Oh my, today I’m featured at O.C. Lit! Here is the emag article–
Today Lit Central O.C. is happy to welcome Kathleen Rowland to the O.C.
With less interest in myself than others, I’m never good at the bio bit. I’ve taught elementary school, worked as a programmer/analyst, and now I write romantic suspense. I love meeting new people, hearing their stories, and traveling abroad with my husband. Of all the wonderful experiences in life, my husband, children, and grandchildren feed my soul and muse. Serving OCC RWA as secretary and membership chair is sparking my writing. Volunteering with fun, supportive people does that.
Q: What was the inspiration for your novel?
A: A fascination with space travel drove me to write book one of my futuristic new adult INTERVENUS series, “A Brand New Address.” I wrote a story about teens struggling with hope during a dark circumstance.
Q: Did you outline it ahead of time, or wing it?
A: I outlined in Scrivener, but writing and musing goes together.
Q: What was your biggest challenge writing this book?
A: Keeping physical attraction appropriate for readers straddling the line between YA and NA was a challenge. I wanted readers to connect with my protags’ love story, get lost in it, and be affected by their choices.
Q: How is writing now different from writing your first book?
A: As a beginner I over-explained. Dialog was stilted. Now I write action in the moment followed by brief sequel. Making Debra Dixon proud, I slam every scene with GMC. My POV character has a goal, is motivated by a personal incentive, but is blocked with a conflict.
Q: When was your first book published, what was the title, and what was it about?
A: “Mining Evermore,” a paranormal romantic suspense published in 2008, follows a beautiful criminal attorney who makes a name for herself by saving petty thieves from trips to the Big House. When a madman leaves victims not quite dead along the beach, her good intentions work against her. Witch hunters believe she knows who’s behind the freaky cruelties. The handsome immortal mayor doesn’t approve of her slick lawyer tactics but has a reason to protect her.
Q: What do you know now about being a writer that you wish you had known before you published your first book?
A: I’ve learned to keep the reader guessing about both the romance and the mystery until the end. I learned to hold back information. The love story is more important than the crime which may have been the reason the couple came together. Readers who are mostly women need to fall in love with the hero through the viewpoint of the heroine.
Q: What is the most common rookie mistake you see new authors make?
A: Point of view problems are a rookie’s most common mistake. Keeping POV consistent within a scene and not allowing “bird’s eye” to slip in is hard to learn.
Q: What sort of author marketing have you found to be most effective?
A: Personal contact has been my most effective marketing tool. Book signings give me an opportunity to get to know readers. I also present workshops at my local library and other groups. In a couple of weeks I have one scheduled with my sorority alum group. I am active on my blog, where I write about topics other than writing some of the time and “spotlight” other writers. I tweet and retweet about once a week for about an hour.
Q: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
A: Always a storyteller, I didn’t become a writer until 10 years ago. Before that, I was consumed with caring for my five children and working full time. Every stage of my life has been satisfying.
Q: What is your typical writing day like?
A: Up at six, I drink coffee while reading email. When my husband gets up, we hang out for an hour. I swim laps for 45 minutes, shower, and start serious writing at 10. I write until 3:30, take the dogs on a walk, clean, do laundry, and cook dinner.
Q: How do you celebrate a book sale or new release day?
A: I announce a new release on my blog and tweet. If I have a book signing, I invite friends by sending them postcards with a book cover.
Q: What book or books are you reading now?
A: I read many subgenres. I just finished reading “Gone: The Breathe Prequel,” by talented YA author Elena Dillon. Presently I’m engrossed in “Generational Curse,” by Tracy Reed. Next on my Kindle is Debra Mullin’s “Heart of Stone.”
Q: Name three of your favorite television shows.
A: “Allegiance,” “The Black List,” and “Chicago P.D.” are favorites.
Q: If you could have dinner with an author—living or dead—who would it be?
A: The late Barbara Parker wrote legalistic romantic suspense with such pizzazz.
Q: If you couldn’t be an author, what other job would you choose?
A: A landscape architect because I appreciate nature and could utilize my creative flair.
Q: How long have you lived in O.C., and where did you live before?
A: We moved from New Jersey to California in 1994, but I grew up in Iowa.
Q: What’s your favorite writing spot in O.C., outside of your home?
A: I enjoy laptop-writing in a park with a rose garden.
Q: How can people find out more about you?
Q: What are you working on next?
A: I am finishing a romantic suspense, “Deadly Alliance.” I plan to pitch this book at the California Dreamin’ conference. After completing this RS for adults, I will write the second NA book, “Betrayal at Crater’s Edge.”
Tomorrow, read an excerpt of Rowland’s novel, “A Brand New Address.”