M’kay, I’m going to interview my friend and fellow author, Kellyn Roth. She’s celebrating the release of her latest book (At Her Fingertips) this week, so you should go and check it out! There’s a giveaway, lots of posts, and other things that I’ll cover after the actual post.
Onward! To the meat of the post!
Bold- me, Loretta
What is your full name?
Kellyn Lyn Garrett.
Kellyn Roth is my pen name. So… I don’t really have a middle name to go with it.
How long have you been writing?
Since I was seven, so about nine years!
Where did you first get the idea for your book series?
It was a prequel to another series which I wrote when I was ten or eleven.
Okay, that’s cryptic. Let’s see if I can’t explain.
When I was ten- or almost eleven, I think- my mom and I read A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton Porter. At that point, I’d already started writing- but never anything about actual humans. It was always about animals. However, after I read that novel, I wrote a story heavily inspired by A Girl of the Limberlost.
Then… I decided to write a story about the parents of the main characters. And the grandparents. And before I knew it, The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy was born! The original story, as you’ve probably guessed, has been trashed (didn’t even have a name- I called it Untitled Work 3) … but Alice and Ivy are as real as ever. 🙂
Any advice for first-time Indie authors?
Get to know some other Indie authors and ask them tons of questions about marketing, websites, etc. before you publish! I didn’t really start doing my research before I published, and I sure wish I had! But on the flipside, don’t let the experience of these other authors scare you. You can do it, too!
Also, make sure you get a couple more qualified people to beta-read for you- other authors, professional readers if you can- not just your family members and close friends! Be prepared for some harsh criticism- but again, don’t give up! If you can hire an editor (I have a couple recs if you’re interested- I can also look over manuscripts from first-time authors for a very minimal fee though I only do so privately), do that, too (though I understand it’s not in everyone’s budget!).
How do you proofread your books?
I order proofs from CreateSpace and read through them to check for errors. This time my mom helped me- and she finished first! And after I continually reminded her that once we got the proofs we’d only have a couple weeks to get them read. *blushes* I guess she’s awesomer than I remembered. 😛
How many hours a day do you spend on school vs writing?
Well that’s tricky to answer. Do blogging and such count as writing? What about editing? I school from about 8:00-1:00-ish (with breaks for various chores, cleaning, getting dressed and putting on makeup, lunch, and me messing around). So it ends up being about 3-4 hours once the day is done.
I try to get up in the morning and write for 30 minutes- aside from blogging or any other form of writing- but that hasn’t happened a lot recently. I work basically until bedtime and then read at night,
… so I end up being up late… and I’m already not a morning person. So my writing ends up happening from the 1 through 6-ish time. Sometimes school runs over to 2, but not often, so I get about two hours until I have to leave for work. At work, on very slow days when I’ve no extra assignment, I might write a little- though at present I’ve mostly been using that time to answer interviews. 😛 I also write in the evenings when I can- usually from around seven to nine-ish or sometimes ten.
Therefore, I have the potential for over six hours of writing- more if I get up in the morning and stay up at night! Wich is definitely more than school time!
But not all of the free time I have can be dedicated to writing. First, I’ve got to have a life. Tricky things, lives. THey take time away from writing… and nothing wrong with that! Life includes things like eating (other than mealtimes wich I figured into that ^ equation- and no, I don’t feel guilty abou the fact that I like to snack!), listening to music- and practicing my instruments, of course- hanging out with my border collies, cleaning the fishbowl- though that’s kind of a chose, I suppose- and trying to keep my cat out of trouble. Oh, and spending time with family and friends, of course!
Then there’s blogging, graphics design, social media and other marketing, research… the list goes on! Sooooo… I’d say I get about 2-3 hours of real writing time in. Not that I always spend it wisely- I like to procrastinate and get distracted!
Who is your favorite character? (Yeah I know, playing favorites. Sorry- but not really!)
*glares at you* HOW COULD YOU MAKE ME DO SOMETHING SO HARD???
I’m doing my favorite character from At her fingertips– anything else would just be too difficult. Annnnddd… that would be Peter Strauss! He’s such a sweet character to write. He’s just so perfect!
Are Alice and Ivy based off of anyone?
