Who is Chuck and why does he like to travel?

I was born to be a writer and when I wrote my novel Wild Point Island, Chuck, my orange and white recently rescued feral tabby, got it in his head that he wanted to travel to the island and see the place for himself. Well, of course, Wild Point Island, can only be seen by revenants (you'll have to read the book to find out who they are) and Chuck is no revenant so instead, I concocted a plan to take Chuck with me when I travel around the world, which I do frequently. Not an easy task. First, I have to deflate the poor kid of all air, stuff him in my carry-on bag, remember to bring my portable pump, and when I arrive, I pump him back up. Ouch. But he's used to it by now and given the choice to either stay home in his comfy cat bed or get deflated, he pulls out his passport, ready to travel, every time.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Welcome to the 2012 Blogger Book Fair

        Thanks for coming to visit me.  My name is Kate Lutter, author of Wild Point Island, my recently published paranormal romance.   I'm so excited to be part of the 2012 Blogger Book Fair!

Please keep on reading . . . the blurb for the book . . . an excerpt . . . a blog about how I broke the rules and almost got the book published . . . and finally a contest where I'm giving away two gift cards and a free copy of Wild Point Island.  

                  What is Wild Point Island about?  The blurb on the back cover reads like this:

     Banished from Wild Point Island as a child, Ella Pattenson, a half human-half revenant, has managed to hide her true identity as a descendent of the Lost Colony of Roanoke.  Thought to have perished, the settlers survived but were transformed into revenants--immortal beings who live forever as long as they remain on the island. 

      Now, Ella must return to the place of her birth to rescue her father from imprisonment and a soon to be unspeakable death.  Her only hope is to trust a seductive revenant who seems to have ties to the corrupt High Council.  Simon Viccars is sexy and like no man she’s ever met. But he’s been trapped on the island for 400 years and is willing to do almost anything for his freedom.

     With the forces of the island conspiring against her, Ella must risk her father, her heart, and her life on love.  

            E Book Reviewers recently read and rated Wild Point Island with 5 stars *****, and I quote:

"At the very core . . .(Wild Point Island) is a multi-level mystery, with plot twists and turns that you never expected. And there is a deep touching love story that grasped my heart and never let go.  This is one book you must go buy now; once you start reading, you won’t be able to put it back down.  I give it ***** (5 stars)." 

            I'd like to share an excerpt from the book with you:

