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Ruby Release: Naughty Karma by Vivi Andrews

After reading Vivi Andrew’s Finder’s Keeper, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on Karma’s book, Naughty Karma. Now that I’ve read the book, it must be said, my impatience was well-justified! Moreover, I couldn’t wait to grill Vivi about how she brought these fabulous characters to life.  Before I commence with the grilling, however, let me tell you about Naught Karma:

NaughtyKarmaDouble crossing the devil is a dangerous business.

Nearly two decades ago, Prometheus sold his beating heart to a devil in exchange for epic power. That contract is about to expire—and so is he. There’s only one woman with the power to help him see his next birthday. And he’s willing to use every manipulation in his arsenal to pry that power from the ice queen’s grip.

Karma, who values order above all else, has had enough of the unscrupulous warlock’s pranks endangering her people. But when she confronts the wily trickster to demand a cease fire, his terms throw her for a loop. The bastard wants her to save his life—and he wants her in his bed.

Clinging to her hard-won control is the only way Karma knows to keep her abilities from overwhelming her. If anyone can tempt her to embrace the chaos of her magic, it’s Prometheus.

One kiss brings her defenses crashing down. But can she trust Prometheus…or has she lost her own heart to a warlock with a hidden agenda?

EB: This book has been years in the making… Was there a lot of extra pressure knowing that you’ve been building to Karma’s book for a while?

VA: LOL. That’s exactly what I asked Tammy when I read Tempt Me (everyone go read it! it’s soooo good!) so I guess it’s only fair that I should answer too.

Naughty Karma was actually only a few months in the making ;), but Karma has been a featured character in every book of the Karmic Consultants series and readers have been asking me for her story since I debuted with The Ghost Shrink back in 2009.  With that kind of build up, I knew I couldn’t let this book suck. But I had time (and six KC books) to mull over what her hero would be like (he had to be a force in his own right) and what kind of conflict would bring them together (the stakes had to be high – life or death, baby).

I actually liked knowing there were readers counting on me not to screw it up, but then I’ve always preferred working under pressure.  Hopefully the end result doesn’t disappoint!

EB: I’m going to ask THE question that every writer gets repeatedly… Where do you get your ideas? What influences you to write a cast of characters with paranormal abilities to fight the big bad woo woo?

VA: Where did I get the idea?  At McDonald’s.  (I was sitting there with a ten-gallon cup of Diet Coke when I wrote the opening scene where Karma confronts Prometheus and takes him to task for his unscrupulous ways.)

In terms of the Origin Story of the series – the short answer is that it was in response to an open submission call for paranormal romantic comedy.  I’d been writing contemp rom-com and was an avid paranormal reader, so I wanted to try my hand at it.  I still think of this series as being right on that line between contemporary and paranormal – mostly about contemporary romance type conflicts, but with a few psychic powers thrown in.

I’ve always been a sucker for super power stories (the X-Men are my crack) and I really love the idea of a tight-knit community formed by those with extraordinary abilities.  A sort of family that comes together because of the ways they don’t fit in with the rest of the world.  The Karmic Consultants stories are opposites attract stories, but they are really about finding acceptance (both accepting ourselves and accepting others into our hearts).  Those themes just give me warm fuzzies all over.

EB: I have to admit, you had me squealing out loud with some of your (older) pop culture references. There were a couple of references to The Princess Bride… (which it must be said is one of my favorite movies of all time)  and the “Riggs and Murtaugh” line hee! Do you ever worry about younger readers not getting these kinds of references? (I ask because I’m struggling with this in my own writing! I have a 26 year old who I run things past, and I’m afraid I get a lot of blank stares!)

VA:  Nope. I don’t worry about “old” references at all.  In part because I have a young cousin who knows more about Monty Python than I do and a young-at-heart aunt who could school me on Glee.  Pop culture doesn’t care how old you are – you can glom it at any age.

I don’t get absolutely every reference in every book I read and I still love them, so I hope readers can still enjoy Naughty Karma even if they’ve never seen a television.  My bigger concern is writing references that are true to the point-of-view of the character.  Prometheus likes to screw with people and he’s an appropriate age to be familiar with the Lethal Weapon movies – so the Riggs & Murtaugh gag suits him.

