor sat Jack. A fellow independent detective, an ally at times, a competitor...and my on and off lover.
"Well, well, well," he said smiling, but I could tell he wasn’t happy to see me. Not here. It meant we were both working the same case. "Hello, Carolyn. Who hired you?"
"Girlfriend," he answered back.
We stared at each other. Complications.
The supervisor didn’t give a damn and said to me, "Well, missy, I'll tell you the same thing I told this guy." He jerked his thumb around to Jack. "The plans are publically filed and that’s all I have to say about it."
I tried a different tactic. "That’s fine with me. I have no problem going downtown for a copy." I wore my practiced, saccharine smile. "But I wonder, could you tell me the name of the architect? Please?" I smiled again. God, this job sucks at times.
The supervisor sighed. "Jones, Evan Jones."
"Thank you so much," I said, smiling my best smile again. "I'll get out of the way and leave you two boys to...whatever you were doing."
I opened the door to go and started to shut it only to find Jack following me out.
"Sure, flash your tits and get what you want." Boy was he in a bad mood.
"There was no tit flashing in there. Face it, testosterone was not a good choice in that situation."
Jack's response: a grunt.
"Besides," I tried to placate him, "I didn’t get the plans either."
"No, you did one better."
"That's assuming the architect will have anything to do with me and cooperate." A thought occurred to me. "So are you going there too?"
"No, I might as well wait and see what you turn up. Besides, I have my own leads."
"Are you planning to share?" Just call me hopeful. As in full of shit, because that’s where hope always seemed to lead.
"No," he said, still grumpy.
"I see. So it's gonna be like that."
"I guess so."
 I felt like such a female. Damn. But I had to ask.
"Are we still on for tonight?"
I wasn’t convinced but didn’t push it. God, sometimes I hated myself. But we were good together—when it was good—when his competitive edge didn’t get the better of him. Though I was one to talk. I did the same thing at times. Hence our on and off status. But currently we were supposed to be on. So, I kept it light in the spirit of things to come.
"Okay, master detective, I'll leave you to your leads. See ya."
"See ya," he replied, already preoccupied, pondering a piece of paper he'd taken from his pocket.
I made my way down the hill in my muddy boots.

About the Author

H.K. Sterling is an author with Breathless Press known for stories with imagination, intelligence, a kick, and twist endings. H.K. likes to focus her writing on suspense, science-fiction, shorts, and anything that is spicy and unexpected. Sometimes her writing may even go dark. H.K. lives in Virginia with her husband who graciously puts up with her passion for writing. H.K. currently has a Mystery/Thriller out: A Taste For Killing; and two short stories in the Breathless Press Anthology: My Bloody Valentine. Her new book, A Taste For Danger has just been accepted for publication and H.K will also soon publish a short-short titled Eyes Only. H.K.'s books are suitable for 18+. You can contact H.K. on the following social media:

Catch up with H.K. Sterling on the following media:

Twitter: @HKSterling



HK Sterling "Undercover Blog":



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