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Kathleen Marentes
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Interviews and Q&A Sessions > Author Interview - Kathleen Marentes

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message 1: by C. (new)

C. Ferry (cjaiferry) | 14 comments Mod
We'll be posting an interview with NWG member Kathleen Marentes on May 1 (noon CST). Check back here to learn about her new release and the special sale that will be happening. (And psst. Tell your friends~)

message 2: by C. (new)

C. Ferry (cjaiferry) | 14 comments Mod
Today we’re talking with Kathleen Marentes, who graciously agreed to be our first interviewee. Kathleen recently joined the Nebraska Writers Guild and has published her first novel.

Kathleen, tell us a little about yourself and your background.

I was born in North Carolina, but we moved to Nebraska when I was still very young. Throughout my life, my two passions have always been writing and horses. I started riding when I was ten, which turned into a volunteer job, then to a full-time job at a show horse ranch. That’s where I met my husband, and we now have four kids.

So let’s hear all about your latest release!

My debut novel is The Shadows Breathe, book one in The Shadows Breathe series. It’s a young adult adventure story following the life of Kara Springs, a Nebraskan horse trainer who makes a desperate decision to save the life of a horse in trouble and faces an unexpected journey.

Ooh, sounds exciting—and a little bird told me it was on sale, right? Where can we buy it?

It is available on in both paperback and Kindle versions. The Kindle version will be on sale for 99 cents from May 1 to May 7 on both and

Nice! I already got my copy. What draws you to this genre?

I love to write young adult books. Young adult often focuses on that time of life when a character is just about to reach adulthood and is testing and questioning his/her world. There’s a lot of growth, a lot of conflict, and a lot of life-changing decisions during that time. And I always love a good adventure and a sweet love story!

Adventure and a love story? What a great combination! Can you give us some insights into your main character—what does she do that is so special?

Kara Springs is a horse trainer that is fiercely loyal to both the horses and to her friends. She has a special knack for working with horses that is evident from the first time she sets foot in a barn. She’s willing to go to extremes to keep those she loves safe, even if it means sacrificing herself, which can be both a blessing and a curse! I’d like to think she’s my alter ego.

Sounds like she has some real struggles to overcome. Which actor would you like to see playing Kara Springs?

Jennifer Lawrence knows how to ride horses! I’m just saying…

The perfect choice for a fiercely loyal young woman who’s not afraid to sacrifice herself. Where did the idea for this book come from?

The idea came to me when I was sixteen and volunteering at a show horse ranch. Though show horses are beautiful to watch, what some of them go through behind the scenes is very disturbing. Achieving the show horse look can sometimes take extreme measures, and when I found out about this, I was horrified! The only thing I could think was how much I wanted to get the horses away from that situation. I couldn’t…but Kara Springs could. So the idea grew from there.

Kara Springs sounds like my kind of heroine, and I love that you were able to bring such authenticity to the writing based on your own experiences. What was the most surprising part of this book for you?

For me, it was when I finished the book for the first time and found myself actually missing the characters. I was so sad that it was over, and I kept having to go back and read it so I could feel like I was part of it again. That’s when I realized Kara’s story just wasn’t finished yet and made a second book.

Woohoo! So more Kara on the horizon—I can’t wait. Is there a message in your first novel that you want readers to grasp?

There’s two messages, really. One is obvious and that is that cruelty to animals in any form is wrong. The other message is that it’s important to stand up for what you believe in.

Both powerful messages, especially for young women like Kara. Hopefully these messages can motivate your readers. Do you have a favorite quote or motivational phrase?

They say when you fall off a horse, you’re supposed to get right back on. It means you shouldn’t give in to the fear of failure. Get up and try again.

Excellent advice, especially for writers. If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?

When I was younger, I really enjoyed reading The Babysitter’s Club series. I wrote a letter to the author, Ann M. Martin, asking her how I could become an author someday. She actually wrote me a long letter back and told me to keep writing and to not give up. That was incredibly inspiring, and I hope to have the same influence on young aspiring writers someday.

Well, it sounds like Kara is going to inspire a lot of young readers. What are your current projects?

Right now, I’m preparing book two in The Shadows Breathe series for publication this summer, and am starting on book three. I also have an ongoing story in my blog on called “The Splash Team” about an alien mermaid.

Can you share a little of The Shadows Fall with us?
“Yanking the rope from her hands, she set her sights on Nico. He was standing on her left, away from most of the other men and with the bridle she was to use in the heist slung over his shoulder. Gathering the rope in her hands, she flung it into his face and snatched the bridle away from him while pushing him backwards into the group. Instantly she turned and bolted, heading at an angle down the slope towards the invisible fence. Lea saw her and followed without hesitation, her strides quickly eating up the distance between them. For a minute, the group was left in startled confusion. Phoebe was the first to react.
“Go, Kara! Run!” she screamed.
“Get after her! Get her now!” Ian yelled. But they were too late. Kara met Lea and used her momentum to swing over her back, aiming the mare for the fence and signaling her to jump. The mare took the fence with ease, hitting the ground on the other side and carrying Kara away into the woods.”—From The Shadows Fall (sequel to The Shadows Breathe)

Go, Kara, go! She is definitely a character readers will respond to. Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

Reading is a great way to live an exciting adventure without leaving your house! Read every chance you get, and try genres other than what you’re used to. You might be surprised what you find out you like!

How can readers discover more about you and your work?
Amazon Author Page:
Book Links:

Is there anything else you would like to add?

Happy reading!

Thank you, Kathleen, for answering our questions. And readers, Kathleen has agreed to answer your questions as well! Just post your questions in the comments below before Friday night (May 2). So go grab her awesome book, The Shadows Breathe, and then come back and post your questions. Thanks, everyone~

message 3: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen Marentes | 11 comments Hi, everyone! I'll be around from now until tomorrow night to answer any questions you have!

message 4: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Kovanda (lisakovanda) | 7 comments Congrats on the new book! Nice interview, Kathleen. I hope you kept that letter from Ann M. Martin. Very cool!

message 5: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen Marentes | 11 comments Thank you! I found it very special that she took the time to answer me and inspire me, and that's something I hope I will be able to do as a writer.

message 6: by Barbara (new)

Barbara Franzen | 3 comments The book sounds wonderful. What a great title! Best wishes.

message 7: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen Marentes | 11 comments Thank you very much, Barbara!

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