#NewRelease – Last Dance at the Savoy by Kathryn Leigh Scott

On April 16, actress/author Kathryn Leigh Scott released her memoir, Last Dance at the Savoy: Life, Love and Caring for Someone With Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, about her husband’s battle with this rare neurological disease and her experiences caring for him.

Please make sure you read the excerpt after the interview.

Interview

Tell us a bit about yourself.

Writing and acting have been twin pursuits for me since I was a youngster growing up on a farm in Robbinsdale, Minnesota. I now split my time between New York and Los Angeles, continuing to act and write. I’ve written several nonfiction books and three novels, including Dark Passages (2012), Down and Out in Beverly Heels (2013), Jinxed (2015), while also appearing in a recurring role as George Segal’s girlfriend in The Goldbergs and in the 2015 launch of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. I wrote Dark Shadows: Return to Collinwood about five decades of the television series that launched my acting career. I played Maggie Evans and Josette DuPres, the fiancé of vampire Barnabas Collins (1966-1970), and appeared in a cameo role in the Johnny Depp/Tim Burton film, Dark Shadows (2012).

What or who inspired you to start writing?

I started writing stories as soon as I was able to put pencil to paper. I wrote a play about George Washington when I was in second grade and gave all the good lines to Martha, the role I cast myself in—knowing then that I would always want to both write and act! I wrote for the school newspaper and won a state award for an interview I did with poet Carl Sandburg when I was sixteen years old. If I hadn’t got a scholarship to study acting, I would have pursued a career in journalism. I don’t remember a time when I didn’t consider myself a writer.

How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?

Last Dance at the Savoy is a memoir about my husband’s battle with a rare neurological disease and my experience caring for him. I draw a great deal on my life experiences and the many places where I’ve lived, worked and traveled in writing both fiction and nonfiction. When I was still a student I worked as a Bunny in the New York Playboy Club, where I met young women who are still my friends today, and wrote about it in “The Bunny Years.” I’ve also drawn on my life as an actress, enabling me to write authentically about Hollywood. I’ve written several books about “Dark Shadows,” the series that launched my career, in which I played Maggie Evans and Josette DuPres, the fiancé of vampire Barnabas Collins.

What fuels you as an author to continue to write?

Imagination fuels me as an actress and a writer. I always begin with “what if?” and that informs everything I do creatively. I like turning the expected inside out imagine a place, time and circumstances

Do you outline your books or just start writing?

I usually jump in and start writing to see where it goes, what “voice” I’m hearing. After spinning out some “what ifs” I generally write a detailed synopsis of the full story. I rarely outline more than two or three chapters at a time because I want the story to evolve and I usually just begin by elaborating on my synopsis. I hate to face a blank page!

Please tell us about your current release.

Last Dance at the Savoy: Life, Love and Caring For Someone With Progressive Supranuclear Palsy is the story of my husband’s battle with one of the prime-of-life diseases that has also claimed the lives of Robin Williams (Lewy Body) and Dudley Moore (PSP), and my experiences as a caregiver. Some 20,000 Americans have been diagnosed with PSP, about the same number afflicted with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease), yet little is known about this neurological disease for which there is no cure or treatment. Our challenge was to live our life together fully, making the most of each precious moment while facing up to the inexorable decline in my husband’s health.

What inspired you to write this book?

When my husband was diagnosed, I trolled the Internet hoping to find not only facts about PSP but also personal stories from people who had dealt with the challenges of caring for someone with a neurological disease. I wanted to know what to expect and how I could best care for him during the progression of the disease and all its ramifications. Figuratively speaking, I wanted someone to hold my hand and guide me through what I knew would be a very physically and emotionally difficult journey. There was so little available on the Internet at the time, and no book that could provide me with everything I needed to know and understand. Drawing on my own personal experience, I’ve written what I hope will provide guidance and inspiration to others embarking on their own journeys with these prime-of-life diseases.

How did you come up with the title?

