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Fried Squirrel, Blue Martini’s and Twilight with Schledia Benefield

99¢ Book Tour, but I got the $99 interview 😉 and a recipe (or two.. or three!)

Welcome to the Cabin, Schledia! Have a seat, watch out for the cat and duck if you hear a squirrel chattering, he has one heck of a wicked aim! Oh wait.. so do we and since you provided me with a great recipe and also if I can evade the wrath of the cat, we will have a mighty good meal!


Tweet the book: You are challenged to tweet a synopsis of the book to include your tweet handle, GO! (tweet with the button below and help share the word of the sale!!)


@Schledia #YA Darkness flows in the blood of Aster McGrath. Can Susan tame the beast seeking to free itself & devour its prey?

CG – Introduce yourself to the captive audience that you now have before you. (As in tell us something NOT in your bio, give us a dirty little secret not having or having to do with your writing)

I’m a fairly upfront person (once I get past my shy stage, that is); I’m willing to share the mistakes I’ve made with others, so I’m not sure about the secret part, but let’s see what I can share about myself. I sing. I love to dance to 80’s music. I usually put my headphones in and dance through the house listening to the sounds of Def Leppard or Bon Jovi while I’m cleaning, and oh yeah, singing at the top of my lungs. I’m usually shy when I first meet people. That has been interpreted as being snobby by some, but I’m far from a snob. Once I get to know people, I start to feel comfortable with letting my real personality out. I can be VERY goofy. I can do a great impression of Madam Blueberry from Veggie Tales. Singing, “I’m so blu hoo hoo  blu hoo hoo blu hoo hoo hooooooo. I’m so blue I don’t know what to do.” Well, the readers didn’t actually hear it, but it used to make my children laugh before they got so old that it no longer entertained them. Now it just makes my husband laugh. I LOVE being alone, despite the fact that I have a husband and five children. I need it in fact. I’m creative in other ways. I’ve made costumes and puppets without a pattern. I’ve painted backdrops and sceneries for my children’s plays at school. I’ve written skits for teenagers to perform and built the backdrops. I played the saxophone in school; I took violin lessons in college. I play a few songs on the piano, and my dad taught me to play a couple of songs on the guitar, but I haven’t touched any of those things in years. Yep, I guess that’s about it.

CG – Is there a genre, other than the one you currently write in, that you wish you could break into? Share with is a flash fiction piece with the prompt of DARKNESS.. GO!

I’ve had a story in the back of my head for some time now that is a psychological thriller.  So, here goes…     Kelsey inhaled a deep breath as she stretched her hands to rub her tired eyes. Confusion washed through her mind; she was groggy. She peered through the passenger-door window into the darkness lurking outside the fog-covered glass. Craning her head she glanced momentarily at her husband. His hands rested on the steering wheel of the car, but something felt odd. She blinked her heavy eyelids repeatedly trying to make sense of it in her muddled thought processes. Then it hit her like a bolt of lightning—his head, his eyes! His head was leaning back against the headrest, and his eyes were and bridge

Their car was rushing toward the side of the Dauphin Island Bridge. As she reached for the wheel to try and correct it, her thoughts raced, How could we both have fallen asleep? I don’t even remember getting in the car. As the tips of her fingers grazed the leather wheel, her upper body was suddenly thrown forward and swiftly flung back again as the car crashed through the side railing of the bridge. “Brax, Suzanne, Destinee!” she screamed. Just before plummeting into the depths of Mobile Bay, she attempted to brace herself with one arm on the dashboard. With the other arm she grabbed her stomach and gasped. She felt warmth seeping through her fingers. As the car smashed into the waters, her arm gave way and she was thrown into the dashboard; everything went black. As the car sank into the depths of the dark waters, she lost consciousness.

Ummm…that’s completely unedited, but there it is. (CGsimply MARVELOUS!)

CG – When it comes to the genre you do write in, what are a few of the books or writers that have influenced you and your own writing (yes I can actually ask a serious question)

I love Nicholas Sparks. Although most of his books are not written for young adults, they do have an influence on me. I’m also a big fan of Twilight. I’m not a fan because of vampires or anything like that. The way that Stephenie Meyer told the love story in the first book was beautiful to me. I devour books, plays, and poetry that reach into my heart and unleash my emotions.

CG – If you could cast one of your works, who would you choose to play your main characters? (some have a huge cast, so say no more than five, I am thinking many would be able to do at least one, you do have one character right?)


If I had my choice I would pick Ian Somerhalder to play Aster McGrath in a movie

Why? (yes you are going to have to support that choice)
version of Wildflowers.

Well, he has the look I describe. Aster is tall with dark hair and piercing blue eyes. His face is chiseled, but he has a dark side to him, so he looks like a bad boy. Ian Somerhalder definitely has that look, and let’s be honest, if they made my book into a movie, I’d ask to meet the cast.

CG –  Write one line you would love for him/her to say from your book.