     We glided along until we came to a doorway, and Simon
pointed to a sign that read Area C. “Remember, there are
monitors. You can see your father, but do not speak to him.”
     I swallowed. Now that I was here, I wanted to see him. Yes,
but I also wanted more.
     “He may be in bad shape. You must prepare yourself.”
     “Please, let’s just go.”
     We passed cell after cell. This prison was like a
mausoleum, and the walls were like coffins. Simon increased
his pace as if there was something wrong.
     “He is there, Ella.”
     On my left, was a single cell in the room we’d just entered.
     My father’s name was neatly inscribed in block letters and
below it the years of his sentence. But I wanted to see other
words. The truth--that they’d entombed him. But there was
nothing else. And I couldn’t see him.
     “Where is he?”
     “Stare at the wall. Imagine him as he was. You will be
able to see him.”
     A revenant who is unnourished shrivels to dust. My father
looked the same as twenty years ago, no older, but thinner.
And there was no life to his eyes. His spirit, at least, had not
shrivelled to dust. We had time yet, but not much time,
before he would give up. The image of him faded in and out,
like stills from an old movie being shown for the last time
before they faded on the screen.
     I stood there in perfect silence and said nothing. I tried to
take in every detail so I could tell my mother what she so
desperately wanted to know. In a moment or two I knew we
had to leave. My father would never know that I had come all
this way to see him and that we were risking everything for
these few precious moments.
     I had to let him know I was there. I had to give him hope
to stay alive for just a while more.
     When we were children, he was fond of whispering a
phrase to Lily and me as he tucked us into bed each night. I
love you, he would say, infinity into the nineties. We didn’t
know what infinity into the nineties meant. Only that it
meant love. Total love.
     If I said it now, he would know he hadn’t been forgotten.
Simon waited respectfully behind me.
     “I love you, Dad, infinity into the nineties.”
     In my present state I had no eyes, which could tear, no
heart, which could break. But my spirit shook as I waited for
the consequences of my actions. I would take the blame. Not
     “It is time to go. Now.”
     We glided back to the starting point, then began to ascend.
     I could, at least, assure my mother that my father had
survived. His spirit had not turned to dust. When we reached
the surface, we glided to the exact spot where our spirits had
been separated from our bodies.
     “Close your eyes. Your spirit and body will be joined.”
     As I readied myself, I felt a tug on my hand before I even
imagined the process would begin. My body had joined my
spirit effortlessly.
     “You can speak to me now.” Simon edged in closer.
     Reclaiming my body felt like stepping out of doors on a
perfect spring day. I didn’t care about the rules or the
promises we had made. I didn’t care that physical love
between us was forbidden. We didn’t want to talk to each
     He reached for me, and his lips pressed against mine.
     Once, twice. And then in a fury of passionate kissing, we
couldn’t quell the desire that consumed both of us as we
sought out each other’s lips.
     He gripped my shoulders as he kissed me over and over.
     “I don’t want to wait anymore,” I cried. “I can’t.”
     He considered, wanting me. Trying to decide, I could tell,
whether I had logically made up my mind, or was so
desperate for him, I would say anything.
     “You don’t have to protect me. I know what can happen,” I
     “Do you know what you are agreeing to.” His voice took on
a warning tone. “Are you willing to live here, with me, on this
     “And what’s the alternative—that we live apart? That I live
with someone I don’t love?”
     “Love. Do you love me, Ella? Does that mean you have
    Something crashed in the woods. Suddenly, lights shined
directly on us. Voices shouted. Someone called Simon’s
name. Uniformed personnel appeared. A large beefy man
ripped me from Simon’s arms and pushed me to the ground.
Simon was grabbed from behind.
     No. No. This can’t be happening. Not here. Not now.
     “You have violated the Council’s orders.”
     I struggled to sit up. “What are you accusing us of?” I
shouted, although I could well enough guess, considering
Simon and I were parked in a restricted area and had
returned from breaking into the prison.
     “Ella, keep quiet.”
     “Simon Viccars, you must come with us.”
     “Go to your uncle. Tell him what has happened.”
     In the time it took me to climb to my feet, the men had
taken Simon away.

               I hope you enjoyed this sneak peek into Wild Point Island.  If you'd like to read more, you can log onto my website www.katelutter.com and read the first chapter.  I also have an album with photos from the island and a page devoted to island history. 

            The road to writing and publishing Wild Point Island wasn't easy.  I wrote a blog about the process called, "Breaking the Rules" for Book Sparks:

