Hump Day Interview - Kay Berrisford

It's Hump Day and time for another interview, this week it's Kay Berrisford's turn in the Hot Seat celebrating the release of Landlocked Heart (Book #3): Dragon Rider.

How do you keep characters consistent through a story?

Ooooh, good question! This can be a tricky one to negotiate, especially when the characters have big emotional arcs and events happen that change them.

With the Landlocked Heart series, I had a pretty strong sense of Ben and Lyle's characters from the start. They're almost polar opposites, so that helped things flow. Lyle, my landlocked merman, is flamboyant and dramatic, prone to emotional outbursts, while Ben, his human lover, is mild-mannered, calm, and slow to anger. That said, over the course of the series, they move almost toward a character reversal, with Lyle learning how to control his wilder urges, and Ben, in book 4 at least, losing it a little. It was a fun challenge to try and write that while staying true to the characters I'd created. But the stronger the character, the easier it is, definitely!

How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?

I have FIVE unfinished manuscripts, at least two of which I hope to get back to one of these days. One is set in the Victorian theatre and I did a ton of research on the setting and costume and everything… but the characters just weren't right. When a manuscript founders, it's pretty much 100% because the characters don't ring true or the MCs just don't have enough chemistry. With romance, character is everything. All the cool settings in the world can't fix that.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?

I always have a good idea roughly where I'm going, but I can't say I plan things as meticulously as I ought. That said, when I do plan, I tend to overemphasise plot mechanics and make things unbearably complicated. Then, when I get going, I remember once again that romance is about creating lovable, believable characters. I end up throwing half the silly plot out of the window and listening to my characters' hearts instead.

What is your favorite childhood book?

I adored fantasy books that genuinely scared me. The Hobbit was always a fave (sadly, I don't really love the film versions), and The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. There was also a little known series called Beaver Towers (it was about cute little animals that lived in a castle, okay?) which had this genuinely scary witch called Oyin who gave me nightmares. I loved it! Then again, the TV show Fraggle Rock gave me nightmares. It didn't take much. I liked being scared, so it seems, but I don't like horror movies much.

I guess I was always drawn to a sense of drama. Even my sweetest romance stories, like Landlocked Heart, have scary "life or death" moments and characters with huge emotions and huger hearts.

What is your writing Kryptonite?

Self-doubt! I can only write when I'm kidding myself I can actually do this author thing. When the wonderful world of make-believe that tells me I can be a writer comes tumbling down (which it does… often) I lose the will to create my own worlds of make-believe.

When I started the Landlocked Heart series, I hadn't written in three years. To get myself through, I just kept my head down and wrote the four books in the series back-to-back. Every time I had doubts, I was like… "lalala, not listening!"

You loaned your car to a friend, forgetting there's something stashed in there you don't want anyone to find. What is it?

Well, for all but a couple of my closest friends, it would be one of my books, sadly. Because of the nature of my day job, my writing has to remain very much a "secret" life because of the spicier content. It is a shame and I wish it could be different.

Write yesterday's fortune cookie - it got everything wrong.

Your day will be triumphant and reap riches, but it won't bring love or end well :)

For your chance to win a $15 Gift Card for Less Than Three Press answer this question...What is the funniest thing that has happened to you recently?

Landlocked Heart: Book #3 Dragon Rider - OUT NOW!

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

The road to Ben and Lyle's wedding is proving a bumpy one. Ben hasn't even told his family he's getting hitched to a shapeshifting merman, and he's not the only one worried. When Lyle's tearaway sister, Cully, whisks Lyle away on the merfolk equivalent of a stag do, she questions whether marriage is what Lyle needs anyhow. A merman should roam the seas and seek adventure, not work in an ice-cream parlour and worry about the rent.

With rumours flying among merfolk that Lyle is a dragon shifter, adventure seeks out Lyle, whether he wants it or not. Cully and Ben must set their differences aside to save Lyle from a gang wishing to steal his magical powers, which are in reality waning, possibly life-threateningly so. Lyle soon realizes it's going to take a miracle for him to make it to the wedding, forcing Ben to embrace magic and become something other an "ordinary" guy...

Landlocked Heart Series

Book #1 - The Lonely Merman - Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 - Lyle's Story - Amazon US | Amazon UK

About Kay

Kay’s been making up romance stories with m/m protagonists since the days before the internet, before she’d any idea what sex was, and when she believed she was the only little girl who did so.

In 2016, she started writing her stories down again after a two-and-a half year hiatus. Her sexy new romance tales contain an unholy concoction of fun and fantasy (dragons, fairies, and mermen, anyone?) alongside a strong dose of angst and hurt/comfort.

She is a bit of a social media recluse (sorry!) but loves to connect with readers. You can email her at and she lurks on twitter a little – @kayberrisford.



  1. Not really haha funny, more ironic, but I ordered some books from Barnes and Noble with a coupon and the next day they sent me a better coupon :(

  2. Thank you for the interview... I love the Hobbit as well, and I agree with you.. I do not love the films. AS for the funnies thing that has happened to me recently, I've been really down lately because I lost my beloved kitty ten days ago so I'm quite sad. but two days ago I was with my mum and she answered the phone and got upset because she could not hear anything, so she was convinced it was broken or something... And it turned out she was holding it upside down the whole time...I know it is stupid, but it made me laugh aloud for the first time in two weeks!

    1. Aw, so sorry to hear about your kitty! Yeah, it's funny the things that make you laugh when you kind of need it *hugs* :)

  3. The funniest thing that happened to me recently was watching a coworker send a crushed oreo through the inter-office mail system. Not only was it delivered successfully with no questions, but it was then returned via the inter-office mail system without issue. It was kind of ridiculous.

    I'm always looking for new books about dragons, so I'll be sure to check this one out! Congrats on the new release!

    1. Haha, Oreo!mail, huh? Hop you enjoy the books, if you decide to give them a go!

  4. To say in a wrong way that I was born in 1888, my classmates bulled me a lot :v mevalem258 AT gmail DOT com

    1. Whooops! You're doing pretty well in terms to years, mind ;)

  5. The funniest thing that happened to me was a bird flying into the side of my car. The bird was fine and continued on its way. :)

  6. This is took me 10 minutes to come up with something funny...I've had lots of sweet, touching, lovely, awful and crazy...but no really funny things! What is wrong in my life when the funniest thing is being trapped in a chair by two dogs that won't leave each other alone and crowd me between them. I guess since I was giggling by the end it was pretty funny.