Here is the first part of my interview with Kim.
Q. Tell us a little about the books you are writing?
A. Well my current WIP is a Paranormal Historical. It is the first book in a 2 part series. This first book is called: The Raven’s Court. The second book will be called: The Black Prince. This series deals with mythology, life and death, family secrets, curses and promises, love and hate, scorn and revenge. It also deals with facing your own strengths and weaknesses to become a more complete version of yourself. I have a number of other works in progress that are either dystopian in genre or have elements of thriller/suspense with a touch of the supernatural/paranormal. Most of my stories are on the darker side of fiction because I believe our true nature comes shining through in times of tragedy, tension, trials and tribulations.
Q. In one of our conversations you mentioned that you are working on several manuscripts. How do you manage that?
A. Well I find that ideas for new stories hit me while I am working on a story already. Often times I tend to write down the idea and then put it aside for later. But some stories will not allow me to put them aside and demand my attention immediately. So I am usually working on at least 3 different stories at the same time. I find that switching between stories gives me a fresh perspective when I go back to stories I have worked on.
I have a very active mind and imagination and find that I prefer working on a couple of stories rather than just 1 at a time. However when I get to the climax of one story I tend to focus on that story until I finish.
Q. Where does inspiration for your characters come from?
A. Oh everywhere and anywhere. A lot of my stories / characters have come to me in dreams. I do not dream often so when I do dream I tend to take notice. But anyone can really be an inspiration for my characters. I like using real life people that I know as inspiration. People Watching is another favourite form of inspiration for characters. I have always found watching people and their actions and reactions to be fascinating. I never fail to be surprised and entertained. I also listen carefully to people’s own experiences. Sometimes I have gleaned pure nuggets of story gold from listening to conversations. I read once that one should be careful of talking to a writer because they cannot resist using part of what they hear to create new story ideas. I would definitely agree with the warning. Any conversation/experience is fodder for this
Q. What is your writing process like? Are you a plotter or a pantser?
A. For me the process starts usually with a character. Usually I “meet” the character in a dream and the dream is so vivid that many a time I have woken up at 4am in the morning to write down what I saw and heard in the dream. I keep notebooks by my bedside for this specific reason. Sometimes while writing it down I can glimpse the character’s story but not every character is so forthcoming. Some characters need to be coaxed, cajoled and yes, even threatened to get their story. I have a series of questions that I ask the character to get their story.
To answer the second part of the question: I am a bit of both depending on the story. I tend to be more of a pantser at the beginning of a story and then as the story goes on, I start plotting it out. I love researching story themes and ideas so a lot of that goes on the plotting side. Do I plot the whole story out? No, because I find that my characters are all rebels and never like “colouring” in the lines. I am often hit by epiphanies during the writing of a story that can often change how I initially thought the ending would go. My current WIP, The Raven’s Court is a perfect example of this. So I do loosely plot to an extent but it is more in outlines. I think that a writer needs to be like a driver at night, you need to at least have your headlights on for safety's sake and to see where the next corner is. But you can take different routes on the same map that will get you to the same place. It just depends on how adventurous you feel. For me a loose outline at the beginning is enough light to get me to the first corner. But for me a story is like a Rubik’s Cube. Any number of combinations could get you to the solution or in the story’s case: the resolution.
Q. Can you tell us about the publishing scene in
? New Zealand
A. This is something that I am learning more of with each passing month. Most of what I have gleaned is from talking to other
writers as well as organizations like RWNZ (Romance Writers New
Zealand) that I belong to. The NZ publishing industry is slightly different
from large markets like the New Zealand UK
Here it is not necessary to have an agent but
because the publishing industry here is limited by its small size, it can often be quite
difficult to be published in USA if you are an unpublished author or even if you
are a published author. For example a well known New
Zealand author who has been
writing and been published many times over in the New Zealand USA
and Europe only just recently this year got published here in for the first time. So even though
she is very well known overseas, kiwi readers are only getting to know her this
year. I think the focus for a lot of writers in smaller countries is to look at pitching
for the bigger markets, like the New Zealand USA
and . UK
Kim can be found online in various places:
writing blog: http://kimkoning.wordpress.com
creativity blog: http://dragonflyscrolls.wordpress.com
facebook profile: http://www.facebook.com/AuthorKimKoning
facebook fanpage: http://www.facebook.com/Kim.M.Koning
google+ : https://plus.google.com/106769198036665517108/posts