1 – How did you get to know each other?
Connor contacted me to ask if I would be his virtual personal trainer because he was so impressed by my biceps… Actually, I found out about him back in the summer of 2020 because I listened to a couple of his podcast interviews and after I heard him on Audibly Addicted I immediately emailed them as producers and booked him and Mackenzie Cartwright to narrate a Christmas steamy romantic comedy that I wanted to write. Then I started making mildly sassy comments on his very rare Instagram posts and Facebook lives. Then he finally recorded A Very Bossy Christmas and he sent me the most aggressive, briefest complimentary email I’ve ever received. Unbeknownst to him, that would be the beginning of a series of long, hilarious email chains and the end of life as we knew it.
That’s pretty accurate. I knew Bossy Christmas was special when I recorded it and I said as much to Kayley in my brief, aggressive way. It’s weird to think I thought it was just another narration gig, and maybe at best I hoped I’d get to record more books of hers. Clearly it ended up being so much more.
2 – How did you decide to write together?
We realized we’d never make it as a singing duo and he claims to be a much better dancer than I am, so writing was the only remaining option for partnering up.
She asked me, not knowing that I’d planned on writing myself. Given how talented she is and how difficult she is when she doesn’t get her way, it was a no-brainer to say yes.
3 – Connor – Is writing was something you always thought of?
Yes, I have an unpublished novel as well as ¾ of an unfinished draft of a romance novel that I had been working on when Kayley and I decided to partner up. I would have written eventually, but writing was easier and more fun with a partner and Kayley shortened the learning curve on a million things it would have taken me a lot longer to learn on my own.
4 – Kayley – How different is it to write with someone than to write alone?
For the most part it’s totally different and I would use up all of your internet space if I actually explained how. When I’m writing my POV chapters it’s pretty much the same, except that I still have to coordinate certain things with my co-writer.
5 – Do you know in advance who the characters will be throughout the series?
For sure. For the football series we already know the stories for three heroes (including Decker) and one for a spin-off. You always have to lay the groundwork for the next hero in the current book.
6 – Who thinks he’s funnier?
I actually think Connor is funnier than I am as a person and as an emailer and texter, but my fictional writing is goofier than his is. I guess my public persona comes off as funnier than him too. Cartoon Kayley and Cartoon Connor are equally hilarious but Cartoon Connor is obviously a bigger asshole.
The answer is found in the form of your question.
Who thinks he’s funnier?
But honestly, as she’s done with all these answers, Kayley’s spot on. Nothing is more satisfying than when I ignite a 5-minute Kayley laughing fit, so I probably work harder to make my emails and texts funny for her.
7 – Where does the inspiration for the stories come from?
Well, in some ways parts of the Decker story come from our personalities and how we interact with each other. But mostly it just comes from Connor’s brain, I guess, because he never listens to what I have to say about anything.
Decker just kind of sprang forth. Where stuff comes from is just one of the mysteries of creating story.
8 – Connor – What would you like to do more – write or narrate?
Writing is certainly the new girl on the block, but I’m the type of guy to dance with the girl that brung me. I feel very fortunate that at the moment I don’t have to choose. I get to do both!
9 – Kayley – Will you continue to write books on your own?
Yes I will!
10 – By what do you choose a cover for a book?
I use my eyes? If the model has the right look for the hero I have in mind and I have a positive physical reaction to what I see and the image is available then I buy it. I usually buy the cover images long before I write the books. If it’s for the football series then I show the images to Connor first to get his reaction. Going forward, I’ll just keep bugging Connor to let me put him on one of our covers so our fans will stop bugging me about it. Because he doesn’t have a big enough ego as it is 🙄
I let Kayley use her time, energy, and female expertise to find the right dude so that I have enough time and energy to diet and lift.
Before writing steamy romantic comedy novels, Kayley Loring got a BFA in creative writing and had a fifteen-year career as a screenwriter in Los Angeles (under a different name). She mostly wrote PG-13 family comedies that studios would pay her lots of money for and then never make into movies. In 2017 she decided to move to the Pacific Northwest and write about all the fun stuff that she wasn’t allowed to write about in those PG-13 scripts. Now she’s breathing cleaner air and writing dirtier words. It’s an adjustment she’s happily getting used to.
Connor Crais is a classically trained actor living in the Midwest with his wife, two kids, and rescue greyhound. He has been both a stage and television actor, and before plunging into the romance genre, he had been narrating commercials, audiobooks, and explainers for well over a decade from his home studio. From alphas to bosses to cocky sports stars (a particular favorite), he loves sparring with beautiful, sassy heroines (and their talented narrators) but also loves winning them over and reaching that happily ever after. He is excited to now create those stories as an author.