Paranormal mystery author to have book signing


Werewolves, witches and lawn gnomes, oh my!

These are just a few of the fantastic creatures that author Candra Kylar brings to life in her new book, "Once Upon a Werewolf: An Abigail Everlaine Mystery."

The Magic of Books Bookstore in Seymour will host a book signing with Kylar from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. The store is located at 113 W. Second St.

Originally from New York, 36-year-old Kylar moved to the Midwest a few years ago, captivated by the countrysides. She and her husband currently live in Greenwood.

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"This is my first mystery book, and I actually became a mystery author this year," Kylar said. "When the pandemic hit, I had some time off from work, and I had written romance before in the past. It wasn’t really a genre that I did very well in." 

She said there are a lot of brilliant and talented romance writers out there who write well and don’t get enough credit because romance is a difficult genre to write.

"I was talking to some friends and one of them said, ‘You seem to like all of this mystery, intrigue and those kinds of things. Have you ever tried to write a mystery?’" Kylar said. "I guess I had never honestly thought about it until then, so I just tried my hand at it, and people liked it."

Kylar started out in entertainment journalism but had always enjoyed reading paranormal thrillers and became obsessed with them and wondered if she could possibly write one herself.

"It became a personal challenge when I had nothing to do for about a month during the time I was out of work when the pandemic hit," she said. "I just wrote, and it became ‘Once Upon a Werewolf,’ which is actually the first in a series, and I have about seven more planned for that."

Writing the first draft to the final edit, the book took about two and a half months to complete. This is her first book in paperback format.

"In college, I took a journalism course with a great professor who ended up being a lifelong friend of mine," Kylar said. "She really encouraged me that even if I stumble or don’t become a successful journalist, which I didn’t become, to just keep writing and use that expression and creativity, and that always stuck with me."

Kylar said her professor/friend really fueled that fire for her to write and to continue to write, and she still checks in on her and is a good coach.

"Originally, I worked as a receptionist, and now, I only work two days a week at a salon, so I can devote myself fully to writing now," she said.

Kylar feels very fortunate that it has worked out this way, living in an apartment with her husband and feeling very blessed she can do what she loves and get paid for it.

Kylar said she would love to have a set writing schedule, but sometimes, she’ll get the urge to write from 11 p.m. until about 4 a.m. Then some days, she will write from 8 a.m. until noon or 1 p.m.

"It just kind of comes sporadically, and I have to go with it when that impulse hits. Otherwise, I might just sit and write and write and it won’t be good quality," she said. "I want to make sure my readers get the best possible story and best possible quality because money is tight for everybody, so the fact that someone is spending money to buy my book, I want to give that person an experience."

Her advice for a person who wants to write a novel is to find a very quiet place and just type, and whatever comes out, be proud of it, even if it doesn’t turn into a book and make you into Danielle Steele.

"Be confident in your writing and know that there’s always room to grow," she said. "I’m constantly learning from other writers and constantly growing."

Kylar currently has two projects going on and stays pretty busy.

"One of the young adult mystery series is going to have a publisher, which I can’t discuss the details yet," she said. "But the one I’ll be signing at the bookstore this weekend is self-published."

"Once Upon a Werewolf" is a paranormal mystery with a touch of romance, but Kylar just tries to keep the action going.

"With a mystery, you have to deliver, you have to entertain people first and foremost and you don’t want to bog them down with too many details," she said. "You want them to feel like they’re the detective in the situation and they are uncovering the mystery along with the protagonist."

Kylar admits she has always had a fascination with mysteries with books that have really great twists in them, and there are some really great authors known for their twists.

The main character/protagonist in her new book is Abigail Everlaine, who starts out as a witch who came from a very privileged life, but her family lacked moral values, so she grew up to be selfish.

In the first chapter, Abigail gets attacked by a werewolf and becomes one.

"She learns to be a new person and forge a path by using this second chance at life to do something positive with it," Kylar said. "She meets a lot of people she would have never befriended before, and one of them is a reanimated garden gnome named Dimples, who provides some comedic relief."

Kylar tries to bring a new theme into each of her books to give people a broader view of the world. Her second installment in the series comes out Oct. 17 and deals a little bit with vampires. 

"I try to never make my characters based off of anyone I know, but I get inspiration when I’m out and about," she said. "I didn’t want Abigail to have a lot of my qualities or my flaws. I want her to be completely independent and have a life of her own."

For that main character, Kylar wanted somebody who had this great grace under fire and who could keep shooting back the one-liners when life is getting her down.

As for how the book signing came about, the owner of The Magic of Books Bookstore, Jenna Martinez, and Kylar were part of the same online Good Reads group.

"Jenna saw that I was in Indiana, so she reached out and contacted me and told me about her shop in Seymour," she said. "It’s a wonderful staple, and it’s truly the little bookstores that keep America thriving with reading and keeping that business going."

Kylar said she had never felt important or popular enough to do a signing, but people seemed like they were interested.

"A lot of people are responding to the RSVP, and I’ll be bringing about 20 or so paperback copies to the bookstore," she said. "I really didn’t know how a book signing would go, and I’m going to be giving out bookmarks while they last."

If Kylar runs out of her books, she will have some signed bookplates that people can take with them if they intend to buy the book online later. "Once Upon a Werewolf" also is available in digital format.

"I’m really grateful to have this opportunity, and I look forward to coming to Seymour," she said. "I especially look forward to meeting readers and people who want to take a chance on this mystery series and are as passionate about reading mysteries as I am."

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Candra Kylar’s favorites

Board game: Clue, because she has always liked mysteries.

Authors: Katherine Applegate, a children’s novel writer who wrote "The One and Only Ivan," and Stephenie Meyer, author of "Twilight" fan. Kylar is a huge fan of the saga, and she is Team Jacob, which is  why she writes about werewolves.

Preferred genre: Paranormal fiction of any kind, and she recently discovered she likes historical fiction, too.

Hobbies: An avid reader and a painter. She says she’s not a very good painter but loves the cathartic feeling of her brush on the canvas.

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For information about Candra Kylar, visit

Her book can be purchased online at


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