Special Guests:Rocco and Toni LoTempio/Kids Need to Read

On this ‘free’ week my guests are Rocco and Toni LoTempio. I first met these two when I stumbled across an interview that Rocco did with one of my favorite authors. Rocco has fascinating writers as guests, from some of the biggest names in the business to those who he and Toni have helped to ’find’ ; the newly published who are more than worth a look. They are active in many causes, and one nearest to their hearts will be featured in today’s post. I immediately fell in with Rocco and Toni, who have become quite dear to me. Oh, yes, I almost failed to mention that Toni is an important part of Rocco’s blog, (behind the scenes); she is a published writer with a new series and new contract. So congratulations and welcome, Toni and Rocco! I could not be more pleased to have you here today!


Author Toni LoTempio and Rocco, the Incredible Blogging Cat

Author Toni LoTempio and Rocco, the Incredible Blogging Cat

Hello. My name is Toni LoTempio, and I’m the proud HUMAN to Rocco!
As some of you may or may not know, ROCCO not only runs his own blog, but he is also the “official spokescat” for KIDS NEED TO READ, Nathan Fillion’s (Castle, Firefly) charity! In addition, he’s also the inspiration for the feline character NICK in the Nick and Nora mysteries, coming this December from Berkley Prime Crime!
ROCCO has interviewed many authors on his blog, but no one to date has ever interviewed him! So now…here’s ROCCO!

TLT: Hey, ROCCO! For all our interested readers out there, describe a typical day in your life.
R: Thank you, my Human. Well, I’m usually very busy as you know, what with coming up with authors to interview for the blog, as well as ideas for that new mystery series you have coming out in December. That takes up a great deal of my time. My morning usually begins at around 3 a.m. when I start knocking everything off your dresser so you are sure to get up and feed myself and my siblings: brother Maxx and sisters Trixie and Princess. Once that’s done, I usually bother you whilst you are getting dressed to go to your day job and once you’re out the door, I take mid-morning nap to regain my strength.
Later, if I am so inclined, I amuse myself by playing with my favorite toy – my ballies! I love to lose them underneath large pieces of furniture so that you can get on your hands and knees and find them for me! Then when you come home, I meow loudly to remind you that we all still need to be fed! Once that’s done, I trot myself into the den where you are working on one of your (our!!!) books and finagle you into spending at least twenty minutes playing “catch”. After that, I take my evening nap (usually at the foot of your bed, sometimes next to you) until it starts all over the following day!
TLT: How did you become the spokescat for KIDS NEED TO READ?
R: You and I were surfing the web one day and came across the charity. It looked worthwhile, and you were traveling to Arizona that year on vacation, so you set up a meeting with Denise Gary and then we hit upon the idea of having an Ebay auction, publicized by moi on my blog, every summer. So far we have run two very successful ones and will be doing our third this September. If folks are interested in checking out this worthwhile charity, they may do so at http://www.kidsneedtoread.org/
TLT: What’s the story behind your name? Are you a Sylvester Stallone fan?
R: Ah, my name has nothing to do with the ROCKY movies. The lady at the Clifton Animal Shelter, where you adopted me, named my sister Pebbles and me ROCCO. Even then she could see I was a feisty devil.
TLT: I’ll definitely agree with the devil part…..
R: Moi? Devilish????????? You betcha!
TLT: What do you love most about me? Dislike most?
R: Love is an extreme term. I love the fact that you know to feed us on time. If I had to hone in on one dislike, it would be you do not play “catch” enough with me.
TLT: Now, suppose you explain how you became the “inspiration” for our new mystery series debuting in December.
R: With pleasure! If you will recall, my Human, I have meowed many times to you that you should concentrate on writing stories about a cat such as myself and give up on the vampires and other such supernatural creatures. After your supervisor concurred with my assessment one day, you came home all fired up and started calling me “Nicky”. Thus was born the Nick and Nora mysteries! My only regret is it had to be rewritten to eliminate my “talking”, MOL! (Meow Out Loud)
And I did come up with the title…MEOW IF ITS MURDER…although to date I have received absolutely NO credit for doing so, hisss!!!!!!!!!
TLT: Just for fun…
Catnip or scratching post? Scratching the arms of your couch!
Tabbies or Tuxedos? Both are equally fine.
Fish or Steak? Sardines
TLT: Rocco, where can readers find out more about you and our mysteries?

R: My human has a website under construction, however, in the interim, one can check our blog, http://www.catsbooksmorecats.blogspot.com Not only do we have at least 3 author interviews/giveaways per month, we also post news about the Human’s upcoming books!
The first Nick and Nora mystery, MEOW IF ITS MURDER, for which I am the inspiration for the tuxedo cat Nick, will be available December 2 from Penguin/Random.

TLT: Any last words?

R: Pad softly and carry a big fish.

Thank you both,Toni LoTempio and Rocco, the Incredible Blogging Cat.Best of luck to you in all of your works.

Please feel free to comment or ask either Toni or Rocco any questions about Kids Need to Read or anything else.Please checkout Rocco’s interviews…you can always find a great deal out about one of your favorite authors or find a new favorite.(And you will always know  if he or she is a cat or dog person!) You can find them both on Facebook, as well.


About Tonette Joyce

Tonette was a once-fledgling lyricists-bookkeeper, turned cook/baker/restaurateur and is now exploring different writing venues,(with a stage play recently completed). She has had poetry and nonfiction articles published in the last few years. Tonette has been married to her only serious boyfriend for more than thirty years and she is, as one person described her, family-oriented almost to a fault. Never mind how others have described her, she is,(shall we say), a sometime traditionalist of eclectic tastes.She has another blog : "Tonette Joyce:Food,Friends,Family" here at WordPress.She and guests share tips and recipes for easy entertaining and helps people to be ready for almost anything.
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16 Responses to Special Guests:Rocco and Toni LoTempio/Kids Need to Read

  1. jbrayweber says:

    Cute! I loved the interview Toni and Rocco. Thanks for hosting them, Tonette!


    • Thanks for coming by,Jenn! I try never to miss Rocco’s interviews, they are always interesting,(and I have won a number of books!). Toni has become a friend.I have one of her ebooks, (which I enjoyed very much), and I anxiously await “Meow If It’s Murder”. Kids Need To Read is a wonderful organization.


  2. jeff7salter says:

    enjoyed the interview.
    Always refreshing to hear the cat’s POV


  3. What? Doesn’t King Sippers give you plenty of input??? LOL! I have to admit, when I fist saw who was doing the interviewing,I was surprised (I’ve told her not to let him hold her back.You know how jealous cats can be.), but Rocco has a style all his own…yet Toni writes well on her own, too.
    (I’ve told her not to let him hold her back….you know how ‘catty’ cats can be!)


  4. pjharjo says:

    Toni! I loved your interview with Rocco. How does one go about being interviewed by you? Besides my writing career, I’m also a human friend! I’m the human friend of a pony puppet. He goes by Derby T. Pony, ESQ and has his own Facebook page with LOTS of friends and his own gmail account. He plans to write a children’s series bc children LOVE him!! He and Rocco should hook up on Facebook! Maybe you could interview us both about our writing endeavors! 🙂 Blessings!


  5. Iris B says:

    Lovely interview. Really enjoyed it. And KNTR sounds like a great organisation!


    • Thanks,Iris.I hesitated for some time to ask them in yet they were quickly accommodating!
      I am particularly proud to have them in, especially since they bring such a great message,


  6. Thank you so much, Tonette, for hosting ROCCO and myself! I look forward to visiting you again and connecting with your friend Derby T. Pony!

    Toni & ROCCO


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