Thursday, September 4, 2014

LoRee Peery Strikes an Over-the-Fence Interview with I.B. Nosey



NOSEY: Greetings, cybernuts. This is I.B. Nosey, your official unofficial reporter. Today I’m coming to you from… *pulls out colorful hanky and wipes at perspiring brow* Man, is it hot here! Where am I? In a jar of Texas Salsa?

MAN’S VOICE: What ya talkin’ ‘bout, pardner?

NOSEY: Say what? *spins around to see man astride a horse* Don’t tell me. I really am in Texas and your name… *points at man* is Salsa?



MAN: Nope.

NOSEY: Your horse is named Salsa?

MAN: Nope.

NOSEY: Then what are you doing in this interview?

MAN: Jest passin’ through. *peers at Nosey* Ain’t ye hyah to speak to Ms. LoRee Peery?

NOSEY: Uhh… I am? *sneaks peek at notepad* Oh, yeah. Heh heh. I am.

MAN: *sniffs* Takes all kinds, Ah reckon.

WOMAN’S VOICE CALLS: Whoo hoo, Nosey! Are you lost?

NOSEY: Me? Lost? *turns to see woman leaning against wooden fence railing* No way! I’m a professional, you know.

WOMAN: Yeah. *shrugs* But a professional what?

NOSEY: Uhh…

LP: C’mon. *gestures at Nosey* I’m LoRee Peery. You better leave Sneaky Sidewinder alone.

NOSEY: Who? *looks around*

LP: My neighbor. *whispers* You want to stay away from him.

NOSEY: *matches LP’s whisper* Why?

LP: Because I'm a woman and I say so.

NOSEY: Oh.

LP: Besides, you’re here to meet me. Remember?

NOSEY: ‘Course I do. *saunters over* Think I don’t know how to do my job, lady?

LP: Hm. Should I answer, or shouldn’t I?

NOSEY: Heh heh, what you should do is to tell everyone why you chose me, the ‘official unofficial’ reporter to do this interview. *puffs out chest* It’s because I’m the only Pukelitzer winning journalist on the net, right?

LP: But Nosey… *spreads palms in confusion* no one knows how you won that award. Care to reveal your secret?

NOSEY: Well, I— No, I don’t!

LP: Spoil sport. *sticks out tongue* Anyhow... *pats hair in place* let's forget you. This interview is about me.

NOSEY: *mutters under breath* Gee, some people can’t bear to share the spotlight.

LP: Therefore… *clears throat* I present my book. *picks up a copy off pile of books stacked in cart* Creighton’s Hideaway.

NOSEY: *stares* You brought along a whole stack?

LP: *gives innocent blink* An author’s got to be prepared for a flood of fans. 

NOSEY: Yeah? *looks around hopefully* Maybe they’ll want my autograph—

LP: Oh, puhlese! *reaches over to grab Nosey’s microphone* I’ll read the blurb, shall I?

NOSEY: Whadda ya doing? *grabs for microphone but LP steps back*

LP: Dear listening audience, I’m author LoRee Peery and I want to tell you about my wonderful story—

NOSEY: Gimme that! *struggles to climb fence, gets leg caught, and falls with an ‘oaf’ to ground*

LP: As I was saying, this book is about Creighton’s Hideaway and it goes like this: Needing to finish her thesis in order to keep her job working with youth in a residential treatment center, Shana Arnold sequesters herself on Creighton Rice’s Nebraska ranch. She expects the secluded hideaway to provide a peaceful environment. What she doesn't expect is to become the victim of identity theft and a crazed home invader. Creighton Rice has been content to live alone with his God--until he meets Shana. He's drawn to her, but must fight the attraction. Getting close makes him face a lifetime's accumulation of scars. Plus, Shana doesn’t share his faith. But when Shana's life is threatened, Creighton must protect her--even if it means letting her in. Will Shana discover that even when a woman loses everything, she can regain courage and strength through faith in God, and can Creighton allow God to heal scars and open the door to a lifetime with Shana?

LP: *looks at Nosey* Laying down on the job, are you?

NOSEY: *sneers* And a hardy har har to you too, missy. *sprints to feet* But since you were speaking of thieves… *snatches microphone back* 

LP: *glares* Weren’t you paying attention? What I said was that Shana becomes a victim of identity theft. That’s entirely different from me, a mere microphone borrower.

