Psyched for Romance

Sports Romance & Romantic Suspense With a Psychological Twist

Monday, October 3, 2011

Author Karen Jones Gowan Interview

I had the pleasure of reading an advance reader copy of Karen Gowan’s novel House of Diamonds (see my review HERE) and now I have the pleasure of interviewing Miss Karen!


Jennifer Lane (JL): Welcome to the blog, Karen! We met through author Susan Kaye Quinn and then I got to know you better on your excellent blog, especially for the Blog Barbecue you hosted last year. How did you come up with your blog title and design?

Karen Jones Gowen (KJG): Coming Down the Mountain came from the image of the writer being alone at the top of a mountain to write in solitude, and then needing to come down from the mountain to join humanity to promote the book. I originally named it: Coming Down the Mountain: From Reclusive Writer to Published Author. Recently I dropped that part and changed to A Writer's Blog, because since I started blogging two years ago I haven't been that reclusive! (And I never actually sat on a mountain top to write, but I can see them from my house in the valley.)

JL: Your blog is quite successful. What tips would you share with other authors who blog?

KJG: The first big thing I did was establish my platform, which is pretty well described above in naming the blog. This attracted other writers as we all tend to be a pretty reclusive, anxiety-ridden group of individuals. The second big thing is to get out and meet people! Follow blogs, and comment, and interact-- don't just start the blog, post and wait for people to find you. Unless you're a big celebrity.Then the sit and wait approach might work.

JL: Please tell us about your journey to becoming a published author.

KJG: I was published years ago by selling stories to children's magazines but had never written a novel. My first book, Farm Girl, came to the attention of an investor looking to start a publishing company. He wanted it for the first release, and he brought on members of my family who had edited and designed the book-- William and Don Gowen-- thus the name of the company, WiDo Publishing, which has since gone on to publish books by many different authors.

JL: You wrote Uncut Diamonds a while ago, and House of Diamonds follows the same characters years later. Would you consider this a series? How did you approach writing the second book?


KJG: I wrote Uncut Diamonds completely ignorant of my intended audience. Like I said, I was a recluse! When I wrote House of Diamonds, I had a much clearer view of my audience, and I wrote for them. I think the second one is a much better book for utilizing this approach. I don't expect to write a third one because I get bored easily. What I'm working on now is a bit grittier and darker.

JL: What inspired you to write the Diamond books?

KJG: I wanted to try my hand at novel-writing and so I wrote what I know, which is family life. My own family, to be specific. They are both fictionalized, semi-autobiographical novels.

JL: Family life is obviously important to you. How do you juggle your family and writing? How do family members view your writing?

KJG: I have a really supportive family, especially now that my kids are grown and out of the house. They no longer mind that I'm cloistered in my writing room not fixing them dinner. I have supportive sisters as well, who have been very good sports about my fictionalizing them in these two novels.

JL: You and your husband are starting a company to help authors sell books. Where are you in that process?

KJG: Yay, I get to talk about Celery Tree! Celerytree.com is currently in the hands of the quality control guy, who is trying to hack the site. When he's done, he'll tell us where the weak points are so the programmer can fix them. After that,  it will go out to the authors so they can review their book and author pages, and fill in anything that's missing, and ask questions. That will be our soft launch. Once the authors have looked it over, it will go live and all of us will promote the heck out of it, because the concept is awesome and people are going to love it!

Thank you for visiting, Karen! I hope you and other authors join us today for the Meet an Author Monday Blog Hop. You can find instructions on Lisa Sanchez’s BLOG.



16 comments:

KarenG said...

Thanks for the interview, Jen! I tried adding myself to the blog hop but the link didn't work for me.

Jennifer Lane said...

Hmm. Which link didn't work for you, Karen? You might try entering from Lisa Sanchez's blog instead of mine, if you didn't do that already. Great to have you on the blog today!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Sit and wait for people to find a blog? I'd still be sitting! Karen goes after it big time.
Great interview!

Jennifer Lane said...

Thanks for stopping by, Alex. From what I've seen of your blog, you're not sitting around much either. ;)

Talli Roland said...

Fantastic interview, ladies. I always love learning more about how other authors got started.

Jennifer Lane said...

Talli, I agree. It's so cool how we come at writing from such different places. Some of us are more, erm, "mature" when we start hee hee.

Nicki Elson said...

Karen's the one who gave me a kick-start in the blogging world w/ her Labor Day Barbecue! And I've always loved the name of her blog - it totally feels like stepping down from some secluded mountain when you "come out" writingwise.

I'm looking so forward to Celery Tree, and wish Karen much luck on her coming release. (I also had the pleasure of a pre-read on House of Diamonds.)

Jennifer Lane said...

Hey, I attended that barbecue too! What'd you bring, Nicki? I think I brought some red wine.

Old Kitty said...

NOW I know what WiDo stands for!!!!! Yay!! Thank you Jennifer Lane for having the most wonderful and talented KarenG!!! I read her Farm Girl and loved, loved, loved it!! Take care
x

Jennifer Lane said...

Hello young kitty! Thanks for stopping by. I enjoyed the hamster on your site and you might enjoy playing with my black kitty on my site (scroll down to the right).

Elliot Grace said...

...wonderful interview, ladies ;)

Karen, I had no idea that you were affiliated with WiDo Publishing!

You've had a busy day, to which I'll be forever grateful. Thanks for posting our interview on your blog, and wishing you only the best for your Diamond series ;)

El

Roland D. Yeomans said...

John Locke advocates your philosophy, Karen : write for your target audience. And see where he is? I hope you get to stand right beside him in sales.

I write for me : sometimes for the little rascal in me, sometimes for the lover of the unknown in me. Sometimes for the lonely soul in search of love in me. I think those of facets of myself exist in all of us.

I wish you grand success with Celery Tree!

And you did a wonderful job with your interview with Elliot Grace,Roland

Jennifer Lane said...

Elliot, I enjoyed reading your interview on Karen's blog and thanks for stopping by to read Karen's interview!

I also wish Celery Tree great success, Roland. :)

KarenG said...

Thank you everyone for all of your kind words!

A Tale of Many Reviews said...

I'm not a fiction writer, but I am a fiction reader. :D Nice interview and great idea for your blog name! I saw BBQ in the comments...now I'm hungry. ;P

Jennifer Lane said...

Hey Julie, thanks for all your help!

 


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