Interview with Writing Team K.M. Daughters, Authors of Beyond the Code of Conduct

K.M. Daughters is the multi-published writing team of sisters Pat Casiello and Kathie Clare. Their penname is dedicated to their parents Katherine and Michael, the “K” and “M” in K.M. Daughters. Their author career began in January 2008 with contracts from The Wild Rose Press for an inspirational romance, Jewel of the Adriatic, and a romantic suspense novel, Against Doctors Orders, Book #1 in The Sullivan Boys Series. Beyond The Code of Conduct, Book 2 in the series, is rated 4-stars, compelling, page turner, by Donna M. Brown, Reviewer for Romantic Times Book Reviews (June 2009 Issue #304). A contemporary romance, Past, Present and Forever is available in E-book from Sapphire Blue Publishing. Residing in Illinois and New Jersey, the sisters continue to work on The Sullivan Boys Series. Book #3 will release later this year and two additional books are anticipated to complete the series. You can visit their website at www.kmdaughters.com. Follow them at http://twitter.com/kmdaughters!

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Welcome to The Writer's Life, K.M. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how long you’ve been writing?

Thank you, we’re happy to be here. Our parents, Kay and Mickey, inspired our penname – the “K” and “M” in K.M. Daughters. We decided to collaborate as sister writers in 2004. We came up with what we thought was an interesting title: Reunion For The First Time. And we conjured a story line for a contemporary romance around it. Sapphire Blue Publishing published the book this year, but they required us to come up with a different title!

Can you please tell us about your book and why you wrote it?

Our new release Beyond The Code of Conduct is a romantic suspense and the second book in our Sullivan Boys Series. The Sullivan family includes six siblings, one girl and five boys, all currently or formerly law enforcers, and the head of the family is a retired police commissioner. Book 2 tells Joe Sullivan and Bobbie Leighton’s love story – secondary characters in Book 1. Joe saved Bobbie’s life in the first book and was injured. Bobbie was a live-in childcare giver for our heroine, one of many odd jobs in her career. We wrote the second book in the series because we weren’t ready to say good-bye to the Sullivan family and we had to know the answers to open questions. Will Bobbie find a satisfying career? Will Joe return to active duty? Did Bobbie get over Joe? Did he get over Bobbie? And as the book opens, who killed Jimmy Sullivan?

What kind of research was involved in writing Beyond The Code Of Conduct?

It’s a contemporary romantic suspense set in New York City and Chicago. We were raised outside NYC and Pat lives in the Chicago area, so we continue to explore these cities we love. We consult with several medical professionals and newly promoted Commander Frank Cargola, Rosemont, Illinois, Police Department in writing the series. While posing questions to Frank about the police dress uniform, Frank responded, “Wait a minute. Let me go look in my closet.”

How much input did you have into the design of your book cover?

The Wild Rose Press includes a form with their contract package that allowed us to make suggestions for cover art. Our Editor, Joelle Walker, envisioned the cover art for the first book, Against Doctors Orders, single-handedly, ran it by us and then conferred with the cover artist, Kim Mendoza. Kim produced a striking cover, so Joelle asked her to produce the new release’s cover as well. We made some suggestions conferring with Joelle and Kim worked her magic.

Has it been a bumpy ride to becoming a published author or has it been pretty well smooth sailing?

We’d say bumpy with smooth patches, but we’re always gauging the wind. We don’t take anything for granted. Our work has to continually improve to earn contracts.

For this particular book, how long did it take from the time you signed the contract to its release?

We just checked the paperwork and from contract date to release it’s almost exactly nine months – fitting for our latest newborn.

Do you have an agent and, if so, would you mind sharing who he/is is? If not, have you ever had an agent or do you even feel it’s necessary to have one?

We do not have an agent yet. Yes, we do feel it’s necessary to work with an agent and we’re talking about appropriate timing for seeking the right agent.

Do you plan subsequent books?

Yes, The Wild Rose Press has just approved the contract for the 3rd book in the series, Capturing Karma. Our work in progress is the 4th in the series and we plan one more before we conclude The Sullivan Boys’ stories.

Are you a morning writer or a night writer?

We write during both times of day – around our day jobs.

If money was no object, what would be the first thing you would invest in to promote your book?

A coast-to-coast book signing tour so we could meet Readers.

How important do you think self-promotion is and in what ways have you been promoting your book offline and online?

Self-promotion is all-important, something we didn’t necessarily appreciate when we were jumping up and down after receiving our first contract. We buy print ads and produce bookmarks and other promo materials to distribute at conferences and mail to book groups/sellers. We just attended the 2009 RT Booklover’s Conference in Orlando and enjoyed autographing books and meeting readers. We have joined social networks, the latest, Twitter. We have a website and we keep it current and informative. We run contests periodically and maintain a newsletter list. We’ve listed our books at various sites: our member RWA chapters, Writers and Readers of Distinctive Fiction, Books In Sync, etc. For this release, we’re working with Pump Up Your Books to virtually tour the book. It’s an exciting experiment for us.

Any final words of wisdom for those of us who would like to be published?

Invest enough time in the writing craft. Attend workshops, classes, network with other authors and publishing professionals. Establish a web presence and join web groups associated with your writing interests and genres. Love to write what you love.

Thank you for your interview, K.M. Would you like to tell my readers where they can find you on the web and how everyone can buy your book?

You’re welcome and thank you. Our author site address is: http://www.kmdaughters.com. Purchase Beyond The Code of Conduct online
At Barnes and Noble: http://tinyurl.com/dco3cn
At Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/cbunqh
In E-Book At: http://www.thewildrosepress.com
Or order at your local book store.
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