Last Dance at the Savoy is very much a love story that began on a romantic evening dancing at London’s Savoy Hotel when, wrapped in each other’s arms, we knew we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together. It was a fairy-tale beginning to a wonderful marriage, but “happily ever after” came with its challenges when we began noticing my husband’s difficulties with eye-hand coordination, repeated falls, slurred speech and other symptoms of a neurological disorder. But we continued to live life fully, holding each other close until our last dance together.

What kind of research did you do for this book?

When my husband was diagnosed with PSP, his neurologist suggested I keep a journal. As a writer I already did write daily, but I began to focus on recording the effect of various medications and keeping track of the progression of the disease, as well as the adjustments we continually made to accommodate his changing needs. Everything was recorded as it happened, including my experiences as a caregiver and our evolving emotional responses to living with a terminal disease. I also learned a tremendous amount not only from my own hands-on daily caregiving, but from the professional medical personnel conducting the support groups I attended. This journal was very useful as a reference for my husband’s doctors when he was enrolled in drug trials and immensely helpful to me as a template for writing this book. Having this diary of our journey is a great comfort to me now and I am so grateful I can share my experiences with others as they deal with the challenges of living with a neurological disease.

What was the most difficult thing/scene to write in this story?

I shed many tears in writing this book, reliving each moment as I read through the journal I kept throughout my husband’s illness. The most difficult scenes to recall and write about were the times when I had to acknowledge my shortcomings as a caregiver, becoming impatient or short-tempered and gave into my own despair. I could not write an honest book without acknowledging the physical strain and fatigue, as well as the emotional fears and anxiety that are a part of caregiving. It’s very difficult to see someone you love suffer and know you are losing your loved one day by day. There were many moments when I ached with longing and had to take a walk in the garden before I could return to my desk and continue writing.

Excerpt

“Indian Summer”

We had spent such a lot of time apart during my mother’s illness that once Geoff and I were together again in Los Angeles, I was able to see him with fresh eyes—and I was concerned. Gestures that had once seemed idiosyncratic—such as the way he fumblingly adjusted his eyeglasses or scratched his head or tapped surfaces with his fingertips before setting something down—now struck me as odd behavior. Sitting with him at dinner, I found myself pressing my thumb on the base of a stemmed glass so that when he reached for it he couldn’t tip it over.

I’d hoped the time apart would ease the tension that had been building up between us. It wasn’t so much that we were bickering, but more that we were trying so hard not to do anything that would lead to an argument or hurt feelings. I made a point of not commenting in any way if Geoff tripped, stumbled or tipped something over. He hated being seen as clumsy or awkward, and avoided any situation that required dexterity.

Yet, he would somehow manage to hurt himself doing the most ordinary task. He favored one hand and would therefore drop dishes, newspapers, cartons of milk, or injure himself just lifting the lid on a rubbish bin. He was simply not capable of holding the lid up with one hand and using the other to toss in a sack of garbage. If he broke something, he became sullen. He didn’t apologize. He didn’t offer to clean up.

When Geoff retired from Los Angeles magazine, we joked that I would have to take over as “staff.” In fact, “staff” became his funny nickname for me. Adding paper to the copy machine or wrapping a package were tasks he simply could not handle because of his growing difficulty coordinating two hands. He’d try to fill ice cube trays in the old refrigerator in the garage where we kept beer, wine, bottled water and juices. Hours later I would find pools of water on the garage floor and the ice cube trays in the freezer compartment were barely filled.

When we gave dinner parties, it was Geoff’s job to “set the scene.” While I worked in the kitchen, he lit candles, chose music, filled the wine bucket with ice and set glasses on the bar. But on a couple of occasions I found him struggling to open bottles of white wine hours before dinner. Once I stopped him from opening a bottle of champagne more than an hour before guests were to arrive.

“Stop! Why are you doing that?”

“I don’t want to be stuck opening bottles when everyone’s watching me.”

“But it’s too early.”

“Then do it yourself.”

