Interview with Kaye Draper

When did you first start writing?
As early as I can remember. I recall writing stories and poems as a child, and always kept a notebook. As an adult, my confidence in my dreams went by the wayside thanks to the "real world," but I started up again, and wrote my first full-length novel when I was 25-26 years old.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Currently, I am working on the third book in the Earth and Sky saga, which is tentatively titled Darkness and Light. I love the world of Earth and Sky, and I feel I could spend forever writing about the assorted supporting characters. I always envisioned that I would write more about Marshall and Ibbe, about Wren and Ville's parents, or about Cai and Bahatti... but while I was writing book 2, I stumbled across a new character completely by accident. He kind of took over and became book 3. Darkness and Light is about the struggle of being flawed in a seemingly perfect world. Or, in the case of the main character, being faced with the fact that you are not as perfect and infallible as the world around you seems to think--and that sometimes you may fail the ones you love. There is also a bit more focus on the redemptive qualities in people, and on accepting yourself as you are in the face of adversity.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I live in constant fear of stagnation. If I feel "stuck" at a certain level in my life, I have to find a way to overcome that. Self-publishing my work has also been an ongoing part of my self-development. I've had to have confidence in myself and my work, and had to learn to trust that I have the ability to do anything I set my mind to. I would say this is the most powerful thing about being indie--you are in control. And while that may be scary, it also opens up a whole new world. If you can learn to write, edit, format, design, utilize new software, talk to people about your work, and put yourself out there--Gods, what CAN'T you do after that? It builds your resourcefulness. You learn to trust that if you don't know something, there is nothing standing between you and learning aside from time and effort. That's kind of amazing.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
There is a two part answer...maybe more
First off, I simply love living in my imagination--that feeling when and idea, a scene, or a whole story just plays out in your head like a movie, like it's alive and real--I can't really describe that. It's not something you can fully understand if you've never felt it. But it is the most amazing thing I've ever felt in my life. Truly.
Secondly, when someone reads something I've written and turns all nerdy fan. It's not the "oh my god someone likes me" aspect. It's the fact that someone GETS you. That they understand what you envisioned and they can see it too--and it's like you are sharing a dream!
What do your fans mean to you?
The world.
The feeling of having someone GET IT, having them see what you see and share that dream That is second only to the actual joy of writing it in the first place!
Who are your favorite authors?
Kim Harrison- The Hallows series
Diana Gabaldon -Especially the first Outlander book-- I feel they get too bogged down with historical details later on, but I'm in it for the characters!
Patricia Briggs- The Mercy Thompson Books
Holly Black- I haven't read many of her actual novels, but I LOVED the graphic novel series Kin.
And I'm a HUGE manga reader- anything with beautiful art and lots of romance
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The desire to improve myself. The desire to grow and learn. And of course my writing goals!
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I work in the medical field. Honestly, my day job is mentally and emotionally draining, and that is part of what drives me to lose myself in writing, reading, gaming, and anything fantastical. I also have a young child, a husband, and a house full of pets and we get up to shenanigans galore. I enjoy biking (trails and mountain biking), belly dancing, jewelry making, and anything involving nature and water. If I could live in a cabin on a lake in northern Michigan, I would be in heaven.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
This is so subjective based on the day! I am always looking for romance. BUT I hate some of the common romance tropes. I tend to look for things that are a step to the side of the mainstream. If it involves romance, magic, and paranormal I will give it a try. But I am generally so over alpha males and gritty street-wise females. I think I've read too many paranormal romance and urban fantasy that follow those tropes and they all start to feel the same.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Not really. I vaguely remember starting a story about horses and running away from home...I also used to regularly wish the fairies in the woods near my home would abduct me...not sure if I ever wrote a story about it though!
Published 2016-08-20.
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