IN THIS BRAND NEW SERIES I’LL BE INTRODUCING YOU TO SOME OF THE FINEST AUTHORS AROUND. YOU’LL GET A PEEK INSIDE THEIR MIND AND THEIR PROCESS. WELCOME TO J.B.’S AUTHOR INTERVIEW SERIES.
J.B. Taylor – What inspires you?
Kate Ryan – I’m inspired by bravery. There’s a saying that ‘everyone is dealing with something’. I have no clue who coined that phrase, but it’s true. No one is immune to tragedy, trauma, illness, or making really stupid decisions. The strength of our character is defined by how we deal with the controllable and uncontrollable blows that we’re dealt. If we bring those blows upon ourselves – damn it – people who own their crap, make amends whenever possible, and learn from it are very brave.
J.B. Taylor – What’s your favorite book?
Kate Ryan – I can’t pick just one! That’s like asking me to pick a favorite child – although I totally could. In college, I was blown away by Margaret Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale”. She came to my campus and did a reading from “Cat’s Eye”, and I was captivated. “Good in Bed” by Jennifer Weiner is a dog-eared, well-worn favorite of mine because I identified with Candace on so many levels and was thrilled her story continued in subsequent books. I love that Jennifer Weiner’s characters are relatable.
J.B. Taylor – If you were asked to unload a 747 full of jelly beans, what would you do?
Kate Ryan – I’d ask – why in the heck are you asking ME?
J.B. Taylor – Where do you like to write?
Kate Ryan – In bed. It drives Mr. Ryan insane because he’s worried about my right hand and my posture. Still, we have this adjustable split king mattress that vibrates, my keyboard lights up in the dark, and it’s my super comfy happy place with a lovely view of the backyard and pool.
J.B. Taylor – Which Harry Potter house would you belong to?
Kate Ryan – According to The Sorting Ceremony on the Pottermore website (yes, I just did this), I belong in Slytherin. I found the result startling, but I answered all the questions honestly so… Whatever. Slytherin.
J.B. Taylor – What is your favorite word?
Kate Ryan – I asked Mr. Ryan and he said it’s f*ck (and any variation of the word). Not exactly classy, but it’s true.
J.B. Taylor – What is your least favorite word?
Kate Ryan – NO – hearing it as opposed to saying it.
J.B. Taylor – What was the first story you ever wrote, and what happened to that story?
Kate Ryan – “A Girl Like You” is my first ‘real’ story. I self-published it on August 15, 2016, with a lot of encouragement from friends & family and help from the ladies at Last Page Publishing.
J.B. Taylor – Tell us about your process: Pen, paper, word processor, human sacrifice … how do you write?
Kate Ryan – Obsessively. Like, I ignore my loved ones, refuse to leave the house, and deprive myself of food and sleep when I’m on a roll! I purchased a Lenovo X1 Carbon ThinkPad and love the keyboard. Since I wrote all four books before publishing the first one, I was able to hop around and make tweaks and changes to the earlier books based on things that came to me in later books.
J.B. Taylor – What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made as a writer?
Kate Ryan – My biggest mistake was doubting the voice of my main character Amanda. Her story spilled out of my head in first-person, present tense. I waffled – big time – and attempted to revise the tense from present to past because it’s supposedly more “acceptable” and “proper”. Sixty pages in to trying to change it, I hated – hated – it. I decided to let it go.
J.B. Taylor – What else are you working on?
Kate Ryan – I’m working on the fifth book in my Now & Then Series. It’s called “Everything to Me” and is written from the point-of-view of Amanda’s husband. It’s a huge challenge tackling the male POV and giving him an authentic voice from teenage years well into his forties.
I have a few paragraphs saved on my ThinkPad for a standalone novel unrelated to this series.
J.B. Taylor – In a perfect world where you could cast your book for a movie, who would you pick for your main characters?
Kate Ryan – Amanda – Ashley Graham but less made-up. I don’t know if Ashley can act, but she’s a tall curvy woman who rocks everything she is with pride – as she should.
Tanner – Ashton Kutcher when his hair is dark and he has the clean-cut look going on
Braden – Chris Hemsworth only taller, blonder, and clean-shaven
J.B. Taylor – When you complete a story, do you let it go? Or do you like to stop and think about what your characters might be up to, what they might be doing?
Kate Ryan – I still haven’t let them go which is how I wound up with a four (soon to be five) book series instead of one novel. My characters live in my head and heart. After I typed ‘The End’ on the final book, I was compelled to write an epilogue because I had to know what happened next. And then I thought… well, this was all from Amanda’s point of view. What was going on inside of her husband’s head this whole time? Hmm… And I’m back in their world again.
J.B. Taylor – Are you a panster or an outliner?
Kate Ryan – I winged it most of the way through knowing how the story would be told and how I wanted it to end. Eventually, since I followed the main characters from adolescence well into adulthood, I had to make an outline. It became impossible to remember when certain events occurred in prior books, how much time had passed, and – yeesh – keeping track of all the children that were born and how old they were at a given point in time.
You can check out the work of Paul Williams following the link below