Q&A · Reading

Interview with Kristi Wientge, author of KHARMA KHULLAR’S MUSTACHE


Today it’s my pleasure to be another stop on the 2017 Debut Authors Bash, a month long event that pairs bloggers and, you guessed it, debut authors together to spread the love and joy of new books! Hosted by the lovely Nichole, there are LOADS of awesome reviews, interviews and giveaways throughout December–so go check them out!

27277199Debut author Kristi Wientge tackles the uncomfortable—but all too relatable—subject of female body hair and self-esteem with this sweet and charming novel in the tradition of Judy Blume.

Karma Khullar is about to start middle school, and she is super nervous. Not just because it seems like her best friend has found a newer, blonder best friend. Or the fact that her home life is shaken up by the death of her dadima. Or even that her dad is the new stay-at-home parent, leading her mother to spend most of her time at work. But because she’s realized that she has seventeen hairs that have formed a mustache on her upper lip.

With everyone around her focused on other things, Karma is left to figure out what to make of her terrifyingly hairy surprise all on her own.

(1)  Hi Kristi, I’m super excited to have you on my blog today, because like Karma, I was/am a hairy girl, and I was SO embarrassed by it as a kid! What other embarrassing things do you think we should talk more openly about?

I don’t think there’s a cap on what we should talk about. Whenever I’d read about a character hating their freckles I’d roll my eyes and think “you could have acne”. We often deal with “bigger” problems in books and don’t delve into these “smaller” issues. I did struggle initially with how to have a mustache carry a story– it was actually a comment I’d get from agents when I queried– How is a mustache going to carry an entire story? Well, it doesn’t. It just shapes the story and gives us a more human main character. So why not have a girl who bleeds heavily or a character with horrible b.o.?

(2)  Can you describe KHARMA KHULLAR’S MUSTACHE in three words?

You’ll feel 12yo! (I was going to list 3 separate words, but this is the comment I get the most from readers)

(3)  What do you do when you’re not writing? Any interesting hobbies?

I love embroidery, crochet, pilates, reading and cooking. Lately though I’ve been busy with my kids’ homework and running them all over the place. Not really a hobby, more of a duty.

(4)  Are you working on anything right now? Can you give us a WIP teaser?

I have two things I’m working on currently. It’s been a slow writing year for me and one of the stories I’m in love with (gray lines between right and wrong) and one I’m struggling to love again (bees and friendship). I’m really, really hoping that one of these will be something that’ll sell. Let’s see!

(5)  What’s the one book that’s shaped you as an author?

I just did an amazing podcast with Brock Shelley called What Book Hooked You? I love this question, but it wasn’t one book that shaped me, it was an author. Beverly Cleary. I adored her from the time I could read until now. She spans age gaps, gender and generations. I love it that my kids read her, too.


Favourite writing snack? Coffee

What is your Harry Potter House? Hufflepuff!!!

If you could have dinner with one person, who would it be? Madeleine L’Engle

What’s the best book you’ve read (so far) in 2017: Eliza and Her Monsters


Thank you Kristi for being such a fab interview-ee! I am delighted to say I have five (YES five!) copies of KHARMA KHULLAR’S MUSTACHE to give away. Head over to my rafflecopter to enter. (This giveaway is open internationally!)


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