Thursday, May 13, 2010

R.J. Keller Interview

R.J. Keller Interview

1: What is the most productive time of the day for you to write?

The middle of the night when the logical side of my brain is asleep.

2: Do you start your projects writing with paper and pen or is it all on the computer?

I usually outline and problem solve my manuscripts with pen and paper. I can't write as quickly as I can type, so it forces me to really concentrate. But I use the computer for the actual writing.

3: What do you draw inspiration from?

I don't base my characters on real people, but I've always been inspired by people's strength, by what they are able to endure and how they're able to endure it.

4: Do you set yourself goals when you sit down to write, such as word count?

Usually I don't, unless I'm stuck. I do participate in National Novel Writing Month (in which participants try to write 50,000 words of a novel in 30 days) every November, which is great fun.

5: Being a self published author how do you come up with your cover art?

For "Waiting For Spring", I did the cover myself. I took two pictures of the same orchard, one in the winter, one in the spring. Then I used a computer program to smush them together (yes, "smush" is a scientific term). I think it turned out fine, but I'm thinking of hiring out for the next book cover. Once I'm done with the writing I'll see what I can come up with on my own first, but I have a very specific idea in mind, and the execution might be a little difficult.

6: What drives you to choose the career of being a writer?

Ego. Also, I dream of fame and fortune.
Seriously, I think part of it is the desire to make a contribution to the world, to leave something behind. I guess that is ego to some extent. I know that when someone picks up a book it's because they want to be entertained, but I always try to write in a way that makes the reader look at themselves or at the world or at people they know a little differently. So I guess that means I'm in it for the power, too.

7: Do you own an ebook reading devise?

I don't, although I have downloaded the Kindle app to my PC. I hope to buy a reader (probably a Kindle) sometime this year, though.

8: Who are some of your favorite authors and what are you reading now?

I'm a huge fan of Luke Davies. He's so raw and honest, and reading his work pushes me to be more honest in my own writing. Right now, though, I'm reading "Sometimes That Happens With Chicken" by Wanda Shapiro. It's very cool, and I highly recommend it.

9: What do you think of book trailers and do you have any plans to have any?

Book trailers - actually, video as a medium in general - can be a wonderful marketing tool for writers. I've made several for "Waiting For Spring." (LINK: I think where some writers go wrong with their trailers is that they treat them like a video synopsis, because that's kinda what we're trained to do, but it's all wrong for video. The best way to use a trailer is to pop it on your website or blog, or on another website where your book is for sale. The synopsis is already featured there, so a trailer should complement that by capturing the mood or feeling of your novel, rather than trying to sum up the story.
I've had the privilege of creating trailers for other authors, and I've teamed up with author Kristen Tsetsi to create a writer-centric You Tube show called "Inside The Writers' Studio", so I guess that means I've got a fall-back career.

10: What are you working on now that you can talk about?

I'm working on a novel tentatively called "The Wendy House." It follows an alcoholic, deadbeat dad as he prepares to kill the man who murdered his daughter, before his son can do it himself, all while having hallucinatory conversations with his long-dead wife.

1 comment:

  1. Great interview. I want to read "The Wendy House" so bad.

    And also, "Sometimes That Happens with Chicken."