I’m very happy to introduce Vancouver author Katherine Prairie, who’s intriguing background offers plenty of material to incorporate into her fiction. Katherine, a geologist and IT specialist, stepped away from the international petroleum industry to follow her passion for writing. An avid traveller with an insatiable curiosity, you never know where you’ll find her next! But most days, she’s in Vancouver, Canada quietly plotting murder and mayhem under the watchful eye of a cat. She is an award-winning presenter and the author of the thriller THIRST.
I posed some questions for Katherine which she kindly answered. Enjoy!
Did you incorporate any real life experiences or settings into the story?
I’m a geologist and I spent much of my career in the international petroleum industry, but I also worked for a mining company one summer. For four months, I lived in a tent, hiked mountains and rode helicopters to/from work sites in the Canadian north. It was an experience like no other and through geologist Alex Graham, I try to share it with readers.
If you’re writing a series, what are the pros and cons? If you’ve written a stand-alone what are the pros and cons?
I didn’t set out to write a series but I came to really like Alex Graham and she fit well into other stories I had in mind. With a series, it’s much easier to deliver a rich personality because I have room to develop Alex over several novels. But it also means that I have to pace her journey carefully because I want readers to get to know her a little better in each story. And I always have to remember that every action she takes affects future novels!
What is the most satisfying character and/or story line you’ve ever written?
You might think that it’s Alex, but it’s my ER doctor, Eric Keenan. THIRST required a key medical scene that I struggled with for many weeks, but when it finally came together I was thrilled with the results. It wasn’t just the scene itself, but Eric’s character as well, and I found myself expanding the role of this very complex doctor and adding more medical scenes.
Name your top three how-to writing books, and/or the best novels you’ve ever read.
The Emotion Thesaurus by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi is my go-to reference when I’m trying to convey emotion through character movement or expression.
I also like The Fire in Fiction by Donald Maass because it goes beyond the nuts-and-bolts of writing to deliver solid practical advice on how to develop compelling scenes.
And when I need to review the basics, it’s Sin and Syntax by Constance Hale.
“THIRST leads the reader down a literary mineshaft where oxygen is running low and time short. Flavoured with insider expertise and a nature storyteller’s flair, THIRST is a gripping and fun ride.” Daniel Kalla, bestselling author of NIGHTFALL OVER SHANGHAI.
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