Please welcome YA Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy author Heather Karn!
Intro: What’s your name, what do you write, where can readers find you on social media? And just for fun, if you could be any mythological being, what or who would you be?
Hi! My name is Heather Karn and I write YA Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy. I’m on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. If I could be a mythological being…hmmm…I’d be a Pegasus. They’re just so pretty!
- According to your website, you will your Facebook in eighth grade and it started as a short story. The book reminds unpublished, but it started your love of writing. What was that experience like and what can you tell us about that book? Do you think you’ll ever publish it?
Yes, I started writing in eighth grade. The short story ended up being chapter 1 of my novel. It’s more of an adventure/suspense novel, which will likely never see the light of day again. I’ve rewritten it several times, but I’m not happy with it, and it doesn’t call to me like my recent books. It actually has a sequel, and half of another book that never was finished.
- Perfect Scent is the first book in The Weregal Chronicles. Tell us a little bit about the series and how you came up with the idea.
The series focuses on a race of tiger shifters and two brothers who are trying to “better” the race. They will do whatever it takes to see their experiments through, while the rest of the race tries to stop them. Honestly I have no idea where this all came from. When I started the series, I had two characters and no plot. The plot has developed along the way far better than I could ever have imagined. I’m a big punster, so no plotting over here. I just see where it leads me.
- Why did you decide to self-publish The Weregal Chronicles?
I wanted more control with my stories, covers, and prices. Not that I’m a control freak, but it’s my baby, so I wanted a say in the decisions. Plus, I’m not patient enough to find an agent and publisher.
- What scene of the newest Weregal book, Freedom, was the hardest to write, why?
Oh good question. It was probably the ending fight scene. I lost my grandma last year, and well, spoiler, there’s a death, and while I wrote that scene, the loss of my grandma was hitting me hard, which I think drove that scene to be better than it otherwise would have been, but I was almost in tears.
- The Weregal Chronicles is a multi-book series. Did you plan it that way from the beginning and what is your outlining/writing process like?
Perfect Scents was supposed to be one book. Just one. I wrote it in pieces at first, and one of the scenes I wrote I thought would be near the middle of the book. Yeah, that scene was near the middle of Book 2. I don’t outline. I’ve tried it and it changes so often that I pretty much skip that step altogether on my books. I know the big points that need to happen…or sometimes I don’t and I come across them along the way. Several big pieces of info throughout the series wasn’t planned, but they’ve made the series even better. (Book 3 had the biggest surprise for me, but it’s a spoiler I won’t be giving).
- Biggest tip(s) to other authors working on series?
If it’s a long series, be prepared for the time it will take to finish it. Don’t rush the stories to get them out. Make them the best they can be. You’ll thank yourself later. I did that with book 3, and it wasn’t as good as it otherwise could have been, but it’s still good.
- In addition to The Weregal Chronicles, you have written a contemporary Christmas collection and a standalone, Gargoyle’s Kiss. Which one was the most fun to write and why?
I think Gargoyle’s Kiss was the most fun. Don’t get me wrong, I love my Christmas books, but Gargoyle’s Kiss just wrote so smoothly that it was like the story was telling itself and I couldn’t keep up with it. I enjoyed seeing where it went and it let me have more freedom in breaking some of the general rules of Fae and Gargoyles.
- Favorite quote from your favorite character in the Weregals series?
This is from Black Out, Book 3. Chrissa is hilarious, and I hope this quote can show it outside of context.
“Put me down, you animal. I am not a sack of potatoes!” Chrissa yelled, squirming in Chester’s hold as he carried her over his shoulder.
- What is the biggest surprise that you experienced after becoming a writer?
That people could actually love my books and be hanging on them waiting for the next and rereading the ones I have out. I never saw that coming. I’ve done it to authors, but never thought others would feel that way about my writing
- What inspired First Christmas?
First Christmas was my attempt at a paranormal Christmas romance that was supposed to be a standalone, but has turned into the start of a collection. I wanted to make it different than the regular saving Christmas or popular story retellings. So I changed a few things up. There are no reindeer. We have ice dragon shifters. It was also to be about the spirit of Christmas, but also learning about who we are and what’s truly important in our lives.
- If you were running the 100 yard dash with a new writer, what writing, publishing wisdom would you bestow upon him/her before you reached the 100 yards?
Learn how to market. You could write the best book ever written, but if you don’t know how to market, it won’t get read. And not all marketing requires lots of money. And never give up. Never ever. Anything worth doing is going to be hard work.
- If you could have been the author of any book ever written other than your own, which book would you choose?
Relentless by Karen Lynch. It’s one of my faves and I’d love to be in those characters heads.
- What character in your book are you least likely to get along with?
I would say the evil brothers, but honestly, Wesson is creepy. He comes along in Freedom, and I don’t want to be caught alone with him.
- What would the main character in Freedom have to say about you?
Freedom is the first with multiple point of views. There are two, Bec and Skye. They’d both love me, but also shake their heads and wonder what I was thinking.
- What’s your favorite writing-related memory?
The day I finished Gargoyle’s Kiss. Many people believe that a good story can’t be written quickly, that it must take time. When I finished Gargoyle’s Kiss after 8 days with 52k words, it was the greatest day thus far in my writing career. And to be honest, it’s one of my most favorite stories thus far. When I revised, it was grammar changes and a few clarifications that were added. The plot never changed.
- What’s a favorite moment you’ve had with a fan/someone who’s read your work?
Okay, this one is a bit closer to home. I have to say it would be my dad. I love all of my fans and have had wonderful moments with so many of them, both in person and online, but my dad is my favorite. Why? Because before I published Perfect Scents I can’t remember him ever reading a novel. Well, he read Perfect Scents and proceeded to read the others as they released. He was totally fanboying (is that even a thing?). He’d wake up in the middle of the night and have to read, or he’d stay up too late. This is not my dad, and I loved hearing him talk to me about my books and what he thought. My mom and sisters have always read, so their reaction wasn’t quite as astonishing as Dad.
- One fun fact most people don’t know about you?
I’m a triplet. Melanie is identical to me and Sarah is fraternal.
Than you, Heather. What awesome answers, especially the one about your dad! If you like the sound of Heather’s books, don’t forget to follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You can buy The Weregal Chronicles and her other books on Amazon.
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As always, keep making magic, word weavers!