SPOTLIGHT on KATY REGNERY

katy regnery

Have you read The English Brothers series?!? This is how I was introduced to Katy Regnery and I. AM. HOOKED!!! Want flawless writing, intriguing stories and characters that stay with you LONG after you have finished the book?? You need to pick up Katy’s books. You will not be disappointed. Katy took some time to answer our questions this week and we are THRILLED to have her!! Find out more about Katy!

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20 QUESTIONS FOR KATY REGNERY

1. Have you always wanted to be a writer?

To be honest, I didn’t even take my first writing class until January of 2012, but I fell in love with writing right away! By September 2012, I had written my first book, and in September 2013 my debut novel, By Proxy, was published.

2. Has it become a full time job for you, or do you have another profession?

It is my full-time job. Since September 2013, I have published a total of 18 books. And this year, I will publish five or six more! I can’t imagine adding another job to my plate. However, I am a full-time stay-at-home mom of two, as well.

3. You’re writing style is very unique. The way you bring your books jumps you straight into the story. Talk to us about your writing style and where it takes you.

Thank you! What a great compliment!

When I am writing, the story unfolds like a movie in my head. I watch the movie and record what I see going on. How one character looks at another, how that look makes them feel, what it makes them want. I watch love stories in my head all day long.

4. I would think that writing is something that happens when inspiration strikes as opposed to a 9-5 job. Have you ever been in the middle of dinner with your family when an idea hits and you have to get to the computer stat?

LOL! Last night, I got out of the shower dripping wet, whipped a towel around my body, went to my office and sat down to outline a scene in my current book! The seat was wet when I finished and there were puddles where I was leaning my arms on the desk! But, I am also a disciplined writer and I do force myself to write five days a week for at least 3-4 hours a day.

5. Not one of the books in the English Brothers series is similar. Each one stands alone. When you write about the same family, and release the books so closely together, how do you manage to keep it fresh?

That’s a huge compliment too – thank you! You know, I saw each of these brothers – Barrett, Fitz, Alex, Stratton and Weston…and their cousin, Kate, as such distinct, individual people. Since my writing is mostly character-driven, it’s important for me to make them all unique, and I think that ensures that the stories are unique too.

6. Are there any characters you relate the most to in your books?

I think there’s a part of me in every character…like Kate English and Valeria Campanile, I struggle with my weight. Like Stratton English, I can sometimes feel out of place in social situations. Like Barrett English, I can be very one-track minded about my work. But one of my all-time favorite characters is Jane Mays from See Jane Fall, part of my Heart of Montana books. She has this mix of confidence and insecurity that really resonated with me.

7. What are your biggest distractions?

My family. I love them and I have an “open door” policy with my office, which is in the back of our house, beside my daughter’s bedroom. There is an almost-constant stream of interruptions while I’m writing, but I write through it. I pause and chat, then go back to writing. I’ve learned how to adapt to interruptions (right now:  “Mom! Tomorrow’s the one hundredest day for kindergarteners, did you know that?”) and multi-task through them.

8. What is your least favorite part of the writing or publishing process?

I love writing. I don’t mind editing and polishing. I love publishing. I ADORE my readers and fans. There is even a part of me that loves the sales and marketing component of self-publishing, because it gets me out there meeting people, strategizing to get my books out there. But, I have not enjoyed setting up new bank accounts, figuring out taxes, and keeping track of my expenses. Boooor-ing.

9. Do you find it difficult, or challenging to write from the male POV?

I *absolutely* love it. Listen, I was a wall flower for many years, and I while I waited, I watched. I watched people’s faces – but mostly boy’s faces when I liked them. Smirky smiles, genuine smiles, brave smiles, heartbroken smiles, jerky smiles, snarky smiles. Those smiles told me the short bullets of his thoughts. “She’s hot.” “She likes me.” “I want her to like me, but I don’t know if she does.” “She’s a joke.” “She’s not hot, but she’ll do in a pinch.” “She likes my friend.” “I wish she liked me more.” One boy could have a hundred smiles and if he fascinated me, I’d catalogue them all. And even now…I can recall them.