So I did—and also took on the job of lighting the gas logs in the fireplace when it became dangerously apparent that Geoff could no longer do it. One evening I smelled gas and found Geoff sitting on the living room couch trying to reach the gas peg while struggling to click the fire starter.

“You could have blown us up!”

“I’ve been doing this for forty years,” he shouted. “If you don’t like the way I do it—.“

“Use two hands! You can’t do this without getting on your knees and turning the gas on with one hand and lighting the logs with the other.”

“So you do it!”

Doing everything came at a price. The more I took on, the less confident Geoff became. If he was slow to do something, I stepped in and then bore the brunt of his frustration. “You just have to show me up, don’t you?”

Geoff, who had always been a warm, gracious host, deft with conversation and full of good stories, had begun to fall silent once the meal was served. He’d prop his elbow on the table, lean awkwardly over his plate and use only one hand to eat. He handled a soupspoon like a shovel and couldn’t manage to hold a fork to eat salad.

I’d continually remind Geoff not to clutch his wine glass, but set it on the table; to use both his fork and knife; take smaller bites so he wouldn’t choke and to please, please cover his mouth when he coughed. I sounded like the dreaded hall monitor, or the nanny from hell. Geoff was sick of hearing “a laundry list of complaints.” Sometimes we argued, often we rode home from an evening out in silence. I could not understand how he could have become so oblivious and ill mannered, and he wondered why I’d stopped loving him.

“You never used to complain,” he’d say.

True. No matter how hard I tried not to, I’d begun to complain a lot. So I saved my complaints for important things, such as, “Please shower and get dressed so we can leave on time!” Then, as we were walking out the door, I’d notice he wasn’t wearing socks, or had forgotten his belt. My husband, who had always cared about his appearance, was no longer willing to wear certain shoes, pants or shirts. We struggled and argued over the most mundane things.

It wasn’t until one evening late that summer, when we were getting dressed for a black tie event that I realized how difficult it was for him to get dressed. I ended up helping him with everything, including his socks and shoes. I teased him about needing a butler and gave him a kiss, hoping our evening wouldn’t be spoiled.

Life was becoming a lot less fun. Too often I’d offer help when he didn’t want it, which annoyed him. Worse, I failed to notice when he did need help. Frustrated, he’d give up and we’d suffer the consequences.

“Why didn’t you just ask me to put your belt through the loops?”

“I didn’t want to bother you.”

At the least sign of exasperation from either of us, tempers flared and we ended up saying hurtful things neither of us meant.

“Leave me alone! You don’t love me anymore. Divorce me!”

“I don’t want a divorce. I just want you to put on a clean shirt.”

We loved each other and our marriage would not come to an end over table manners and wardrobe issues. But anger, frustration, resentment and hurtful words were taking a terrible toll. I made every sort of adjustment and concession to avoid trouble, which meant we no longer talked about it.

Book Blurb

LastDanceAtTheSavoyCoverBorderWhen her husband is diagnosed with progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), a neurological disease for which there is no cure so far, actress/author Kathryn Leigh Scott’s very active and creative life comes to a halt. Scott “yearned for someone to figuratively take my hand and walk with me through the difficult times I knew were ahead.” Last Dance at the Savoy is the story of Scott’s marriage to Geoff Miller, the founding editor of Los Angeles magazine, and is filled with insights into caregiving based on her practical experiences.

About the Author 

KathrynLeighScottAuthorHeadshotAuthor/Actress Kathryn Leigh Scott has written several books of fiction and nonfiction. She starred in the cult favorite “Dark Shadows” and has recently appeared in a recurring role on “The Goldbergs.” She grew up on a farm in Robbinsdale, Minnesota and currently resides in New York City and Los Angeles.

You can find out more about Kathryn on her website.

You can purchase Last Dance at the Savoy on Amazon.

Today’s Featured Author: Kathryn Leigh Scott

Today, I want to welcome back author Kathryn Leigh Scott to my blog. Kathryn appeared on my blog during her Down and Out in Beverly Heels blog tour back in April 2013. Now she is back with her latest release, Jinxed, which came out in February.

