Interview with Robin Kirk

Published 2022-06-22.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
In a way, I'm always writing: in the shower, cooking, scootering around. Somehow, my brain works on story especially well when I'm not trying to force something out in front of a computer. My readers will recognize many of my habits from my stories -- travel, cooking, reading, hiking, going to music and theater. Dancing, usually awkwardly.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I read A LOT, including all sorts of media, blogs, and social media. One of my favorite book blogs is Books, Bones and Buffy. Tam Sparks has a great eye for science fiction and fantasy. On Sundays, I generally have my computer open as I'm reading the paper and put on reserve the books I'm interested in. I also (usually) take part in #SundaySentence on Twitter and get so many great reading ideas from what other people love.
What is your writing process?
I think writing is about 95 percent sitting at the desk and trying. I have so many ideas and sometimes they flow and often they don't. But even when the ideas are stuck, being at the work is vital.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
Many of the most formative works I read as a child. Charlotte's Web (which I have on my desk), the Narnia Chronicles, and so much more really made me want to be a writer.
How do you approach cover design?
I approach cover design well-protected by an actual design professional! This is not one of my skill sets. I know what I like, but I'm very much not a designer. When I first saw The Bond Trilogy covers that Molly Phipps designed, I almost fainted. They were SO GOOD and in so many ways reflected the story and themes. That's what great design can do: encompass thoughts and feelings.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
In no order:

1. Charlotte's Web by E.B. White: So beautifully written and also quite challenging. There's a lot of real and implied violence that writer EB White somehow makes accessible to children. Charlotte's death scene is one of the most beautiful passages in American literature.

2. "His Dark Materials" by Philip Pullman: This is a bit of a cheat because there are three books in the original series. The American titles are The Golden Compass, The Subtle Knife, and The Amber Spyglass. First of all: GREAT titles. I love the adventure aspect to the story, one of the inspirations for The Bond Trilogy. And I modeled 12, my mutant battle dog, very much on the character of Iorek, the armored polar bear.

3. Beloved by Toni Morrison: Gorgeous and brutal and deeply important. We need many more writers as brave and sharp-sighted.

4. The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien: a bit of a cheat No. 2, three books: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King. I've read the entire series probably 30+ times (and watched the extended version of the Peter Jackson films). The real heart of the story is how average hobbits, who no one thinks much of (except Gandalf) end up sacrificing themselves to save others. I especially love the way Tolkien uses landscape.

5. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak: This book changed my life. So good. His main character, Liesl, deserves to be recognized as one of the great literary achievements. After I read this, I decided I wanted to write books for kids and tackle tough subjects.
What do you read for pleasure?
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Books by This Author

The Mother's Wheel
Series: The Bond Trilogy, Book Three of The Bond Trilogy. Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 90,540. Language: English. Published: September 6, 2022. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy, Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
The Mother’s Wheel is the final, thrilling conclusion to the Indie award-winning Bond Trilogy.
The Hive Queen
Series: The Bond Trilogy, Book Two of The Bond Trilogy. Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 92,670. Language: English. Published: June 22, 2022. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy, Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
In the second book in the INDIE-award-winning Bond Trilogy, warrior Fir leads his brothers on a quest for salvation that will threaten everything they hold dear.
The Bond
Series: The Bond Trilogy, Book One of The Bond Trilogy. Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 91,920. Language: English. Published: June 22, 2022. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy, Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
In the all-female Weave, everyone’s bio-engineered for perfection. Dinitra’s a misfit captured by rebels who breed males as slaves. She falls in love with one and must betray all to save his kind.
Commissioning Truths: Essays on the 30th Anniversary of Nunca Más
Price: Free! Words: 38,060. Language: English. Published: September 19, 2016. Categories: Nonfiction » Politics & Current Affairs » Civil & human rights, Essay » Political
Commemorating the 30th anniversary of the world's first truth commission, this collection of essays by activists and scholars examines the state of truth and reconciliation as a human rights tool.