Links to Trisha Kehoe’s work online:
Special Additions for WinterfestOnline
More Online Stories from Trisha:
Clowns, Crowns and Comeuppance
Who are you?
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your interests in general.
Hm, interests in general. Where do I start? LOL! I
love to do needlepoint, cross-stitch, painted crafts, and ceramics. I also do quite
a bit of seamstress work, both for myself and others, plus I make quilts in my
"spare" time. I also create both fabric and floral wreaths and sell
them at various fairs, home shows, etc., throughout
What drew you to the Beauty and the Beast TV series, and why did you/do you feel the need to write about B&B?
What first drew me to the show was when I was told that Ron Perlman was going to star in it. I've been a fan of his since his nightclub days. He was still relatively unknown back then, so I was thrilled to hear he'd been given a series, and hoped that it would be a "boost" to his career. Which it certainly was.
Was writing something you had done before being involved with Beauty and the Beast or something that developed out of it?
I'd written a few short pieces in my teens / early 20's, including one for The Ladies Home Journal, but when I married and had kids writing seemed to take a back seat to "normalacy".
How long have you been writing?
Off and on since Junior High School.
If you started when you were a child/teenager, do you still have some of your work from that time? Did you share it with your friends then?
Yes, I still have some poetry and a few of my short
stories, which I shudder over when I reread them now. (Paragraphing and spelling
is important!) No, I didn't share my work then, except for a few news
articles in a local paper. Most of my friends weren't into that sort of thing
very much. You see, I'm a child of the
"hippy years". Peace marches against
I also worked/still work with GreenPeace, long before
it became "fashionable" to help threatened animals in their fight to
share this planet. I went to
Who most influenced and/or encouraged your talent?
My husband first, and also a few close friends.
What training have you had for writing/literary techniques, and where, if it was formal training - or are you self-taught, working from instinct and lots of reading?
No training, per se. I seem to work strictly on instinct or gut reaction, call it what you will. If a particular subject "grabs" me, I write from that premise. I've always loved books, and devoured them whenever I could scrounge the time. Then I found fandom and fanzines. On that day, a new world lay before me, ready to be explored. Some of the books / stories were very well done, and others left me wanting to change just about everything I'd read! Vincent with a tail, with a...a... retractable penis, and he shed like a great big cat? What?! Catherine was dead? No! No way! Not in my world! So, taking a deep breath and summoning up the courage, I crossed the threshhold. Plunking my fanny down in front of my trusty old typewriter, I began to draft my first Tunnel story. And the rest, as it's said, is history. (smile)
Do you write professionally?
Yes, I do.
When you write:
Describe the space in which you do most of your writing.
Outlines, when I do them, are started in the library of the building where I live. Then I sit at my computer and input the notes, etc. I turn off the phone, tell my husband that I'm "Going to the Tunnels", shoo away my pain of a kitten, and start organizing / agonizing / over my notes.
How do you work when you write - outline the story, start from an image, a word, an individual section... have an idea that tugs at your mind and practically writes itself...? Where do you start on a story... beginning, end or middle? Or does it just depend on the story?
It depends on the story a great deal; on what I want to say, or to be more precise what I want the characters to say and/or explore. The work also depends on my mood at that moment, a song whirling around in my brain, or it might be an article I'd read that interested me / angered me / moved me, that stirs the so-called muse. One of my short stories, about a very bad day Vincent had, stemmed from a day my husband actually had, where everyone and everything seemed "out to get him", including the shower door, the kids, and the dog. Grabbing a puzzle book, poor old Ray had crawled back into bed and hunkered down there for the rest of the day. Just before he'd slammed the bedroom door shut, he'd announced, "If you hear a giant thud it's just the GD ceiling falling on my head!" Once I'd stopped laughing hysterically into a bathroom towel, I did manage to get him fed and offer a few words by way of comfort.
Do you have endings in mind for works in progress when you start them or do you just let the stories go where they take you? Do you always know what you want to achieve at the end?
