Monday, August 1, 2016

Summer Splash Book Blog Tour: Meet Kristan Cannon!

Kristan Cannon was born in Kirkland Lake, Ontario and educated in North Bay and Toronto.  She is a staunch supporter of literacy, reading, and young writer's programs. She also holds a current membership with The Indie Writer's Network and is a member of the NaNoWriMo Ambassador's program.

When not researching or writing, Kristan exists for sailing her classic wooden sailboat with her cat, friends, and family... or for video games and books when snow and ice have the boat locked in its slip and she can't get away.

1. What is your most recent book?
My most recent book, which will be released at the end of August, is Between Silence and Fire.
2. Why do you think people would want to read it? What is its most compelling quality?
Fans of the series (it's the third book in an existing series) will want to read it because it continues from the end of The Last Iron Horse, and is the explosive start to both a war and when the very last of the supplies, even those greedily kept back after civilization ended, finally run out.  People have to start literally from nothing again, or depend on what they have already managed to build since the beginning of the first book, After Oil.
War is literally breaking out as various factions now realize that they only have so many resources, and there are areas (and factions) who have more than they do.  This book is going to be far more brutal and feral than the others.  Allies are being met with silence from other allies, simply because of a lack of a way to help, and there's this wildfire burning out of control and herding other factions who don't necessarily get along with into each other.
Again, though, the most compelling quality isn't the fires, or the war breaking out to control the city, but the people caught up with it.  We again follow Derek Moss and the Rangers of Walden and how he, and those Rangers, are dealing with everything being dropped on their doorstep.
And there's going to be a huge game changer in this book that has only been hinted at since the very first page of the series.
3. Who is your favorite character that you’ve written and why?
That is really a tough question because I love them all.  Even the ones that end up leaving the series, whether through death or otherwise, are so different from each other and always brought something else to the table.  If I had to pick just one, though, it would have to be Derek.
4. What is the hardest thing you have to do when you create a character and what’s the easiest?
Characters have a way of creating themselves, and in the Kingdom of Walden, they literally did.  Most of the characters are based off what others created during a role-playing campaign.  Others are based on people I know.  The hardest thing would be doing them justice when I finally write about how they respond to what I throw at them.  It's getting into their heads.
The easiest is letting the characters--even the ones I created from scratch--develop into their own.
5. How do you deal with writer's block?
I walk away and do something else for awhile. Writer's block, for me, is my mind telling me it's had enough and just needs a break.
6. What is the one book that changed the way you write?
Chuck Wendig's The Kickass Writer, with a close second (only because I read it second), James Osiris Baldwin's Fix Your Damn Book!
7. What is the nerdiest thing you've ever done?
I built and sewed my own Time Lord High Council Member (from Doctor Who) costume, from scratch, including the collar, gown, and jewellery.  It didn't come out perfect, and in the second year, I had to retire it because the collar fell apart.  But that was easily the nerdiest thing I've ever done.
But I'll remake that costume with the stuff I've learned.  I have a few ideas on how to improve and finish the collar, as well as make the gown part fit better.
8. What is one item on your Bucket List that you haven't completed yet?
I would like to go to Kyoto and be allowed into a banquet with actual geisha performing.  Walk the streets and soak in that history.
9. If you could spend one week anywhere in the world, where would you go?
Outside of that mentioned trip to Kyoto, I would also like to eventually make my way to Ireland and Scotland, as well as other parts of the UK.  Easily half of my family tree can be traced to Ireland and Scotland.
10. What is your most prized possession?
The book collection I inherited from my Nanny. (my grandmother on my mother's side of the family)
11. What is the best piece of advice you have been given in regards to your writing?
 First drafts are supposed to be crap.  Just shut up and write.  You can edit out the crap later.
12. What is one piece of advice you would give to someone who wants to write but doesn't know where to start?
Without repeating what someone else said to me, don't sweat making it perfect.  Just tell yourself that story by at least getting the first draft out.  Start small.  Just write something, even if it's a series of flash fiction every day.  Eventually, the bigger stuff will come.

Find Kristan's books on Amazon HERE
Did you enjoy this interview? Do you have a question of your own for Kristan? Comment below and I will pass it on to her! Meanwhile, catch my interview with fantasy author Catherine Banks on her blog >HERE<!