10. When writing a series like the English Brothers, do you know where it is going to head? For example, did you always know what would happen with Kate and Ètienne?

Again, because my stories are character-driven, I’m not as plot-oriented. So, I know that Kate will begin as an insecure, overweight, highly-successful business woman who longs for love…and I want Kate to get to a place where she’s in a secure romance, embracing her curves with a man who loves her for who she is. And Etienne…I know he will begin as anti-romance, free of commitment, and misunderstood, and by the end, I want him to be the King of Romance, the King of Commitment, and understood by the woman he loves. Once I’ve created the character arcs, the story comes together pretty quickly, and I LOVE using classic structures…like “Romeo & Juliet” or “Beauty & the Beast” – I have so much fun with my structures!

11. Do you have a favorite author?

Oh, man. My first favorite romance author was Lisa Kleypas, and she probably held the top spot for two or three decades until I found Bella Andre, who I absolutely adore. I also read everything Mia Sheridan writes and I swear she can do no wrong. I also love Amy Harmon and Penny Reid. And I buy almost everything by Colleen Hoover and Christina Lauren too.

12. Ever think you have a great idea for a book, only to find out someone released the same storyline already?

It happens. It’s especially frustrating when you have no idea the other book existed and the comparisons start showing up in reviews. You want to be like “We both had the same idea! Nobody could have copied someone else that fast!” LOL!

13. Do you have multiple stories swimming in your head at once?

Yes. I am working on two at once right now–Never Let You Go (which is a Hansel & Gretel reboot) and Bidding on Brooks (the first in my Winslow Brothers series.) And frankly, the other Winslow Brother stories are swimming around in there too!

14. If you could pick one favorite scene you wrote, what would it be?

Oh, wow. Great question. There is a scene in the beginning of The Vixen and the Vet when Asher and Savannah have dinner in “the grove,” which is this really charming outdoor living room hidden in the woods at the back of his property. It described really romantically and they have their first kiss. I loved picturing that scene. I want a grove, too!

15. What does your writing workspace look like?

I have a corner desk, so I face the wall beyond my screen. To my right is a window that looks out on the woods. To my left is an air conditioner. Above my desk is a bulletin board that has reminder, work lists, publication lists, drawings by my kids, tickets to go see Meghan Trainor in concert, and all sort of other things.

16. Sharing your baby with the public has to be scary. How do you respond to negative reviews?

I’m not going to lie, it can sting. But, I will say this…it stung a LOT more in the beginning. You do toughen up over time. I try very hard to evaluate bad reviews for valuable constructive criticism and I’ve been known to even implement the criticism if I feel it’s valid. There is a one-star review for Breaking Up With Barrett that has a VERY long comment chain on Amazon because I edited the whole book based on that review, and readers really seemed to like it that I took the time to listen to their feedback. So, bad reviews aren’t all bad. As long as they’re not mean. MEAN reviews are a whole different thing…

17. If you could cast your books, whom would you choose?

I would cast Alex Pettyfer as Weston English and Kate Mara as Molly McKenna…but that’s one of the only couples I ever wrote who I “saw” as actors! Mostly I use models in my fantasy casts. Although my inspiration for Kate English was the crowned princess of Sweden! She just had the right look!

18. Can you tell us what you are working on next?

Yes! I am working on the second book in my “a modern fairytale” series, Never Let You Go, which is loosely based on “Hansel & Gretel.” It’s a tough book because it has some very serious themes: foster care, kidnapping, and abuse, in particular, which makes it my grittiest book yet. But that gritty setting does make the reunion of the characters REALLY powerful. I am also one-quarter of the way through Bidding on Brooks, The Winslow Brothers #1, which is ADORABLE! Tomboy and boat mechanic, Skylar, and gorgeous ex-Olympic sailor, Brooks, are thrown together for a week on a very small boat. Things heat up pretty quick! 🙂

19. What is in your purse right now?

Wallet, Jockery battery, iPhone cord, pens, hairbrush, tampons, a small carved loon, ear buds, Ray-Ban sunglasses, prescription tri-focals, nail file, and a plastic Penguins of madagascar ring leftover from my daughter’s birthday party.