                   Breaking the Rules: How I Got Published

         I was never one for breaking the rules.  I was the kid in school who always did her homework.  Who always arrived on time for school.
        Who took notes.  Studied for tests.  I was that kind of person.
When I became a writer, I still followed the rules.  Why wouldn’t I? I believed that rules prevent chaos, make the world a better place.  One of the most important rules was—never pitch a book that you’re writing until you are finished writing it.  NEVER.
But after writing four novels and not selling them, I began to grow suspicious that maybe the ideas I was writing about were not marketable.  
        And then one day . . . last year . . . I decided to do the unthinkable.
I was at a conference and for the first time in my life, I had signed up for an appointment with a top New York editor of a publishing house I respected even though I was only100 pages into writing my current novel.
Now this isn’t a good idea on many levels. 
But I convinced myself that I needed to know whether the idea I was writing about was marketable.  
I had the title: Wild Point Island.
I had the genre: paranormal romance
And I had the germ of the idea down on paper—a love story where two people want to be together but they can’t because it’s physically impossible.  
Yes, I’ll admit it—I was addicted to True Blood—HBO’s hot new drama and was a Sookie and Bill fan.  I loved the idea of Bill (a vampire) falling for Sookie (a half human, half fairy).  It was a relationship doomed from the start.  Bittersweet.  And I’d drafted a romance modeled on a similar concept.  
My hero, a revenant, who was once human, was now a different life form.  He’d returned from the dead.  He was 420 years old and was condemned to live his very long life on Wild Point Island.  My heroine was half human/half revenant.  She lived on the mainland, in North Carolina.    
        They were both descendants of the Lost Colony of Roanoke, an original English colony that was settled in 1592, but then disappeared when the mother ship returned to England for supplies. This was my hook, and I wanted to see if it was hook enough to sell a book.  
        I figured that if the editor were interested, she would request at most a partial—the first three chapters—if she requested anything at all--and that would give me time to finish the book, and then I would know that I had a marketable idea.  
So I marched into my appointment to do a very wrong thing.  I pitched the story I hadn’t really finished and waited with bated breath for her reaction. 
         Now, if you’ve ever been to a pitch session with an editor at a conference, you know you have ten minutes to sell your story.  The pressure is on.  Some writers crack under the pressure.  They become tongue-tied.  They stare down at their notes and the words swim before their eyes.  
         In truth, I believed in my story, and to my shock and amazement, the editor responded to me immediately.  She knew all about the Lost Colony of Roanoke.  She’d vacationed down in North Carolina as a child.  She loved the idea.   
        And then she lowered the boom. 
        The good news.  
        What every writer who pitches wants to hear.
        Could I send her the entire manuscript?
        She was, of course, referring to the story I hadn’t yet finished.
I smiled and said, “Of course.  No problem.”  But I was doomed.
Back home, my husband said, “Just finish it then.”
Honestly, I hadn’t even considered that possibility.  Two hundred pages in a month?  That would mean with time to edit . . . I would have to write ten pages a day straight for twenty days which would give me roughly two hundred pages and then take ten days to edit . . . I was sweating profusely.
The next day I signed up online for Book In A Month.  I set myself a schedule.  I grew determined to do this thing.  Finish the book.  
It was ugly and beautiful at the same time.  I learned two things from the experience.  One—I learned that I could write incredibly fast when I wanted to.  For the first time in my life, I entered into what writers call “the zone.”  When you write intently everyday for long periods of time, you know your story so well, you do enter into the special world of your story, and it does get easier.  Two—I learned never to do it again.  Break the rule.  
I finished.  I edited.  And I submitted.  And it was rejected.  
It wasn’t until months later when I had a chance to rewrite the story that I was able to sell it.  
So maybe I needed to have more faith in myself and my story ideas.  
Wild Point Island was published by Crescent Moon Press on June 15, 2012.  It’s available from Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.com in paperback and ebook formats.
       And so who am I, this rule breaker?
      Here’s the typical blurb I send out:

       I believe I was born to write.  I wrote my first novel when I was in eighth grade, but then almost burned my house down when I tried to incinerate my story in the garbage can because I couldn’t get the plot to turn out right. Now, many years later, I live in NJ with my husband and five cats (no matches in sight) and spend my days writing contemporary paranormal romances, traveling the world, and hanging out with my four wild sisters.  I am happy to report that my debut novel, Wild Point Island, the first in a series, has just been published by Crescent Moon Press. I am busy writing the sequel.  I also write a weekly exotic travel blog entitled Hot Blogging with Chuck, which features my very snarky and rascally almost famous cat.  

      Wild Point Island is available at Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.com in paperback and in ebook formats.  

        I'm also running a contest back at the fair . . . 
        In 25 words or less tell me the title of your favorite novel and why.  My favorite is Wuthering Heights.  I just love the intensity of the relationship between Heathcliff and Catherine.  I need your email address, of course.  
That's it.  You can leave your answer in the comments section of my blog here or email me at:

             I hope you'll participate!

  Your almost famous author,

                                                                Kate Lutter


  1. No need to include me in the contest, but just for conversations sake:

    The Picture of Dorian Gray is one of my favorites because of Wilde's style and the story that takes you back in time.

  2. Also, I would like to thank you for participating in the Blogger Book Fair and for doing such an awesome giveaway! This fair has been so much fun and it's because of great people like you!