As a Multiple Sclerosis patient, it has become necessary for me to reinvent myself. I have ... and continue to ... refuse to lie down and die, or in this case, follow the normally prescribed drugs and treatments that do nothing to defeat my disease. I am not only surviving by pursuing alternatives, I am thriving. I do the things specialists told me I would never be able to do. I walk and hope to one day even run regularly. I retain my cognitive and creative abilities for the pleasure of my readers. Although you may never see me on my daily walk, you are welcome to read my novel(s) and in doing so, come to ask yourself, "How can the 'out of the box' protocol she has followed, help my loved one with an autoimmune disease like Multiple Sclerosis?"


I love cozy mysteries and have since Murder She Wrote enraptured me as a teenager. Today I’m visiting with Josi Kilpack, author of some rather yummy culinary mysteries. Come on in a take a seat or hang on the wall! Josi is a facinating lady and we had so much fun, I'll have to share more with you later this summer.

 Josi, what is your favorite genre? And why?

To write, I really enjoy mysteries, specifically the cozies that don’t have the gratuitousness some other subgenre’s have. I like it when the ‘gore’ gets to be hidden but is still intense. To read, I enjoy lots of genres so long as they have strong characters. Characters make or break a book for me and I find some authors do better with characters than others. I love Sue Graphton, who writes suspense thrillers, but I also love Leif Enger who writes literary pieces. I’m also a John Grisham and JK Rowling fan, with a little Susan Evans Phillips thrown in now and again. I’m eclectic in my genres, but picky in the books I’ll actually finish. I would guess I only finish about 1/3 of the books I pick up these days—it really has to grab me to make it worth investing my time into the story and its characters who grab me more than plot.

Picky reader—I’ll have to remember that. Of all the wonderful pieces you’ve written (Please list them all so I don’t miss one or worse, misspell one), which is your favorite?

So far I’ve published 13 novels: Earning Eternity (CFI 2000), Surrounded By Strangers (CFI 2003), Tempest Tossed (CFI 2004), Star Struck (CFI 2005), To Have or to Hold (CFI 2005), Unsung Lullaby (Deseret Book 2006), Sheep’s Clothing (Deseret Book 2007—Whitney Award Winner), Her Good Name (Deseret Book 2008), Lemon Tart (Deseret Book 2009—Whitney Award Finalist), English Trifle (Deseret Book 2009), Devil’s Food Cake (Deseret Book 2010), Key Lime Pie (Deseret Book 2010), and Blackberry Crumble (Deseret Book 2011). There is something about every one of them that I love and there isn’t a single one that when I reflect back to it doesn’t stand out as an essential part of my journey. Tempest Tossed was a very personal book for me as I explored some things that have influenced my life personally. To Have or to Hold was the fulfillment of a challenge I’d made to myself to write a common historical romance theme (marriage of convenience) in a modern setting. Lemon Tart was an important growth spurt for me where I really put myself into a new think tank and changed my career. I love Devil’s Food Cake, though, because I just kept upping the ante with myself and the story really captured me. I guess that’s a lousy answer to your question, sorry.

Maybe you didn’t tell us your fav, but that is an impressive list of work, an even dozen to date. For those of my readers that may not know, CFI is Cedar Fort Inc. A publishing house in Springville, Utah.

Tell me about your all time favorite character (of your creating.) Sadie, of your mystery series, perhaps? Is she modeled after a real person?

Another tough question! I do love Sadie, but she wears me out and sometimes I’ll be writing and just shaking my head at her. She isn’t patterned after any one person, but has attributes of several people I know or have encountered. She’s very much her own person, but a lot of fun to write. I’ll always have a deep bond with Kim (Earning Eternity), the first character who ever became real in my mind and Andrew from To Have or to Hold has many features of my husband, so he’s always someone I’m warm and fuzzy toward. Again, each of my characters holds something special—often an aspect of me or my life that I hope other people can relate to as well so it’s hard to choose any one above another.

Sadie wears me out as a reader and as a writer I doubt I could generate her energy. Well done. I’ll have to meet Kim and Andrew in the near future. A hint to the next title? . . .

I’ve just turned in Pumpkin Roll, which will be out this fall (2011). It takes place in Boston and has a Halloween feel to it. As soon as that was handed in, I got to work on book seven, Banana Split which will be out in spring 2012. Banana Split takes place on the island of Kauai in Hawaii and so far is a lot of fun.

You’re quite a prolific author, Josi. Readers, did you here? Not one but two new titles to watch for…

Anything else you want to share . . .

Here’s a link to all my books on

I promise to share Josi's recipe for writing wonderful murder mysteries later this summer. You're welcome to drop me a line (comment) and pester me for it sooner than later, I won't mind.
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