Interview with Karen Joan Kohoutek

What's the story behind your latest book?
I love Halloween, and even though it’s never openly stated, the book partly exists to answer the question I often get in life: “Why do you love Halloween so much?”

It's about a couple of little girls, who, along with a jaded big sister, are planning for the holiday. They worry about their costumes, decorate the house, tell ghost stories, and generally creep each other out. Although the characters and most of the situations are completely fictional, some elements are based on real-life shenanigans that led me on the path to becoming a life-long fan of everything Halloweeny.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Wadena, a town of about 4,000 people in central Minnesota. My first novel was very much inspired by my experience of Halloweens in a place and time (the 1970s) when kids had a lot of freedom to explore the world. In writing it, I tried to be as authentic to that time and place as I could be, with results that seem to me nostalgic, but not sentimental.
When did you first start writing?
I've been making up stories as long as I can remember, and writing them down since I could write.
What are you working on next?
I'm working on a more full-length, more obviously grown-up novel, about a late-night television "horror host." And ghosts!
Published 2013-09-29.
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Books by This Author

The Jack-o-Lantern Box
Price: Free! Words: 41,560. Language: English. Published: September 9, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Holiday » Halloween, Fiction » Children’s books » Holidays & Celebrations / Halloween
It's an old-fashioned Hallowe'en -- 1970's style. Two little girls who love everything spooky -- along with a big sister who can't stop trying to scare them -- plot the orangest and blackest Halloween they can, in this trick-or-treat bag of a book.