Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Interview with Kendare Blake, author of Anna Dressed in Blood

Anna Dressed in Blood will be available in less than a week, so I thought it was a great time for an author interview.

Thanks Kendare, for answering some questions for the readers of my blog. I really enjoyed Anna Dressed in Blood, and would like to know more about the author!

Hey, no problem. Thanks so much for having me on the Book Spot!

When did you know you wanted to be a writer? What steps have you followed to become such a great writer?

Ha ha, okay, first off, “great” is pushing it. But thank you. I’m very glad you liked Anna Dressed in Blood! So when did I know I wanted to be a writer…Well, I knew as soon as I could physically write that I liked to write stuff. Then in junior high I started seeing if I could write novel-length. But it wasn’t until after college that I got serious about it.

The steps I followed…I read. A lot. Probably the most important thing. I listen to teachers, to other writers. I did do an MA in Creative Writing, which was excellent. Learned a lot about the method, and analysis, and met a ton of really great writers in a workshop-cooperative environment. That’s not necessary for everyone. But it was hella fun. And let me live in London for a year.

What is a typical “writing day” like? How many hours do you write? Do you have a schedule of how far you want to get each day? Do you have any writing rituals? Where do you write?

I write wherever my laptop, Daniel-san is. Yes, I named my laptop. When I’m drafting a novel, it’s rare for me to put more than a few hours in on it a day. An average word count is 1 to 3k. I don’t worry so much about writing a set number of words. I think in scenes. “I need to make it through this scene today.” The interesting part comes in when I need to make it through a scene, but have no idea what comes after.

Who are your favorite authors? Favorite books?

Favorite authors: Joe Hill, Caitlin R Kiernan, Bret Easton Ellis, Milan Kundera. Favorite Books: The His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman, The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley, Jane Eyre, Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles. Recently, I’ve enjoyed Original Sin by Lisa Desrochers, Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton, The Day Before by Lisa Schroeder and I just started A Song of Ice and Fire series.

What do you like to do when you aren’t writing? Hobbies?

Read! Also, hike. And eat food. Mmm. Food. I love to travel, try to do a major trip every other year with minor domestic trips yearly. I enjoy deep-sea fishing, horseback riding, and arcade video games.

Do you believe in ghosts? Have you ever seen a ghost?

Sure I believe in ghosts. But I’ve never actually seen one. I try to believe in just about everything, in sort of an agnostic sense. Can’t really prove or disprove much in the world.

How long did it take to write Anna Dressed in Blood? How long to get it published?

Anna took about six months to write. I signed with Tor Teen in April 2010, and she’s finally coming out in August 2011. 

Why Thunder Bay?

It really suited the story. And beautifully, it was close enough to my Minnesota home that I could go there to do a bit of hands-on location research (and stay in a fantastic B&B. Stuffed French toast and broiled grapefruit!). Thunder Bay was urban and wild at the same time. Seated on the edge of a sinister lake. I love it.

How did you research the witchcraft part of the story?

Well I have a background in it. Sort of. I’ve known a few cool wiccan and pagan folks, so it wasn’t hard. I wanted to keep it as grounded in realism as I could. Cas’s kitchen-witch mom was absolute fun to write.

What are you writing now? Is it another ghost story? What can you tell us about it?

Right now…I’m writing nothing! I wrote a novel last summer from May 2010 to August 2010 that I hope will kick off my next series, but I can’t say much about it yet. I can tell you that the second book in the Anna series is called GIRL OF NIGHTMARES, and should release next summer. 
Is there anything else you would like to tell us that I didn’t ask about?

Can’t think of a single thing. Thank you for having me! And thanks for spreading the love of books. Oh wait, did you know there are going to be two Hobbit movies? Why wasn’t I told? I thought it was just one! 

Here's my review of Anna Dressed in Blood.

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1 comment:

  1. Great interview! I love hearing about authors' writing processes. Every one is so different. Love that she named her computer.

    ANNA DRESSED IN BLOOD is next on my list to read (Thank you, Tor Teen!) and I'm really looking forward to it.

    Mary @ BookSwarm


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