#Interview with Cari Z, author of Where There’s a Will

Posted May 2, 2016 by Sophia Rose in Book Tour, Interview / 17 Comments

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#Interview with Cari Z, author of Where There's a Will

Howdy, Delighted Readers!

Bringing you a special guest straight from the Superhero (and Super Villain) World of Panapolis to share a bit about herself and the newest Panapolis action romance, Where There’s a Will.  Say hey to Cari Z!!!!

Hi people! *waves, then recalls you can’t see me*

Haha, no worries!  This is magical virtual land and we see stuff like that.

Love the series and those who read my reviews on the first two books of the series already know this.  Glad to snag Cari before she gets carried off by a supervillain.  Thanks for penning such a fun and fantastic world, Cari!

Thank you for reading!

Have to ask, curiosity and all…Are you a fan of comic superheroes or maybe the movies based on the comics? I was an Isis and Thor fan (sucker for mythology mixed with superheroes).

I love the blend of super heroes and mythology; I feel like super heroes are a contemporary version of a very ancient human instinct to admire something or someone for being more than ordinary. I’ve always been a major Marvel fan, but for darker-edged favorites I went to Top Cow for The Darkness.  Saga from Image is also pretty delightful.

Saga is on the list.  Sigh…someday.

And apart from writing about superheroes, villains, ordinary joes, action, and romance, what would your family or friends say about Cari Z?  Hobbies or projects?  Fanatical about?  Most detested chore?

My nearest and dearest would say, “Cari, you’re so nice! Why do you write things with filled with action and intensity and violence? How do you know this stuff?”

Yeah, I’ll bet.  But think of all the stuff that comes under ‘research’.

And then I would say, “Um, my hobbies are knife fighting (mostly defensive!) and yoga (surprisingly intense). Do you know me at all?”

I also love reading, but hate paperwork. So naturally, my day job comes with a lot of paperwork. *sigh*

Yeah, I see a lot of paper cross my desk on the job, too.  Ugh!

So, tell us about Panapolis.  How did it all come into being?

A lot of my best ideas seem to come from a prompt of some kind. For Panopolis, there was a small press that put out a call for stories about villains, and I got attached and decided to take it very literally, and wrote a story about Super Villains. This story ended up at Riptide, and they encouraged me to do more with the concept. Because they’re awesome over there.

Now that’s pretty cool.  I’m a fan of a well-written villain whose motives and actions are well-developed.

What have been the highs and lows of writing Panapolis series or this latest book in the series?

This last book, I took the focus from my Super Villains to a Superhero. I hadn’t exactly set Freight Train up to be a sympathetic character in the first two novellas, so it took some doing to get him to the point where I thought people might actually like him.  Yep, this would be me before I read this one.  Now I’m a Freight Train fan.  *see me wearing my fan tee*

On the other hand, this is my first novel-length contribution to the series, and I feel that it pulls together a lot of the most interesting elements of Panopolis. Like mad science battles!

Oh yeah, you have a positive gift for the mad science battles.  You must go with that early and often in future.

Was there some little contrivance that you put into Where There’s a Will that you thought was so cool and you hope the reader’s notice?  Maybe it was a wink to something cultural or something from earlier in the series or something cool you learned from research.

Oh my gosh, yes! For example, the devices that Dr. Mansourian develops to help mitigate problematic Hero powers? Those are based on real scientific, peer-reviewed research papers. Sonic black holes are an actual thing! But us normal people will need some Bose-Einstein condensate to make one, so hey, if you could pick a little up on your way back from the store…

Hmm, don’t see that making the weekly shopping list.

Did any tunes run through your head while writing this one?

A weird mix of Shinedown, Fallout Boy and Lana Del Rey, for the most part. There’s nothing like sultry, controlling vocals followed by a thudding bass so heavy it loosens your teeth.

And…now we get to my selfish question.  Is there more coming from Panapolis?

I hope so! I’ve still got to work out the details for the next book, but if people like Where There’s A Will, I can’t imagine not coming back with Where There’s A Way.

Every finger and toe crossed.

Finally, what’s next for you, Cari?

*rubs hands together, laughs maniacally* You’re scaring me, Cari…

I just contracted another novel to Riptide to be released later this year. It’s a contemporary thriller, which makes me wonder a little bit what I was thinking not going spec fic as is my wont, but hey. We all have to stretch sometimes. I’ve also got a steampunk serial going on my blog, which promises to be wonderfully weird.

Um, hang on while I trot over to check out this wonderfuly weird steampunk serial…

Appreciate Cari taking a break from her imaginary world and writing desk to be a sport responding to my questions.  Thanks for stopping by, Cari!