I usually know where I "want" a story to go, or end. Sometimes the work takes off on its own and before long an entirely different premise has taken over. If I like the direction, I allow it to continue. If I don't like it, the words end up in the wastebasket, or I'll hit the DELETE key.
How often do the characters take off on their own once you've started writing?
Quite often, the feisty little buggers.
Do you ever end up with a story entirely different from the one you started, or maybe two or three spin-offs?
Yes, that happens with Tunnel stories quite a bit. At times what started out as a contemplated few pages ends up as a novel!
You’ve written stories full of humor. Tell us about why you like this approach of Vincent’s and Catherine relationship.
Other than a few images and instances involving Mouse, there appeared to be very little humor in the Tunnels, or at least it seemed that way to me. I thought some was definitely needed. After all, humor and a sense of the ridiculous is a part of life. It gets us through the tough times, the sad times, the times when we want to hide under the covers, wave a white flag, and shriek, "Enough!" On a personal level, my sense of humor has saved me this past year, when nothing else would have.
You’ve also been know to write some pretty steamy fic. How do you feel about being known for that, and why did you choose those particular ways to present Vincent and Catherine’s love?
Passion is also a part of life; one of the best parts, imho. I wanted Vincent and Catherine to enjoy a healthy and vigorous sexual relationship - a "normal" relationship. I wanted them to have the same days we all have; days when they'd argue, times of despair, and times of joy - or days when one of them is just plain constipated. I wanted them have a life, with all of the bells and whistles. As a man and woman in love they deserved to have everything I could give them in that regard. Being known for what I write / the way I write / has never bothered me, nor has it affected my work, for the most part. People can read my stories and either fling them across the room, like them, hate them, howl over them, or whatever. Over the years I've received a lot of encouraging mail, and very few 'slaps to the head', so I guess / hope / that people have enjoyed the stories.
Where do you get the inspiration for those steamy scenes? Or is that a trade secret?
Some of the inspiration is from life - my life - and some of it's from a very fertile imagination and/or dirty mind. And no, I'm not revealing which it which!
You write a wide range of stories, from G to R and beyond. Is one type of story easier to write than another?
By far, humor is the most difficult. To write down words that will make another person "see" the joke can be completely exhausting. Give me a good steamy love scene any day, where the words just flow - no pun intended.
Is writing a “suggestive” sexual scene more difficult than writing a scene that is more sexually descriptive?
That depends on various things, including my mood at that moment, the mood of the characters I'm detailing, or the surroundings they're in. With suggestive sex there has to be a lighter touch to the words or they won't work well. The scenes can very easily fall apart, or evolve into something much "hotter" than what was originally planned.
When you're putting together a steamy fic, do you ever chuckle as you work or proof read, knowing you're leaving your readers in need of a cold shower?
To be honest, I love 'getting' a reader, either with a love scene or a humorous one. That's when you know the story is working. And when I find myself laughing, that's fun, too.
Dare we ask if you might need a cold shower, too, now and then?
You can ask.
What are your sources of inspiration? Do your ideas come from things you see around you, start from a seed and gradually blossom, or spring, fully armored, like Athena from the head of Zeus...? What do you imagine first - the content or the emotion you want it to convey? What was your most interesting inspiration for a story or poem?
Sources of inspiration, for me, can be the words of a song, a poem, a tiny spark of an idea that won't leave me alone until I fully ignite it. First I try to imagine the point and/or path I want the readers to follow. Then I try to lead them down that path as best I can.
One of my most interesting inspirations, although those aren't the words I'd choose in this instance, was the loss of my friend, Robby, after an intense battle with AIDS. I dedicated my novel Walk the World For Me to him. He was so young, so kind, and he died in my arms weighing 67 pounds. I mourn him still. Robby was my sounding board for various things, my screaming cohort at rock concerts, my dance partner for the rock and roll that my hubby refused to "move his groove thing" to. He was a part of my soul; a part that's gone with him, to wherever that place might be. When I see him again, I know he'll still be young, and I wonder - will he recognize me?
