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Tule Author Q&A: Katja Desjarlais’s heroine was a mystery to her!

Katja Desjarlais stopped by the Tule blog to discuss the third book in the Hellhounds series, Muzzled!


Where did you get the inspiration for Muzzled?

Muzzled is set in the small Canadian city of Saskatoon, my hometown. When I was weaving through ideas for Ryan and Micah’s story, I couldn’t get thoughts of Saskatoon’s busy festival season out of my head. Having spent five summers working on a patio where I was treated to buskers and painters on a daily basis, I knew this was the perfect place for Ryan to find his artist. Every sight and smell in the book is a memory.


How is Ryan different from his brothers, Alex and Bo? How is he the same?

Ryan is by far the most responsible, loyal, and reliable of the brothers. He’s the quiet organizer of the hunt and the level head when tempers and emotions flare. His singleminded focus in serving his master and mistress has guided his every decision and action since his birth, and he sees no other path until he meets Micah. Like his brothers, love flips Ryan head over heels and leaves him scrambling to come to terms with an emotion he’s never experienced. Much like Ryan and Bo, it doesn’t take long for Ryan’s inner guard dog to rear up to protect the woman he loves, even if it means going head to head against the god and goddess he serves.


If you could spend the day with Ryan or Micah, who would you choose and what would you do?

A day with Micah would be both entertaining and thrilling. She’s a woman who seeks out new experiences, opens her mind to fresh ideas, and sees beauty everywhere she goes. Her fearlessness and determination to embrace everything in life, good and bad, would be life-changing.


Are your characters set before you begin writing or do you let them develop as you go? What did that development process look like for Muzzled?

My characters are lucky to have a name and a picture pinned on a Pinterest board when I start a new book. Although he made appearances in both Junkyard Dog and Leashed, it took Ryan’s own book to reveal his deeper nature and motivations. Every interaction he has with Micah is another insight into his character and his morals, and it’s those small pieces which come together to make him whole. 

Micah was a total mystery to me from the beginning. I knew she was an artist but it wasn’t until halfway through writing the book that I felt I had a clear picture of who she is. Unlike Ryan who is quite solitary, Micah’s interactions with her friends and with Ryan speak to her values, her personality, and her desires.


What are you currently reading?

Thanks to TikTok, my TBR pile has become borderline unmanageable, but I am determined to persevere. Right now, I have Mia Sheridan’s Signs of the Zodiac series on my Kindle which I keep propped up on my exercise bike as an incentive to cycle myself fit before paddle-boarding season begins. My phone is loaded up with Tillie Cole’s Deadly Virtues, ready and waiting for me to finish the latest Pittsburgh Titans book by Sawyer Bennett.


About the Author

Katja Desjarlais is a music teacher by day and a paranormal romance writer by moonlight. She is an unapologetic music addict with an obsession for bad Bach puns despite her irrational aversion to Baroque. Her favorite words include ‘plethora’ and ‘dapper’, and she is physically repulsed by the word ‘moist’. Katja’s interest in the paranormal can be traced to her early childhood movie choices and to the collection of books she has stored on her phone for reading emergencies.

Desjarlais lives in northern Canada with her husband, three children, and polydactyl cat. Her summers are spent driving across North America with her family, while the long Canadian winters are made more bearable by attending heavy metal concerts.