Me, on Karen Swart’s Blog

Karen was a wonderful hostess!


When did you first consider yourself a “writer”?

I considered myself a writer when I was about four years old. My mother transcribed stories for me, before I learned the alphabet. Considering myself an author has been a very different road, though. I published my first book 9 years ago, 8 books and 5 anthologies later, it’s taken me a long time to adjust what I thought being an author would look like, and realize how it really looks.

How long did it take to get your first book published?

My first book ever, it took a year. My first erotic release took about 3 months.

What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?

The Fangirl’s Dream is everyone’s fantasy of meeting their favorite hot fictional lover.


Who is your publisher? Or do you self-publish?

I have worked with a few publishers, and also self-published. I really enjoy working with Decadent Publishing. They provide a great community of support to their authors and really understand that community is what solidifies relationships and fosters growth. Publishing independently has given me a greater appreciation for that community, and also enabled me to expand my skills in production.

How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?

On average, it takes me about a month to write a shorter manuscript. Getting it into shape to submit, then jump the hoops of revisions and resubmitting is another timeline, all together.

What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?

I have really enjoyed writing interracial erotica, which I will likely continue to write. I want to verge more into intergendered characters, people whose lives are on the line in a very visceral and inescapable way. I‘m also interested in exploring diverse relationships dynamics in poly relationships.


Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?

I doubt that I do. I read some, though I’ve learned that usually isn’t informative in a helpful way. I think often authors look to reviews for feedback on their writing, which is a huge mistake. That’s what beta readers and revisions are for. Reviews from readers aren’t for authors. They’re for other readers, and you can only hope that the reviews are fair.

How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?

Usually the characters and places are essential to the plot, so it all comes to me at once.

Are character names and place names decided after their creation? Or do you pick a character/place name and then invent them?

Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along? Elements of writing a book come to me like a paintball splatter, all at once, and often in a jumble. Usually character traits drive the plot in some way, so they are there from the beginning. Things like being a nail-biter may flesh out as the plot evolves, but big traits, like being a Dominatrix, wanting release, or needing to save others are there from the beginning.

Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of “The moral of this story is..”)

If I answer that, they won’t be hidden anymore! But yes. Everything I write has layered meanings, intentionally. I often write Readers Guides to my books, to engage readers in their thoughts on the books, and to learn their relationships to them. I’ve always enjoyed that part of reading a great book, and I like to lace little interesting bits throughout my own.

Which format of book do you prefer, eBook, hardback, or paperback?

Wow. This is s hard one. I prefer hardback, though I live in the sustainability mindset and find ebooks more in line with my lifestyle. It’s been hard for me to make that transition. Now that I have, it’s really challenging for me to read a physical book. I’m more likely to read digitally, if at all.

What is your favorite book and Why? Have you read it more than once?

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Southern fiction is not particularly on my radar, though this book is perfect. I’ve read it at least three times, and every time I’m astounded by what a fantastic example of writing it is. She not only nails every theme the book touches on, but she actually crafted a story and characters that support it completely, start to finish. It is an absolutely perfect novel.

Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is you favorite/worst book to movie transfer?

On the whole, I think book-to-film sucks. I understand that the mechanics that make a book work are not what enable a film to progress properly. Those kinds of changes I can deal with. Ones based on box office draw and dumbing down really bother me. For instance,Carrie and To Kill a Mockingbird are great adaptations. The Lovely Bones and the Narniaseries, not so much. And often, it’s not that the entire film got it wrong, but the last 10-15 minutes of the film unravels the best of the book.

Your favorite food is?

I don’t have a favorite food, so much as favorite food genre: Asian food. I’m gluten-free, and for the most part, Asian foods are perfect for my food needs, and they are divine. I could live in shrimp fried rice, butter chicken, and roasted lamb with zatar and olives. Now you got me started. I might even have to cut his interview, short now. Wow.

Your favorite singer/group is?

All-time favorite is U2, old school. Now, I’m not so much about a specific artist or group. I like just about anything that isn’t country or jazz. I know, how uncool of me. But there you go.

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