I loved reading Minder and we are lucky enough that Kate Kaynak agreed to let us interview her! So without further interruption-
BCM: Which of the skills from Ganzfield do you wish you had?
KK: Hmm...If I had to pick one it'd either be remote viewing (RV) or mind control (charm). I have three little kids at home, and it would be great if I could get them to do what I say--or at least find out where they put my keys.
BCM: Some authors get ideas for names from those they know in real life- was this the case for you?
KK: Absolutely! Most of the bad guys are named after my ex-boyfriends.
BMC: Do you have a favorite character?
KK: I think I have three. I love writing from the inside of Maddie's head; I have a major book-crush on Trevor, and Drew just cracks me up.
BCM: Have you always wanted to be a writer?
KK: Yes--since college. I've tried several times over the years since to write novels. I actually completed my first in 2007, but Minder was the first good novel I've completed.
BCM: Did you have anyone in mind as you were writting Maddie?
KK: Actually, Maddie's a pretty close characterization of myself at sixteen. Writers often have one character who channels their own thoughts about the novel. Jane Austin had Elizabeth Bennett; Jim Henson had Kermit the Frog, and mine's a killer telepath from 'Jersey.
BCM: With three young children, how do you find the time to write?
KK: During the day I daydream about the book, running the next scenes through my head from different perspectives. Once the kids go to sleep, I write them down.
BCM: How did you make the jump from a Psyc degree to author?
KK: I taught psychology for many years before my kids were born, primarily for the University of Maryland. I always thought I was too tired from my job to write. It turns out, though, that I'm even more exhausted as a stay-at-home mom, but I need the intellectual stimulation of writing to keep my sanity while constantly immersed in the world of three preschoolers.
BCM: Does your degree help with writing?
KK: Actually, I used a lot of psychology in Minder and the other Ganzfield books. For example, all the "sleep issues" are based on the actual psych research, and I do my character development based on the motivational values system (MVS) developed by Elias Porter.
BCM: Do you have any advice for budding writers?
KK: I think the hardest thing for all writers--both new and experienced--is realistically appraising our own work. We have every nuance of the story in our heads so clearly that we don't know what's coming through on the page. So, if you're an aspiring writer, make sure that you get tons of feedback--both from other writers and from members of your target audience. I went through over a dozen revisions of Minder before I submitted it to my editor, and she still found things to fix on nearly every page.
BCM: How many books are you planning for this series?
KK: I have three completed now. Adversary comes out next month, and Legacy will be released in January 2011. I'm working on an early draft of the fourth. I think I'll have at least six before the existing major arcs of the series play out, and I have a few ideas for additional directions after that.
BCM: OK, when reading about the connection between Maddie and Trevor- Do you believe in soulmates?
KK: In a way. I believe that there are some people out there who we have the potential to connect to on a deeper level. Once we meet one of these people, if the relationship deepens, that person becomes our soulmate.
Everyone here at BCM would like to extend a huge thank you to Kate for the opportunity to interview her and for allowing us the honor of hosting such a great giveaway of her books. Thank you, Kate!
To enter to win a Minder SWAG, fill out the form below. You must be a BCM follower to enter. Giveaway limited to U.S. residents unless you have someone that can ship it to you. As always, you can earn an extra entry (each) for tweeting, facebooking and blogging this giveaway. However, if you add our button to your blog, you will get 3 extra entries. Please be sure to leave the links. Giveaway ends Tuesday, July 27th at midnight EDT. Winner will be announced on Wednesday, July 28th. Good luck!