Hmmm…there are so many lines, so that’s a hard one to pick, but I can hear his voice asking Susan, “Have I created a rebel?” I know it’s a short line, but it shows that bad side of him.

CG – What is the first thing you would do if you woke up one morning to find one of your books on the NY Times Bestsellers List?

I would call my husband, tell my kids, call my dad, post it on facebook and twitter, and then I’d probably do a couple of cartwheels!

CG – Do you have any vices that you turn to while you are writing (as in what candy / snack food / drink / 80’s hair band you break out in song too when you just cannot figure out the next line to write and that bitch of a muse is off on her own hunt)?

musical cappuccinoDefinitely music and coffee. I pick out the music depending on where I’m at in my writing and what is going on at the time. If I were writing a sad love scene where a character had just had her heart ripped out, I might put on Adele or a song from the 80’s that fits the scenario. I come from a musical family, so music is a major inspiration to me.

CG – What do you do when you’re not writing? (what festive things do you do for fun? What things do you do when you make yourself have fun, and what is on the top of your list to do when you actually take two days for you (and family)

Work. I have a large family, so I spend a lot of time cooking, cleaning, washing clothes, folding clothes, and putting clothes away on top of working at the middle school in our area. As to what kind of festive things I do for fun, my dad owns a small bar, so occasionally me and my husband go visit him while he’s at work. (He’s always at work, so if I want to see him, that’s the best place to catch him). When we stop in, I’m always sure to sign up to sing karaoke. I always have fun goofing off like that! Gosh, if I had two days for just me and my family, I would probably be lazy. I’ve been wanting to take a weekend getaway to a small cabin. It would be nice to explore the wildlife, relax, and curl up with a good book.

CG – If it was a meal what would it be? Meat and potatoes? Vegetarian? A light novoue cousine? (I do a recipe with many of my authors this maybe an opportunity for you to share a recipe you think could go along with this?)

We live on the Mississippi Coast, so most would probably expect that I would be a Southern cook and eat lots of seafood, but I’m not a Southern cook at all, and I’m allergic to all shell fish, so we don’t eat a lot of seafood. My husband is lucky if he gets fried chicken three or four times a year, but he’s got a lot of Italian in him, so we eat a lot of Italian dishes. I make a great lasagna, but it is so expensive that I only make it twice a year. I use 7-9 different cheeses. I make two types, one with red sauce and one with a marsala sauce.

Marsala Lasagna

Ingredients:White Lasagna

  • 1 large tub of small curd cottage cheese
  • 2 large tubs of ricotta cheese
  • parmesan cheese
  • mozzarella cheese
  • Colby cheese
  • Monterey jack cheese
  • mild cheddar cheese #4887df
  • a big tub of portabella mushrooms #1a3584
  • two bottles of marsala wine
  • garlic
  • oregano
  • flour
  • olive oil
  • lasagna noodle


  1. Chop ¼ of your mushrooms into tiny slivers
  2. pour a little olive oil into a skillet (sorry, I don’t measure things. I eyeball them CG- like any good Italian cook should do!).
  3. Add chopped mushrooms and garlic; sauté them.
  4. Once they’re cooked down real good, add a little four to thicken the juice created.
  5. Pour in the Marsala wine one bottle at a time. You may not use all of it.
  6. While that is cooking, cook your noodles and shred your cheeses.
  7. Cut the remaining mushrooms into small pieces (not as small as the chopped ones though) and add to the sauce.
  8. Mix the ricotta, cottage, and Parmesan cheeses.
  9. Layer everything just like a regular lasagna and bake on 350 degrees for an hour.

OK now for the REAL fun and this will make it an official Cabin Goddess “Interview/Review and a recipe”Figure out a drink (with our without booze) representing your book in name an ingredients (this could be a renamed established drink)

 Blue Aster Martini.

(with my own personal twist concerning the garnish)



  • 2 Dashes of dry vermouth,
  • 2 dashes of blue curacao blue
  • 2 oz Bombay Sapphire gin (or other premium gin)
  • one blue aster cut and cleaned.


Chill a cocktail glass. Add a couple of dashes each of dry vermouth and blue curaçao to the glass. Pour in the gin. Garnish with the blue aster.


BONUS ROUND “MAKE MINE A MEAL” Add a recipe for a dish, an appetizer or a dessert that goes with your book.

 Fried Squirrel

In Wildflowers, Aster goes camping and eats squirrel, so I’ll give you my husband’s aunt’s fried squirrel recipe. (sure, make sure it is as far away from you as possibly.. sure it is not your husband’s aunt’s brother’s daughter’s sister’s?? Hhehehe)


The fatter thebetter!! Fatten those suckers up and as Emeril puts it.. BAM!

  • 2 squirrels (he eats two), skinned and cleaned (mine will have to be really chubby ones)
  • water
  • flour
  • salt, and pepper
  • vegetable oil.


  • Soak meat in water and salt.
  • Rinse and drain.
  • Dredge in flour mixed with salt and pepper.
  • Fry in pan over a camp fire until golden brown and cooked all the way.

