Fat Chance Character Interview With Cassaundra Keaton!

Today I'm taking a break from the writing of Prescription For Love (book two in the Kingsley Series) to hang out with an old pal, Cassaundra Keaton, the main sweetie from Fat Chance (Kingsley Series, book one).

She's agreed to take some time out of her wedding preparations to speak with me, but we'll try to keep this quick ... this bride is a busy woman with lots of planning to finish!

So without further ado ... Cassaundra Keaton!
who walks in with a shy smile, dressed in her trademark wrap tunic & jeans

Brandi; Well, let's just start this at the beginning, shall we? I know you had what you felt was a good start in life, Cass. What was it like for you, growing up and watching your family sort of disappear?

Cass; It was definitely a low point in my life. I mean, I had a small family to begin with; both my parents were only children, and I was an only child. But we were a close knit group, and I felt very loved. I was always with someone who doted on me, and as a child, of course I loved that. It made it pretty hard for me to lose them all, though, especially because I was still so young, and it was difficult to find myself alone in the world.

Brandi; I can only imagine. Was it very difficult for you to adjust to the foster home system?

Cass; Honestly, it wasn't all that bad. Don't get me wrong, there wasn't a lot that was fun about it, you know, but I didn't have the kinds of terrible experiences some kids have.

Brandi; Foster care is also how you met the Keaton family, right?

Cass; Yeah. Janet and Jim took me in like I had always been there, and the twins have been amazing. I could have done without all the drama with Rick, though. I'm glad to say that seems to be all settled, at least for now.

Brandi; I have noticed, as I'm sure others have noticed, that you carry the Keaton name, at least until your marriage. Were you ever officially adopted?

Cass; Not really. By the time I made to the Keaton house, I was in my later teen years, and an official adoption can take time. So we just waited until after I was eighteen and I had my name changed then. Janet and Jim paid for it; they seemed to feel like that made it more official, and I liked that I could do it much sooner that way.

Brandi; How did the others feel about that? Rick and the twins, I mean?

Cass; Well Rick did it too. And the twins - they were thrilled to welcome us into the family officially.

Brandi; What about the switch from when you were an only child, into the foster system where you probably had a lot of other children in the house? Did you like the idea of siblings?

Cass; Growing up as an only child, I never really wanted siblings, but having Renee and Chelsea take me in as a sister really meant a lot to me back then.

Brandi; That's right, they'll be servings as bridesmaids for your wedding in Prescription for Love, won't they? (at this point, Cass gets a little sneaky grin on her face, and a rather suspicious twinkle in her eyes)

Cass; Yes, they will both be there.

Brandi; Let me ask you this, just because I'm curious. I had noticed you developing a little crush on your therapist, Dr. Caswell in Fat Chance. With Drew being a patient there also, it makes the doctor a good part of the reason that you and Drew ended up meeting. Is he invited to the wedding?

Cass; Yes, he is. In fact, I can see him sticking around for a while, especially if I have anything to say about it. (shocked, my mouth falls open, which makes her grin mischievously)

Brandi; Cass, you're getting married!! Are you still interested in Dr. Caswell?!

Cass; No, of course not. I have better plans for him. (this grin is becoming very ... Chesire cat-like.)

Brandi; Well, I confess, now I'm very, very curious. Are you playing matchmaker?

Cass; I wouldn't call it that, no.

Brandi; What would you call it then?

Cass; Um ... creative introduction?

Brandi; I see. And since it's clear you aren't ready to share any details about that just yet, let's move on. How do you feel about getting married?

Cass; You know, I really didn't see myself getting married. I was so down on myself for so long, and when I couldn't love myself, I'm not sure I'd have even been receptive to romantic love from someone else. In itself, that sort of puts a stop to the typical girlish hopes for the wedding scenario, and even if I had been dreaming of a big wedding all along, I knew a big beautiful wedding wasn't something I could pull of really - financially speaking. I think I just never saw myself as a marriageable woman.

Brandi; And how do you see yourself now?

Cass; I'm a lot more confident now, actually.

Brandi; Does that mean Drew gets the lingerie he wanted you to buy? (Thanks for asking, Jessica Johnson!) I distinctly remember him enjoying your curves under satin and lace ...

Cass; Too bad I can't show you the current contents of my sexy drawer. (she says with a wink)

Brandi; I take it Drew is satisfied then. How do you keep your confidence up on days when it wants to drop off?

Cass; Music has helped me a lot, and I still keep my power playlist tuned in to all my electronic devices.

Brandi; Your power playlist?

Cass; You know, the bunch of songs I listen to when I'm feeling down, music that picks me up and gets my mind back on the confident track.

Brandi; What songs do you listen to?

Cass; Well, my favorites right now are "Soar" by Christina Aguilera, and "Video" by India Arie. I crank them up so loud my ears hurt.

Brandi; Imagine that - I do that too!! So, where you do see yourself going in life, now that you've got this fresh new outlook? Has the change in confidence and personal image had any effect on your plans for the future? (Thanks for asking, Jenny Lynn Weyer!)

Cass; You mean other than opening me up to the possibility of love? Sure! I've even moved up a bit at work. But ultimately, we'd like to have children someday soon. I'd like to finish having children before I'm thirty, and my twenties are breezing by so I hope we'll be, uh, working on that after the wedding.

Brandi; Do you think you'll keep your job after having children?

Cass; We haven't really decided that yet. I think it will be more clear to us once that time gets nearer.

Brandi; With the way your grandparents died, and also your mother, do you feel any specific concerns for your health? And if so, are you taking any early steps to watch for or prevent certain things? (Thanks for asking, Dana Fetters!)

Cass; I am definitely watching. I have regular mammograms, and I am part of a program at work that advocates for breast cancer awareness. I also have been trying hard to watch my weight and increase my fitness, so that I can count on good cardiovascular health.

Brandi; What works for you, as far as weight loss and fitness activity?

Cass; Well, my sister Renee is in the process of buying into the yoga studio we both take classes at, and I've been running for some time too, which has helped a lot. There isn't a lot you can do to prevent dementia though, so I take a ton of vitamins and freak out a little every time I lose my car in a parking lot.

Brandi; And does that happen often?

Cass; Oh, here and there ... In fact, I can't remember where I parked today, which is bad since you have a small parking lot outside your building. Thank goodness, I'll see the car at a glace and I can pretend I knew where it was all along.

Brandi; I definitely hope that's not a sign of dementia, because I do it myself, all the time. So tell me this - are you afraid to have children, knowing that some of the bigger health concerns can be genetic? (Thanks for asking, Dana Fetters!)

Cass; If there's one thing I've learned, it's that there's no point living life timidly. I'm planning to have my babies and love them while I'm here, for however long that is. And I hope I am able to teach them the same philosophy.

Brandi; Okay, folks, that's all the time we have for today, but thanks for stopping in to get another glimpse at Cassaundra Keaton, straight from the pages of Fat Chance, book one of the Kingsley Series! For a closer look at her personality, and for a good look at her personal love story, you can find the book available for Kindle here!

(Update: this book is now live on all major platforms - and better yet, it's FREE! Find out where to get your copy here.)


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