SNEAKY SIDEWINDER: He botherin’ ya, Ms. Peery?

NOSEY: *starts* Don’t sneak up on me, fella. *curls lip* And stop crowding. You're breathing down my collar.

LP: I’m fine, Sneaky. You go right on with what you’re doing. *turns to Nosey* And you continue with my interview.

NOSEY: Uh, well. Maybe. *steals glance at Sneaky, then nudges with elbow* Move along, Sidewinder. Nobody likes a spotlight hog.

SNEAKY ONLY WATCHES THROUGH SLITTED EYES

NOSEY: *tugs at Sneakiated-hot-breathed collar and moves closer to LP* Uhh… Ms. Peery. Er, what I wanna know is— uh, what kind of money could a thief make from stealing an identity? I mean, how smart can that be if he doesn’t even have any idea who he is?

LP: *nods* Have to hand it to you, Nosey. You’re in high form today.

NOSEY: Heh heh, you bet I am. By the way, you can also add how sharp I look in this new Be Nosey line of tailored tweedy-weedy blazer. *pivots like male model and knocks against Sneaky*

LP: *coughs* Hm. I’ll just answer the question, huh? Like, the first thing the perp did was wipe out Shana’s bank account.

NOSEY: *gasps* You mean she doesn’t have enough cash to buy one of my Be Nosey blazers?

LP: Not a cent. See, little by little, Shana discovers creepy, unexplained signs of personal invasion. Though Creighton’s quick to offer his strong shoulders for support, all that yucky stuff mostly happens hours away in the city, a world apart from… *gestures at surroundings* open pastures and a winding creek.

NOSEY: Ah, c’mon. She can get her money back and buy one of my krazy blazers for her hunky guy, can’t she? After all, she sounds like a smart gal what with all that th-the-thesis stuff. *works mouth* Holy tongue twister. Is the word related to a thatis?

LP: Oh, don’t you mean a Thatits?

NOSEY: I dunno. You tell me.

LP: Well, that’s what I’d call a thesis. Actually, it’s a formal, detailed, lengthy, focused—

NOSEY: Uh huh.

LP: …Footnoted documented essay on what she’s researched mostly through interviews… *glances at Nosey* followed up by people in the know.

NOSEY: Interviews? *growls* She better not be horning in on my job.

SNEAKY SNORTS AND SHOOTS STREAM OF TOBACCO JUICE NEAR NOSEY’S FEET

NOSEY: ‘eyyy! *leaps back* Spit shine your own shoes, pal.

LP: Oh Nosey, you have nothing to worry about. *waves dismissive hand* Shana’s that kind of professional, you know, with lots of letters following the names. *sighs* Whew. I’m confusing myself. Too many ths and big words make me want to stutter.

NOSEY: We pros have the right lip, girlie. *smirks* That’s why I carry the microphone.

LP: *pokes tongue in cheek* Thanks for the enlightenment.

NOSEY: Here’s something else that’ll enlighten ya. I’ve done my investigative snooping and know what I found out?

LP: Ooh. Sounds thrilling. *eyes light up with excitement* What, Nosey? What?

SNEAKY GRUNTS. NOSEY GNASHES TEETH: Why don’t you mosey along, cowboy? I think I hear a game of hopscotch calling your name.

SNEAKY: Aw, don’t pay no mind to me. Ah’m jest passin’ through.

LP: Nosey… *taps his shoulder* you were saying?

NOSEY: *wags brows at Sneaky, and then turns to LP*: Yeah. Listen up to this news flash: those kids in that ‘residential treatment center’ are there for one reason, and one reason only.

LP: Really? What?

NOSEY: They won’t eat any chocolate unless it’s grown at Gum Drop Island. *nods* Uh huh. The kiddos know Gum Drop Island is the bestest in the land. *drops voice* You’re not gonna tell me the adults want to ‘treat’ them for their chocolate smarts, are you?

LP: I have to say, in my book, there’s not a thing wrong with being a lover of chocolate or gum drops.

NOSEY: So what’s the deal with—

LP: Most of those youth favor spicy flavored gumdrops.

NOSEY: Sure, but—

LP: But caring adults do need to help them face their pasts before they can go on and manage a healthy future and function in society. It takes work to keep them from being harmful to themselves and others. But Shana believes all youth are worth a caring adult’s time and guidance to the right path.

NOSEY: What right path? The one Shana skipped down when she showed up at Creighton’s ranch one bright morning?

