Interview with Carla King

How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
I love Smashwords because Mark is on the cutting edge of everything self-publishing and his blog gives me news I can use to sell my books. The coupon codes alone have helped me grow my email list by making my books free or discounting them steeply. The ability to sell books for $0 helps a lot, too, because it forces Amazon to offer my book for free as well... something you can't do from the Kindle dashboard. Thank you!
What do your fans mean to you?
Lots of people say that your "friends" on social media is a fake thing but these fans have so often become real, in-person friends. I'm on the road a lot and have met so many of them in my travels. I care about them and they care about me, so we're truly friends.
What are you working on next?
I'm working on a memoir about riding a motorcycle solo through China. It broke down all the time (like the one I rode through American) so there are lots of great stories of human kindness. I'm also working on an adventure guide to Baja.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy of writing is the creation process... being in the flow. But equal to that is the knowledge that I can help or inspire others with my writing.
Who are your favorite authors?
Wait a minute. Let me go look at my LibraryThing list...

Okay. It seems I love Donna Tartt, Diane Gabaldon, Martha Conway, Ann Patchett, Amy Tan, Barbara Kingsolver, Chris Pavone, Rachel Kushner, and Christina Baker Kline.

I did my college thesis on writers of the Roaring Twenties so of course, I love Steinbeck, Hemingway, and Fitzgerald, too. And as a traveler and travel writer Bill Bryson is so fun, and Paul Theroux the opposite of fun but wow, and Ted Simon who is a friend as are Lois Pryce and Christopher Baker who have some very excellent travel memoirs. And Rolf Potts.

In the arena of business books, I am a fangirl of Tim Ferriss and will read anything he writes.

There are more but connect with me on LibraryThing. My handle is missadventuring.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I get out of bed every day hoping I am not too late to see the sunrise. Often I am too late but still, a morning run or bicycle ride followed by yoga really sets the tone for my sedentary butt-in-the-chair writing day.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
When I'm not writing I am reading, traveling, hiking, biking, doing yoga, or riding motorcycles (dirt and street), visiting family, and reading. I have been accused of reading too much.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I discover the ebooks I read mostly through the trade reviews (because I read a lot of literary fiction) and word of mouth.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
The first story I ever wrote was about a girl in France who was swimming in the Mediterranean Sea in a thunderstorm. I re-wrote it many years later when I lived in Nice. It has never been published.
What is your writing process?
My writing process is to set aside a few days and not do anything but write. No distractions except for exercise and cooking, which I love to do. Both things help me think about what I'm writing and get clarity.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first story I remember reading on my own (with pictures) was Winnie the Pooh and I tried to figure out for the longest time why Eeyore was so sad. I don't know... this is such an interesting question. Maybe it helped me put myself in another's shoes.
Describe your desk
My desk is an uneven walnut plank (it's beautiful) with black steel legs and a Human Solution keyboard tray that's bolted underneath for ergo-typing. The desk is scattered with journals, random pieces of notebook paper with notes that I will probably never read again, a five-pound barbel, a mixing board and two condenser mics, two hard drives acting as bookends, and a Webster's Thesaurus stacked on top of a New Collegiate Dictionary to raise the height of my computer screen.
Published 2018-04-21.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Stories from Elsewhere
Price: Free! Words: 33,440. Language: English. Published: October 14, 2018. Categories: Nonfiction » Travel » Road travel, Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
In 1995, Carla King takes a job as a test rider for a company who wants to import a Russian sidecar motorcycle for the American market, thus spending four months breaking down in small towns all around the USA and becoming an expert mechanic. In 1998, she sets off on an illegal journey across China at the invitation of a group of expat American bikers, with similar consequences. In turns hilarious
A Consumer's Guide for Self-Publishers
Price: Free! Words: 1,450. Language: English. Published: April 20, 2018. Categories: Nonfiction » Publishing » Self-publishing, Nonfiction » Reference » Consumer guides
This trusted resource reviews tools and services that help you write, edit, format, design, fund, publish, sell, market, and promote your books. Take all the doubt out of your decisions about what vendors to use in your journey as an independent author and keep this reference handy.
What Every Author Needs to Know about Microsoft Word Styles
Price: $0.99 USD. (Free until Jan. 1, 2025!) Words: 1,050. Language: English. Published: July 27, 2015. Categories: Nonfiction » Publishing » Self-publishing, Nonfiction » Education & Study Guides » Reference
This short tutorial shows the novice author how to use Microsoft Word Styles to format their books.
Motorcycling Northern California
You set the price! Words: 17,690. Language: English. Published: December 11, 2013. Categories: Nonfiction » Travel » Road travel
Northern California is known for its wines and its lovely meandering backroads from the Sierras to the Sea. MotoSFO insiders share their favorite roads and new discoveries with you in trip descriptions with images, maps, and suggestions on where to sleep, eat, and stop for a moment to take in the view.
American Borders: Breakdowns in Small Towns all around the USA
Series: Fearless. Price: $4.97 USD. Words: 67,420. Language: English. Published: November 8, 2009. Categories: Nonfiction » Travel » By region
This 4-month, 10,000 mile adventure is a comedy of breakdowns in small towns all around the USA. Moments of blissful backroads freedom, cultural connection, and roadside romance are interrupted by cracked welds, electrical gremlins, evil tow truck drivers, tornadoes, and hurricanes. From B.C. to the Blue Ridge, Boquillas to Beverly Hills, a unique and intimate exploration of America's borders.