Tuesday, 26 March 2013
Author Interview: B R Kingsolver
I made silver and turquoise jewelry for almost a decade, ended up in nursing school, then took a master’s in business. Along the way I worked in construction, as a newspaper editor, a teacher, and somehow found a career working with computers.
I love the outdoors, especially the Rocky Mountains. I’ve skied since high school and I’ve hiked and camped all my life. I love to travel, though I haven’t done enough of it. I’ve seen a lot of Russia and Mexico, not enough of England. Amsterdam is amazing, and the Romanian Alps are breathtaking. Lake Tahoe is a favorite, and someday I’d like to see Banff in Canada.
I have a very significant other, two cats and two Basset Hounds. I’m currently living in Baltimore, nine blocks from the harbor, but still own a home in New Mexico that I see too infrequently.
Web site: http://brkingsolver.com/
Do you plan everything or just let the story flow?
I create an outline, but it’s just the major plot points. Often the story takes on a life of its own and I let the characters determine how it manifests.
Do your characters ever want to take over the story?
My characters always take over the story. They each have their own personality, and I try to let them be themselves. I think if an author tries to force the characters, they don’t come across to the reader as living beings. Too many characters in novels are two dimensional. All of my characters have their own personalities and back stories.
What is your favourite food?
It depends on my mood. I love seafood, but I also love steak and lamb. I like food. Well-prepared food. But I’m also happy with an apple and a slice of cheese.
Are you a morning person or a night owl?
I hate mornings, but I’ve had to get up early to go to work for so long that I’m usually falling asleep by 10 pm. If left to my own devices, I’d stay up late and wake up late.
Where do you dream of travelling to and why?
So many places ... Europe, Australia, Canada. I want to see everything I’ve ever read about. I want to see the castles of Europe, and do a seafood tour of the Mediterranean. I love to hike and ski, love the mountains, but I also like fine food and architecture.
Do distant places feature in your books?
My books are primarily set in Baltimore, Washington, and West Virginia. But I’ve also taken my characters to San Francisco, England, Ireland, Amsterdam, France, and Ecuador. I haven’t been to all those places, but I love doing the research on them, and hope to go there someday.
Do you listen to music while writing?
Not usually. Often I have the TV on as background noise, and if there’s a show with good music I’ll listen to it. I tend to like the quiet.
Could you tell us a bit about your latest release?
Succubus Rising is the third book in the Telepathic Clans Saga. Brenna O’Donnell is the wealthiest, most beautiful telepathic succubus in the world, and she’s only 24. Her best friend and bodyguard is Rebecca Healy. Brenna has found her soul mate, Collin, but Rebecca seems to always be looking for someone. Brenna starts work as a congressional lobbyist in Washington, and meets a handsome general from Ecuador. Although they have a brief fling, Brenna is truly in love with Collin. But Carlos and Rebecca circle around each other, attracted but wary. When Carlos approaches Brenna about an alliance between his Clan and hers, he and Rebecca find themselves together more than is comfortable for either of them. But the alliance leads to war with the other South American Clans.
What have you learned about writing and publishing since you first started?
An incredible amount. I’ve learned that I can write easily, though not often well. My books have required a lot of editing and revising to make it into print. But people like my stories, and I have a great group that has helped me to make the stories readable. I’ve also found that self publishing is easy. Promotion is hard. When I first tried to publish, I discovered that my novel didn’t fit into any of the standard categories or genres. That’s when I first heard the term New Adult. Luckily, there are readers who are looking for something “new and different”, and are willing to take a chance on a new author.
Is there anything you would do differently?
Not a lot. I would give Brenna more flaws and less power. I certainly learned that a character who is too powerful is difficult.
Who, or what, if anything has influenced your writing?
There have been a lot of influences. Richelle Meade and Marion Zimmer Bradley influenced the creation of the world in the Telepathic Clans. But I have always read voraciously. Tolstoy, Steinbeck, Heinlein, Andrea Norton, Cherryh, Nora Roberts are just a few of my favorites. I’ve also spent most of my working life editing other peoples’ writing. I’ve worked as a newspaper editor, edited two textbooks, and written and edited in the business world.
Anything you would say to those just starting out in the craft?
Find a good editor. No one is qualified to edit their own work. You read what is supposed to be there, not what is really there. Awkward sentence structures, confusing descriptions, poor word choices are inherent in the writing process. You need someone else to point them out.
What are three words that describe you?
Introverted, cynical, and optimistic.
What's your favourite book or who is your favourite writer?
I don’t think I can cite a favorite. I’ve read so much. I think one should read widely. I read science fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, mysteries, history, biographies and occasionally what is called “literary fiction”.
Blurb of your latest release or coming soon book
Book 3 of the Telepathic Clans Saga, Succubus Rising
The Goddess has plans for Brenna and Rebecca, and the Goddess has a wicked sense of humor.
Rebecca Healy is a true wilder, growing up with no contact or knowledge of other telepaths. Discovered by a Clan member on the streets of San Francisco, she felt like she’d hit the jackpot. Finally, she knew what she was, or at least she thought she did.
When Brenna O’Donnell, long-lost heir of the O’Donnell Clan, and the strongest telepath in history, is returned to her family, she and Rebecca form a tight bond. Brenna has it all, looks, money, power, and men falling all over her.
Rebecca isn’t jealous, but it would be nice to find someone who would really love her and stick around in the morning. She’s intrigued by a handsome South American general, but of course, he has his sights set on Brenna. Carlos de Vargas wants more than love. His Clan has its back to the wall, and they hope for an alliance with O’Donnell. An alliance that would lead to war.
The story began in The Succubus Gift and continued in Succubus Unleashed. In Succubus Rising, questions are answered and new mysteries are revealed.
Any websites/places readers can find you on the web.
Web site: http://brkingsolver.com/
My books are available at:
Also at the Apple iTunes bookstore.