Do your stories ever include some of your own life experiences?
Yes, many of them.
Have any of the characters you have created in a story been a reflection of yourself or someone you know?
I try very hard not to put myself in the place of any one character. But if the truth be told, at times I do tend to view the world through Vincent's eyes. I understand his conflicts, and I can relate to his differences, in various ways. I had an extremely difficult childhood, both emotionally and physically. Some of the scars show, and some don't. I survived. Let's leave it at that.
If so, to what extent?
A character named Allegra, from my Vincent's World series of books, is about 30% me. Okay, 40% me.
Do you adhere to any self-imposed set rules or boundaries?
No, none whatsoever. If I were to set rules or boundaries for/on myself, then I may as well shut down both my computer and my mind. I can't write with limits. If a writer isn't free to express themselves on every level, then they're 'ham-stringed', and that will certainly reflect in their work.
If you introduced especially painful developments, were they a priority in order to make the story eventful, hook the reader...? How did you feel about making the characters suffer - it would make them or their determination stronger, eventually solve their problems...?
Painful developments are also a part of living. Many of us deal with that truth on a day to day basis. Hopefully, most of us get through those times as best we can. Having someone to share that anguish with helps, up to a point. When I share a character's pain with a reader, then they (fingers crossed) understand it, and can sympathize. That's when determination comes into play. If a story is working, the reader looks for the characters to, A: overcome the pain, B: reclaim their lost hope, and/or courage, and C: get their happy ending. But not every happy ending can solve every problem. Somewhere out there, lurking in the shadows, more pain awaits. It always does; it always will. I understand that, and so do many of the readers. Tunnel people seem to have an empathy for one another that goes far beyond words. When someone is in pain and wants/needs to share it, hoping to lessen it, a friend will give them their full attention. But a true friend listens with the heart.
What research, if any, do you do for your stories?
Not all that much, at least not for Tunnel stories. That extraordinary place exists forever within a part of me. When the world above is simply too much to endure, I can close my eyes and be Below in an instant - just like this:
Running the tips of my fingers along the rough stone walls, and walking cautiously through those dimly lit corridors, I inhale deeply. As I do, the delicious aroma of William's stew and the scent of Rebecca's candles wafting from various chambers fills my nostrils. Then, the sound of Pascal's pipes tapping out a variety of messages and Vincent's gentle tone as he reads to a gathering of children encompasses me. Turning right, I hear Catherine muttering to herself in the Library, where she's stuck doing a chore she'd rather pass up, with Father at her side, grumpily issuing a variety of "suggestions".
Suddenly, from a pathway to my left, there comes the hurried raise and fall of Mouse's voice as he explains a new project to Jamie. In a chamber nearby, Mary's soft words are comforting a child. If you listen very carefully, you can hear the distant sound of Kanin whistling as he carves out a new chamber for yet another new resident. And in that moment I'm home.
Even now, after so many years, the Tunnels remain a treasured part of my life. They probably always will.
What is the hardest part of writing a multi-chapter story?
The #*&(&!! plotting!
If you wrote "what-if" stories or stories outside of your own preferred boundaries, how did you feel about those developments? Did you write them just for fun, as an intellectual exercise, some other reason...?
"What if" stories can be a blast, if they're done carefully. They can also be challenging, as in my short story “Just An Ordinary Man”. In that one, Vincent finds a grey hair. Okay then. His reaction, within the boundaries set by various TV writers, would be "Oh well". But what if he reacted completely out of character? That's when a writer can have lots of fun.
Do you have one or several favorite happy endings and/or developments in the characters' lives? If so, have you written about them yourself?
I've read many books where my mind takes another tack and changes the endings to suit *me*. Only then can I set the book aside and 'let it go'.
Are there similar stories from other authors that you enjoy as much as your own?