A couple years ago I did have an editor express concern that a Twilight reference was dating one of my books, but hey, Jane Austen referenced Ann Radcliffe’s Gothics in Northanger Abbey so maybe dating your books with appropriate contemporary references isn’t such a crime.

EB: You have an ethnically diverse cast of characters, which I love. (It seems like a lot of romance series have a pretty vanilla cast) Have you had any comments from readers (good, bad or indifferent?)

VA:  No one has ever commented on it to me.  I suppose because my books aren’t “about” race. The couples are ethnically diverse because my family is ethnically diverse and that is how love looks to me.  I’m not trying to make a social point with it, just writing what I know.

EB: You are the world famous, world traveling Nomadic Ruby.  Where were you when you wrote this book and how did the location influence it?

VA:  *snort* I’m certainly not world famous, but thanks for the laugh.  I was in the mountains of New Hampshire when I wrote the bulk of the book and I think the only influence the location had on it was the fact that my place up there didn’t have internet so I had fewer distractions.  I’d highly recommend it for the autumn colors and a peaceful retreat if you’re looking to go be a word-hermit.

EB: Thanks so much for telling us about Naught Karma!

VA: Thank you so much for hosting me, Liz!  I’ll just leave you with a little snippet of Prometheus and Karma squaring off in Naughty Karma.  🙂

He seemed even taller than he had the day before—which was peculiar. He should have seemed smaller in the bright, expansive spaciousness of her office than he had in the cluttered, dingy surrounds of his shop. Perhaps it was seeing him in motion that made him seem larger than life. He’d been so still the previous night, but this morning he was a body in motion, testing every corner of her office, and her patience. He prowled the room, touching her things, trying to get a rise out of her.
“What are you doing here, Prometheus?”
“I’m so eager to be reformed I couldn’t wait a single day.” He flung his arms wide, throwing back his head. “I am your clay. Mold me into virtue.”
She arched a brow. “I’m not sure my skill as a sculptor is up to the task. The raw materials leave something to be desired.”
“I assure you I leave nothing to be desired. Thoroughness, that’s my motto.”
Karma did not blush. She was on her home turf. No amount of innuendo could fluster her. “I thought your motto was reckless endangerment in the name of freedom and fun.”
“Sounds wordy. Wouldn’t fit very well on a coat of arms.”
“Prometheus.” She made his name an epithet of impatience.
“Are you surprised I couldn’t wait until tomorrow? I only have two and a half months to live. I can’t waste days.”

EB: You can read another excerpt here, or just go ahead and buy it (You know you want to!)
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble ~ Samhain Publishing

32 responses to “Ruby Release: Naughty Karma by Vivi Andrews”

  1. jbrayweber says:

    Great interview, ladies. Love, love this, Vivi. So excited! I’m always a suckers for this type of book and the thick innuendo and banter. Awesome cover, too. Can’t wait to dive into this one.

    Congrats!

    Jenn!

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  2. June Love says:

    Congratulations on your release, Vivi! I love your cover.

    RE use of pop culture. I use them and I love reading them in books. If I’m reading something and I don’t get it, then I research it later. It doesn’t take me out of the story, and I learn something.

    Great interview, ladies! Where you got me, though, was New Hampshire. Being holed there in the fall to write…what a way to be inspired.

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    • Vivi Andrews says:

      Thank you so much, June! I’m in love with the cover too. And New Hampshire! It’s so lovely. I was pretty rural and it was heaven for getting away from distractions.

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  3. Liz Talley says:

    I’m off to buy this book. I’m woefully behind on the series, but I love, love, love your writing. It’s so much the style I love to read…and I still can’t understand why you haven’t shot off to the moon making millions and putting NYT Bestseller behind your name. Such a good writer!

    Congrats on all the buzz this one has received and for doing Karma justice. She’s a tough character and deserves a story to melt her a bit. Can’t wait to read it!

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    • Vivi Andrews says:

      Aw, thank you so much, Liz. That’s the nicest compliment. I’ll keep plugging away at it until I have that special phrase after my name. You and me, readers just haven’t discovered us yet. We’ll get there. Luckily there’s no quit in us.

      I hope you love Naughty Karma!

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  4. Laurie Kellogg says:

    Congrats, Vivi. You have such an incredible voice and talent for humor, I know the book HAS to be wonderful!

    Prometheus sounds like a hoot!