20. Where do you hope your writing career is in 10 years?

I’m dying to make a bestseller list. I just think that would be the coolest thing ever. But, as long as I’m still writing love stories every day 10 years from now, I’ll consider my career a success.

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BOOKS BY KATY REGNERY

breaking up with barrett

Breaking Up with Barrett is the first of six books about the Philadelphia-based, wildly-handsome English brothers who are all on the look-out for love.

(Except Alex. He’s a womanizing manwhore. And maybe Stratton, because he’s wicked hot, but super awkward around girls.)

Barrett English, aka “the Shark,” is the fair-haired, first-born of the English brothers, and the CEO of the oldest, most prestigious investment banking firm in Philadelphia. He rules the boardroom with an iron fist, refusing to take no for an answer and always getting his way.

Emily Edwards, a first-year doctoral student at the University of Pennsylvania, grew up in the gatehouse on the outskirts of Barrett’s childhood estate. The daughter of his family’s gardener and housekeeper, she was always looking through the window of privilege, but forced to remember her place at the very periphery of the kingdom.

When business partners suggest that a fiancee might soften Barrett’s image over business dinners, he approaches Emily for the “job” of fiancee. And while love wasn’t necessarily on Barrett’s radar, he begins to realize that Emily always has been. But will his take-no-prisoners boardroom tactics work on the heart of the woman he loves?

BUY BUTTON

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falling for fitz Falling for Fitz is the second of six books about the Philadelphia-based, wildly-handsome English brothers who are absolutely not on the look-out for love.

(Except Barrett, who fell in love when he was eight-years-old. And Fitz, who met the girl of his dreams at nineteen. And maybe even Weston, who just doesn’t know it yet.)

Fitz English and Daisy Edwards fell in love during one magical summer when they were teenagers. When something tragic happens at the end of the summer, Daisy tells Fitz she never wants to see him again. Despite his feelings for her, he respects her wishes and for almost a decade Fitz and Daisy go their separate ways.

Nine years later, when Daisy moves home to Philadelphia, they meet again, and both are shocked to discover that the feelings they had that summer are just as deep and real today. There’s a little snag, however. It seems that Daisy is engaged to someone else, and she’s come home to get married.

Can Fitz gets Daisy to fall for him all over again before it’s too late? Only if Daisy can learn to trust the man who shattered her heart once upon a time.

BUY BUTTON

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anyone but alex Anyone but Alex is the third of six books about the Philadelphia-based, wildly-handsome English brothers who are all on the look-out for love.

(Sort of. Barrett and Fitz are officially off the market, Alex has sampled every piece of available ass from Rittenhouse Square to the Liberty Bell, Stratton can’t seem to see what’s right in front of him, and don’t even get me started on super hottie, Weston…)

Alex English, the well-known man whore of the country club set, has always preferred to play the field, eschewing a chance with Miss Right for a satisfying quickie with Miss Right-Now. But after seeing his two older brothers take the plunge, something has been aching inside of Alex, and no amount of casual sex seems to fill the void in his heart.

Jessica Winslow, whose older brothers are best friends with the English brothers, has returned home from a fifteen-year stay in England, only to find herself face-to-face with her childhood crush, Alex English, on her first night home. She’s heard all the rumors, but Jessie remembers the older boy who was so kind to her as a child, and can’t help reaching out to Alex in friendship.

Between disapproving brothers, scheming exes, and the biggest business deal of English & Sons’ illustrious history, Alex and Jessie’s budding romance is going to be put to the test. The question is…will it be strong enough to be their happily-ever-after?

