Katlynn Brooke continued as a gypsy-wanderer and reader into her adulthood. Her travels took her to spending several years in both India and Indonesia, before settling permanently in the United States where she now lives with her husband and cat.
She has drawn on her past experiences and lifestyle to create novels that are also out of the ordinary, novels for the young adult that opens doorways into the unusual through her world of fantasy.
What inspires you to write?
Reading inspires me. When I read a good book, one that touches me on a deep level, I have a strong desire to inspire others as I’ve been inspired. While I can only speak for myself, I suspect that most authors need to share something with the world, something that will go beyond the ordinary. I know I do and this is what keeps me both reading and writing!
Tell us about your writing process.
I am a seat of the pants writer. Every bit of writing advice I’ve ever read advises against this method, but it works for me. I did make an effort to outline with all my books, only to abandon it when my characters refused to cooperate. So I blame my characters. They really do have minds of their own. I am now in the process of writing the fifth book in the Ialana series—with an outline. It will be interesting to see how far I get with that. My characters are more established now, and I tend to anticipate their moves, so it may yet work.
As a seat of the pantster, my characters are formed as I write. Once they emerge, fully-fledged, I create a record of their characteristics, appearance, etc. so I don’t forget something important about them and to keep them consistent.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I swear at them a lot. They can be pretty hopeless sometimes, getting themselves into all kinds of situations that, if they had an ounce of sense, they could have avoided. To be more serious about it, though, they do feel like real people to me. Much more than me talking to them, I ask them to talk to me, and they do.
Who are your favorite authors?
While the fantasy genre is my favorite, I read many other genres, including non-fiction. I feel as if I am choosing between my children to choose favorites, but I love Christopher Paolini, J.R.R. Tolkien, Michael Sullivan. The books that kept me awake all night were the Duncton Chronicles by Christopher Horwood.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
After I wrote my first book, I decided that I would attempt the traditional route. Each time I submitted the manuscript to a possible agent, I’d have to wait months for any response whatsoever. I decided that if I were still in my youth, I’d have a lifetime to submit and wait for responses, so instead, I went the self-publishing route. I have no regrets. I have learned so much about publishing and writing doing it this way.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
It is depressing to see how many people don’t read—at all, but it is also encouraging to know that reading has not yet gone the way of the dinosaur. Publishing is changing for the better. Gone are the days when five publishing companies controlled our reading matter; now we have Amazon and other outlets that make books available and affordable to most people. We have better choices. We can choose print books, or we can read more cheaply on an electronic device.
I am very grateful that self-publishing is no longer tainted with the stigma that an author who self-publishes is “not good enough” for traditional publishing. As an Indy author, I ensure my product is of the highest quality. I hire great editors and book cover artists. My books can compete with the best out there. Any author (or publisher) who thinks they can throw a book up on Amazon with an inferior cover, no editing, and poor writing are deluding themselves, and the market will sort them out.
What genres do you write?
Fantasy, African Literature
What formats are your books in?
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