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  5. Tamara Hogan says:

    Yay! Karma’s story! Can’t wait to read this one.

    I think I feel the same way you do about pop culture references, Vivi. If someone doesn’t get it, there’s always Google. 😉

    Craft-wise, can I just say how much I love the first two lines of your excerpt? Characterization, sexual tension, time passage, deep POV, and setting in two sentences. BOOM. (Vivi drops mic after showing us how it’s done.)

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    • Vivi Andrews says:

      Aw, Tammy. *blushes* (Of course, I should confess that what looks like great craft in one little excerpt might look a little different in the context of the book… but I’ll shut up because I’m busy being flattered.)

      Thank you! Hope you love the book! And thank god for Google.

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  6. This looks delicious!! Can’t wait to read it. 😀

    So, I have to ask if you’re planning any more KC books, or if you’re thinking this is done. And what’s next for you?

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    • Vivi Andrews says:

      Thanks, Anne Marie!

      I’m a never-say-never kind of girl, but my current plan is to make this the last Karmic Consultants book. (Though I have a Christmas novella/second epilogue that I’m dying to write, so that might have to happen.) I *LOVE* these books and would love to write more – either continuing in this series or something with the same tone in a new world – but unfortunately some of it is influenced by the economics of the situation. For whatever reason, these books don’t seem to have “caught” the way my shifters did – so my new series, launching in June, is shape-shifters again! And I’m very excited about this new spin-off. Even if I will miss the Karmic family. *Vivi bursts into I Will Always Love You, a la The Bodyguard*

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  7. Vivi Andrews says:

    Just wanted to say a big thank you to Liz Bemis for the fabulous interview! Muchas gracias!

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  8. Kim Law says:

    Ah! Another Vivi Andrews book! I must run off of to buy it 🙂

    Congrats Vivi! And I’m with Liz Talley. I love your writing style, and I don’t know why you don’t yet have NTY Best seller beside your name!

    Great interview ladies.

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    • Vivi Andrews says:

      Aw, thanks, Kim. Sweet of you to say. 🙂

      Those lists are tricky nuts to crack. Yeah, you gotta write a great book, but there are so many great books out there and to hit the lists you have to have good visibility and velocity of sales too. I’ll get there one of these years… in the mean time it gives me something to work toward.

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  9. Rita Henuber says:

    WOOT! Super congrats my Ruby traveling sister. May this be the most successful of all your books.

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  10. A peaceful getaway so I can be a word-hermit. Sounds like heaven, and for now, about as possible as walking to the Pearly Gates while yet breathing. *sigh*

    This sounds like another winner, Vivi. Wishing you mega-sales.

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  11. Kate Parker says:

    I loved the interview, and I love to hear about Vivi’s travels. And of course reading her books. This is all good today.

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  12. Amanda Brice says:

    “A couple years ago I did have an editor express concern that a Twilight reference was dating one of my books, but hey, Jane Austen referenced Ann Radcliffe’s Gothics in Northanger Abbey so maybe dating your books with appropriate contemporary references isn’t such a crime.”

    Can I steal that line the next time someone states that they think all my pop culture references are going to date my books?

    Yay, great interview, ladies. And squee! We finally we Karma’s book!!!!

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    • Vivi Andrews says:

      Steal away, Amanda. Pop culture lovers unite! I like to write for the moment I’m in – trying to be universal and timeless seems like a good way to make sure your books never connect fully with anyone.

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      • Amanda Brice says:

        I totally agree. Personally, I want the book I’m reading to reflect a specific time period, whether that’s actually today, 100 years ago, or even just 10 years ago. Trying to make something “timeless” isn’t really a recipe for success for most folks.

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  13. Enjoyable interview. Congratulations, Vivi. Love how you write about such interesting worlds! Must be that world travelling that gives such scope.

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    • Vivi Andrews says:

      I’m lucky to have been able to visit a fair bit of the world, but I think I learn scope as much from reading exquisite books. Traveling new worlds in our minds, isn’t that what we all do? 🙂

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  14. Shoshana says:

    Happy book birthday, Vivi. Wishing you many sales.

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  15. This sounds so awesome! Congrats, Vivi!!!

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  16. I looove your voice, Vivi!! It’s so fun, and this book sounds like it’ll be a blast. Congratulations!

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