LP: That’s —th and apostrophe s again— what she did… well, she appeared in his driveway. Shana and Creighton’s sister Rita are coworkers and BFFs.

NOSEY: Boogie Foot Forward?

SNEAKY SNIGGERS. LP HURRIES WITH: Er - no. Actually, they’ve attended an addiction rehab center where they interviewed young and older adults. For things like backgrounds as per family and environment, trouble with the law, addictions—

NOSEY: That’s it! *snaps fingers* Addictions! Is that the kind of scars your Creighton carries?

LP: He does have addictions all right, and he’s in recovery for them.

NOSEY: *draws back* Surely not Gum Drop Island Addiction overdose!

LP: Absolutely not. No. It’s memories of antics with former associates that shame him. Plus, he carries guilt of feeling responsible for an accident that permanently changed a friend’s life.

NOSEY: *winces* Ouchie. He did a boo-boo, huh?

LP: A big boo-boo. And then there’s guilt for his relationship with his brother. Add in ill feelings toward his father… *shakes head* I’m guessing a visit to Gum Drop Island would cure him.

NOSEY: Guessing? You know it, woman.

LP: Maybe I do at that. *gives wicked grin* Nosey, you’re rubbing off on me.

NOSEY: It’s not me. It’s this… *fingers top of wooden rail* icky black stuff. *frowns in distaste* Does Creighton dabble in oil ranching?

LP: *laughs* Creighton would ask you, ‘what the heck is oil ranching? Something to do with exotic emus?’

NOSEY: Uhhh…

LP:  But it’s a horse and cattle ranch, or was when he was growing up. There were horses and cattle aplenty then. But life happened. To keep the ranch, it had to shrink, and the land is leased. He needed income so he constructed and now rents cabin retreats along the creek.

NOSEY: Sounds like Creighton might need help to run his ranch.

LP: And Shana can do that.

NOSEY: Does he want her to if she… *checks notes* ‘doesn’t share his faith’? How come she don’t?

LP: Aw, Nosey, a very interesting question to ask.

NOSEY: Sure it is. That’s why you scheduled with me, lady.

LP: *murmurs* Should I tell him? Hm. On second thought… *smiles brightly* Where was I? Oh yes. About Shana - she grew up an only child, the daughter of a professor. Her world was filled with scholarly books and hanging on her daddy’s intellectual talks on lofty subjects.

NOSEY: Uh huh. But Creighton — ?

LP: Creighton’s protective generosity reveals to Shana his standards. Once she opens his mother’s Bible and hymnal, and chats with another cabin dweller, she’s exposed to just how magnificent God is. And she’s enthralled by the beauty of the land.

SNEAKY: This hyah is a beauty too. *withdraws can from saddle bag*

LP: Oh, my! *jumps back and swallows* Did you bring your little friend with you today?

NOSEY: *glances around* What little friend? Where?

SNEAKY: Ah’ll tell ya, Mistah Nosey Reportah. *eyes glint with plain ol’ mean nastiness* She be my pet what do’ care nuthin’ fer a tacky dressed idiot like you’s be.

NOSEY: ‘eyy, don't knock my threads, dude.

LP: Ack! I'm outta here! *watches as Sneaky opens can, then spins around and runs for the hills*

HUGE, AS IN BIGGER THAN ITTY-BITTY, A ONE SOLITARY TOOTHED SNAKE SLITHERS FROM CAN

NOSEY: *shrieks* Whoa! Whoa, snakey! Shoo! Shoo! Get! *dances in a marathon winning two-step to avoid the sharp, shiny fang of quick-striking sidewinder serpent* Sneaky, help! 

SNEAKY: Don't pay me no mind. Ah'll let you happy couple be. *turns horse’s head in other direction*




NOSEY: I'm not happy! Help! Help, Sneaky! Call her off!

SNEAKY: Nah. Ah'm jest passin' through.


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Available at Amazon

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LoRee Peery writes Christian romance, where characters learn through spiritual struggles how to come to terms with the Lord's will in their lives. A song usually abides in LoRee's heart, mixed up with the verses she holds dear. Add to that character voices amidst the stories that take her away from the troubles of life, and she admits to never having a dull moment.
To read more, click link...

