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GCC presents Karen Neches

Happy Friday! Next up on the Girlfriend Cyber Circuit is Karen Neches, who is the author of EARTHLY PLEASURES, (Simon and Schuster,) that has been chose to be a Booksense Notable for February.


“…Appealingly unorthodox… a heaven where angels lust, drink and follow terrestrial celebrity gossip… A tangled story of cold ambition and true love unspools. Neches’s funny and sweet novel shows that to err is human and angelic as well.”–Publisher’s Weekly

Welcome, Karen! Grab some coffee, get comfy in the beautician’s chair, and let’s get down to the gossip.

When’s the last time you’ve treated yourself to a manicure?

Never, sadly. My nails look like they’ve been chewed on by termites.

What’s the most regrettable hairstyle you’ve ever had? Any mullets? Rat tails?

Remember in the 80s when they had those moussed asymmetrical hairstyles held in place with banana clips? Guilty!

Oh, yes. The banana clip. I had my array of rainbow colored clips as well! Okay, ever had a major hair or salon disaster?

I played Anne in The Diary of Anne Frank and a stylist put a very dark vegetable dye in my hair he claimed would wash right out. My hair grabbed the color with washings turned a horrible metallic green. Thank God it was during the time when the punk look was popular.

Time for your “Hypothetical Questions of the Week”:

HQ #1: If you could hit the rewind button, which book published by another author do you wish you could have written? Which movie screenplay?

Accidental Tourist by Anne Tyler (although only she could write it.) Adaptation is such a writers’ movie.

HQ #2: You magically find a $100.00 bill in your box of cereal. In what frivolous way would you spend it?

A high end bottle of Pino Noir.

HQ #3: You’re a big-time celebrity who just had a baby. If you were competing for the most bizarre celebrity baby name, what would it be?

Accessory. Sessie for short.

HQ #4: Paparazzi are stalking you, looking for shots of odd things authors do while writing. What do they catch you doing, hmm?

I have a picture of J.k. Rowlings on my desk and three times a day I bow to it while facing England.

HQ #5: If you could go back in time and make changes to any of your published books, would you? If so, which one and why?

My first book. I’d change the cover. It was this big hand on an old fashioned cash register. No one had a clue what it was about.

And finally, what’s your favorite . . .
Time to write?
Movie? Rent
Book? The Secret History
Author? Anne Tyler
Song? Take the A Train
Pair of shoes? Clogs
Guiltiest pleasure? Red wine
Line from a movie? Let’s start at the very beginning. A very good place to start—from Sound of Music

Thanks for stopping by, Karen, and best of luck with EARTHLY PLEASURES!

Here’s more gossip on her latest novel . . .

Earthly Pleasures, by Karen Neches

Welcome to Heaven. Use your Wishberry to hustle up whatever you want. Have an online chat with God. Visit the attractions such as Retail Rapture, Wrath of God miniature golf and Nocturnal Theater, where nightly dreams are translated to film.

Your greeter might just be Skye Sebring who will advises her newly dead clients on what to expect now that they’re expired. “Heaven is like a Corona Beer commercial” she assures her charges. “It’s all about contentment.”

So different than Earth where chaos reigns. Unfortunately for Skye, she’s been chosen to live her first life. She’s required to attend Earth 101 classes, which teach all of the world’s greatest philosophies through five Beatle songs.

Skye has no interest in Earthly pursuits, until lawyer Ryan Blaine briefly becomes her client after a motorcycle accident. Just as they are getting to know each other, he is revived and sent back to Earth.

She follows his life via the TV channel “Earthly Pleasures” but discovers he has a wife as well as a big secret. Why then does he call a show for the lovelorn to talk about the lost love of his life?

In Earthly Pleasures (Simon and Schuster, February 2008, $14) great love can transcend the dimensions, narrowing the vast difference between Heaven and Earth.

“What a treat! Earthly Pleasures more than lives up to its name. I was glued to the pages of this delightful little gem of a novel, and wish it could have been twice as long!”— Megan Crane, author of Frenemies

”Karen Neches’ Earthly Pleasures is a rare treat. I laughed from the first page and cried in all the right places. Do yourself a favor and curl up with this book. Heaven knows, you won’t be sorry!”–Julie Kenner, author of Demons Are Forever

“Equally hilarious and poignant, Earthly Pleasures is a little powerhouse of a novel about love, life…and what comes next.”–Melissa Senate, author of See Jane Date and Love You to Death

Karen Neches’s novel is an intriguing love story with a rare combination of both wit and depth. In her fresh voice Neches gives us an innovative version of heaven where the one true thing still remains: love that transcends both time and space.” –Patti Callahan Henry, National bestselling novelist of Between the Tides

“Earthly Pleasures is more than just a novel. It’s a dream, a calling, a divine trip from which you won’t want to come home. I loved it!—Valerie Frankel, author of I Take This Man and Hex and the Single Girl.

About the Author

Karen Neches was single for over twenty years. She used to tell people she was in the “hospice stage” of being single as she never expected to recover. Then at the age of forty-three she finally met her soul mate. Earthly Pleasures is dedicated to him. She maintains a web site at www.karenneches.com.

Neches also writes under the name Karin Gillespie and is the nationally bestselling author of The Sweet Potato Queen’s First Big-Ass Novel with Jill Conner Browne and three novels in the critically acclaimed Bottom Dollar Girl series. She’s founder of the virtual tour The Girlfriend Circuit as well as the grog for Southern authors A Good Blog is Hard to Find. She is a former lifestyle columnist for the Augusta Chronicle.

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