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Retirement. Publishers, thank you for the many years of reading pleasure you gave me, but all good things must come to an end. Due to failing eyesight I am forced to retire. I can no longer review your books, and any that you send will be donated to the local library, unread. Do not send any more. I can only read for a couple hours every day, and this does not allow me to finish a book in reasonable time. I will be devoting time to my own books from now on, and reading on a personal level. Books that interest me. I prefer paperbacks and hardbacks, not eBooks. My eyesight has been failing the last few years, and I cannot handle hundreds of review books any more. My books are still available for review. Anyone interested in reviewing any of them, they are found in the Link to Tom’s Books On Amazon. Contact me for pdf copies at

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Interview With Author Camy Tang

Interview With Author, Camy Tang

Tessa Lancaster's skills first earned her a position as an enforcer in her Uncle Teruo's Japanese Mafia gang. Then they landed her in prison for a crime she didn't commit. Now, three months after her release, Tessa's abilities have gained her a job as bodyguard for wealthy socialite Elizabeth St. Amant and her three-year-old son.
But there's a problem or two ... or three .... There's Elizabeth's abusive husband whose relentless pursuit goes deeper than mere vengeance. There's Uncle Teruo, who doesn't understand why Tessa's new faith as a Christian prevents her from returning to the yakuza. And then there's Elizabeth's lawyer, Charles Britton, who Tessa doesn't know is the one who ensured that she did maximum time behind bars. Now Tessa and Charles must work together in order to protect their client, while new truths emerge and circumstances spiral to a deadly fever pitch.
Factor in both Tessa's and Charles's families and you've got some wild dynamics--and an action-packed, romantic read as Tessa and Charles discover the reality of being made new in Christ.

I first became aware of Camy Tangs novels when I ran across a review of PROTECTION FOR HIRE, the first novel in her series about Tessa Lancaster. As a fan of action and adventure novels, finding books in this genre with a Christian theme is rare, and I immediately wanted to read Camy’s books. Many writers profess to be Christian, but their work often reflects a willingness to write what the media wants. This is not the case with Camy Tang. Her work reflects her Christian background, and knocks the story out of the ballpark too. I loved the first two books, and wanted to invite the author to PULP DEN for an interview. She was kind enough to stop by for a visit.

Tom: Camy, how about telling everyone a little about yourself; your background, history, where youre from, that sort of thing. Although you have been writing for some time, there may be some readers out there who do not know you, and are not familiar with your books.

Camy: Thanks for having me, Tom! I grew up in Hawaii but now live in San Jose, California. I was a biologist researcher for years, writing in my free time, until my contemporary romance series, the Sushi series, was contracted by Zondervan. Now I write full time. In my free time, I work with the youth group at my church, I lead one of the Sunday service worship teams, and I am training to (very slowly) run a marathon. I also enjoy knitting in public, which embarrasses my husband. :)

Tom: Im sure you have been an influence on many writers yourself, so tell us who were some of your influences.

Camy: I read very widely, just to warn you! My absolute favorite writer is Jane Austen because of her wit. I also really love Kathy Tyerss science fiction because she is so imaginative and yet has such strong characters that really resonate with me.

Tom: As I mentioned in my introduction, I love action and adventure, especially with heroes/heroines who triumph over the bad guys. There is actually a new genre for this type of story called NEW PULP, reflecting the tradition of the action novels published in the early American magazines printed on pulpwood paper, that featured heroic characters that fought for the safety of others. From 1931 to 1953 many of these characters wore a sort of costume, which influenced the comic book super heroes like Batman, Wonder Woman, etc. How did you come up with your characters, and was there a reason?

Camy: I love Stephanie Plum and The Joy Luck Club, and so I wanted to write a book with all the humor of both and with the action/suspense of the Stephanie Plum series.
I also love strong, capable heroines like from the TV shows Alias, Nikita, Covert Affairs, and the movies Tomb Raider and Resident Evil. I wanted to write about a strong woman with a heart for God, so I came up with my character, Tessa.
I wanted to give Tessa a reason to keep being involved in different crimes (so that I could have more books with her as the heroine) and the idea came to me that if Tessa had a shady past before coming to Christ, that past would provide good spiritual conflict as well as causing external problems in her life. I am a fan of The Sopranos--I dont care much for the violence, but I liked the more humorous parts of the series, especially those involving the family fiascos. I thought it would be fun if Tessa belonged to the Japanese mafia, and I created a Japanese version of The Sopranos, which makes it both exciting and funny, mirroring the feel of the Stephanie Plum series.
For her hero, I thought up the most unlikely pairing--a straight-laced lawyer from Louisiana--and as I wrote, I let the sparks fly!