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If you enjoyed this interview, schedule your own. Contact Nosey via the form on the left hand side of this site!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Lynn Lovegreen Has a Golden Interview with I.B. Nosey




NOSEY: Greetings, cybernuts! This is I.B. Nosey, your official unofficial reporter. I’m coming to you from…um…er…what’s this? *reads sign nailed above Entrance*…No Dummies Allowed. Well, O.K. Maybe Just One Nosey Reporter’*scratches head* Wonder who that’s meant for?



WOMAN’S VOICE: *echoes* N-O-S-E-YYYYY….

NOSEY: Aacckkk! *shrieks* Who said that?

*Light flickers and woman holding lantern approaches* Nosey, you’ve gone all white.

NOSEY: *clutches chest and staggers back* A-and you’re all yellow.

WOMAN: What? *eyes narrow* I don’t like what you’re implying.

NOSEY: I just meant… *swallows* You’re covered in something yellow.

WOMAN: Right. *dusts down front of shirt* It’s not exactly clean in here.

NOSEY: Here? *pivots around to take in surroundings* Where is here?

LG: Ssh. *lays silencing finger to lips* I’m Lynn Lovegreen. Remember our appointment?

NOSEY: Oh, s-sure. Name’s familiar, but, uh, lady, you gotta admit… *drops voice to whisper*… scheduling to meet this reporter in an isolated location like this—

LG: Excuse me?

NOSEY: Well, I have to wonder, uh, what sort of scenario you had in mind.

LG: *crosses arms* Surely you aren’t thinking I brought you here to steal Gum Drop Island chocolates from your tacky blazer pockets?

NOSEY: I just thought— hey, whadda ya mean ‘tacky’?

LG: *clicks tongue* Nosey. I arranged to meet you here for one purpose only. Look. *casts lantern light down length of walls*

NOSEY: *gasps* What’s those sparkling yellow rocks?

LG: This is a mine, Nosey. A gold mine.

NOSEY: Holy yellow brick road. *whistles* All we gotta do is follow it, huh? Heh heh.

LG: Heh heh, nothing. We have to keep one step ahead of claim jumpers.

NOSEY: Claim jumpers? You don’t mean— *leaps away from walls*

LG: Not spiders. No.

NOSEY: Snakes!?

LG: Huh uh.

NOSEY: Roaches?

LG: Nope.

NOSEY: Then what? Green toed froggies?

LG: A claim jumper’s got nothing to do with frogs. Really, that’d be unfair to the frogs.

NOSEY: Yeah?

LG: *nods* Yeah, because claim jumpers are humans who take other people’s mining claims.

NOSEY: Wait. I’m confused. What does mines, frogs, and clams - um, I mean- claims, gotta do with scheduling a date with me?

LG: A date? *frowns* With you?

NOSEY: Sure. *checks notepad* Says right here: ‘Lynn Lovegreen, meet for interview date…’ Oh.

LG: *giggles* Right, Nosey. Interview date. Like, you know, for my book, ‘Quicksilver to Gold’. *slaps book in Nosey’s palm* I don’t think you’ll have trouble reading the blurb in this light, will you?

NOSEY: ‘Course not. I’m a professional, you know. *straightens tie* Who wears famous tackless blazers.

LS: Tactless. Right. *nods* My mistake.

NOSEY: Ahem. Interview, take one— *glances across shoulder* Um, why do I get the feeling little beady eyes are on me?

LS: Just a reflection off the gold. I assure you, you’re - um- *peers down tunnel and edges away* perfectly safe. Uh huh. But, there is a, uh, a draft. Yes, a draft. Maybe you should get started? *looks again toward dark tunnel*

NOSEY: Er, well, okay. Here goes: ‘Gold mining is in Jeannie Kelly’s blood. But it’s a dangerous time to be an honest miner in Nome, Alaska—claim jumpers have invaded the territory. Jeannie has set her sights on Clint Tilghman, the strong, quiet man next door to her family’s claim. Clint fights his feelings for the impulsive lady miner, fearing he’ll lose his independence. Jeannie tries to change her tomboyish ways to attract Clint and gain respect from others, but there’s a lot to learn amidst gunplay and bar fights. Jeannie must woo Clint and beat the claim jumpers before summer’s end.’

NOSEY: Egads! *throws down book* Gold mining’s in her blood? Is that contagious? Am I gonna get sick?

LG: *mutters* How should I answer that?

NOSEY: Huh?