I enjoy Diane Galbaldon's work. She's highly
descriptive writer. I also like Frank Slaughter, Crichton, and Yerby. Moreover,
any book that concerns
Do you ever have a case of writer's block?
Oh yes. Although they're infrequent (thanks be to all the gods) those blocks can be the size of icebergs.
If so, do you have a technique to get past it?
When banging my forehead on the keyboard doesn't work, then I either go for a walk, bake something decadent, call a friend (and growl at them), or turn on the TV and find an animal show. I try very hard to clear my mind of the block/problem until I have the inner strength, or whatever, to face it again. Of course, sometimes trying to clear one’s mind is like trying not to think of pink elephants.
Is there any particular part of a story or poem that you had an unusual amount of trouble getting the way you wanted it and how did you resolve that problem?
The entire novel In Search Of Angels was a path I'd prefer not to travel more than once. To deal with Catherine's supposed demise came as close to killing me as I ever want a story to bring me again, ever. To find out how I resolved the problem, you'll have to read the novel. (Grin)
If you could change one thing about your writing, writing habits, style, etc, what would it be?
I'd be much more disciplined. I'm a Virgo; I'm supposed to be disciplined!
Tell us about the story/stories you are working on at present, if any.
I'm working on two novels at the moment. The first one deals with the life of a NYC policeman, his new female partner, and a serial killer. The central figures are very akin to Ron and Linda - which helps a great deal in doing the characterizations. The second book is far more romantic, and relates the story of a Scottish woman in the early 1800's.
After you’ve written:
Do you have your stories edited and proofread?
Yes, I do, always.
Do you consider this important?
It's at the top of the list.
Do you involve beta readers?
Do you have favorite editors/proofreaders/beta readers?
You, as well as the other guest authors we are interviewing, have allowed your work to be posted online for the enjoyment of all B&B fans. Why did you decide to do it?
Since my novels and most other stories are out of print, and can be hard to come by, I thought it would be good to share them in whatever way possible.
How did you/do you choose the sites to have your stories posted?
Usually a site owner emails me and asks for permission to post something.
What do you like to hear from someone reading your story?
That it worked for them; that they enjoyed it.
What do you find most helpful or rewarding when reading reviews of your writing?
Constructive reviews, with personalities set aside, are the best. 99% of the readers write to me honestly, saying that they enjoyed a story, etc., or that they didn't, and tell me why. And that's fine. An honest and open opinion is always welcomed. A few others, however, write letters from...shall we say...mean-spiritedness? If I answer those sorts of letters, which is rarely, I testily remind them, as the saying goes, "Those who can write, do, and those who can't, critique."
What was the most interesting response you've had to your work?
There have been so many I'd hate to pick just one. But I'll have to admit that Ron Perlman's response to one story in particular made me grin widely for days.
What do you consider the greatest compliment you've received?
To me, each and every sale of a book is a compliment in itself. At the moment, one instance in particular comes to mind: A reader told me she was laughing so hard while reading in bed that her husband banished her to the laundry room, where she proceeded to finish the story while trying very hard not to pee her pajamas - and lost the battle. That had me howling!
Did you ever get a review that really touched you?
Yes, I have. But, keeping a promise, I prefer that the comments remain between me and the person who wrote them.
Something a reader wrote that really inspired you?
Well, one reader told me a story from her youth that inspired a tale of Allegra (Vincent's World Books) receiving a rather bad haircut!
Which of your B&B writings do you like best, and why?
The humor. I have fun writing it, and I have fun rereading it months later. (VBG)
If you were forced to pick one passage, scene or line from one of your stories as a favorite, what would it be?
Offhand I can recall one in particular, from my mini-zine “Of Love and Laughter”: Vincent lisping to Devin, "I promith to hum."
What are your favorites of other things you've written?
Again, I enjoy writing humor. But I also like a teeth-gritting visually energetic scene, where there's a lot of angst, finger waving, yelling, vase throwing, etc. Writing the "making up" scene can be exhausting though!