Tom: Please tell readers a little about the story, and the characters of PROTECTION FOR HIRE, without revealing any crucial secrets to the plot. But, of course, with enough tease to both the characters and plot to make them want to read it.

Camy: Tessa Lancasters life is like a Asian sitcom version of The Sopranos. Her Uncle Teruo took her under his wing after her Caucasian father ditched her family when she was ten. Its just a little too bad that Uncle is the godfather of the Japanese yakuza in San Francisco, but well, nobodys perfect.
Tomboy Tessa always got along better with her male cousins rather than delicate girls like her younger sister, Alicia. As she got older, she excelled in fighting and her uncle unofficially recruited her to do jobs for him, although she never killed anyone. Her mother and sister were appalled and embarrassed that she was working for her uncle. To Tessa, it seemed as if the two most important women in her life wanted her to be who shes not and judged her for it.
Then Uncles son killed his girlfriend in a rage. Tessa willingly took the blame instead and went to jail for him, pleading guilty to manslaughter. Charles Britton, the judges law clerk, was affronted by the lesser charge when it was obvious to him that Tessa was guilty of a host of other crimes, and convinced the judge to add two years to the agreed sentence. Those extra years prevented her from saying goodbye to her beloved aunt and attending her funeral.
Tessa was in prison for a total of seven years, but after four years, a fellow inmate led her to the Lord. In place of the disapproval, embarrassment, and coldness of her mother and sister, in place of the offhanded love of her uncle, she had the unconditional love of Jesus, and she felt a true and complete sense of belonging for the first time in her life.
The story opens when Tessa is released from prison. Her uncle doesnt understand her new faith and wants her to continue working for him, but she refuses, wanting to get a real job and go legitimate. However, no one will hire her once they realize who her uncle is. Shes living with her mom, who resents how Tessas conviction is an embarrassment to her, and Tessas sister Alicia doesnt want anything to do with her. Tessa realizes that she will never please the women in her life, despite the fact she has turned her back on her illegal doings, trying to be the person they wanted her to be. This prompts her to rebellion, to a determination to use her skills rather than denying them, and helping people. She hopes to make enough money to move out of her mothers house.
She agrees to help Elizabeth St. Amant, a San Francisco transplant from Louisiana, who is trying to escape her abusive husband, Heath, and reclaim her inheritance money, which is in their joint account. She refuses to go to the police because Heath will find her, or her son will go into child services, or they might even give her son into Heaths custody because who looks like the more responsible parent, the wealthy private equity firm businessman or the unemployed, homeless Southern belle? Elizabeth contacts family friend Vivian Britton, who gets her son Charles to take her case pro bono, despite the fact he is trying to make partner at his law firm. Charles is appalled that Elizabeths bodyguard is Tessa, whom he remembers.

Tom: The second novel in the series is A DANGEROUS STAGE. Would you like to tell the readers a little about the plot, and can they expect recurring characters from the first story?

