Today’s guest is Kaira Rouda, author of the women’s fiction novel, In the Mirror. Kaira is an award-winning and bestselling author of both fiction and nonfiction. Her books include: Real You Incorporated: 8 Essentials for Women Entrepreneurs; Here, Home, Hope; All the Difference; In the Mirror; and the short story, A Mother's Day. She lives in Southern California with her husband and four children and is at work on her next novel.
Thank you for this interview, Kaira. Can you tell us a little about yourself and how long you’ve been writing?
I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. Once I graduated college, I started working in the newspaper business. Next stop, magazines and then finally, after a long career in marketing, I published my first book in 2009. Since then, I’ve released three novels and a short story. I’m so excited to be living the career of my dreams.
Can you tell us briefly what your book is about?
I’d love to! In the Mirror asks the question: What choices would you make if you knew you may die soon?
In the Mirror is the story of Jennifer Benson, a woman who seems to have it all. Diagnosed with cancer, she enters an experimental treatment facility to tackle her disease the same way she tackled her life - head on. But while she's busy fighting for a cure, running her business, planning a party, staying connected with her kids, and trying to keep her sanity, she ignores her own intuition and warnings from others and reignites an old relationship best left behind.
If you knew you might die, what choices would you make? How would it affect your marriage? How would you live each day? And how would you say no to the one who got away?
So far the book has received great reviews and I’m so excited:
"Kaira Rouda has created relatable characters you'll care deeply about. Emotionally gripping and heart-achingly beautiful, In the Mirror will make you think about what's truly important." ~ Tracey Garvis Graves, New York Times bestselling author
“Balancing sadness and humor, the retrospective tone of this novel is both therapeutic and affecting. In the Mirror is an emotion-packed novel about a mother facing terminal cancer. It is a nostalgic tribute to the things that really matter: family and friends.” ~ Foreword
"Rouda writes with a fluent, psychologically subtle realism that cuts Jennifer’s pathos (and occasional self-pity) with humor and irony, and she surrounds her with characters—doting dad; vain, shallow mom; mensch of a gay business partner; sarcastic gal pals—who are sharply etched and entertaining. Jennifer is a winning heroine, and readers will undoubtedly root for her as she reaches for a more mature, if achingly uncertain, future. An absorbing story of a woman grasping at life in the midst of death. ~ Kirkus Reviews
Why did you choose your particular genre?
The genre chose me, actually. I’ve always been a big fan of women’s fiction – fiction that focuses on women’s lives, with female protagonists. Call it Chick Lit, call it Romance or call it Women’s Fiction – it’s the heart of life and I’m proud to be a small part of it all.
What was your greatest challenge writing this book?
Making sure I could treat this very sensitive topic – a young mother with advanced stage cancer – with the empathy, sensitivity and compassion the topic deserves, while still making it a story you’d like to read.
Are you published by a traditional house, small press or are you self-published?
I have been all three. This novel is published by my imprint, Real You Publishing Group.
Was it the right choice for you?
Absolutely. Hybrid authors are becoming the norm. I am open to all types of publishing options, but not constrained by any of them.
How are you promoting your book thus far?
Predominately social media. I am doing a few in-person events in my area and then, hopefully, some book club appearances in person and on Skype. I love Skype book club meetings!
How is that going for you?
Building a brand takes time. My first novel was published three years ago this month. I had a release in 2012, but not in 2013 (long, writer’s block story) and so I lost momentum. I’m hopeful with IN THE MIRROR, I can reignite the excitement my readers had for my books and gain some new followers along the way! So far, the reception has been amazing!
Can you tell us one thing you have done that actually resulted in one or more sales?
Calling my mom, and asking her to order IN THE MIRROR. Actually, in the end, that’s what social media provides – one to one connection. So it’s a slow build, but if you believe in yourself and your career, it will happen.
This year, in addition to all the things I’ve done in the past – blog tours, authorbuzz, etc., I’m trying all types of new things – my attitude is bring it on. #AmazonCart. Thunderclap.
Do you have another job besides writing?
I had a 20 plus year in marketing, but retired when we sold our business four years ago. This is it, and I love it.
If you could give one book promotion tip to new authors, what would that be?
Don’t look for the quick fix. Stay true to your personal brand and your writing brand. Stay focused on writing.
What’s next for you?
Staying focused on writing and promoting my new release IN THE MIRROR! And, my next release, out in August, LINES IN THE SAND.
Can you tell us where we can find you on the web?
Absolutely! And thank you for having me here! To find me online, please visit me on
Pinterest: Kaira Rouda, author
And on my website, www.KairaRouda.com