LG: *grins* No, silly, it’s not contagious. It just means Jeannie comes from a mining family. Her dad and brothers are miners, and she grew up mining. Hm… *brow furrows in thought* Maybe reporting is in your blood?

NOSEY: Don’t be nosy, lady. I ask the questions here.

LG: Oh, that’s right. *lays wrist to forehead* How could I forget your skill? Your flair? Your gift of gibberish?

NOSEY: Heh heh. *puffs out chest* A fan after my own heart.

LG: *coughs* Er, just your listening audience. How about asking something about my hero, Clint.

NOSEY: As a matter-of-fact, I was just gonna do that.

LG: Certainly.

NOSEY: Yeah, right. Yeah, uh… let’s see - well, if he’s so afraid he’ll ‘lose his independence’, why doesn’t he go back and find it where he discovered it in the first place?

LG: Good point. Maybe he could. *shrugs* But losing your independence is like losing your good looks — you can’t get it back. *mumbles* Of course we’re assuming you once had—

NOSEY: Huh? *leans closer* You said something?

LG: Never mind. *waves dismissive hand* What else can I tell you about Clint?

NOSEY: Well, something’s sorta bothering me.

LG: Really?

NOSEY: Uh, how can I put this? *tugs at ear in awkward gesture* See, it’s not what you can tell me. It’s what I can tell you about Clint.

LG: Is that so? Like what?

NOSEY: Something you’ve got a right to know. You mentioned Clint was rebuffed by Jeannie. But you wanna know why?

LF: Since I’m the author, I think I know why.

NOSEY: No, you don’t.

LG: Yes, I do.

NOSEY: You don’t.

LG: Do.

NOSEY: Don’t.

LG: I—

NOSEY: Listen, I’m trying to tell ya! Clint gets rebuffed ‘cause he found that autographed Nosey fan photo that Jeannie carries in her locket. Yeah! So now how are they gonna make up?



LG: *hoots with laughter* Nosey, Nosey. Why do your interviews always end up about you?

NOSEY: Uhh…

LG: *wipes tears from eyes* Actually, I’m not going to tell you more about their romantic difficulties because I don’t want to give any spoilers.

NOSEY: But—

LG: You’ll just have to read the book to see if there are any Nosey fan photos mentioned.

NOSEY: *snarls* That’s cheap.

LG: *spreads palms* So are your interviews.

*Loud clang sounds in distance. Nosey jumps* Holy headless horseman! What was that shadow that passed by?

LG: Something really spooky. *holds up lantern* That draft caught your profile and stretched it up the wall. *points* See?

NOSEY: Yikes! *crouches behind LG’s shoulder*

LG: Maybe we should move toward another section, huh, Nosey? *glances down length of tunnel*

NOSEY: But—

LG: Come along. *takes Nosey’s arm and heads down opposite end of rail track*

NOSEY: Drafts. Shadows. Clam jumpers. *shivers* Why do you even want to set your books in this dangerous Alaskan wilderness?

LG: It’s home.

NOSEY: A gold mine is home?

LG: Ssh.

NOSEY: *whispers* Why do you wanna be quiet?

LG: We don’t want your shadow to overhear, do we? *glances behind and quickens step*

NOSEY: Uhh…

LG: Anyway, to answer your question. No, my home isn’t a mine. It’s Alaska. And I also enjoy the odd characters who live there— hey, have you ever been to Alaska, Nosey?

NOSEY: *stops to stare at LG* You mean we’re not in Alaska now? Then where am I?

LG: Look around. *gestures at rock walls* It’s sure not Kansas.

NOSEY: *snaps fingers* You’re right. Aw, fudge. Why do they pick me to go on these crazy author assignments?

LG: You know how it is, Nosey. You’re continually searching for the next Pukelitzer Award interview.

NOSEY: And this one’s no candidate, lady.

LG: *looks offended* Think again, Nosey!

NOSEY: I’m telling ya. No way.

LG: *taps foot angerly* I suggest you explain yourself.

NOSEY: Put it together, gal. Shadows, drafts, clams. Even your own Jeannie says, ‘there’s a lot to learn amidst gunplay and bar fights’. Playing with guns too? And fighting with bars? Or… *eyes narrow in suspicion* is that fighting with bears?

LG: *snorts* Have you ever tried to fight a bear? Trust me on this one, their teeth and claws give them an advantage.

