Friday, November 25, 2011

Interview with Kallysten - author of many romance books

Welcome to the interview with Kallysten! Kallysten is also one of the authors participating in 1000+ giveaway. I met Kallysten through a giveaway hop for a while ago, when I wanted to win on of her books. :) I did not win that time, but since that, I ave been frequent visitor at her web-page.

Author Bio:

Kallysten is a writer of romance novels and short stories, most of them with paranormal elements. Her most exciting accomplishment to date was to cross a few thousand miles and an ocean to pursue (and catch!) the love of her life.

She has been writing for over fifteen years, and her first eBooks were published by Linden Bay Romance in 2005. The defunct Venus Press subsequently published a few of her short stories. Because so many of her stories are linked as series and part of the same universe, she decided it would make sense to have them all in the same place, which is why today she self-publishes with the co-op Alinar Publishing. When she sees calls for submissions that speak to her muse, she sometimes tries for them, and was published this way by Samhain and Torquere.

When she's not writing – which isn’t all that often! – she devours books, works in her vegetables patch or at her 9-5 job, puts small quilts together for friends, and tries to exercise more. She's also still looking for the correct form to enroll for 30 hours long days.

You can find Kallysten here:

And now, ladies and gentlemen, please give a warm welcome to Kallysten!

The interview is in three parts. First section is about Kallysten, second section is about her books, writing them, about characters etc, third part is about her favorites.

Part I

MR: Please describe yourself with few sentences. Who are you?

K: I am a thirty-something French-born American resident. I am a wife, a storyteller and a lover of all things chocolate-y. I’m a great worrier, a first-class procrastinator, rather shy and fiercely attached to the few very good friends I have made over the years.

MR: What inspired you to want to become writer?

K: I cannot remember a time when I wasn’t making up stories for myself. When I reached middle school, it occurred to me that it might be fun to share these stories with my friends, and that was when I first put a pen down to paper, wrote a story from start to finish and gave the notebook to a friend to know what she thought. She liked it, and I was hooked.

MR: Who did you want to become when you were a kid? What did you dream about?

K: It never occurred to me that writing could be a career, and for most of my childhood my goal was to become a teacher. At first, I wanted to be an elementary school teacher so I could teach children to read because I thought (and still do) that the ability to read is a wonderful gift to offer a child. Later, I wanted to become an English teacher, because I thought (and still do, too!) that speaking a different language was pretty cool. Whenever I imagined myself as a teacher, I would see myself going away to visit exotic places during the summer vacation so I would have extraordinary stories to tell my students when we went back to school.

MR: What brought you to writing? When did the idea of writing your first book formed?

K: Writing for me was always about sharing. Like I said, I am shy, and I can have trouble making friends. By sharing those notebooks and stories in middle school and high school, I opened myself to some of my peers and made great friends. When I moved to the United States, I had to start over and find new friends, and I did it through writing. I joined a fanfiction community and started with short little stories, and was encouraged by my readers – and then my friends – to keep writing and to grow as a writer. It’s a friend from that same community who nudged me into taking the plunge and writing my own characters rather than borrowing someone else’s.

MR: What do you do when you are not writing? Do you have any hobbies?

K: At this time, I have a job in retail, so that takes a lot of my time. In the spring and summer, I garden a lot and grow my own vegetables. My favorite hobby though is to make patchwork quilts. I posted on the Alinar blog about how quilting and writing are similar for me.

MR: What is the most difficult aspect of being a writer for you?

K: It has to be that I jump too easily from story to story. I get new ideas all the time, and every new story that springs in my mind becomes an obsession. I always have too many works in progress at any given time and focusing on one to finish it can be a struggle when there are so many things for me to write.

MR: If you wouldn’t be a writer, what would you be and do?

K: I honestly don’t know, because as I said I’ve always been telling stories.

MR: Who or what is your Muse?

K: Some days – okay, most days! – it’s my husband. Sometimes it’s a favorite actor who makes me think of a character. I’m a very visual person and a particular pose or expression from a favorite actor can inspire a whole scene in a book.

MR: Did you ever experience writer’s block when the writing process just wasn’t moving ahead?

K: Oh yes! Recently, as a matter of fact. The third part of my Blurred Trilogy was scheduled to come out this month, but I was blocked on writing the story for months. I think it was a combination of being afraid to disappoint my readers after they waited so long for this story and of the frustration of being unable to pinpoint what was not ‘clicking’ together. I knew something was off, but I couldn’t figure out what. It took putting the book away, re-reading the first two installments and having long talks with my editor before I finally figured out what I needed to change, and from that point on it finally started flowing.

Part II

Let’s talk about books!

MR: Most of the books you write belong under romance and erotic romance genres. Do you think it is easy or difficult to write good erotic books?

K: I think it’s difficult, for two main reasons. First, keeping the bedroom scenes fresh and new is a must, because they can easily become repetitive, but that freshness, to me at least, requires a lot more work to achieve than other parts of the book. My editor likes to tease me because I often delay writing the bedroom scenes until I’m done with the rest of the book, but I find that once I have reached the end, literally, I can give myself more time to focus on these parts. The second thing that can make writing an erotic book challenging is that I’ll confess I have not experienced all the ‘games’ I write about. I want to convey why my characters enjoy them and how they feel during and after with as much details as I can so that the readers can experience it too, and that sometimes require a lot of research… Not that I mind doing that kind of research…!