Interview

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m an author/actor — twin pursuits my entire life. I draw on both, one informing the other in my work and both careers are important to me. I grew up on a farm in Robbinsdale, Minnesota. My earliest memories are writing and performing plays with neighborhood kids, often costume dramas since my dear aunt worked in a bridal shop and gave me the castoffs. How lucky can a little girl get! Velvet, tulle, chiffon and silk, with hats, gloves and shoes to match… it’s a wonder I don’t write historical romance! I’m blessed I had family and schoolteachers who encouraged me to write and act. Of course, I was on the school paper and performed in every school play. As a teen, I won a state award for an article I wrote after interviewing the poet Carl Sandburg, and also took first place in a state drama competition for a Strindberg monologue. I can’t imagine my life without writing and acting.

Where were you born and where do you call home?

I was born on a frigid morning in Minneapolis and have thrived in cold climes ever since. While I grew up in the country, I’m a city girl these days, living and working in both New York and Los Angeles. I also lived in Norway as a child, and for many years called London home… and lived a year each in Zurich and Paris. I refuse to make comparisons among these wonderful places; wherever I am is “home.”

What or who inspired you to start writing?

I’ve written since I could hold a pencil, but discovering my mother’s old Olympic typewriter when I was seven years old was a huge inspiration. She showed me how to use it and I slowly poked out one letter after another to write a play about George Washington for my second grade class… and gave all the good lines to Martha Washington, the role I set aside for myself.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

The moment I first saw something I wrote in print, which happened to be a short story that appeared in a little mimeographed booklet when I was in grade school. But everyone in my family writes. My dad, who was a farmer, wrote a monthly humor column for several Norwegian newspapers, called “Brev Fra Amerika.” My mother and brothers are also excellent writers.

How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?

We write about what we know, of course, drawing on our acquaintance with all the arenas of life we experience. But I do love the jolt I get when I write something and wonder how I knew it or where it came from! We learn such a lot about ourselves by writing, which is particularly true in fiction where what we’ve experienced is simply the inspiration, the jumping off point for imagination.

Have you started your next project? If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?

Yes, I am about two-thirds along with a stand-alone novel I’m calling September Girl. It’s mainstream fiction, a considerable departure in style from my other books, which have been mystery, romance and paranormal novels. I’ve also completed a nonfiction book, Last Dance at the Savoy. The next title in the “Jinx Fogarty Mystery” series will be set in London.

What is the best thing about being a writer? The worst?

Frankly, the best thing about being a writer is seeing your work in print finding a readership. The worst thing is facing the blank page (screen), which is daunting and certainly inspires humility.

What fuels you as an author to continue to write?

There’s always another story to tell.

Please tell us about your current release.

Jinxed is the second installment in a story about actress Meg Barnes, who had it all and lost everything and ended up living on the streets of Beverly Hills in her “Ritz-Volvo.” She’s now finding redemption, rebuilding her life with work in a new television series… but also solving a crime involving the mysterious disappearance of her young co-star.

What inspired you to write this book?

Leslie Stahl did a “60 Minutes” segment years ago about once-wealthy, now destitute women living in their cars on the streets of upscale Bel-Air. I came to meet such women while working in a homeless program in Beverly Hills and imagined “what if” I were in such a situation… how would I handle it? Everything I write begins with “what if?”

Did you base any of your characters on real people?

Yes, but no character is based on any one single person. All my characters are a mixture of traits and personalities of people I know and observe, just as it is with roles that I play. The downside of knowing a writer is that you’ll eventually get written about, but I’ve never had anyone say, “You wrote about me!”

Which of your characters is your favorite? Do you dislike any of them?

Too many favorites! They all become very real to me. I write about an elderly down-on-her-heels actress, who is so elegant and well-groomed you would never know she lives in her rusting El Dorado parked on a shady side street just close enough to Neiman-Marcus that she can use their public facilities… I love this woman!

