Interview with K A van Wyk

When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I inherited a greyhound just over a year ago and we love long countryside walks together. I'm also training for a barefoot walk round the coast of mainland Britian to raise awareness and money for shark conservation.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I'm a real browser. I like to have a good old grub round and see what catches my eye. I look at the title and the cover, then I read the blurb and if it appeals to me I'll give it a go. I rarely search keywords unless I'm looking for non-fiction.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes, it was a story about an ice skater and a horse. I was in primary school at the time.
What is your writing process?
Hmm, I'm not sure you could really call it a process. I usually have an idea for a character before I get the story. I play with the character in my head for a while, asking 'what if?' questions. Once I have the seed of a story I sit down, type 'chapter one' at the top of the page and I write straight through until I get to the end.

During the editing process I may shift the odd section around a bit for greater impact, but otherwise I write from beginning to end, and the story just comes as I work.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I remember the library rather than one particular story. Our library was an old house that had been converted. I loved the creaky floors and the high shelves with the kids books at the bottom. I enjoyed reading as a child and I think I read every book in the library more than once. (It was a small library.)
What do you read for pleasure?
Having grown up in Africa I love Wilbur Smith, but I have to say I prefer his older works. I'm also passionate about sharks and I'm quite happy to sit back with a good cup of coffee and a shark encyclopaedia.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I never thought I would get into e-readers but I love my Kindle and my Kobo reader on my Blackberry Playbook.
Describe your desk
It's a mess! There's my little notebook computer, a couple of cell phones, a coffee mug, a pair of headphones, piles of paper and Post-It notes everwhere.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I spent five years in Zambia and the rest of my childhood in South Africa. I do tend to set most of my novels in South Africa as it's the place I know and love best.

My third novel, Where There's Life, is set in SA and the UK and that's when I realised how different South African English is. Learning to write dialogue in British English was quite a learning curve, but fun too.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love getting lost in the story and getting to know the characters. I find I really miss them when I finish a book.
What are you working on next?
I have three books in the pipeline at the moment. One is my first foray into non-fiction with a working title, The Life of Radley. It's the story of how I inherited an ex-racing greyhound and how he turned a cat person into a dog person.

I'm also working on, Saifa, the third (and probably final) book in the Knockdown Karate Series, and Nightmare on Paradise Island, the first book in the Ocean Adventure Series.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Usually a cold wet black nose. The sunshine and the birdsong helps at this time of year too.
Published 2014-04-12.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Where There's Life
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 104,390. Language: English. Published: April 12, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Women's fiction » General, Fiction » Romance » General
Young violinist Reuben Shayne’s life is torn apart by the murder of his mother. A home schooled child prodigy, he is ill equipped to cope with what happens next. Ten years later, though emotionally crippled, he gets a second chance at life. But can he put the past behind him and make a success of it?
Yantsu
Series: The Knockdown Karate Novels, Danny and Darren's Story. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 82,150. Language: English. Published: January 22, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Drama
When Danny Jordan's estranged brother returns home, the family's stability is rocked by past hurts and guilty secrets. Torn between his father and his brother, Danny's karate begins to suffer. Can his dream to become one of South Africa's top tournament fighters survive the upheaval? And can the family bond survive the truth?
Sanchin
Series: The Knockdown Karate Novels, Tristan's Story. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 76,410. Language: English. Published: April 19, 2009. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Drama
(4.00 from 1 review)
Tristan Steyn's dreams of representing South Africa in international competition, and grading as the youngest nidan in the history of his karate club, are shattered when a foolish violent encounter leads to tragedy. Forced to re-evaluate his life, he discovers a strength of character he didn't know he possessed. But is it too late to redeem himself in the eyes of his hero, Shihan Dean Stander?