Interview with Gini Koch + Giveaway
Here it is: Our first author interview!
And the very first lucky author we can welcome here is the amazing Gini Koch, author of the ALIEN / Katherine “Kitty” Katt series (Touched by an Alien, Alien Tango, Alien in the Family, Alien Proliferation, Alien Diplomacy).
We’re also doing a giveaway! You’ll find it by either reading the whole interview until the very end or simply clicking here: Giveaway!
About Gini Koch
Gini Koch lives in Hell’s Orientation Area (aka Phoenix, AZ), works her butt off (sadly, not literally) by day, and writes by night with the rest of the beautiful people. She writes the fast, fresh and funny Alien/Katherine “Kitty” Katt series for DAW Books and the Martian Alliance Chronicles series for Musa Publishing. She also writes under a variety of pen names (including G.J. Koch, Anita Ensal, Jemma Chase, A.E. Stanton, and J.C. Koch), listens to rock music 24/7, and is a proud comics geek-girl willing to discuss at any time why Wolverine is the best superhero ever (even if Deadpool does get all the best lines). She speaks frequently on what it takes to become a successful author and other aspects of writing and the publishing business.
Interview mit Gini Koch
Hi Gini, and welcome to Anima Libri’s new “Author Interviews”-Special (which is really BRAND new, since you just happen to be the very first lucky author to get featured in this special, so BE HONORED! ). I’m so happy you agreed to do this interview!
So very happy to be here! And I AM honored, it’s very cool to be anyone’s “first”. Thanks for choosing me to be the first for your Author Interviews!
So, let’s start at the beginning: Why, and how, did you become an author?
The voices in my head.
Seriously. I’d had story ideas for years but it took a set of really loud, persistent characters to get me out of the “I’m not a writer” zone. Once I started, there was basically no stopping me. I love to write. I live to write. It’s my “one thing”, the thing I’d do no matter what, no matter where, no matter when.
The rest was just patience and perseverance, working at the craft of writing in all lengths and genres and POVs and such until I hit escape velocity and was able to truly take off.
I’m very aware that publishing is, first and foremost, a business, and therefore I did my best to learn and understand that business and how it works. I also accepted that there was going to be a lot of rejection along the way.
My answer to everything, good or bad, is the same: write another book. So far, that’s been working for me.
What does your average workday look like?
It varies, because rarely do I get a day that truly ends up “average” any more, but usually I crawl out of bed somewhere around 10-11am. Take care of the Canine Death Squad and Killer Kitties. Make breakfast (well, I call it breakfast…the hubs calls it lunch or brunch). Handle all the “business” stuff — reply to agent, editors, fans, interview requests, do a Hook Me Up! email blast and blog if appropriate, and so on.
I start writing somewhere between 1 & 2pm, depending on how busy the morning’s been and how late I crawled out of bed. Write until dinnertime. Make dinner. Depending on day (Monday) sit down w/hubs & chicklet and watch TV (aka Castle). Otherwise, it’s back to writing, handling business stuff that came in during the afternoon and evening, and so on. I usually get into bed between midnight and 3:30am, depending.
And then it’s deja vu all over again.
I could go fully nocturnal in 3 days or less, but since I enjoy seeing my husband and interacting with my agent and editors, I don’t. (Social media ensures I can interact with my fans day or night.) Though I think I’d probably be more efficient and a whole heck of a lot more conscious when awake if I did.
Where do you get your inspiration for writing in general and of course for your ALIEN / Katherine “Kitty” Katt series in particular?
In general, and also for Touched by an Alien, which is the first book in the series, my inspiration comes from dreams. I get about 50% of my ideas from my dreams. The rest come from songs, seeing something that strikes me, random conversations, and a lot of “what if” scenarios.
I work out plot issues when I’m in the shower. Don’t ask me why, but that’s where the Fix It Inspiration consistently hits me. Apparently shampoo and conditioner help my brain work.
I also truly need the right music playing in order to get whatever I’m working on to flow properly. I will spend more time figuring out the right bands and songs for each book than I do on any other form of research. But without the right music, I plod. WITH the right music, I fly. And I’d rather fly.
The fifth book in this series, Alien Diplomacy, was just released. Did you know from the beginning what was going to happen in this book or did the things you wrote take you by surprise?
