For What It's Worth

Friday, November 2, 2012

Guest post & Giveaway:! Carolyn Crane–Mr. Real

I’m so happy to welcome Carolyn Crane back to the blog today. She is the author of one of my favorite series EVER, The Disillusionist Trilogy, and is back with a new series called the Code of Shadows.

Book #1 from the series, Mr. Real, is an especially fun book for me because I’m a character in it!! I’ll let Carolyn go ahead and explain the whole thing but it was a lot of fun and for a great cause!

CCrane Collage

What you might not know about Karen! by Carolyn Crane

So, way back in June, Chelsea at the blog Vampire Book Club ran a Books Fighting Cancer auction  to raise money for the Barrow Neurological Institute. They research brain cancer, which is a cause dear to her heart.

Karen, your host here at For What It’s Worth, was so thoughtful and generous to offer a donation. She won the prize of “Sidekick in Mr. Real named after you.” Yay, Karen!

So now Karen has the dubious honor of being the namesake wild-child Alix Gordon’s long-suffering BFF, Karen Alderman. Karen, are you regretting this yet? lol. I hope not!

Really, one of the most delightful aspects of working on this book was using Karen’s name. There is one point where the primary villain is mocking Karen for an email she sent, and I was just laughing to have him say her name.

I’ve never done anything like that. I think, in my mind, real Karen, you’ve merged with character Karen. I had her named something else before the auction, but she’s so much become “Karen” that, weirdly, I can’t remember what her other name was.

In the book, Karen is a strong woman-friend character, one of my favorite types of characters. She often talks tough to the heroine. Here is her description, from the heroine’s POV:

      A barrette sparkled in Karen’s short, dark hair. Karen loved shiny little barrettes; Alix felt that she wore     them, not quite ironically, but in the way a tough motorcycle thug might have a “Mom” tattoo. Her dress was green and prim on her slender frame, and her shoes were a different shade of green than her dress—one of her famous monochromatic outfits. She looked a little bit like a librarian, but not the kind who might be sexy underneath. More the kind who might be badass underneath.

In so many ways, character Karen is the smartest one in the room, and she catches the eye of the spy, another smart character. I left the way open for them to have a book together, though it’s not actually planned. It’s just one of those possibilities a writer leaves open for herself. I promise, Karen, that if I do, your namesake won’t become an axe murderer!

Recently on Twitter, real Karen and I had a jokey exchange with a tweep about a racy event in character Karen’s past, and I was like, oh, noooo! I hadn’t thought about it from real Karen’s angle. Because, as a writer, I go where it makes sense for a character, but then there is real Karen out there. But Karen, you were so great about it. You said something to the effect that she’s your wilder, smarter alter-ego. lol. I loved that.

It was fun to put in Karen as my sidekick name! I think maybe I should send you a shiny barrette to wear or something! Anyway, thanks so much for your generosity to a hugely worthy cause, and for being such a great sport!! You Rock.


Carolyn Crane

Author Links: Website | Twitter | Goodreads

Thanks Carolyn! The auctions may be over but please check out Chelsea’s charity auction page to see all the great authors that were involved and learn how to donate to the Barrow Neurological Institute. It was a thrill to be a character in one of Carolyn’s books, but on a personal father is suffering from Parkinson’s Disease, which is one of the many brain & spinal conditions that the Barrow Neurological Institute researches, so it is a very important cause to me as well. 

On a lighter note…. It was so funny to see my name in a book! When it was just “Karen” I loved it because no one is ever named Karen. When I was a kid I thought I had such a strange name.

Whenever Carolyn used my full name though…I was WHAT? Who? It jolted me every time. It felt so weird. lol

The fictional Karen is much more computer savvy and girly than I am in real life but how she talks to her BFF – saying it like it is, is VERY much like me. I loved the character so yay & thanks Carolyn and Chelsea for such a fun opportunity!

15706309The woman of his dreams…with the secret agent of his nightmares

Alix Gordon is a woman who doesn’t take life too seriously. What’s the fun in that? So when she stumbles across occult software that can bring any computer image to life, she conjures up lots of awesome outfits and accessories. And then, on one drunken, horny night, she conjures up Sir Kendall, the sexy TV ad spy . . . who looks exactly like Paul Reinhardt, the hot martial arts teacher who kicked her out of class a few years ago.

Fighter Paul Reinhardt has good reason to hate Sir Kendall, the character he brought to life to land a part in a TV ad; he’d do anything to forget him. A cross country road trip seems just the thing . . . until Paul finds himself inexplicably drawn to Minnesota and is shocked to discover Sir Kendall – in the flesh – with the girl he’d once loved from afar. He barges into Alix and Sir Kendall’s love nest, determined to stop the madness – somehow.

But is super spy Sir Kendall transforming into something more dangerous anyone can imagine? And what will Sir Kendall do when Paul and Alix finally give into their mad lust for each other? ~ Goodreads | Amazon 


Carolyn is giving away one ebook copy of Mr. Real!

Just leave a comment to enter:

If you could be a character in any book - which book/series would you choose?


What character would you bring to life if you had a magic computer?

Ends November 10th 11:59pm ET. Winner announced 11/11


  1. You won Karen?! So cool :D I'd love to be a sidekick

    1. I did! It was a lot of fun reading about me - not me lol

  2. Ohhhhh, that's a dangerous question! I'm going to go w/the WVMP Radio series. I wouldn't try to steal Shane from Ciara, but I would covertly ogle him.
    Congrats on the win, Karen. And thanks, Carolyn, for such a fun post.

    1. That would be MY answer!!! lol I love Shane!

  3. OMG! That is so cool! You've been immortalized! I would love to be a character in an Immortal After Dark series by Kresley Cole.

    1. I bet a lot of people would agree with you there!

  4. I love me some Karen!! And Carolyn! Fun interview and I can't wait to read about Karen's alter ego, heh heh heh. There are do many great books out there with great characters- I'm kind of overwhelmed picking one. While I have many, I'd start off with Rhia from Aspect of Crow Series.

  5. Oh, If I could bring to life a character of my choice it would be either one of Larissa Ione's heroes (Wraith, Ares, Than) or one of the sexy Doms from either Cherise Sinclair's Shadowlands series or one from Kallypso Masters' Rescue Me series.

  6. I'd choose to be a character in Cherie Priest's Cheshire Red Reports series, she has the most quirky characters it would be fun to see what I became.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com

  7. Ooh! I think I'd have to use my magic computer to bring Roarke to life. Just the thought makes me smile (and sigh)!

  8. If I had a magic computer I would bring Jon Snow from the series A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE by George R Martin to life. I'm in love


  9. I would want barrons to come to life :)

    aprilmom00 at gmail dot com

  10. I can't decide if I would want to be Cat from Night Huntress or Eve Dallas from In Death. It is a tough choice deciding between going home to Bones or Roarke! And yes they are my deciding factors.

    mmafsmith AT gmail DOT com