Interview with Kai Kiriyama

When did you first start writing?
I first started writing when I was 11 or so. It was for school projects when I really started to take a shine to writing. I would come back with 20 pages for a 2-page creative writing assignment. My teacher loved it, and I certainly never got a poor grade. After grade-school, I continued writing in my spare time. I originally wanted to write for film, and a lot of half formed ideas and projects were written while I was at work in my teenage years. I still go between novels and scripts now, though none of the scripts have been published anywhere.
What's the story behind your latest book?
My latest book is Blaze Tuesday and the Case of the Knight Surgeon. I wanted to try writing crime and pulp noir has always been a favourite of mine. Since I write mostly fantasy, I needed to add a spin tot he crime detective genre, so I set my book in the future and threw in a mild steampunk element except 1920's/30's instead of Victorian. I am fascinated by the counter-culture of body modification and tattoos, and that really influenced me to write about what would happen when tattoos and piercings became "normal" and what the next step would be in body modification. Clockwork implants were born.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I fully intend to pursue hybridization, as I am querying other works. I was motivated to try my hand at the indie route because I've been querying for 3 years (as of this writing) and have had many rejections. I wanted to take my career into my own hands and since I'm a workaholic, it seemed logical at the time. I don't regret it, and I'm having a blast being an indie author.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Getting my ideas out on paper and seeing my worlds come to life bring me so much joy. It's a thrill for me to get the ideas out of my head in a tangible way and the process of writing and editing and just creating is why I continue to write. Even if most of my work stays locked in my vault or packed in boxes forever, just knowing that there are worlds alive on the page brings me giddy happiness.
What are you working on next?
I am always working on something. Literally. I have a binder full of over 50 ideas that I am constantly adding to. I'm probably working on another novel, and it will likely be fantasy and involve a murder of some sort and a blend of mythologies. I write a little bit of everything, and I am always excited to share. There is always a serial on my blog, and I do submit shorts to anthologies and e-zines, so checking my blog and website is a surefire way to make sure that you know where to find me, and where I'm submitting to.
Who are your favorite authors?
This is a very loaded question as my tastes tend to change. Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman, Stephen King, Shakespeare jump to the forefront. As I'm answering this I'm also digging Chuck Wendig, Seanan McGuire, Mira Grant, Stephen Blackmoore, Lauren Beukes, and this list constantly grows, shifts and changes as I read more and more. This is something that I don't normally answer because there are SO MANY awesome authors out there, that it can never stay the same.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
When I'm not writing, I'm usually asleep. Ha! I crochet, I play video games, I sew. I'm crafty and I don't watch as much TV as a normal person does, but I am prone to bingeing on a series all at once over the course of a few weeks and then I don't watch TV for months. I also play D&D and I do improv comedy.
What is your writing process?
My writing process is sit down, turn off the internet, write. The preparations beforehand are varied and involve plotting out the basics of each chapter in my story and building character references. I don't go into huge detail because I tend to get bored. I use enough detail in my outlines so that I don't get stuck. Then, I write like crazy until my fingers metaphorically bleed and/or fall off. Then I unwind and do it all again the next day. I do take at least one day off, just to keep myself refreshed.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read anything. Give me anything, I'll read it. I like to try new things. I typically stay away from YA and romance because I'm not as interested in those things, but if you loan me one of those books, I'll read it. My TBR pile is so big, however, that I'm certain I will never get through all the books.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I use a Kobo, currently. It was a birthday gift and I'm quite happy with it. I consider a tablet but I don't want the additional distractions! I also use my MacBook to read sometimes when iBooks or PDFs are the only options available. I do review most books I read and I've been slacking in my reading lately.
Describe your desk
My desk is huge. It takes up a whole wall. It is sandy coloured wood with six drawers. It has two computers, an external hard drive, a lamp, two pencil holders, and a zombie mug with dry erase markers in it on top of it. It's about 6 feet long. Above my desk is a big cork board where I pin notes and outlines that I need when I'm working. On the wall to my right, I have another cork board and a white board for organizing schedules. We don't talk about the mess that is in the drawers, however.
What do your fans mean to you?
