1--What is the title of your latest release?
TEXAS ROSE HAPPILY EVER-AFTER
This is the 5th installment of my Texas Rose Ranch series.
2--What’s the “elevator pitch” for your new book?
It’s The Princess Diaries meets Yellowstone.
3--How did you decide where your book was going to take place?
The Texas Rose Ranch is the second largest ranch in Texas. It’s in the Texas Hill Country. It’s been in the Rose family since before the civil war. The first Rose to own the ranch was Carlton Rose. He was the bastard son of Santa Anna and Emily Morgan.
Yes, that Santa Anna of the Alamo fame. After the Alamo, Santa Anna was intent on showing those pesky Texans that he was in charge. He marched his thousands of troops across Texas in a show of force. He camped on the San Jacinto river near the town of New Washington. That’s where he met Emily Morgan who was a member of household staff of James Morgan a large Texas Landowner.
It’s a tale as old as time. Santa Anna was a horny dictator and Emily was a beautiful servant girl.
So, instead of marching into San Jacinto and crushing the Texas army, he spent his time in his luxurious tent (it was rumored to have three carpeted rooms, champagne, and a piano) with Emily. Being a loyal Texan, Emily kept him “busy” long enough for the Texas troops to attack his siesta-taking soldiers. The battle took 18 minutes, and the Texans were victorious.
The Texas Rose Ranch series is based on the “what if Emily and Santa Anna had a baby?”
4--Would you hang out with your heroine in real life?
Absolutely. She’s the crown princess of the fake European Kingdom of Swacovia. She has lots of bejeweled tiaras, diadems, and crowns. If you ask her nicely, she might let you try them on.
5--What are three words that describe your hero?
Determined, confident, and caring.
6--What’s something you learned while writing this book?
I learned that it’s harder than you think to create a fake royal country. Like where exactly is this country located and what’s its history? Does it have a coat of arms? FYI-there’s a free coat of arms generator at https://coamaker.com. Just so you know, my fake personal coat of arms has a dragon fighting a unicorn. I’m rooting for the unicorn.
7--Do you edit as you draft or wait until you are totally done?
I edit as I go. I don’t typically have multiple drafts. I have what I call a working copy. After I finish that, I read through the whole manuscript, and I’m done. That’s when the working copy becomes the finished copy. It sounds a lot easier than it is.
8--What’s your favorite foodie indulgence?
Peanut M&Ms and Haribo gummy bears - not at the same time.
9--Describe your writing space/office!
My office is filled with bookshelves, a giant dining-table-turned-desk, a tv, and a gazillion crystals. I love pretty rocks, fossils, arrowheads, and crystals. My office is sparkly chaos.
10--Who is an author you admire?
There are so many:
Susan Elizabeth Phillips
11--Is there a book that changed your life?
Yes, LaVryle Spencer’s Years. I read it the first time when I was fifteen. It opened my mind to the world of romance. It started my love of reading.
12--Tell us about when you got “the call.” (when you found out your book was going to be published)
My “call” is different than most. I self-published my first few novels and then I was approached by an editor at a publishing house. She wanted to know if I would write a series for them. I said yes and that series became the Texas Rose Ranch series.
13--What’s your favorite genre to read?
That changes on a daily basis. I’m a genre-hopper. I love a good story no matter the genre.
14--What’s your favorite movie?
That’s a hard one. If I have to pick a couple of favorites probably Pride and Prejudice—the BBC series and Galaxy Quest. I know, they’re polar opposites. What if we mashed them together—Pride and Prejudice and Mathesar?
15--What is your favorite season?
Fall. Everything is pumpkin spiced, and the leaves are changing colors. I get to pull out my sweaters.
16--How do you like to celebrate your birthday?
I like to make a bunch of strawberry cupcakes and hand them out as I run errands. It’s amazing how many people will take and eat a cupcake from a total stranger. I also wear my rhinestone birthday tiara.
Here’s my strawberry cupcake recipe:
1 10oz. frozen strawberries at room temp and drained. You will use both the berries and the water from the berries.