YES ANOTHER SQUIRREL eater! I love it! They need to serve SOME purpose other than harassing me! Of course my cat has turned “tail” that is… she is a traitor!


Fast and Furious

On the Rocks or Blended? – On the Rocks

Coke or Pepsi? Definitely Coke. Everything in the South is a Coke; we call Sprite Coke, Dr. Pepper Coke, any kind of Cola is a Coke down here.

East Coast or West Coast? – East Coast

To Be or Not to Be?  Not to Be

Roller Coasters or Carousels? – Carousels

At the movies or DVD? – Movies

Ocean or Lake? – Ocean

Duck or Goose? – Goose

Scooby Doo or Snoopy? – Scooby

Well since you sent me three killer recipes I can forgive the Twilight and the Coke! THANK you SO MUCH for coming and being a part of another fantastic Interview and a Recipe!

“Fans of Facing the Giants and Fireproof will enjoy this story of sacrificial love and redemption.” Girl Who Reads 

From the author of Plain Jane comes a new young adult novel by Schledia Benefield

Wildflowers 99 Cent Tour

Tour Schedule

The e-book is 99¢ until the end of the month (it is regularly $4.99)

Fans of Nicholas Sparks’ A Walk to Remember will fall in love with the young love, tough choices, sacrifice and redemption found within the pages of WILDFLOWERS.



Have you ever feared what may be hiding deep within you? Darkness often skulks in the blood of unsuspecting victims, but Aster McGrath is acutely aware of the violence coursing through his veins. After all, he is the son of a murderer, and everyone in the town of Bayville, Mississippi says he will end up just like his father. When Susan

Blackman moves into town, Aster has already embraced his brutal nature, but her gentle spirit draws him in and slowly melts the icy exterior of his heart. Taming his savagery, she professes her love, but will the good within him be able to overcome the evil lurking deep inside? Or will the fiend break free of its fetters and seek blood?

99¢ on AMAZON

About the Author

Schledia Benefield is the author of Plain Jane, Pretty Boy, and her soon to be released novel, Wildflowers. She attended Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College but chose to be a stay-at-home mom for many years. She devoted eight years of her life to working with youth as a youth minister and has been invited to speak in a rehab to hurting and wounded women, giving them hope for a better future. She was the Keynote Speaker for Division 14 of the Key Club International’s divisional rally.

Born and raised on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Schledia holds a sense of pride in her southern heritage. She presently lives in Big Point, Mississippi with her husband and four of her five children. On top of writing novels, she writes youth and children’s church curriculum, and she works as a substitute teacher at East Central Middle School. In her spare time, she reads, sews, and spends time with her family.

Fried Squirrel, Blue Martini's and Twilight with Schledia Benefield


  1. Ah, dangit…. this looks gorgeous! Y’all make my post tomorrow look so drab… LOL Wish I knew how you did some of these things!

    I’m the type that can be shy at first, too, and have definitely been accused of being snobby. Years and years ago I created an outgoing persona and can slip it on when I’m feeling personable, but it’s not an easy thing for me.

    Great interview!

    • Slipping on an outgoing persona when you really want to hide behind stuff is hard, isn’t it? I learned to push past a lot of it in college, but it is still difficult for me, but once I feel comfortable, people probably wish I would shut up! LOL I’ve embarrased my husband on more than one occasion by allowing my goofy side to come out.

      • Hmmm…. once I developed it, I found it strangely comfortable! LOL But I’ve always loved acting and this is like acting only in everyday situations 🙂 My mom was the type who thought you always needed to smile all the time, and she would tell me: “Kate, you need to smile, you look like a bitch!” *snort* Yeah, better that than to look like I have a fake smile pasted on my face. LOL

        • I totally look mad if I’m not smiling. I attribute it to the fact that my lips are thin and my mouth is small.:)

  2. Thanks for having me, Kriss! It was a fun interview. It looks amazing! My husband said it was his favorite, although he didn’t really like my comment about Ian! LOL

  3. He has you to make his squirrel and Lasagna, so he should be secure in the fact that Ian is busy ummm elsewhere. Unless enough fans get his attention hehehe. Tell him thank you and THANK YOU for being such a sport! It was a BIG post but well worth it! Glad you did not mind me sniping your other photo so I could put flowers behind you! *GRIN* I had a lot of fun!

  4. Oh, I should add: I saw on my local news station that Ian Somerhalder was in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi this past weekend, which happens to be the town that Bayville is loosely based upon in Wildflowers! Oh, how I wish I would have known beforehand!

    • oh, I’m glad she didn’t know! lol…… yes this was my favorite interview!! very fun indeed.. love all the effects on this site.. you did an awesome job with this Kriss… thanks

      • You are so welcome! I am glad that I made you guys smile. Honestly, it is the BEST reward for a book blogger when an author is happy!

  5. You and Schledia totally rocked this interview! Amazing post as always Kriss.

    • Oh, it was all Kriss! I just answered her questions, which happened to be great and challenging.

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