I am a lifelong reader and sometimes an author. I am also an appellate attorney, photographer, political junkie, and mother of two daughters, living in a county outside a town in Indiana. I read science fiction, historical fiction, biography, history, 18th and 19th Century English classics, mysteries, YA, and once in a while a bit of fantasy. I write science fiction, general fiction and picture books -- so far.
Tell us a bit about your writing
I wrote my first novel - a picaresque story of a boy and his dragon - at the age of 10, as a gift for a teacher I adored. I abandoned another, about an orphan girl, at age 14. I wrote poetry in high school, short stories in college, and nothing for many years thereafter. In my late 30's, belatedly starting a family, I began writing picture book manuscripts. My older daughter's involvement in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) in 2010 led me back to writing novels. I published my science fiction novel Twin-Bred in October 2011, and a science fiction story about human cloning, "The Baby," shortly thereafter. I am currently revising two more novels: the sequel to Twin-Bred, and a novel set in an afterlife of my own devising.
Do you write in a specific genre? science fiction, but not only science fiction
Share the blurb from the book that you've written that you like best...
Humans have lived on Tofarn, planet of creeks and rivers, for seventy years, but they still don’t understand the Tofa. The Tofa are an enigma, from their featureless faces to the four arms that sometimes seem to be five. They take arbitrary umbrage at the simplest human activities, while annoying their human neighbors in seemingly pointless ways. The next infuriating, inexplicable incident may explode into war.
Scientist Mara Cadell has a radical proposal: that host mothers carry fraternal twins, human and Tofa, who might understand each other better. Mara knows about the bond between twins: her own twin Levi died in utero, but she has secretly kept him alive in her mind as companion and collaborator.
The human Council approves the project. The Tofa agree to cooperate, although no one is sure they understand the project’s purpose. In fact, the Tofa have their own agenda. And so does one member of the Council, who believes the human colonists should have wiped out the Tofa before setting foot on Tofarn. Mara must shepherd the Twin-Bred project through dangers she anticipated and others that even the canny Levi could not foresee.
The Twin-Bred were born to bring peace to their two peoples. But will their unique upbringing leave them too different, too alien, to achieve this goal? Will Councilman Kimball turn the Tofa Twin-Bred into a weapon against their own species? And what is it the Tofa really want?
Do you agree that all authors need an editor? Why?
I believe having someone with the appropriate skills edit one's book could be enormously helpful. If the author is already a professional writer (e.g. an appellate attorney -- purely a random example :-) ), and if the author is willing to proofread repeatedly at intervals, it may not be absolutely necessary. I took the gamble of going it alone, and based on my reviews, I seem to have gotten away with it.
Share a link to a great blog http://www.instapundit.com
Share a link to a great book http://www.amazon.com/Sparrow-Mary-Doria-Russell/dp/0449912558/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1327084506&sr=1-1
Share a link to a 'must use' site for writers http://www.thepassivevoice.com/
How do you manage your writing day? Do you write full time?
I juggle writing, my part-time law practice, my duties as Mommy Taxi and household coordinator, walking the dog, and the rare social interlude.
During NaNoWriMo or its summer equivalent, Camp Nano, I generally write at least 1700 words a day, usually in two or three main stints plus many short trips to the computer. The rest of the year, I may go days without writing, or write almost as much as during those more intensive periods.
How do you use networking to improve your writing and/or reach readers?
I follow several Goodreads groups for authors, for readers, and for both. I follow some writers and editors I respect on Facebook and/or Twitter. I have a website (www.KarenAWyle.net). On my author Facebook page (www.facebook.com/KarenAWyle), I post about books, writing, and my own work. I tweet on those subjects, as well as legal topics and miscellanea, as @WordsmithWyle.
What has been the biggest challenge in your writing/publishing life so far?
Trying to get the word out about my books! I had heard that it was crucial to find bloggers and others willing to review one's book. That may be -- but I'm discovering that good reviews, while perhaps necessary, are not sufficient. I'm trying to use any reasonable and non-obnoxious promotional technique I can find. I've been reluctant to try KDP Select because of the demand for exclusivity, which would make it more expensive to provide review copies, but I may resort to it eventually.
What are you working on at the moment?
I'm revising my afterlife-setting novel, tentatively titled Reflections, and working on another human cloning story.
Is there anything else you'd like us to know?
My story "The Baby," involving human cloning, is currently free on Smashwords.
I'm running a Playlist Promotion. The first reader to suggest a particular song -- one I find appropriate -- for a Twin-Bred Playlist will have their name and selection included in an appendix to a future edition of Twin-Bred. I'll post updates from time to time on Twin-Bred's Facebook page, www.facebook.com/TwinBred (no hyphen).
Linkshttp://www.KarenAWyle.net http://looking-around.blogspot.com http://www.facebook.com/KarenAWyle https://twitter.com/#!/WordsmithWyle
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