Can you tell us a little about the black moment in your book?

The blackest moment is when Meg realizes her own life is in jeopardy and that it’s because of her that other people have been harmed in her stead.

What was the most difficult thing/scene to write in this story?

Love scenes. One risks such terrible public exposure in writing scenes of intimacy!

Did the story turn out the way you planned from the beginning? If not, what change happened that you didn’t expect?

The villain! A motive became so clear to me and then I knew who the villain was. I really became the detective as a writer.

If you could be one of the characters from any of your books, who would it be and why?

Meg Barnes. She’s funny, resourceful… and she blurts out exactly the right retort that in real life I would only come up with in the middle of the night when it’s way too late.

Tell us a random fact about you that we never would have guessed.

I worked as a Playboy Bunny while going to school in New York, and took Bunny Training with Gloria Steinem. (Then wrote about the 25-year history of Playboy Bunnies in The Bunny Years.)

Book Blurb

Jinxed_finalcover_hirezIn Jinxed, Meg Barnes is back on the comeback trail. Beloved for her role as amateur sleuth Jinx Fogarty in a renowned detective show, Meg assumes she’ll star as Jinx in the revamped TV series, only to discover that a young ingénue has been cast instead. Meg swallows her pride for a paycheck to coach Chelsea Horne—until temperamental Chelsea goes missing before filming begins. Meg ignores the warnings from Jack, her FBI-agent boyfriend, not to do her “Jinx thing.” But when Jinx’s iconic top hat goes missing and someone from her past is murdered, it’s clear her life— and more— is in jeopardy. As in Down and Out in Beverly Hills, Scott once again pulls back the curtain on the grit behind the Hollywood glamour, taking the reader on a wild ride in this mystery-suspense/romance novel.

About the Author

KathrynLeighScott_brownsuedeKathryn Leigh Scott, author, publisher and actress is probably best known for her star turn as Josette Du Pres, ingénue bride of reluctant vampire Barnabas Collins in the TV cult classic “Dark Shadows.” Her third novel, Jinxed: a Jinx Fogarty Mystery (Februrary 2015), is a standalone sequel to the successful Down and Out in Beverly Heels (Montlake Romance, 2013). While continuing her acting career, Kathryn launched Pomegranate Press to publish books about the entertainment industry, “Dark Shadows” fan books, and other nonfiction and fiction titles. She continues her acting career playing George Segal’s girlfriend Miriam in “The Goldbergs” and recently appeared in the 2015 mid-season launch of “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

A native of Minnesota. Kathryn landed the ingénue lead in the classic Gothic daytime drama “Dark Shadows” (ABC, 1966-1971) upon graduation from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. She also starred in the 1971 MGM feature, House of Dark Shadows. Kathryn played four roles in the series: Maggie Evans, Josette du Pres, Lady Kitty Hampshire, and Rachel Drummond. Kathryn wrote Dark Shadows Memories to coincide with its 20th anniversary and Dark Shadows Companion as a 25th 
anniversary tribute. Both were book club favorites.  Including her history of the Playboy Clubs and the various audio and digital editions of her work, Kathryn’s literary sales exceed 165,000 copies. Kathryn appeared in a cameo role in Tim Burton’s Dark Shadows, starring Johnny Depp. Her latest nonfiction title is Dark Shadows: Return to Collinwood.in the U.K. by Bloomsbury.

Kathryn’s theatrical credits include a lengthy run with James Stewart in Harvey in London’s West End. She has appeared in many television series and mini-series, including Barbara Taylor Bradford’s Voice of the Heart, Dan Travanti’s wife in Murrow, George C. Scott’s mistress in The Last Days of Patton, Philip Marlowe’s girlfriend in Chandlertown, and series regular with Brian Dennehy in Big Shamus, Little Shamus. Feature films include Providence, The Great Gatsby, Brannigan, The Greek Tycoon, Assassination, 187 and Parasomnia, Dr. Mabuse, and Dark Shadows.