Alice is a mix of me, my older sister- the sane one *coughs*- and a dash of extroversion- don’t know where that came from, as both me and this particular sister are extremely introverted! Basicallly, Alice has my sensible imagination, independence, and emotional stupidity, my sister’s intelligence, logic, and organizational skills, and that dash of extroversion- the wild card, if you will. 😉
Ivy… oh, I don’t know. My grandma thinks she’s a lot like me- and it’s true we’re both quiet and introspective. But Ivy’s a lot more emotional than I am- and a lot more sweet and gently, to be honest! Also, she plays the piano well. That’s not like me. 😛 I’m not really sure who inspired her.
What is your favorite writing advice?
Well, writing, of course! 😉 But I also enjoy outlining a lot- I know, sounds crazy, but it’s fun.
Who are your favorite authors?
Oh, wow, there’s too many to list! Well, let’s see. Gene Stratton Porter, Maud Hart Lovelace, Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte, Jules Verne, Margaret Mitchell, A.A. Milne, Elizabeth Goudge, C.S. Lewis, Sarah Sundin, Jeanne Birdsall… and a thousand more. XD
What was the first book that made you cry?
I actually wrote a blog post on this here. But… let’s see. The first one out of that list that I read (I don’t cry a ton, haha) was probably A Girl of the Limberlost. I just get to feeling sorry for Edith Carr and… *lip trembles*
When did you reach the point that you were past thinking ‘I want to be a writer’ and onto ‘I am a writer’?
Okay, so, I have the most terribly egotistic nature, and so I always thought I was a writer! It may not have been true at the time, but when I was seven, I was pretty convinced I was a writer- as well as a songwriter, poet, horse-tamer, cat-breeder, etc. I always think I’m something and every so often I look back and think, “Well, back then I wasn’t a [fill in the blank here]… so glad I am now, though!” 😉
Now I really do think I am a writer. Maybe not the best writer there ever was, but if you’re writing then you’re a writer- end of story!
Did you ever consider writing under a pen name?
Um… yes. *coughs*
Ha ha! I had no idea that Kellyn Roth wasn’t your actual name… kinda awkward since it’s basically the same question I asked first… oops.
How many unpublished and unfinished books do you have?
Unpublished-but-completed first drafts is easy- Beyond her Calling (which is the next book in the series), Ladytudes (short story, Goldfish Secrets (short story), Adae (Novella), and a couple other shorts.
As for the unfinished… whoa. The count is too high! Off the top of my head, I’ve got Alice Unanswered (~30K written), Once a Stratton (~45K written), Water on the Rocks (outlining), a few stories I’m keeping secret for now (shhh), and a ton of ideas!
Before we move onto the next question, now you’ve got me curious! Kell… what on earth are you planning? I can’t wait to find out!
What kind of research do you do?
Mostly I do a lot of Google searches! But I also get books on whatever era I’m researching, talk to people who might now about it- if they’re available- and watch movies made or set during that time period!
How do you name a character?
I browse through lists of popular baby names for the era,
I do that too, and now I’m sure Google thinks I’m going to have a baby… I keep getting maternity adds 😛
…look at meanings, think about what was significant to the parents… and sometimes it just comes to me. Other times I have to just pick a name for now and think of a really good one later! It’s difficult, but usually I eventually find one that just fits.
How hard was it to finish your first book?
My first official “book” was called Midnight and Twilight. It was about wild dueling mustangs in Nevada! It wasn’t actually that hard to finish it. The story was only about 10,00 words long, and I really wanted to finish it. It did take me several months, though. I could finish it in a day now if I really wanted to!
On that topic, what was your first finished novel and how do you feel about it?
I’m not sure how I feel about Midnight and Twilight nowadays. On one hand, it was utterly ridiculous. On the other- look at eleven-year-old me go, eh? And that was the first time I had two projects going on at once- M&T and “Untitled Work 3.” I’m glad I did finish the story, yet I don’t have illusions of grandeur. It’s pretty awful!
Well, thanks for answering all my (slightly ridiculous) questions, Kell!
Back to the announcements.
Kellyn’s giveaway can be found here: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/cbb544c94/?
Her website here: kellynroth.wordpress.com
At Her Fingertips (and the other books in the series) here: kellynrothauthor.com
Kellyn Roth was born and lives on a cattle ranch in North-Eastern Oregon. Always fascinated with telling stories, she created crazy games to play with her little brothers as a child. Today, she writes Christian and Historical Fiction with a focus on truth and family. Find out more about her and her novels at kellynrothauthor.com