My fans mean the absolute world to me. Without them, I wouldn't be here. Without their feedback, I would never improve. Without my fans I couldn't continue writing and I'd be relegated back to working in retail. I love my fans, and I wish that we could all hang out and have a pizza party. My fans rule so hard. I love you guys. XoXo
Published 2014-08-20.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Blaze Tuesday and the Case of the Singing Canary
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 62,590. Language: English. Published: August 28, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Hard-Boiled
More murders. More gangs. More mafia turf wars. Blaze Tuesday thought he'd washed his hands of it all when he solved the Five Points murders. Unfortunately, he'd only gotten himself tangled up deeper in the mess. And when his girlfriend Kali gets caught up int he crossfire, well there's no way Blaze will sit this new case out.
Vices of Blood & Jealous Souls
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 79,320. Language: English. Published: September 5, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Historical, Fiction » Mashups
A vicious pirate attack cripples Venice. With their navy decimated, a desperate magistrate calls on a disgraced Captain to save the city. The problem? Othello wasn't ready to fight his former friend, Iago. A retelling of Shakespeare’s Othello but with a swashbuckling twist, Vices of Blood & Jealous Souls is a high stakes adventure of jealousy, greed and redemption.
Tales of the Lawmaker: The Blight of Rulian
Price: $1.49 USD. Words: 23,690. Language: English. Published: September 5, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Urban
When the prosperous kingdom of Rulian is suddenly stricken with a mysterious illness, can the legendary adventurer The Lawmaker, save the kingdom? Or will they fall, too? A fantasy Western where science and magic exist, The Blight Of Rulian is the beginning of the Tale of the Lawmaker - a half-elf adventurer known throughout the realms.
Surviving Rapture
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 59,220. Language: Canadian English. Published: April 26, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Undead
Surviving Rapture is the hottest reality TV show - random contestants are chosen to fight each other and hordes of zombies for cash, prizes and fame. Aya Wu has opposed it for years, and now she's been forced to compete in the Rapture. 10 Contestants. 3 Days. 1 rule: Survive.
Between the Panels
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 45,370. Language: English. Published: April 26, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Romance » New adult
All Emma wanted was to get some comics, she hadn't been expecting to meet Scott, the cute boy working behind the counter. As their friendship grows, so does Emma's pull list, but will they become more than friends?
Pathogen: Revolution
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 34,910. Language: Canadian English. Published: April 26, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Undead
Six weeks have passed since the initial outbreak. Liam, Charlotte and Gabe have been in quarantine, unaware of the events going on in the outside world. Now, they are being tasked to help the CDC and the military clean up. How far would you go to guarantee your safety?
Pathogen: Outbreak
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 37,710. Language: English. Published: August 14, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Undead
A lot can happen in 24 hours. A patient can die. A doctor can be put in quarantine. And all hell can break loose. Following the events of PATHOGEN: PATIENT ZERO, find out what happens when protocol is breached and the dead begin to rise.
Pathogen: Patient Zero
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 33,490. Language: English. Published: May 15, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Horror
A young girl, hospitalized with a violent strain of the flu, deteriorating before her doctor's eyes. Unable to help her, they dehumanize her, call her Zero, and reduce her to a series of tests. This is her story, told through a haze of medicine as she makes peace with her fate, hoping her doctors will save her.
My Life Beyond the Grave: The Untold Story of Vlad Dracula
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 51,130. Language: English. Published: October 28, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Biographical
" I have outlived my entire family and have lived to see a time that one could not think possible. I am Vlad Tepes Dracul and I am here to tell you my story." A fictional memoir steeped in historical fact and pop culture, this is the story of Dracula, and how he came to be such an iconic figure. Told from Dracula's point of view and presented like a memoir, it is unique in its execution.
Blaze Tuesday and the Case of the Knight Surgeon (Special Edition)
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 93,130. Language: English. Published: August 5, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Crime thriller
New York's most accomplished PI, Blaze Tuesday is a guy who gets results. Hired to investigate the murder of a charity doctor, Blaze finds himself embroiled in a conspiracy that spans from the lowest illegal surgeries in Hell's Kitchen to the medical elite and the corporations who make clockwork body parts. Agatha Christie meets Repo! The Genetic Opera on the streets of New York.