MR: You have many published books. Would you briefly give us an overview how many published books do you have and what are these about?

K: On last count I had forty-seven stories available as ebooks, and eight as paperbacks. To be fair a lot of my books are short stories or novellas. The majority of them take place in the same universe where humans know that vampires exist, and they coexist for the most part peacefully. Vampires who kill humans are tracked down by Special Enforcers, but it’s not uncommon for humans and vampires to have relationships that may or may not involve the exchange of blood. This universe has a present, which is made up of the series On The Edge, Out of the Box, Visions of Destiny and Special Enforcers. It also has a past, told in the series The Pacts, and a future, told in the series The Demons Age.

MR: What went through your mind when the first book you wrote was published?

K: A string of incredulous curses that I wouldn’t repeat in polite company! I could hardly believe my book was accepted, and it almost felt like the editors had made a mistake and would soon tell me as much. It took a while before it finally sunk in that yes, my book and my characters were out there for readers to find and hopefully enjoy.

MR: How do you write? Do you sketch a plot first, create characters first and then starting to write?

K: Most of the time I write a fairly detailed outline. If parts of the plot hinge on a very important conversation between the main characters, I usually write out the dialogue right then, and go back and refine it later during the writing process. I don’t always follow the outline, but having an idea of where I might be when it’s time to write ‘the end’ helps me get going.

MR: What do you think is the most important thing while writing?

K: I think the most important is to keep writing. The temptation is always there to look back at the previous chapters and start tweaking and editing as I go, but I’ve learned that if I do that my writing pace slows down, or even stops. Also, changes I want to do as I write might have to be changed again by the end of the story, so it’s better to keep moving forward until I have a complete first draft, and only then go back and start fixing what needs works.

MR: Which character do you love most in your books? Which character and in which books can you mostly relate to?

K: That’s a hard question! I hate to play favorites, but Anando is probably the character I love the most, and that’s certainly why his story, Out of the Box, started as a one shot, short story but turned into a ten short stories series and a novel as a sequel… and now I’m thinking of another sequel. His heroine, Virginia, has to be the one I most relate to, at least in the beginning of their adventures. She’s a little frightened but eager to discover her sensuality… and I’ll end my explanation there, I think…

MR: I’m aware that your books are pure fiction, but I’d still like to ask: are any of the characters inspired by real persons? Do you base your fiction on some experiences you have had and people you have met?

K: I do borrow some traits from people I know, though I doubt anyone but I would notice. The one exception was a character from my novel Carte Blanche, the Domme Mistress Red. While the vampire part of the story is of course fiction, I have a friend who is a bona fide dominant, and who sometimes tried to enlighten us ‘vanilla’ people about what her world was like. I was very proud, when I had her read the book, to get her thumb up for the depiction of her lifestyle.

MR: What was the best summer read for you this summer? Why?

K: Two books come to mind. Jim Butcher’s Ghost Story, the new installment of the Dresden Files, which I waited for impatiently and enjoyed a lot. The big reveal was both totally surprising (to me) and yet perfectly logical, which is the best kind of writing as far as I’m concerned. The second is World War Z, which I enjoyed because the style of the storytelling, using ‘interviews’ of survivors from the war against zombies, felt very unique and interesting.

MR: I must ask you about new book to be published. What will it be about? Anything you can tell us already?

K: My next freebie, which I will release in December, will be a collection of very short stories featuring characters chosen by my readers.

The release I’m very excited about right now should take place in February. It will be Blurred Memories, the third installment of the Blurred Trilogy that gave me so much trouble. It’s a rather dark story, but the three main characters push through adversity to truly be together in the end.

Part III – Favorites

Who is your favorite author? A French sci-fi author named Barjavel. If I can one day play with my words with the same ease and beauty he did, I will be a happy writer.
What is your favorite book or series? A novel by the gentleman above translated as The Ice People. It is characterized as a sci-fi story, but at the core it’s a beautiful and sensual love story that spans, literally, thousands of years.
What is your favorite song? La-bas from French singer Jean-Jacques Goldman. It’s a song about leaving everything behind to go pursue your dreams, both sad and hopeful.
What is your favorite season? Winter. As much as I complain about it, I love the snow.
What is your favorite food? It has to be a tie between chocolate and cheese.
What is your favorite car? I have a thing for the VW Beatle. The roundness of it just appeals to me.
What is your favorite color? Blue
What is your favorite movie? Star Wars – the original trilogy.
What is your favorite time of the day? Any time that I can sit down and write.
What is your favorite weather? Thunderstorms.

Thank you so much Kallysten for the interview! It is highly appreciated that you took time for it!

I have read couple of Kallysten's books and one of the reviews will be up in couple of days, so come back to check it. Otherwise, participate in the 1000+ Giveaway and you have a chance to win Kallysten's books!

Happy reading!


  1. liked the interview
    nevr heard of her tho ,going now on her site

  2. Patchwork Quilts, Choc & Chesse, Star Wars!!! You think you know someone and then you learn their flaws! lmao!!! Just kidding - you know I love you ;)

  3. I always enjoying learning about the authors behind their books and what they think of their books, characters, and the industry.

    Thanks for the post.

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. thanks so much for the opportunity, Inga. It was fun!