The Writing Life of: Kaylin McFarren
This week on ‘The Writing Life of:‘ I am thrilled to be interviewing author Kaylin McFarren. Kaylin will be sharing with us detail of her writing life, telling us all about her latest book ‘Banished Threads‘, which was released on 20th March 2016, and answering a few fun questions too. This post contains affiliate links.
Kaylin McFarren is a California native who has enjoyed traveling around the world. She previously worked as director for a fine art gallery, where she helped foster the careers of various artists before feeling the urge to satisfy her own creative impulses.
Since launching her writing career, McFarren has earned more than a dozen literary awards in addition to a finalist spot in the 2008 RWA Golden Heart Contest. A member of RWA, Rose City Romance Writers, and Willamette Writers, she also lends her participation and support to various charitable and educational organizations in the Pacific Northwest.
McFarren currently lives with her husband in Oregon and visits her second home in California once a month. They have three grown daughters and two grandchildren, and look forward to having more.
1) Do you remember the moment you decided that you would like to become a writer?
When I was 8 years old, I won a poetry and short story contest and decided that I would be a writer one day.
2) How did you go about following your dream?
I attended dozens of workshops and conferences, then I locked myself away in my library and wrote like a banshee.
After submitting my manuscript to a half dozen contests and winning first place in most of them, I thought I might actually have something on my hands. I contacted 40 agents and publishing houses, and followed all the steps and formalities.
When I was finally accepted and signed by an agent in New York, I thought my job was done. But it wasn’t. She waited three months before notifying me that I needed a full rewrite in order to sell my story to one of the big houses. I severed our relationship shortly after and eventually went independent, and that’s the way I’ve chosen to publish my books.
3) Is there a particular author that inspires you?
I love reading Lisa Jackson books, as I’m a huge suspense-thriller fan. Her twisted stories keep the reader’s attention and the pages turning, and that’s ultimately what I strive for when I write.
4) What is your average writing day like? Do you have any strange writing habits?
I start at 8am—social networking and answering emails. Then I grab a cup of coffee and set to work around 10am and work nonstop until 2pm.
Usually I work from Pinterest—where I enjoy plotting my stories and developing all aspects of my characters: looks, traits, interests, etc. I’ve been known to down a glass of wine while writing love scenes and devour a box of chocolates when I’m completely stumped. And I’ve been known to cry over an emotional exchange because my characters have become so real to me.
5) Do you write Longhand, Type writer, Computer?
I work strictly on my computer, writing from my thoughts and inspirations.
6) From all your books, do you have a favourite character?
I love Chase Cohen, as he reminds me of my brother—a handsome, adventurous man that lacks social graces at times but still manages to charm the ladies.
7) Do you plot your books completely before hand or do you let your imagination flow whilst in the writing process?
I write a synopsis before beginning a story and then I turn my imagination and characters loose.
Concerning your latest book:
Threads Series #3
Author – Kaylin McFarren
Publisher – Creative Edge Publishing
Pages – 258
Release Date – 20th March 2016
Format – ebook, paperback, audio
A valuable art collection disappears turning a treasure-hunting duo into crime-stopping sleuths committed to vindicating family members in Kaylin McFarren’s action-packed suspense novel, Banished Threads.
While vacationing at the stately Cumberforge Manor in Bellwood, England, Rachel Lyons and Chase Cohen attend an elegant dinner party hosted by her uncle, Paul Lyons, and his aristocratic wife, Sara. Before the evening ends, a priceless collection of Morris Graves’s paintings are stolen from her uncle’s popular gallery, throwing all suspicion onto his wife’s missing granddaughter.
Determined to clear Sloan Rafferty’s name and, in the process, win Paul’s favor, Chase scours the countryside looking for answers. In his absence, the police accuse Rachel’s uncle of an unsolved murder and secrets surrounding her grandmother’s death and the deaths of Sara’s former husbands turn his wife into the most likely suspect.
With the true villains hell-bent on destroying Paul Lyons and his family, solving both crimes while ensuring her uncle’s freedom not only endangers Rachel’s life but that of her unborn child. Will Chase save them before the kidnappers enact their revenge or will the ultimate price be paid, as predicted by a vagabond fortuneteller?
8) How long did it take to get from the ideas stage, to the date of publication?
From the time I dream up my story to the final edits and completed copy, I would have to say 5-1/2 months.
9) Did you suffer from writer’s block at any stage? How did you overcome it?
I honestly haven’t had a problem with writer’s block and have to force myself to stand up and stretch. My best escape is always my gardens, and sometimes I find great solutions to painted corners there.
10) How did you come up with the name(s)for your lead character(s)?
I like to think that my main characters have traits that are reflected in their names. Rachel Lyons is a strong, elegant woman, but she’s also a fighter and will go to great lengths to protect her family. Chase Cohen is tough and aggressive, and he’s always after the prize, pushing himself to his limits and beyond.
11) If your book was made in to a film, who would you love to play the lead character(s)?
Allison Brie and Ethan Hawke.
12) Did you get anyone in particular to read your work before sending it to the publisher i.e family member, friend etc?
I have a critique group that I depend on, a great friend who is an avid reader, a niece who is an amazing editor, and a daughter who is an established writer and great sounding board.