Time for another Indie Author Interview, this one with Kristina Stanley, a Canadian-born author, editor, blogger, favorite aunt to eight lovely nieces and nephews, and dog lover! She’s been married for 29 years and she’s lived on a boat! Here are a few more fun facts about Kristina:
She’s the best-selling author of the Stone Mountain Mystery Series, and the recently released stand-alone mystery, Look the Other Way.
Her short stories have been published in the Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine and The Voices From the Valleys anthology. She is also the author of The Author’s Guide to Selling Books to Non-Bookstores.
She is the co-founder and CEO of Fictionary.com, a company started to help writers rewrite better fiction. She loves the self-editing process and wants to help other writers learn how to do a structural edit on their own work.
Her latest book, Look the Other Way was just released on August 1, 2017 by Imajin Books.
Synopsis for Look the Other Way
SUBMERGED BENEATH THE DEPTHS IS A SEA OF SECRETS . . . . A year after her Uncle Bobby mysteriously disappears in the turquoise waters surrounding the Bahamas, Shannon Payne joins her grieving aunt to trace Bobby’s last voyage. Shannon hopes the serenity of the sea might help her recover from a devastating breakup with her fiancé. Sailing the 38-foot catamaran, A Dog’s Cat, is Captain Jake Hunter, a disillusioned cop who has sworn off women. While Shannon tries to resist her growing attraction to the rugged captain, she uncovers dark truths about her uncle’s death that might send them all to the depths.
And now, how about a few questions for our mystery author?
What’s your writing background, where do you work at writing, and how did your journey begin?
I have a degree in Computer Mathematics. I’ve worked in telecommunications and a ski resort. I spent 3 years living in Japan and 4 years living in Germany. I’ve lived on a sailboat for 9 years. I now run a company that created Fictionary – an online tool for serious writers who want to turn a first draft into a great story.
I started writing when I was working at the ski resort – too many great stories to spark my imagination. I write wherever I happen to be living. I do all my writing on a computer – no paper anywhere – as I’m usually traveling or living in a small space (my boat).
I love to read mysteries. Late one night in Unteruhldingen, Germany I was reading Moonlight Becomes You by Mary Higgins Clark. The opening—a woman trapped in a grave. Darkness and silence surround her, and she doesn’t know where she is. I can still see her fingers clawing at the edges of the coffin.
Tucked in my bed, I knew a driver would arrive at 4 a.m. to carry me to the Zurich airport for a flight to London, England. The sensible thing to do was sleep. But I couldn’t. I turned pages until the car arrived. I was exhausted, bleary-eyed and excited. At that moment I knew I wanted to write something that forced a person to read and to forget about life for a while. And I knew it would be a mystery.
That’s an awesome story! From where do your ideas come? What inspires you? How do you keep the creative spark going?
Where I live inspires me. My first three novels are based in a ski resort. I worked at a ski resort for six years as the head of security. My latest novel is a murder mystery that takes place in the Bahamas. I lived on a sailboat for 9 years.
What’s your routine? Do you work out while writing, take breaks, or simply gut it out?
I don’t have a routine. I love to write, so I always find time for it.
Do you think writing is a form of therapy and, if so, has it helped you work through anything in particular?
I guess you could call it therapy because it makes me happy.
Do you work outside of writing, i.e., do you have day job?
I’m the CEO of Fictionary.co. a company started to help writers rewrite better fiction. I love the self-editing process and want to help other writers learn how to do a structural edit on their own work.
Pantser or perfectionist who meticulously plots out their stories?
Your perfect day – go.
Snowshoeing with my dog before breakfast. Downhill skiing with my husband for the day. Hot tub after skiing. Dinner in front of the fireplace.
I love to read mysteries and don’t have a favorite author.
What has been your greatest writing lesson? How about life lesson?
That would be to keep writing. Don’t give up in the early days when is seems so hard. My greatest life lesson – be kind.
If you could be a character in any novel, what character would you be?
I don’t know how to answer this one. I’ve read so many novels, and in a mystery it doesn’t always go well for the characters…
Haha — true! So how many books do you have out and who is your publisher?
Five books out. Publishers are Imajin Books and Luzifer-Verlag are my publishers.
And the final question, do you think writing can save the world and if so, why?
Yikes. That’s a big question. I think education can save the world, and writing is a part of that.
That’s a wrap. Good luck to you, Kristina, in these and your future writing endeavors.