NOSEY: *winces* Ouch. I bet. But—

LG: But, in this case, it’s more like those old-time Western movies where people have fist fights in the bars and muds. Though… *shakes head* I never understood why so many movies have fights in mud. Maybe they think it’s Gum Drop Island chocolate and it’ll taste good?

NOSEY: Hm. *rubs chin in consideration* That’s a thought.

LG: And a good one too. So why couldn’t my interview be put up for a Pukelitzer Award?

NOSEY: Uhhh…

LG: Wait. *pulls Nosey to one side* I hear something.

NOSEY: W-w-what? *huddles close to LG*

LG: Your teeth chattering, for one thing. Do you mind? *strains to push Nosey away*

NOSEY: Oh, drats. Your Jeannie was right.

LG: When?

NOSEY: When she said  it was a dangerous time to be an honest miner.

LG: Hm mm. There’s no arguing with a sensible woman.

NOSEY: Yeah, but wouldn’t it be safer to— you know…

LG: What?

NOSEY: Maybe be — sorta dishonest?

LG: You wouldn’t be suggesting I could write dishonest main characters, are you? I’ve never been so insulted in an interview! *stomps off in other direction*

NOSEY: B-but— 

*Shadows jump out from nearby tunnel*

NOSEY: *shrieks* My headless horseman shadow! It’s alive!

TWO MEN (OR WEIRD-SCIENTIFIC-EXPERIMENT-GONE-WRONG)  APPROACH: Ye hear that, Tuffy? *one elbows the other* He don’t know what we be.



OTHER MAN CACKLES: Should we tell ‘im? *cackles again* Clam jumpers, pal. Real high kickin’ clam jumpers.

TUFFY: We hear ye talkin’… *nods at tunnel* ‘bout goolld.

NOSEY: Gold? Er… *twitches nervously* Not me, buddies. Huh uh. No way.

TUFFY: Looky ‘im, Snuffy. He got whole mouth full o’ goolld.

NOSEY: *backs up* Whoa, fellows. That’s just my dazzling, gorgeous, super Nosey white pearlies.

SNUFFY: Purls, eh? *pulls out giant sized pliers from back pocket* Ye must be wearin’ million bucks worth.

NOSEY: *slaps covering hand to mouth, and then screams* Ms. Lovegreen! *turns tail and races down tunnel* Help! Help! Heellppp!

LG: Hey, guys! *calls out to weird-scientific-experiment-gone-wrong claim jumpers who leap and bound after Nosey* You’ve got it all wrong. Nosey’s nothing but fool’s gold!

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Available at Amazon
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Lynn Lovegreen grew up in alaska, and still lives there. She taught English for 20 years before retiring to make more time for writing. She enjoys reading, hanging out with friends and family, and hitting targets with a cowboy action shooting club. Her young adult/new adult historical romances are set in the Alaska Gold Rush, a great time for drama, romance, and independent characters. Visit her website to learn more. You can also find her on Facebook, Tumblr, and Pinterest.
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If you enjoyed this interview, schedule your own. Contact Nosey via the form on the left hand side of this site!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Laura Shinn Pulls a Fast 'Draw' on I.B. Nosey





NOSEY: Greetings, cybernuts! This is I.B. Nosey, your official unofficial reporter! Here I am on my day off from interviewing. I’m merely wandering the halls and—

WOMAN: Sssh!

MAN: Ssh!

LITTLE GIRL: Ssh!

NOSEY: *spins around and sees a family wearing frowns* What’s ya problem? Can’t a guy walk around in a doughnut shop?

WOMAN: *whispers* This is an art museum!

NOSEY: You must be lost, lady. That*points at wall* is a doughnut and coffee display.

MAN: That is a painting.  

NOSEY: Yeah? *leans to look closer* Whadda ya know. It’s even signed: Laura Shinn.



LS: Who called?

NOSEY: *pivots around to see woman seated before easel* Are you Laura Shinn?

LS: That’s not you, is it?

NOSEY: Me? I’m I.B. Nosey, your official unofficial—

LS: Yeah, yeah. No need to chew your spinach twice.

NOSEY: What spinach? Hey, this handsome mug doesn’t belong to Popeye, ya know.

LS: Handsome? *coughs* Er, um. Hm. *checks watch* Oh, I get it. You must be my eleven o’clock. Pose for me, please.

NOSEY: Pose? Heh heh. *slants profile* Is this my best side?