Thank you so much for hosting me!

Readers, are you a superhero fan?  Or maybe you get into the villains? Any particular favorites?  No?  What about a real life hero?  Do tell!

Where There's a Will by Carl ZAbout Where There’s a Will

Being a Hero in Panopolis means living the high life: parties, money, influence, even reality television. And I’m one of the most powerful Heroes in the city. I have plenty of fans, a manager who looks out for me (after himself), and a job that pays the bills. I should be enjoying myself.

Unfortunately, the downside of my superpower means I can’t touch anyone, which tends to put a damper on things. I probably don’t deserve all those perks anyway, since I’m working in secret with two of Panopolis’s biggest Villains to undermine GenCorp—my main sponsor and the company that controls what gets through my force field.

I obviously don’t trust my corporate overseers, but they’ve hired a new scientist who actually seems interested in helping me. Dr. Mansourian might have the answers to all my questions—not to mention a starring role in most of my dreams—but he’s hiding something big. If I let him have what he wants, I might not live to regret it.

Then again, the way things are going in Panopolis these days, I might not live either way.

About Cari Z

Cari Z was a bookworm as a child and remains one to this day. In an effort to combat her antisocial reading behavior, she did all sorts of crazy things, from competitive gymnastics to alligator wresting (who even knew that was legal!) to finally joining the Peace Corps, which promptly sent her and her husband to the wilds of West Africa, stuck them in a hut, and said, “See ya!” She also started writing, because some things she just thought she could do better. She’s still climbing that ladder, but can’t stop herself from writing, or from sharing what she creates.

Cari enjoys a wide range of literary genres, from the classics (get ‘im, Ahab) to science fiction and fantasy of all types, to historical fiction and reference materials (no, seriously, there are so many great encyclopedias out there). She writes in a wide range of genres as well, but somehow 90% of what she produces ends up falling into the broad and exciting category of m/m erotica. There’s a sprinkling of f/m and f/f and even m/f/m in her repertoire, but her true love is man love. And there’s a lot of love to go around.

Cari has published short stories, novellas, and novels with numerous print and e-presses, and she also offers up a tremendous amount of free content on Literotica.com, under the name Carizabeth.

Connect with Cari:


To celebrate the release of Where There’s a Will, Cari is giving away ebooks of both Where There’s Smoke and Where There’s Fire, a $10 Riptide credit, and a Panopolis t-shirt. Leave a comment to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on May 7, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

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6 years ago

I have read Cari Z’s books and loved them. I am sure I will this one as well.
debby236 at gmail dot com

Cari Z
6 years ago
Reply to  DebraG

o/ I hope you do!

6 years ago

Good luck with the release!


6 years ago

Wow this sounds really cool

6 years ago

Congrats on the new book in the series. Thank you for the interview!
humhumbum AT yahoo DOT com

Debbie Haupt
Debbie Haupt
6 years ago

good luck! great post!

6 years ago

Congratulations on the release, i’m very interested on reading this series, sounds great. I guess i’ll like a superhero story, it’s not something that can be seeing often in romance. I’ve always being more atracted for the villains in stories, i think this book will work for me. Congratulations again.


Cari Z
6 years ago
Reply to  Ana

I hope you enjoy it!

6 years ago

Thanks for the great interview! violet817(at)aol(dot)com

Lisa Arbitrary
6 years ago

I’m hearing very good things about this, Cari. Great, fun interview, Sophia, well, and Cari too 😉
*squirrel* Did someone say steampunk? ————————–>
And knife-wielding yoga? Only you, Cari. Only you 😛

Cari Z
6 years ago
Reply to  Lisa Arbitrary

I do try to enjoy myself, darlin’. I’m glad you enjoyed the interview 🙂

Christy LoveOfBooks
6 years ago

Knife fighting as a hobby … hell yeah! This sounds like a fun book!

Cari Z
6 years ago

It’s the best hobby, imho 😉

6 years ago

Wonderful interview! I have already read about Dr. Mansourian’s inventions so it was fun to get that tidbit about them. Also, yay, about more. Since I’m not finished with it yet, I wasn’t sure if it finished the series or not. I’m sure I’ll want more.

caroaz [at] ymail [dot] com

Lisa S
Lisa S
6 years ago

Thanks for the interview! I’m looking forward to reading this series. I just snagged Where There’s a Will to add to my ever-expanding collection.

Anna@herding cats&burning soup

LOL those moments with friends and their shock are so fun. Love the hobbies! Sounds like a fun read!

vvb reads
6 years ago

Good to know some tidbits behind the book and author. I am curious about how Freight Train got that name. Interesting mashup thoughts on yoga and knives 😉