BUY BUTTON

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seduced by stratton Seduced by Stratton is the fourth of six books about the Philadelphia-based, wildly-handsome English brothers who are all on the look-out for love.

(Except for Barrett, Fitz and Alex, because they’re taken. And Weston, who is still riding the ugly-love roller coaster with one of the Atwell sisters….)

Stratton English, the hottest, youngest, most devastatingly handsome CFO in Philadelphia, has a problem: women make him nervous. Really nervous. Catastrophically nervous. Socially awkward to an extreme, he’s apt to blurt out the first thing that comes to mind, and it’s rarely something a woman wants to hear. Quietly in love with his neighbor, Amy, he has no idea how to make his move, but he is committed to figuring out a way to seduce her.

Valeria Campanile, who Stratton knows through one of his four brothers, is a PhD candidate who moonlights as a dance instructor on the side. Ironically, even though Val studies Courtship Rituals, she can’t seem to find herself courted. Pursued by boys from the “old neighborhood” who promise to overlook the fact that she’s so smart, she longs to meet someone who romances her mind as well as her heart.

When Stratton helps Valeria with a financial problem, she is anxious to return the favor. But will Stratton, who needs Val’s expertise to win Amy, find himself seducing Val instead?

JENN’S REVIEW

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wild about weston Wild about Weston is the fifth of six books about the last of the Philadelphia-based, wildly-handsome English brothers who are all on the look-out for love.

(Wait a second! They’re definitely NOT all on the look-out for love anymore. Not if Emily, Daisy, Jess and Val have any say in the matter. Weston’s the last single English…oh, yeah. And Kate. Poor Kate…)

When Weston English’s girlfriend breaks up with him to move to Italy on the morning of his brother Fitz’s wedding, he fully expects to have a horrible day. What he doesn’t anticipate is meeting Molly McKenna at the reception.

Daisy’s friend, Molly, whose fiance dumped her the night before the wedding, decides to throw caution to the wind and eschew her schoolteacher persona for a wild, one-night stand with Weston.

From the ceremony to the cocktail hour, from dinner to dancing, from toasts to photos, Molly and Weston will discover that they have more in common than they could have guessed, and that some horrible endings lead to the happiest beginnings.

 JENN’S REVIEW

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kiss me kate Kiss Me Kate is the sixth of six books about the Philadelphia-based, wildly-handsome English brothers (and one lovely cousin!) who are all on the look-out for love.

Kate English, cousin to the beguiling English Brothers, has relocated to Philadelphia and now works with her cousins at English & Company. The problem with moving to Philly? It was where Kate met her first love, Etienne Rousseau. Since the move, Kate can’t seem shake the painful memories of a romance that broke her heart.

Etienne Rousseau, neighbor and arch-enemy of the English family, is recently single and has every intention of enjoying his newly-minted bachelor-status. That is…until his brother inks a deal with English & Company, forcing Etienne to work with his one-time lover, Kate English. Though he wants to hate the girl who once destroyed his life, he can’t deny the fierce attraction or hide the deep tenderness he still feels for Kate.

With vibrant flashbacks of their passionate, teenage love affair making it impossible to ignore their unresolved history, Kate and Etienne will commit to unraveling the secrets of their heartbreaking past to make way for a breathtaking future.

JENN’S REVEW

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by proxySometimes love finds you.

Stubbornly small-town Jenny Lindstrom has misgivings when she promises to stand proxy in her best friend’s wedding – misgivings that are fulfilled when tall, handsome Sam Kelley walks into the courthouse an hour late. In order to keep her promise, an afternoon favor turns into a weekend of startling but undeniable attraction, threatening the well-ordered world that keeps her heart at arm’s length from any more pain.