LS: *makes face* I’m not sure you have one, fella.

NOSEY: But—

LS: Let me see. *comes up and bends Nosey into Egyptian-like pose* There. Better.

NOSEY: Whoa, wait, lady. I’m not—

LS: Be quiet, or I’ll call security.

NOSEY: But—

LS: You’re not paying me to argue.

NOSEY: But—

LS: Your mouth looks better when closed.

NOSEY: But—

LS: And what is this disaster? *gestures at Nosey’s jacket* Call this a smock?

NOSEY: I call it my famous tweedy-weedy Picasso Pukelitzer Premiere. *glares* Hey, who are you, anyway?

LS: *returns to easel* Didn’t we settle that? I’m Laura Shinn.

NOSEY: You’re a painter?

LS: Cover artist, actually. Plus, I’m an author.

NOSEY: I should’ve known. *groans* Listen, gal. This is my day off and—

LS: Don’t move! *stares knives*

NOSEY: Why? *gives fearful glance across one shoulder* Is there a spider?

LS: Worse. You’re creating creepy shadows on the wall.



NOSEY: *jumps* Really?

LS: And, honestly. How do you think I can possibly paint you if you don’t stand still?

NOSEY: I don’t wanna be painted!

WOMAN, MAN, LITTLE GIRL: Ssssh!

LS: Better listen to ‘em. I see the woman’s carrying knitting needles and I think she knows how to use them.

NOSEY: *gulps* Uhhh…so, what do I do?

LS: Allow me to do my job. *hums while splashes color on easel* Why don’t I tell you a story?

NOSEY: No. No author stories. This is my day off and—

WOMAN, MAN, LITTLE GIRL: Ssssh!

LS: Where shall I begin?

WOMAN: *smiles eagerly* At the beginning, dear.

NOSEY: Hey, if she can talk, why can’t I?

MAN: Because she looks like she’s got brains.

NOSEY: What’s that supposed to— ‘eyyy!

WOMAN, MAN, LITTLE GIRL: Ssssh!

LS: Ahem. As I was saying… Writing is a passion I acquired in high school in my Junior year. Although writing stories, particularly short stories, was new to me, I took to it quickly. My English teacher in high school, Mrs. White, inspired and encouraged me at every turn. I owe her a great deal.

WOMAN: *clasps hands* How exciting. Do go on.

NOSEY: Can I just say— ?

WOMAN, MAN, LITTLE GIRL: No!

LS: Anyway, the majority of my inspiration later in my adult life came from the love of reading romance. Back in the ‘80’s, my key genre to read were historical romances. When I picked up my time travel romance, and a short time later my first vampire romance, I was hooked into the paranormal genre. I began reading more contemporary stories with elements of the paranormal and, of course, romance. I’m a romantic at heart and couldn’t imagine ever writing a story without some kind of romance within it.

MAN: *frowns and points at Nosey* If you’re a romantic, what are you doing painting him

NOSEY: *scowls* I don’t like the italic in your tone, pal.

MAN: *snarls* Would you like it any better in my fist?

NOSEY: Heh heh. *tugs at collar* Nine italic words. Good tone too.



WOMAN: Be quiet! *bares teeth at Nosey, and then turns to LS* Ah, romance. *sighs and lays gentle hand atop LS’s shoulder* We’re all listening, Ms. Shinn.

LS: Well, as I was saying… *works busily at easel* My mother once asked me to write a novel for middle-grade reader to YA. It started off pretty good, but by the end of chapter one, I had the single mother falling for the single man who recently moved in next door. *laughs* What can I say? It’s in the blood, I guess. My mother wrote children’s stories and Christian non-fiction, so my mother’s love of writing passed on to me, along with music and art.

MAN: Talent runs in the family. *nods* We can see that.

WOMAN: We certainly can.

LITTLE GIRL: You draw good.

NOSEY: *ducks* Hey, there’s a fly buzzing—

WOMAN, MAN, LITTLE GIRL: Shut up!

LS: *chuckles* Talent? Why, thank you. But it was hard work too. After my first son was born, I began typing stories on my electric typewriter. I went through tons of ‘liquid paper’. Anyone remember that? I sent a few of the stories to Zebra and Harlequin. After receiving several rejection letters, I decided I’d just write for myself. It wasn’t until my husband and I purchased our first computer in 1999 - yeah, way back then - that I was able to go online for the first time.