You may find out more about Kathryn on her website or follow her on Twitter or Facebook.

You can purchase Jinxed on Amazon.

Book Blog Tour: Kathryn Leigh Scott

Author Kathryn Leigh Scott is on a Blog Tour to promote her latest release, Down and Out in Beverly Heels.

Interview

Where were you born and where do you call home?

I grew up on a farm in Minnesota after living in Norway for a year when I was a toddler. How different my life would be if my parents had chosen to remain in the small Norwegian village where my father was born! Yet I think I would still have become a writer and actor because so many of my family members, including my parents, wrote and acted. My brothers are both excellent writers. I am thoroughly American, yet I’ve lived, worked and traveled all over the world, filling notebook after notebook with journal writings. For many years I called Zurich, London and Paris home. Now I divide my time between New York and Los Angeles.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I’ve been drawn to writing and acting since I was a child and they are still my twin careers, one always feeding the other. I wrote a play about George Washington in second grade, but it was all about Martha, the role I intended to play. I wrote short stories all through grade school, worked on the school newspaper and in high school won a state award for an interview I did with Carl Sandburg. I attended the summer “cherub” program at Northwestern University on scholarship when I was 16, after applying in both the journalism and theatre departments. I consider myself so blessed that I am still working as a writer and an actor, and I’ve though of myself as both since I was seven years old!

How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?

Much of what I’ve written is nonfiction. I am very drawn to memoir, having written books about my experiences working as both a Playboy Bunny while in drama school and as one of the original actors on “Dark Shadows.” When I turned to fiction with Dark Passages, I was able to incorporate everything I knew about the behind-the-scenes world of Playboy and live soap opera in the 1960s… that’s very rich material! I also tend to write funny and it reflects my take on life. I’m essentially a happy person with a robust sense of the ridiculous… and I do love taking a poke at artifice and complacent thinking. Down and Out in Beverly Heels is about a homeless woman, but however harsh her life becomes, she deals with it in a very resourceful, humorous, upbeat manner. My work as a writer is very much character driven and dialogue comes naturally… is that a surprise?

Have you started your next project? If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?

I’m currently writing a sequel to Down and Out in Beverly Heels because I love the character. I sometimes wish I were Meg Barnes! She’s tenacious, fun, resilient and so appealing to me. I’m writing in the mystery romance genre, but I tend to choose plots that have serious underpinnings, in this case sex trafficking. I guess I need a bit of fire in the belly when I write and dealing with the harsh realities gives my character some bite and purpose. I like that.

Do you write full-time? If so, what is your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?

I’m an early riser and quite often go straight to my desk with a cup of tea to read over what I’ve worked on the day before.  My goal is 1000 words a day and I usually manage it. However, I’m also an actress so sometimes auditions and acting take me away from my desk. For relaxation, nothing’s better than a long walk or cooking for friends. There’s no point in trying to write at night because I simply can’t!

What fuels you as an author to continue to write?

I can’t not write. It’s as simple as that. It’s hard and sometimes I wonder what I could accomplish channeling that time spent writing into some other endeavor, but I keep writing. For one thing, you learn things about yourself you never suspected.

Do you outline your books or just start writing?

I write a synopsis that is very complete and then I outline. However, invariably by chapter 6 the characters take off on their own. It’s easy to write yourself into a corner that way, but at a certain point you have to trust your characters to figure things out.

What inspired you to write this book?

Down and Out in Beverly Heels is about a woman who leads an enviable life until it all comes crashing down when it’s revealed that her husband is a conman who has fleeced her and her friends… she loses everything she’s worked so hard for and ends up living on the streets of Beverly Hills is what she calls her “Ritz-Volvo.” The novel is inspired by an experience my brother had when he unwittingly hired a man in the witness protection program, who was an embezzlet… and my own experiences meeting women living on the edge, “homeless and hiding it.” It takes so little: career meltdown, bad investments, catastrophic illness or accident, natural disaster, etc. I think we all live with the apprehension that we could lose everything in a blink of an eye. The “What if” factor is the springboard to imagination, making me ask myself what I would do if the worst happened? How would I cope?