Sam’s plan is to fly to Livingston, Montana, take vows for his favorite cousin, and return to Chicago as quickly as possible. But his plan is turned upside-down when he must spend a weekend with Jenny in Gardiner to keep his word. He doesn’t want to fall for the prim, proper schoolteacher whose small-town life seems to him like selling out, but the more time he spends with her, the harder it is to say good-bye.

When city and country come together for Christmas, the unexpected gift is true love.

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The christmas wishWaitress Tess Branson has earned a bad reputation, and the nickname “Fast Tessie,” as result of her poor judgement where men are concerned. With a body that matured early, Tess learned from a young age that men – of all ages – were interested in one thing from her. But all Tess has ever really wanted was to connect with someone special – to mean something to someone.

Lucas Flynn, the short order cook at the restaurant where Tess works, has just been released on parole. He’s trying to get his life back on track, but can’t help noticing the pretty waitress who treats him kindly, despite his past. At Lucas’s urging, Tess makes a wish on a star, but they’ll have to rely on the magic of Christmas to help it come true.

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midsummer sweetheart Erik Lindstrom never had much faith in love. He saw his parents’ marriage collapse and  vowed to avoid the same anguish himself. His fiercely protective nature drew him to a career in law enforcement, where he’s managed to keep himself and his heart safe…until now.

Katrin Svenson is in danger. After leaving her home in secret, her only hope for safety seems to lie in the hands of a man who has steeled himself against her deep blue eyes and sunny  smile.

During the annual celebration of Midsommardagen, sparks fly between the officer and the nurse, and those sparks turn to fire as Katrin melts the ice surrounding Erik’s heart. Yet a dark force, determined to tear the young lovers apart, must  be vanquished before their sweet midsummer nights can turn into a sweet forever.

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see jane fallWhen Trend magazine contracts Lindstrom & Sons to manage a fashion shoot in Yellowstone, easygoing Lars Lindstrom rolls his eyes. “Babysitting” supermodel Samara Amaya’s assistant sounds like a snore, even amidst the park’s lush wildlife and scenery. Little does he know that Jane Mays, Samara’s down-to-earth, smart-mouthed assistant and cousin, will be the most exciting person he’s ever met. Her smoky voice and surprisingly sweet heart rock his world.

Jane has been hurt before, but this time it’s right. From loving the same music to their effortlessly sexy sparring, her handsome new tour guide gets her–and Jane is getting Lars right back until Samara blows into town. Used to living in her cousin’s shadow, Jane knows Lars will be nothing more than a notch in a bedpost if the spoiled supermodel has her way. In the past, maybe she would have stepped aside. This time she’ll find the strength to stand up to Samara once and for all…and trust that Lars will be there to catch her if she falls.

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meeting ms mystic High school principal Paul Johansson has never been lucky in love, which is too bad, because few men in Montana are more naturally romantic. Then his friend Maggie signs him up for Internet dating, and while Paul is initially furious, he’s soon blown away by Holly Morgan, a blonde, blue-eyed art teacher from Connecticut. She might just be the girl of his dreams.

Zoe Flannigan–aka Holly Morgan–totally forgot about the account she set up two years ago on Meet-the-One.com. In fact, after an accident that left her physically and emotionally scarred, she hasn’t been up for meeting or dating anyone. Until Paul. Handsome, sweet, and too-good-to-be-true… But while the built-in anonymity of the Internet offers a buffer, she can’t hide in cyberspace forever, either from Paul’s expectations or from herself. There’s a
journey she must take, and at the end of it will be a love as beautiful and boundless as the wide Montana sky.

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what were you expectingDeep in the heart of Montana, Nils Lindstrom and Maggie Campbell learn that friends can become lovers, and true love can heal even the deepest wounds.

Nils Lindstrom and Maggie Campbell have been circling each other for years. A strong attraction simmers between them, and their hearts beat only for each other. But a tragic secret keeps them apart.

Out of the blue, Maggie learns her U.S. visa has expired and she’ll be deported. Nils offers marriage under guise of a favor, but only if they can just remain friends. Despite the whisperings of his heart, falling in love again is a risk he won’t take. Yet, regardless of how it begins, marriage can take on a life of its own–and true love is more powerful than either Maggie or Nils ever expected.