1-18oz. white or yellow cake mix
1-3oz. pkg. strawberry gelatin
1/2 cup cooking oil
1 cup juice from frozen strawberries—if there’s not enough juice for a cup, then add enough water to juice to make a cup
2 sticks butter softened
1-10 oz. frozen strawberries, drained
2lbs. powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 350. Dump all of the cake ingredients into a bowl and mix well. Pour batter into either greased round baking pans or cupcake tins. Bake layer cakes for 18-20 minutes or cupcakes for 15 minutes. If you're making cupcakes, line the cupcake tins with cupcake wrappers and remember to grease those too. After baking, for layer cakes, remove from pans, cool and then frost. It's okay to leave the cupcakes in the pans to cool.
Dump everything in a bowl and mix well. Spread on cooled cakes.
17--What’s a recent tv show/movie/book/podcast you highly recommend?
I highly recommend the Murdaugh Murders Podcast or MMP. It’s about Alex Murdaugh and the many murders that his family are/were involved in. Mandy Matney and Liz Farrell are the hosts and investigative journalists. If I’m ever murdered and it’s unsolved, I want these ladies in my corner. Stay in the sunlight and stay pesky!
18--What’s your favorite type of cuisine?
Mexican food. Every few years, my husband and I toss around the idea of moving out of the Austin area, but it always comes down to the Mexican food. We can’t move away from our favorite Mexican restaurants. I’ve heard stupider reasons for not moving … okay, maybe not.
19--What do you do when you have free time?
I garden, scuba dive, read, and eat Mexican food in my free time.
20--What can readers expect from you next?
I’m working on the 5th book in my mystery series, The PTO Murder Club. It’s called Puzzled Pieces and will be out on May 30th. The PTO Murder Club are a group of best friends who are on the Board of the Parent Teacher Organization in their kids’ elementary school. They investigate the occasional murder between board meetings. It takes place in the fictious city of Lakeside, Texas which is suspiciously like the city of Lakeway, Texas.
In Puzzled Pieces, the school bus driver is murdered.
A Texas Rose Ranch Novel #5
From International Bestselling Author Katie Graykowski comes a story about love, laughter, and ranching. The fifth installment of A Texas Rose Ranch series will prove that everything is bigger in Texas and love will always find a way.
Swacovian Crown Princess Alexandra Louisa Eleanor Evangeline Von Claremont known as A-Lee is on a mission to find her maternal grandfather. She promised her beloved grandmother as the woman lay dying that she would find the man who her grandmother had loved and then lost contact with during the Korean War.
After all, the man has a daughter and a granddaughter that he doesn’t know exist. Over the years her grandmother had looked for him, but in 1965 he disappeared. The last place he worked was the Texas Rose Ranch. A-Lee must find him. It was her grandmother’s dying wish. She will not fail. Her whole life has led up to this point. Nothing will stop her. Until she runs out of gas in the middle of nowhere.
San Antonio—T-Bone—Rose is the fifth son of the famed Texas Rose Ranch. It may be the second largest ranch in Texas, but it’s the most profitable by far. He’s finally home for good with his newly minted PhD in Agribusiness. He’s taking over the farming arm of the family business. The ranch is going non-GMO whether the family likes it or not. He knows best. It’s his way or the highway. Speaking of the highway, there seems to be a tall chestnut-haired woman wearing a red sequin crop top walking purposefully down the middle of Highway 16.
After some serious convincing, T-Bone talks A-Lee into taking a ride from him to the Texas Rose Ranch. Together they tear the ranch apart looking for clues to the mystery that is Llewellyn Bradford.
What they find, changes their lives forever.
Romance Comedy [Independently Published, On Sale: April 11, 2023, e-Book, ISBN: 9798376842751 / ]
Katie Graykowski is an award winning author who likes sassy heroines, Mexican food, movies where lots of stuff gets blown up, and glitter nail polish. She lives on a hilltop outside of Austin, Texas where her home office has an excellent view of the Texas Hill Country. When she’s not writing, she’s scuba diving.
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