Camy: A Dangerous Stage taps into the popular, global craze of reality television singing competitions. A former member of her uncles Japanese Mafia gang, until she was sent to prison for a murder she didnt commit, Tessa Lancaster is now a bodyguard for a contestant from a nationally televised singing competition, who has information that the show is rigged. Tessa is once again working with Charles Britton, the lawyer who sent her to prison, to help her discover the dark figures manipulating the contest from behind the scenes. Tessas abilities will be tested like never before as shes forced to balance the safety of her clients family and her deepening relationship with Charles.
This book is like The Joy Luck Club meets the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich, meets American Idol. It has the fun family dynamics of The Joy Luck Club or My Big Fat Greek Wedding, and the action and humor of the Stephanie Plum series and The Sopranos, with the wacky relatives thrown in, too. Adults and older teens after an entertaining read with a strong but subtle spiritual message will enjoy Tessa and her adventures.
When I first wrote A Dangerous Stage, I knew I wanted the backdrop to be a singing competition like American Idol, or The Voice, or X-Factor. I couldnt use the name of any of those shows for legal reasons (and I wouldnt want an angry note from Simon Cowell anyway!) so I had to come up with a name for my fictional singing competition.
I brainstormed for days, but couldnt come up with anything better than Screechers, which my husband vetoed. :) So I posted on my Facebook Author page ( to ask my Facebook friends for help.
I had a ton of great ideas! The best one was from Amancay, which was Grab the Mic. I loved that title right away and inserted it into my manuscript only a few days before I sent it to my editor at Zondervan.

Tom: I believe you are working on the third story now. Do you have a title for it yet? How about a small hint on what the plot is about?

Camy: I cant say more except that Tessas father comes into play, there are lots of FBI agents, and Tessas sister falls in love.

Tom: Do you have any plans for new characters in the action adventure genre, besides the PROTECTION series? The field is wide open for some great characters and stories. We just need good writers to write them. As Christians, we especially need stories that include a Christian background.

Camy: I am actually hoping to write a dystopian at some point with the same type of kick-butt heroine as Tessa, but thats a couple years down the road.

Tom: You also write Christian Romance & Suspense novels. Why dont you tell our readers about some of them, the titles, and any pseudonyms you may write under?

Camy: My Sushi series is contemporary romance (with humor) and the fifth Sushi book will release from Redbud Press in December 2015 ( I also have a romantic suspense Sonoma series, and a novella in that series, Necessary Proof, is available free on Kindle, iBooks, Nook, and Kobo. ( I also write Regency romance under a pseudonym, Camille Elliot, and readers can see my books at

Tom: For the new writers just getting started, maybe you can help with this question. What do you find most difficult about your work-in-progress? Plot? Characters? Beginning? Ending? Editing?

Camy: Usually plotting takes the longest for me, because I do an extensive scene-by-scene outline for myself before I start writing. I use Randy Ingermansons Snowflake Method ( and Snowflake Pro software.

Tom: What do you enjoy most about the creative process?

Camy: I love how the actual writing of the manuscript can still surprise me at points with things the characters say and do, even though I have an outline Im following.

Tom: Tell the readers why they should buy your books.

Camy: I always say that I write romance with a kick of wasabi. Wasabi is a very hot (sinus-clearing) Japanese radish condiment used to give a clean-tasting little spice or kick when eating sushi or any raw seafood. Most of my stories are romances, and wasabi, with its Asian origin, refers to my Asian characters, that kick of sass in my contemporary romance, and that kick of danger in my romantic suspense.

Tom: Finding a market, and promotional avenue can be daunting today. What advice would you give to a person trying to get their short story / novel published in todays market?

Camy: The best thing to do is just write a great story. Then after you submit it to an agent or self-publish it, write another great story. Most great writers write at least a book a year, usually more. A lot of writers I talk to are discouraged because their book hasnt been accepted by a publisher or they self-published it and it hasnt sold well, but then I hear that they only wrote the one book. Write more books! Just keep writing and improving your craft, and your readers will find you.

Tom: Do you have a Blog, Facebook or Twitter where fans can follow you?
And very important, where can your book be purchased?

Camy: My blog is at, Facebook page is, and Twitter is The buy links for my books (for all retailers) is on my website at

Tom: Thanks for stopping by Camy. Your books are a treat, and the action is perfect. I especially want to see more of Tessa and the characters of PROTECTION FOR HIRE.

Camy: Thanks so much for having me, Tom! I would also be happy to offer a copy of A Dangerous Stage for a giveaway on your blog (print copy for US winner, ebook copy for international winner).


  1. Thanks so much for the interview Tom! and thanks for reviewing my Protection for Hire series books!

  2. My pleasure, Camy. I'm anxiously awaiting Book #3.

  3. Sounds interesting. I can't say I'm the biggest fan of Christian fiction, I'm intrigued by the setting and the plot.