Award-winning author Karen Rose Smith was born in the Susquehanna Valley. Although she was an only child, she remembers the bonds of an extended family. Since her father came from a family of ten and her mother, a family of seven, there were always aunts, uncles and cousins visiting on weekends. Family is a strong theme in her books and she suspects her childhood memories are the reason.
In college, Karen began writing poetry and also met her husband to be. They both began married life as teachers, but when their son was born, Karen decided to try her hand at a home-decorating business. She returned to teaching for a while but changes in her life led her to writing romance fiction. Now she writes romances and mysteries full time. Her 86th novel, GILT BY ASSOCIATION, will be released in 2015.
Presently, she is hard at work on her Caprice De Luca home stager mystery series for Kensington Books. When she isn’t writing, she cares for three rescue cats, strays and feral cats, gardens, and cooks. Married to her college sweetheart since 1971, believing in the power of love and commitment, she envisions herself writing relationship novels, both romance and mystery, for a long time to come!
Readers can email Karen through her websites at http://www.karenrosesmith.com or http://www.karenrosesmithmysteries.com. She posts excerpts there and info about upcoming titles. They can also follow her on Twitter @karenrosesmith and her Facebook page KarenRoseSmithBooks.
What inspires you to write?
After back surgery, I needed a creative outlet. Once an English teacher, writing came easily to me. It was a wonderful way to express myself, and therapeutic, too.
Tell us about your writing process.
Since I started this process over twenty years ago, it comes naturally to me now. When I developed the concept for my Caprice De Luca mystery series, I created Caprice first and then each member of her family. I’ve always heavily plotted and outlined so that I can write no matter how I feel or where I am. I plot three to four scenes per chapter and a certain number of chapters, depending on the word count. I once used a notebook with a page for each chapter. Now I use my iPad and the app PAGES. I follow the process in a similar way. I plug in my chapter numbers and then plot each scene from there.
I have fibro myalsia and arthritis. The fibro myalsia started affecting my eyes over fifteen years ago and I began using a tape recorder to write. I have a typist transcribe the tapes and then I edit the hard copy. This process works for me.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I listen to and talk to my characters. When I work consistently on a book, they are with me every day and have minds of their own. I follow my gut instinct and usually let them have their way.
What advice would you give other writers?
Persistence and perseverance are as important as the ability to write. Marketing savvy is all important in this new publishing world.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
When I began writing in the late 80s, a traditional publisher was the only way to go. A few years ago, I began to indie-publish my backlist titles as well as indie-publishing original work. Diversification is the key. Right now, I’m writing for two traditional publishers as well as indie-publishing.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I absolutely don’t know. As the market becomes glutted with indie-published books, readers have a multitude of choices. It’s difficult to get a foothold. This is where perseverance and hard work pays off. A writer will have to keep producing and marketing way into the future.
What do you use?
Dictated and got transcribed, Professional Cover Designer
What genres do you write?
romance, mystery, women’s fiction, sci-fi
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print