Interview with Kate Aaron!

Image of Kate Aaron              Blood & Ash (Lost Realm)

Bio for Kate Aaron

Indie author, queer theorist, sometime recluse and occasional binge drinker, Kate Aaron lives in Cheshire, England with two dogs who won’t behave, a parrot that won’t talk and a tank full of fish that won’t even acknowledge her unless it’s dinnertime.

She has the best of friends, the worst of enemies, and a mischievous muse with a passion for storytelling that doesn’t know the difference between fact and fiction.

                                   Bio taken from Kate’s site

I was very excited to receive a request from Kate to interview her! Her stories are just as unique as the author. And that is a good thing! So grab a cup of your favorite beverage and get comfy as you read the interview with Kate. Thank you for stopping by!

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1. What makes for a good hook in your stories? Where does your inspiration come from?
I like to think that I can offer something a little bit different to my genre. As a gay woman, m/m romance might seem an odd field to write in, but I believe that by drawing on my own experiences I can add value in a genre that is predominantly written by and for straight women. My inspiration comes from my own life when I’m writing about relationships and what it’s like to come out and be out. Adding fantasy to the mix means I can have fun building a world from scratch, and I love developing that world as my Lost Realm series progresses.
2. Are you an organized writer? Do you do things like take notes and make lists of characters? Or do you free write and work it out as you go?
I pretty much write down whatever is in me as it flows out. Towards the end of finishing a book I’ll go back and sort out all the little details: make sure that a character doesn’t have blue eyes one page and brown the next, that kind of thing. Writing contemporary stories can make that a little bit trickier: I’m finishing a new novel at the moment which is set between 2011 and 2012, and I’m currently going back and working out the exact date that each scene takes place and making sure I’ve got stuff like the day of the week and the lunar cycle right, because I just know if I say there’s a full moon on such-and-such a date someone is going to notice that there wasn’t!
3. What is your normal writing day like? Do you write when you are inspired or do you have a schedule?
I try and write every day, but I don’t worry too much if I don’t. If I can’t write it’s usually because I’ve not got something quite worked out in my head yet. At the moment I’m writing an easy 2,000-3,000 words a day, because I’m on the home straight and I know exactly how it’s going to end.
4. Who is your favourite author and how did they inspire you to write?
Mary Renault has always fascinated me: for a start she too was a gay woman writing about queer male experience. Her novels are just beautiful, but she seemed so ill-fated: she should have been really famous, but for some reason it never quite worked out for her. I suppose her story is a good reminder that you don’t have to be a household name to be a great writer.
5. It’s easy to see that you have a passion for writing but is there any part of it you don’t like?
The endless editing gets draining pretty quickly. By the time you’ve read your own book for the twentieth time you’ve lost your distance from it, and it’s easy to start doubting it. And I do find myself, towards the very end, sitting and debating the respective merits of stupid things like ‘pushed’ vs ‘pressed’. Madness sets in!
6. Do you make time to read and if you do what are you reading right now?
I read voraciously, and always have. I keep track of my reading via Goodreads ( and I’m almost always in the top 10 readers. Last week I read 27 books, wrote 15,000 words and worked 40 hours at the day job. I don’t need much sleep! At the minute I’m reading the fourth volume of Don’t Read in the Closet, a collection of m/m shorts that was commissioned by the Goodreads M/M Romance group. It’s a hugely impressive feat, and most of the stories are very, very good.
7. What drew you towards this writing style of vampires and love? Is there personal life experience in the writing?
Not so much with the vampires! I’ve always loved vampire novels, from Bram Stoker through to Charlaine Harris. (Although I confess I’ve never read any of the Twilight books). The beauty of writing about anything paranormal or mythological is that you can put your own interpretation on it: my vampires have some characteristics that make them unique to my books. Plus there’s endless scope for compelling narrative when your character has lived for a thousand years. How does that kind of longevity affect personality; how do you cope with seeing the world change so dramatically; with watching everyone that you ever get close to growing old and dying? What is it about a naïve teenager that can capture the heart of someone like that?
8. Your books have been published with, Does this mean you see the publishing industry headed this way?
I think indie publishing is one of the greatest advances of recent years, because it takes publishing back to its origins. In the Victorian era anyone with a bit of cash could produce pamphlets and magazines – and they did. Some foundered, some were hugely successful. That’s the same today. I think in the latter half of the last century too much control was handed over to the big publishing houses. It’s next to impossible for a new author to get their foot in the door, through no fault of their own. Now the readers can decide for themselves what they do and don’t like. It’s a democracy again.
9. Do you have any online sites where others can read more of your writings?
I run a blog where I post excerpts of upcoming publications, along with short pieces that aren’t available through the mainstream sites.
10. Do you have any more stories in the works? What kinds of stories do you plan to write next?
Like I said I’m at the end of one now, a contemporary m/m romance. It’s a bit of a response piece to some of the more clichéd stories I’ve read with impossibly-perfect happily ever afters. This story starts with the end of a ‘perfect’ relationship, and asks how someone can find the strength to love and trust again when the fairytale has failed them. There’s excerpts from it on my blog and on my Goodreads profile. After that it’s straight into Lost Realm book three, which is going to be published alongside another short story, Fenton’s Absolution. Fenton first appeared in Blood & Ash but I decided to expand his character in Fire & Ice. I gave him a backstory in Fenton: the Loneliest Vampire and since it was published I’ve had people crying out for him to have the ending that he deserves. Fenton is asexual and trying to find love on his own terms, so his story was never going to end in traditional romantic style. I think I’ve found a way to reconcile his personality with what my readers are telling me they want for him, and I’m really excited about the new turn his character has taken. The plan for Lost Realm originally was for a trilogy, but as I’ve begun plotting the final novel I think there’s scope for more one day. Never say never…
11. Who would be your first choice to play Ash from your book “Blood and Ash”?
I’ve been asked this before, and it’s a difficult question to answer. Ash is so young and naïve that I don’t think it would be easy finding someone to play him. Maybe a young Elijah Wood, all blue-eyed innocence.
12. If you could meet anyone from any time who would it be and what would be your first question?
Can I cheat and have three people, but one question? Alexander the Great, Oscar Wilde and Peter Wildeblood. The question would be “Was it worth it?”