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the vixen and the vet In this modern-retelling of “Beauty and the Beast,” Savannah Carmichael, betrayed by an unreliable source, returns to her hometown of Danvers, Virginia with her once-promising journalism career in ruins. Given the opportunity to get back in the game by writing a patriotic human interest piece, Savannah turns her attention to the town hermit, Asher Lee, a wounded veteran who returned to Danvers eight years ago, and hasn’t been seen since.

After an IED explosion in Afghanistan took Asher’s hand and disfigured half of his face, he’s lived a quiet life on the outskirts of Danvers where the locals respect his privacy…that is, until Savannah Carmichael comes calling in a borrowed sundress with a plate of homemade brownies. When Asher agrees to be interviewed by Savannah, he starts feeling things for the beautiful reporter that he hasn’t felt in years.

Misfits in small-town Danvers, Savannah and Asher create a bond right away, touching each other’s hearts in ways neither thought possible. When a terrible mistake threatens to drive them apart, they’ll have to decide if the love they found in one another’s arms is strong enough to fight for their hard-won happily ever after.

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playing for love at deep haven

Violet Smith and Zach Aubrey have history…

…the kind of history he regrets and she wishes she could forget.

She was the girl. The only girl. Ever.

Nine years have passed since successful, brilliant songwriter, Zach, slept with, then walked away from, his best friend, Violet. But that doesn’t change the fact that he’s never gotten over her.

He shattered her heart.

Despite the years that have passed, chick-lit novelist, Violet, vividly recalls the pain of Zach’s rejection, and hates that she’s never been able to completely let go of the brooding boy who turned his back on her.

When the rocker and the writer find themselves thrown back together in a strange twist of fate, their chemistry is just as scorching as ever, but old wounds don’t just disappear. Even if Zach can explain why he walked away from Violet, can she find the courage to trust him again? Together they will discover if a love that broke them both is worth a second chance at forever.

Playing songs, playing for keeps…
…Playing for Love at Deep Haven

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the wedding date
Curvy, vulnerable Jasmine Turner has never had much luck with men and doesn’t believe in true love. When she grudgingly accepts an invitation to her sister’s wedding, the last thing she expects is to be seated beside gorgeous, teasing Robert Callahan.

Finding herself attracted to the handsome swimmer and won over by his kindness, Jasmine lets herself fall for the first time in her life. But, even if she can overcome her fears and give him a chance to win her heart, will Robert’s checkered past be a problem for the young couple?

Based on beloved characters found in Lucy Kevin’s charming Four Weddings and a Fiasco series, The Wedding Date tells the story of Anne Fairleigh’s half sister, Jasmine Turner and  Robert Callahan.

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katy regnery

Katy Regnery, award-winning and Amazon bestselling author, started her writing career by enrolling in a short story class in January 2012. One year later, she signed her first contract for a winter romance entitled By Proxy.

Now a hybrid author who publishes both independently and traditionally, Katy claims authorship of the six-book Heart of Montana series, the six-book English Brothers series, and a Kindle Worlds novella entitled “Four Weddings and a Fiasco: The Wedding Date,” in addition to the standalone novels, Playing for Love at Deep Haven and Amazon bestseller, The Vixen and the Vet.

The Vixen and the Vet is included in the charity anthology Hometown Heroes: Hotter Ever After, and Katy’s novella “Frosted” will appear in the upcoming (Jan ’15) anthology, Snowy Days Steamy Nights. Additionally, Katy’s short story, “The Long Way Home” will appear in the first RWA anthology (Feb ’15), Premiere.

Katy lives in the relative wilds of northern Fairfield County, Connecticut, where her writing room looks out at the woods, and her husband, two young children, and two dogs create just enough cheerful chaos to remind her that the very best love stories begin at home.

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