I’m an extreme linear writer. I start with the title, then the first line, and then I go from there. Within a series, of course, I know certain things that are going to happen. But still at least 80% of the time what’s going on is a complete surprise to me, just like it is to the characters.
In Alien Diplomacy in particular, I know some things will surprise readers because they sure surprised me. LOL
What will Kitty and Co. (and your readers) have to deal with next in your ALIEN / Katherine “Kitty” Katt series? Any hints on how it will go on or even just how long it will go on?
Well, I live spoiler free. But not teaser free. ;-D
In Alien vs. Alien the threat to Earth in general and Kitty and Company in particular rises to a scary degree. The stakes have never been higher, nor the risks greater. But, when you get right down to it, Alien vs. Alien is all about the birds.
As for how long, right now I’m contracted through Book 8, I have through Book 12 mapped out (as much as I map), and I can “see” through to Book 16. My editor knows all this, and so far, DAW says that as long as readers are buying the books, they’re happy to publish the books. So, really, it’s all up to YOU GUYS for how long the series goes. But no pressure. ;-D
What other upcoming projects are you working on? Anything special waiting on that secret stash of high school manuscripts of yours?
I wrote in grade school and junior high, but I never wrote in high school or college. Mostly because I had a teacher (who I knew, at age 15, to be an idiot) who said that you could only write if you outlined…and I believed her. Outlines are great for term papers and business presentations, and for those authors who can’t do without them. But for me, they were the worst thing in the world in terms of creating fiction. Ergo, I didn’t write for YEARS. Until, as I said earlier, those pesky voices in my head wouldn’t shut up.
So, I have no secret stash, LOL. I have finished manuscripts that are done and being shopped, and various manuscripts that I’m working on, and the variety of WIPs that are waiting patiently for their turn to be completed. So far, I’ve only scrapped one project that I did when I was first starting out with the writing journey. I save it and use it and its ideas for “parts” so to speak. I loved my ideas, concepts and settings, but my characters weren’t “there” yet, and my villains were FAR more interesting…and they weren’t interesting enough. But when I use them for “parts”, then they really shine, so it wall worked out. I’m a firm believer that no words written are ever wasted, even if no one else will ever see those words other than you, the author.
As for what else is coming, however, I have the release of the first novel in a new series, written as G.J. Koch — Alexander Outland: Space Pirate — which will release from Night Shade Books (http://nightshadebooks.com/cart.php?m=product_detail&p=240) in trade paperback and ebook formats on June 5, 2012.
Trouble’s brewing out in space, and Alexander Outland — the least likely hero in the galaxy — and his eccentric crew have to save the day, despite the fact they’d prefer to take the money and run.
It’s science fiction with a lot of action, romance, and humor. It’s also funnier than my Alien series. (Yes, really.) I think readers who enjoy the Alien series are also going to enjoy Alexander Outland.
And, speaking of the Alien series, Alien vs. Alien releases December 4, 2012, and Alien in the House and Alien Collective will release in April and December 2013, respectively.
I also have a variety of novelettes and novellas up at Musa Publishing (http://musapublishing.com/). They’re e-releases only, and written both as Gini Koch and as other pen names of mine (Anita Ensal, Jemma Chase, and A.E. Stanton).
There are more things cooking, but I never talk about anything that isn’t sold or solidly in place, so everyone will just have to stay tuned!
Thank you, Gini, ever so much for this amazing interview and for taking the time to answer these questions.
Thank YOU for having me here to visit! I had a great time and look forward to visiting again!
More information on Gini Koch and her books can be found on her homepage:
As said above Gini was so nice to offer a signed copy of one of her books as price for a giveaway! It’s winner’s choice on a signed and personalized copy of either TOUCHED BY AN ALIEN, ALIEN TANGO or ALIEN IN A FAMILY.
Just fill out the following form to take part in this giveaway!
The giveaway is open internationally and ends on May 19th!
German readers (as well as Austrian ones and those from Switzerland or anyone else German speaking) should head over to my German blog, where we’re also giving away a signed copy of the German version of TOUCHED BY AN ALIEN (ALIENS IN ARMANI): See here for more information
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