“Today we welcome Kimberly Palmucci to Meeting the Authors as we travel to New England. We’ll talk about how pink glitter lipstick, ice hockey, shelter pets, being a freelance reporter, and Glacier National Park play a role in Kimberly’s life.”
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I have been described as a walking oxymoron. You will find me at most of my book signings with bold pink glitter lipstick and a Venti Strawberry Acai from Starbucks, but I also play ice hockey and listen to heavy metal music. I play piano, but can’t read music. I was told in journalism school to always remain unbiased when covering a story for the news, but often found myself crying while conducting interviews on heart-breaking stories. I believe we are who we are and should never apologize for being ourselves.
In which genre do you write?
Picture story books and soon, narrative nonfiction!
How many published books do you have?
I currently have three books in the Purr-fectly series published and am working on my next project.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer and what ignited your author’s flame?
I have always been passionate about helping shelter pets, but truly committed myself to the cause when I adopted my cat, Meesta. He is funny, smart, loving, strong, and perfect in every way—and he has three legs. He was passed up in the shelter simply because he is different, and I was inspired to write my books to share a narrative of positivity about shelter pets and celebrate all the qualities that make us unique and amazing.
What would you choose as your mascot, spirit animal, or avatar and why?
If you looked around my house at all the cat paraphernalia, cat T-shirts, cat jewelry accessories, and cat home décor, you’d assume I would answer “cat” to this question. But my answer, much to everyone’s surprise, is…cat. Quite shocking, I know. I absolutely love cats. They are feisty and independent, but so loving and affectionate (only when they choose to be). I love all animals, but there’s something about receiving love from a cat that is ultra-special—they could be anywhere else they want, doing anything else they want, and yet they choose to spend time with the ones they love. This is how I feel about myself; I’ve reached a point in my life where I feel wildly independent and free, with myself and my career, yet my favorite place to be is with my husband and family.
What do you do when not writing or marketing your books?
I am a freelance reporter in addition to being an author, so I spend a majority of my time writing.
When I’m not writing, though, you’ll find me visiting my parents’ shepherd mix puppies, shopping at my new favorite home décor store, reading my brother’s books (he is an author as well), or taking my daily walk down our extremely long dirt driveway through the woods to the mailbox.
What is the most enjoyable thing you’ve found through writing?
Writing is cathartic for me. I write to express myself and connect readers to narratives of positivity. But the best part of this whole process for me has been when readers share their own stories, or tell me that my books inspired them in any way. I gravitated toward reporting and authorship for the same reason—because I believe we each have beautiful and unique stories to share, and it’s my job to share those stories. I tell all of my readers—you matter, your voice matters, and you can inspire others through your words.
At this stage in your life, what advice would your young self give to your more mature self?
Be you, girl. Your imperfections make you perfect. Don’t spend any time focusing on the negativity in this world; choose kindness and positivity, but be fierce and stand up for yourself when it matters. Be confident and bold in your decisions and love yourself completely. Try to read positive intent in situations; don’t apologize when it’s not necessary. When you find that peace within your own mind, you will begin to attract the kinds of people who constantly build you up and make you the best version of yourself. And leave your eyebrows alone.
If you could ask your pet three questions, what would they be?
1. Is there anything under the couch that I’ve lost?
2. Would you mind not standing on me at 4:00 a.m. aggressively meowing for food? Or is that non-negotiable?
3. Did it hurt when you fell from Heaven, my purr-fect angel kitties?
Which of your personality traits has been most useful and why?
Most definitely my sense of humor. My mom thinks I’m the funniest person in the world and laughs at all my jokes. Thanks, mom, you’re the real hero.
Describe the perfect solo date you’d take yourself on … where, time of day, weather, place, etc.
Well, this may be avoiding the question completely, but I would choose a date with my husband, Dominick, any day over a solo date. Don’t get me wrong, I love my “me” time at home with the cats, self-reflecting, and binge watching re-runs of Law and Order: SVU, but I’d still choose him, every time. A perfect date would be: hiking a trail called Scenic Point at Glacier National Park in Montana on a beautiful, sunny day in late June. Temperatures are higher than average, a heat wave bringing a scorching day to the towns below us, but on top of the mountain that sits 7,500 feet above sea level, there’s a crisp breeze that calls for us to pull out the jackets we have stuffed in our bags. Ideal circumstances include just me and him sitting together, no one else around as far as the eye can see, eating snacks, him making me laugh as he always does, looking down at the world around us wondering how it’s possible to feel this free and this in love. He’s my breath of fresh air.
What are you currently working on?
I decided after the Purr-fectly series that I wanted to write something a bit different than picture story books. I absolutely love the lyrical way I am able to write with my picture books, but I have heard so many beautiful stories on my journey from others, specifically animal adoption stories. I am currently writing a narrative nonfiction book that shares a compilation of true and inspirational adoption stories.
Tell us about your most recent book.
My latest published work is Purr-fectly Home, which is the sequel to my first book, Purr-fectly Lucky, and the third book in the Purr-fectly series. The book follows Lucky years after he was adopted…and a new friend who comes into his life! I was inspired to write this story after we adopted our second three-legged cat, Princess. She was initially a shy, timid little girl who had a rough start, but she blossomed within a week into an outgoing, independent, loving member of our family. All she needed was a little love, and Meesta immediately fell in love with her, too. They became best friends almost instantaneously—he even took her on a tour of the house after they first met. I was so inspired by this bond that I had to write a sequel.
I truly loved this interview so very much. Anyone who knows me will understand why. Having a child with a disability, this topic is close to my heart and am deeply moved that Kimberly is raising awareness of differences in our pets. My son, Thomas, and I volunteer at The Nevada Humane Society (which is a no-kill shelter). His favorite section to be? The cats. Thank you Kimberly for being a part of MTA. Here’s wishing you much success! –Camilla
Blurb for Purr-fectly Home:
Lucky is purr-fectly happy with his family in a cozy house in the middle of the woods, but he doesn’t realize something is missing until a new friend comes into his life. Purr-fectly Home is inspired by the true story of Meesta and Princess, two three-legged cats who formed an immediate and inseparable bond. Their adventures together help each of them overcome fears and discover hidden strengths, and their journey proves that anything is possible with a new friend at your side.