Melanie Doctors was once told you can’t put a piñata in a funeral home. So that is exactly the kind of stories she writes, Real-life. Because it’s messy, complicated, and often hilarious. Before turning to novels (because why not write a million words) she wrote a weekly newspaper column, Dear Miss Kitty, published in The Santa Barbara Daily Sound for seven years: humorous philosophy disguised as relationship advice. Think a sassy Ann Landers with a naughty streak. A typical Gemini, she’s currently working on three manuscripts, splits her time between California and Idaho, has three grown children, three dogs, and more cats than any sane person should have. Her rocket scientist of a husband is a very understanding man.