25 Jul 2015

Hello my little chickadees

Well I've been around the block a few times with various publishers but I think I have finally found my niche. Kem Shortland the owner took time out of her busy day to talk to me.


1.    Please introduce yourself Kemberlee. 

Hi, I’m Kemberlee, and yes, that’s my real spelling.  I’m originally from an area of Northern California known as Steinbeck Country, from a town founded by writers, however I’ve been living in Ireland since 1997. I’m married to a Corkonian, we have two rescued Border Collies which we used to work part time, and I enjoy reading, knitting, photography, and lately coloring, and I’m an avid castle huntress! I have eleven published titles to my name and a pile of projects I’m sure I’ll never finish in my lifetime. I’m also a publisher. My husband and I launched Tirgearr Publishing on Leap Day 2012. We’re a digital-first publisher of adult commercial fiction, and we welcome queries.

2.    What do you love most about Ireland in comparison to your homeland?

Castles. And the ancient history. America is a baby by comparison, and California even younger, as a state. Ireland has some of the oldest monuments in the world, such as the Newgrange tomb which dates back to around 3200BC, making it older than the Egyptian pyramids, the Incas, and the Moai of Easter Island. It even predates Stonehenge by an estimated 700 years. Who wouldn’t be impressed by that?! Comparing California to Ireland is like comparing apples to pears. They’re both amazing in their similarities and unique in their own ways.

3.    How did Tirgearr Publishing begin and how the heck do you pronounce it? (for those who don’t know)

Well, Tirgearr was actually established back in 2000. For many years, I worked as a travel consultant with people traveling into Ireland, and during that time I wrote several travel articles. In the off season, I designed websites. Tirgearr Design and Publishing was established in 2000 as my official business name. When I left travel during the economic downturn, many things occurred that led us to think about formally opening the publishing end of the business. We made the decision just before the holidays in 2011, invited some great author friends to submit a few things, and officially launched Tirgearr Publishing as a formal ebook publisher on Leap Day 2012 (29 February). We also now do some print. 

TKG The name Tirgearr rhymes with Beer Bar I believe.

4.    A typical week for you would be?

Let me catch my breath from laughing. Umm . . . my work week doesn’t really have anything typical about it, other than long hours of fielding questions and making sure everything runs on time, even if I am personally always late. Typically, I’m at the desk or online by 9am every morning. I usually start by checking emails, which I often do before I get to the desk where I’ll then answer them. Lunch time is Dog Time, so I’ll get them out to chase a ball for a while before I finally get to eat. Then I work on various other things, including more emails, until the hubs comes home. He takes the dogs out for a run while I make dinner. Then he’s home, we have a bite at the table to catch up on the day, then I’m back in the office until around 9pm. At 9pm, I’ll catch up on some favorite shows which I’ve recorded (guilty of being a Castle and Bones fan). I enjoy knitting while watching TV, but recently have taken up the latest fad of adult coloring. I used to study graphic arts, way back when, and miss it.

My ‘typical week’ also means I’m cleaning the house, doing laundry, figuring out what’s for dinner, washing dishes . . . The place doesn’t pick up after itself! And this is one of the downfalls of working form home. One day I’ll be rich and I can afford to hire someone to vacuum the dog hair for me, but knowing me, I’ll be too embarrassed for them to come in and will clean before they get here! :-)

Now that we’ve been open for nearly four years, I’ve developed a system whereby I’m pretty caught up on most things, so I’m starting to allow for more ‘me time’ in the mornings. This is where I find my balance between writing and publishing. I want them both to succeed.

5.    Given a choice at no expense to yourself, where in the world would you like to continue publishing books. (let your imagination take off)

Do you mean if we weren’t publishing in Ireland? Well, those wheels are already in motion. For me, it will be a return to Northern California. We’ll still have the Irish end of the business, so CA will be another where we’ll also happen to live for a while. If we weren’t planning to move to California and could move anywhere, assuming we still wanted to move, it would have to be somewhere warm most of the year. But you know, with a business like ours, we could run it from an RV and drive around America or Europe, as long as we could get a wifi connection :-)

6.    What was your first published book and how did it sell in the book market at the time?

I sold two fiction short stories in 2005 that were part of a themed anthology about crazy laws around the world — Tutti-Frutti Blues and Dude Looks Like A Lady. My first novel in 2009. Long story but it was the second book in a series, which has now been republished in order with the series — The Irish Pride Series. I’ve been publishing pretty regularly since then.

7.    Your favourite wild animal?

Oh, tough one . . . African Elephants and American Wolves are right up there on top for land animals. In the water, Humpback Whales. In the sky, Monarch Butteryflies. I bet you thought I was going to say a bird lol

TKG Yes I did :-)

8.    Your favourite drink of any kind?

Rootbeer. Love it. I can’t find it here, so I tend to drown myself in it when I’m visiting home. Failing that, ginger beer, but I drink a lot of Caffeine Free Diet Coke, normally.

9.    You have a leprechaun come to visit you but you tell him to disappear as your far too busy. However he won’t leave you alone and comes back, in one of your quiet times and offers you a one off wish. What would it be I wonder?

No more hunger or homelessness in the world.

10. You are given a barren small island to do with whatever you please. Thoughts… and how would you implement them?

I’d do absolutely nothing with it. It has it’s own microclimate and wildlife. It’s perfect as is. I might camp a few times to enjoy it’s wildness and uniqueness, but there’s no reason my intrusion should change things as they are.

TKG Thank you Kem 


Kemberlee Shortland was born and raised in Northern California in an area known as Steinbeck Country. It was home to many authors, including John Steinbeck, and for a while Jack London and Robert Louis Stevenson. In 1997, Kemberlee had the opportunity to live in Ireland for six months where she ended up meeting a man who convinced her to stay. Kemberlee is now celebrating her eighteenth year in Ireland and has been lucky to travel the country extensively, picking up a cupla focal along the way—a few Irish words.

Kemberlee was an early-reader and has been writing since a very young age, and over the years she has published many travel articles and book reviews, as well as worked some notable authors who’ve set their books in Ireland.

After publishing travel articles since 1997, Kemberlee saw her first short stories published, and now has eight published books to her name and half a dozen others languishing in a drawer.

Away from the computer, Kemberlee enjoys knitting and other needlecrafts, playing with her Border Collies, castle hunting, travel, reading, gardening, and cookery. One day she hopes to have time to learn to play guitar properly.

Website: www.kemberlee.com
Blog: www.heartshapedstones.blogspot.com
Blog: www.hearticles.blogspot.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/KemberleeShortland
Time suck! Not on there. But I’m sure it’s only a matter of time
Amazon Author Page:
Tirgearr Publishing: www.tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Shortland_Kemberlee

Books written by Kemberlee Shortland


So there you have it my little chickadees. I hope you enjoyed this insight into my publishing house and here is the link to the Tirgearr Publishing House main page


This is my page of course but it you go to the home page it will tell you everything you need to know.

Laters Potaters


Hannah said...

Lovely to read a little more about 'our Kem'. Thank you for this interview, Tee! XXX

tgeering said...

Pleasure my friend xxxx

Kemberlee said...

Hey, that was quick :-) Thanks for the interview. It was fun.

Do you have direct link to the page so I can add it to my interview list?

Kemberlee said...

Oops! Never mind. I found it. Doh!! Thanks ;-)