What kind of research did you do for this book?

For a number of years I’ve volunteered serving weekly meals to the homeless in my community and volunteered in other capacities where I’ve assisted people in need. Without prying, I’ve come to know a few women who are living on the edge, who have lost everything, but are not recognizably homeless… what I have come to call “homeless and hiding it.” I drew on all those experiences in writing this novel. I also stockpile clippings and read up extensively on any of the matters that touch my characters. One of my characters is an FBI agent and I spent some considerable time talking to a friend who is an FBI agent.

Did you base any of your characters on real people?

Several reviewers have referred to my array of “quirky” characters. I think my acting training comes in handy in building very specific characters with lots of back story and dimension. I haven’t based any of my characters entirely on real people, but as I write about them they become very real to me. One of my favorites is Ariana, a former actress with great style, who is completely batty… and I realize she sprang from my memories of a great friend who was a fashion designer. Believe me, the fashion designer would never recognize herself, but I blush when I think how similar they are in their eccentricities.

If this book is part of a series, what is the next book? Any details you can share?

The sequel is almost completed. I’ve pulled in my favorite characters from the first book and developed the wonderful relationship between Donna and Meg. Donna is essential to Meg, I realize, and a great foil. Only now do I realize how much I’d like to change a few things in the first book that would make this sequel easier… but alas, I have to move on within the confines of the characters I’ve already established.

If you could be one of the characters from any of your books, who would it be and why?

I feel a great kinship with my lead character, Meg Barnes. I’m sure friends who read the book think she’s based on me… if only! I admire her tenacity, resourcefulness and great sense of humor. She’s much freer and looser than I am. She’s brave and can endure hardships that I’m afraid would break me. Perhaps I’ve just written the woman I’d like to be, but frankly I’m a bit envious of her.

Is there a specific place in the house (or out of the house) that you like to write?

I’m blessed to have an office in the back of my house that looks onto the garden and is awash in sunlight. Writing is a lonely business, but there’s comfort in looking out at trees and my rose bushes… and having my cat, Daphne, curled up on the window bench. At odd times she’ll get up and meander across my keyboard, but you can’t blame a cat for being a cat.

Book Description

DownAndOutInBeverlyHeels_Front_Cover_FinalFrom brunch in Bel Air to homeless in Hollywood…

Former actress Meg Barnes used to have it all: tony Beverly Hills address, Amex Black card, Manolos for every day of the month. Not to mention a career as a popular TV detective that made her glittering life possible. But her lifestyle of the rich and famous has turned into a reality show for d-listed starlets. Lost in her Louboutins, she has one man to thank: her con man of a husband.

Handsome FBI agent Jack Mitchell knows a suspect when he sees one—even if she’s as beautiful and gutsy as Meg. Meg’s ex “made off” with half of Hollywood’s wealth in an epic real estate scam. And Jack thinks Meg may have been involved.

Determined to prove her innocence Meg teams up with her quirky, movie-mad best friend to track down her fugitive husband and exact justice. But getting her life, and her career, back on track is harder than auditioning for Spielberg. Especially when her life is threatened. Meg has to trust Jack, the man who may want her behind bars…or as his leading lady for life.

About the Author

KathrynLeighScottKathryn Leigh Scott, author of Down and Out in Beverly Heels, is probably best known for her star turn as Josette Du Pres, ingénue bride of reluctant vampire Barnabas Collins in the TV cult classic “Dark Shadows.” This is her second work of fiction, following her debut novel last year, Dark Passages. While continuing her acting career, Kathryn launched Pomengranate Press to publish books about the entertainment industry, “Dark Shadows” fan books, and other nonfiction and fiction titles. For more about Kathryn, please visit her website.

You can purchase Down and Out in Beverly Heels on Amazon.