NOSEY: But this fly—

WOMAN: *whirls and jabs with knitting needle* Didn’t we tell you to pipe down already?

NOSEY: But—

MAN: Cram it, Big Mouth. *squints eyes* Or is all that just your nose?

NOSEY: Heh heh. Jealous of my masculine profile, aren’t you?

LS: *clears throat* Where was I?

WOMAN: You just went online, remember?

LS: *snaps fingers* That’s right. I joined a few Yahoo groups connected with some of my favorite authors. It was there I came upon a women’s writers group. I joined and spent the next few years learning so much about the publishing business and writing/editing. Shortly thereafter, I was hired on as an editor for Writers Exchange E-Publishing. She also published a few of my stories!

NOSEY: Shoo, fly! *swats* Get! Get!

WOMAN: *gives rapt attention to LS* Then what happened?

LS: Later I worked for two other publishers as an editor. *swirls brush on easel* One of the publishers hired me also as a cover artist. I didn’t receive very many projects, however—

MAN: No!

LS: *nods* Yes! So I eventually pulled all of my books and followed my best friend’s advice to self-publish. God bless her, she taught me everything, including formatting.

WOMAN: Wonderful friend!

LS: She’s the greatest, and—

NOSEY: Who reads fly language? This one… *ducks* I think he’s trying to say something!

LITTLE GIRL: Didn’t anybody teach you manners? It’s rude to interrupt. *sticks tongue out at Nosey*

LS: Stop jittering, Nosey! I’ve almost finished. *smiles at audience* Where was I? Oh, yes. Well, at that point, I was already designing covers for WEE -that’s Writers Exchange E-Publishing- and I was no longer editing. I learned how to design print covers too, mostly by hit-or-miss. My best friend began her own publishing business and hired me as her Chief Designer. I’m now Chief Designer at WEE as well, and a cover designer for Western Trail Blazer. I format and design covers as a freelance business too.

WOMAN: *flutters lashes* Oh, goody. So you’re willing to be hired to paint portraits?

LS: Uh… Well, let me just say that freelancing has been a real blessing. It’s enabled me to leave retail jobs and now I work from home. With arthritis setting in, this is now a Godsend. I am the proof that you don’t need a Design degree or Literary degree from a university to pursue that chosen field. If you want to be a writer, start writing. If you want to be a cover designer, get a program and start playing around with it and learn all you can. There’re several on the internet you can download for free with all kinds of free tutorials too. 

NOSEY: *throws up hands* No one’s listening to me. Sheesh. I might as well be at work!

LITTLE GIRL: Ms. Shinn, you still writing stories too?

LS: *laughs* When I can. My muse has been going crazy inside of my head, wanting to get stories written, published, and out to the public. But my workload usually prevents it. I’m hoping to take some time off during vacation and work on my own writing. If all goes well, I should have several new releases coming out in the Fall and around the holidays.

MAN: We can’t wait. We’ll be your first buyers and— *stumbles as winged insect buzzes close to ear* What’s this pest doing?

LITTLE GIRL: You mean him? *points at Nosey*

WOMAN: That’s a funny looking fly. *gasps* Oh no. It’s a hornet!

LS: A hornet? *bolts to feet* Nosey, why didn’t you say something?

NOSEY: But—

MAN: All you had to do was to… *flails arms at angry hornet* tell us, man!

NOSEY: But—

LITTLE GIRL: *wails* He should’ve spoken up!

NOSEY: But—

LS: Run, everyone! *shrieking, the small crowd makes a ‘bee’ line for the exit*

NOSEY: Wait! Wait for— Oops. *skids to stop as hornet spins to face him. Nosey backs up* I, uh, I run fast too, little hornet. If you read any of my interviews, you’ll see—

HORNET: Buzzzz. *flies to easel and scrawls out words in the paint*

NOSEY: *reading* ‘It be quiet here to sleep. Why you make noise?’ *stares at hornet* Me? It’s my day off and all I wanted was — er, I mean — sorry we woke you but —

HORNET: ‘You. Go. Work. NOW.’ *zooms towards Nosey, menace written on his little bug face, and he didn’t have a nice expression either*

NOSEY: Oww! Ouch! Ooh! *screaming, Nosey flees for the doorway* Okay, okay, dude. I get your point! Aaiiii!


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A book by Laura Shinn


Available at Amazon

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(Samples of some of Laura's covers)

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