Who are some other B&B authors who might inspire you or whose work you particularly enjoy?
I enjoy most of Swope and Prosser, Pam Garrett, and a few others.
What aspirations do you have for your writing? i.e. Do you wish to write professionally or keep it as a hobby?
I've chosen to write professionally. Now if I can just get that fire rekindled under my butt before my agent comes after me with an axe...
In either case, what do you hope to achieve?
Other than wealth and fame? LOL!
Do you write in any other fandoms besides B&B?
Any advice you would give to beginners?
Keep at it. The struggle is worth it, in the end. Keep your words honest, be coherent, and have the story proofed - more than once! Wherever you go, study people; what they're doing, what they're saying, their gestures, etc. People can be great teachers, if you watch them closely and really listen. If you find it difficult to write a believable love scene, either skip it or learn to let go of your inhibitions. Any sort of compromise will stick out glaringly in the finished piece. Above all, learn to accept whatever limitations you have - and we all have them. Work around them, through them, or whatever it takes to produce something you're willing to put your name to.
Sadly, people tend to wake up one morning thinking, 'Today I'll become a writer!' I'm sorry, but that's not how it's done. It takes work, lots of it, and practice, more practice, at least three rewrites - and about a ton of wasted paper. Finally, when you've finished a story, let it 'gel' for a while. And then read it again. When I reread my first attempts at writing, I absolutely cringe. I'd be disappointed in myself if I didn't. Try 'baby steps'. Learn what subjects you're best at, most confident of, or most interested in. Those are the stories to tackle first.
Being a B&B fan:
In RL are you a closet "beastie" or do all your friends and family members know you're a fan?
They know I'm a fan.
How do they feel about your Beauty and the Beast involvement?
Well, my daughter calls me, "My Mom, The Porn Queen", my son teases me, which gets him smacked with whatever I'm holding at that moment, and my husband just grins. You see, he's the one who reaped the...ahem!...rewards of me writing a steamy scene. 'Nuff said.
Do they worry about your sanity?
Oh no, my friends have always known that I'm as mad as the proverbial Hatter, and accept me as I am. My kids tolerate my 'strangeness' just cuz I'm Ma. And my hubby seems to be proud of me for accomplishing exactly what I set out to do.
How did B&B affect your life?
It expanded it, rounded it out nicely, and made it a bit more interesting.
Are you or have you been involved with any other fandoms in the same way?
Nope. None have ever 'called to me' as Beauty and the Beast did - and does.
Do you want to tell something else to the readers of this interview, about yourself, B&B, the writing art, the fandom?
I think I've said it all. If anyone has a question or whatever, they can email me.
Latest stories online: Special for Winterfest Online
Clowns, Crowns and Comeuppance
Patricia A. (
Roy) Kehoe, 62, of Waltham, died Tuesday, March 28, 2006, at . Massachusetts General Hospital
She was the wife of Raymond W. Kehoe Sr.
Newfoundland, Canada, Mrs. Kehoe lived in most of her life. Waltham
Beside her husband, she leaves her son, Michael C. Falzone of
her daughter, Michele B. Mogan and her husband, Kevin;
and her grandson, John Mogan.
Trish was an old, old Ron Perlman fan. She went to
to see New York
his plays, and was a member of a fan group called "Perlman's Posse".
She remained loyal to him for the rest of her life. She joined the
fandom at the beginning, and remained through the "third season
wars", when many people left the fandom entirely. Although her
health was not good during the last few years, she regularly joined
in on BATB projects, and added her voice to whatever controversy was
happening on BBTV mailing list through her tart comments.
She had a clever mind and a sharp tongue; people who entered into
argument with her tended to come out second best. We're familiar
with her very sharp sense of humor through her fiction, which was
like no one else's - one could recognize her style even without her
name at the top of the page. She wrote of Vincent and Catherine
from an individual viewpoint, with humor and passion.
We'll miss her voice and her humor; one of the first and most loyal
of Beauty and the Beast fans is gone.