Interview with Author Kristina Bak

Kristina Bak

I am thrilled to have interviewed author Kristina Bak, who shared with us details of her writing life, her book ‘Cold Mirage‘, which was released on 16th June 2022, and answered a few fun questions. This post contains affiliate links.

Kristina Bak author

Kristina Bak grew up in the Pacific Northwest, dropped out of Reed College in 1969, and spent enough years hiking in the North Cascades to graduate from Western Washington University in Bellingham. She explored utopias via Paolo Soleri’s Arcosanti and the University of New Mexico.

A graduate degree in architecture at the University of Washington earned her a Fulbright year in Rome before she moved to Australia with her husband and six-month-old daughter for three years. Back in the US, the family lived on Bainbridge Island until Kristina graduated from Antioch, Seattle, with an MA in psychology. They moved to Bend, Oregon, in 1993.

Since that time, Kristina has worked as a mental health therapist, taught qigong, and sojourned in Sydney again as a ghostwriter, among other things. She took her first Argentine Social Tango class in 2010, and like countless others, is addicted to the dance.

interview picture 2023


1) Where did the inspiration for your book come from?

I lived in Australia for some time in the 1980’s. In early September, 2001, I was scheduled to fly from Oregon to Sydney to visit an old friend there. We all remember what happened on September 11th, and after that tragedy, commercial flights were shut down for a while. My flight to Sydney was among the very first international flights to be allowed. It was scary, but the flight was packed with Aussies who had been stuck at Heathrow in London for days, so it was also like a big party in the air, people glad to be alive and going home.

On my first morning in Sydney, jet-lagged, I went for a walk in my friend’s beautiful harborside neighborhood. Out of curiosity, I stepped into a shop in an odd little 19th Century stone building, and, to make this long story shorter, met a person who became my teacher in a system of off-the-body energy healing for the next three years. I learned how to sense and focus my own energy to soothe mind and body tension and pain in others. This technique amazed me with its effectiveness. At some point I wondered what would happen to a child born with this skill, and began to explore this idea in my fiction writing. Thus, my protagonist, Stevie, was born. Strangely enough, over the past five years of writing about Stevie, I have had the experience of receiving healing from her, the healer I created.

2) How did you plan out the plot?

I first see my novels as movies in my mind, then write notes on paper with diagrams of characters and plot points, then first drafts on my laptop.

3) When did you choose the title for your book?

The title of Cold Mirage came to mind before I knew how it connected to my story. (I researched online to be sure it hadn’t been used, but strangely, another very different book of the same title appeared at about the same time as mine was published.)

4) How did you come up with the names for your characters?

My protagonist, Stevie, was named in the first novel of the series (Nowever) after Stevie Nicks, the great American singer/songwriter, though my character admits she herself “sings like a penguin.” The other characters’ names evolved from long lists of names I searched online.

5) Can you give us a hint to any sections that you removed?

None removed, though I was tempted to add more.

6) What made you choose this genre?

This genre chose me. For this series, I wrote novels that would have been fun and empowering for me to read when I was a teen; stories that appeal to the younger version of each of us at whatever age we are now. A more precise description of what I write is Near-future non-dystopian realism with fantasy elements. (My experience of “realism” being flexible in many ways.)

7) How long did it take you to complete your book?

About three years.

8) Can you describe your book in three words?


9) What’s the hardest part of being a writer?

Marketing! A natural introvert, this presents a steep learning curve for me. I love doing readings and talking to people, but the tech parts of the process aren’t my favorite things, especially because they keep changing.

10) Why should our readers pick your book up?

It’s an entertaining and thought-provoking page-turner that won’t leave ugly traces in your dreams if you read yourself to sleep at night. Mysterious and scary things happen, but the beauty of the locations and basic human kindness are there, too.

Cold Mirage by Kristine Bak

Cold Mirage

Author – Kristina Bak
Publisher – Luminare Press
Pages – 195
Release Date – 16th June 2022
ISBN 13 – 978-1643888903
Format – ebook, paperback


In Nowever, high school misfit Stevie juggles secrets—her haunting visions, her uncanny gift, a confusing relationship that might be love—searching for her missing dad and narrowly escaping death on two continents. In Cold Mirage, sequel to Nowever, Stevie battles her worst nightmare with two newfound allies—whose gifts are even stranger than her own—and their cats.

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Fun Questions

Talking Owl Interview Pic 2023

1) Do you have a writing buddy (i.e. a pet)?

Nanuq, my 13-year-old cat, came to me in a vision before I found him as a frightened adolescent in our local animal shelter. He’s always somewhere close by, often in my lap crowding my laptop.

Writing Buddy, Nanuq

2) Do you have any writing quirks?

Only if you call an excellent espresso to start with in the morning a quirk.

3) Where do you write?

By the fire in my studio in the winter. In the garden when the weather is warm.

Winter and summer writing kristina Bak

4) Your book has been made into a movie, you’ve been offered a cameo role, what will you be doing?

I’d love to be Stevie, but I’m not a teen and if it’s only a cameo, I think I’d have to be her mom.

5) A talking owl has just finished reading your book, what’s the first thing he says to you?

“Why did you paint an owl for the book cover illustration when there’s no owl mentioned in the story?” (And the owl is not happy about not being included.)

Author links


A big thank you to Kristina Bak for sharing her writing life with us and for a wonderful interview.

The above links are affiliate links. I receive a very small percentage from each item you purchase via these link, which is at no extra cost to you. If you are thinking about purchasing the book, please think about using one of the links above. Thank you.

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