About MK Lee:
M K Lee is an author of poetry, short stories, and novels, who thinks the world deserves more happy stories. When not writing, they enjoy the company of all creatures great and small, love watching amateur dramatics, and discovering the world one good coffee and great cake at a time.
What inspires you to write?
I like the idea of everyday adventures, and of couples who get together and stay together, facing any problems they encounter as a team.
So much of the media I watch prefers to create unnecessary drama within a couple, or will have characters with great chemistry but only ever tease about the possibility of romance instead of letting that chemistry lead to a relationship. I look at these things, and want to run in the opposite direction!
There is excitement in a solid relationship. There is an adventure in doing the mundane. I'm inspired to write these things because I think if you can't find joy in these small moments and are always waiting for the next big something, you're missing out.
What authors do you read when you aren’t writing?
Hands down Marian Keyes, because there is something very beautiful about mixing comedy with drama and tragedy. Keyes has this way of making me want to know absolutely everything about all her characters; I aspire to have that kind of character development!
Another author I admire a lot is Tom Holt, who uses this incredible mix of comedy and satire to tell a story. I have reread one of his books so much I could probably quote it at you, it's such a cleverly crafted adventure.
Tell us about your writing process.
I'm not the most linear writer; what I like to do is write the scenes that I'm desperate to get down first, then reorganise them however they fit. This generally means I get a 'what if this happened' scenario in my head and I make a note of it, then write then another, until I have a bunch of things that need slotting together.
I do use a lot of spreadsheets to keep track of things, and I like to try to keep a fairly strict timeline so I know what is happening when. For me, this brings a story together easier, because I'm getting to know my characters and what they are doing in their lives at a certain time. So, I guess I lean far more towards being a seat of the pants writer but with a firm hold on my spreadsheets for guidance!
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I am the awkward person in the room who looks at my characters and wants to get to know them! Sidling up to them in a cafe and attempting small talk, generally tripping over my tongue and then having to disappear again in mortification. A true disaster human being; why else would I be a writer?
Generally, I listen to my characters more than talk to them because, well, disaster human. I like to listen to what they're thinking about a situation, and that way, things about what is unfolding around them is revealed to me through their thought process.
What advice would you give other writers?
All those rules for writing, all those do and don't lists? Ignore them. You'll know yourself what works for you. Every time someone says you shouldn't do something I bet you could come up with a situation when it would actually work. So, learn to trust your instincts.
Write for you. If you aren't enjoying telling yourself this story, it's not worth telling it at all. You need to be your audience first; how else are you going to conjure excitement if you aren't into it?
Have patience. This skill, I hear, is very useful; I am working on it!
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I did initially have a book published with a publisher but unfortunately they closed, and at the same time as that was happening I was looking into self-publishing. What I like about self-publishing is that everything is to my schedule, I have total control over every aspect of the process. In the future I might go back to a 'regular' publisher but for now self-publishing works for me.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think there is a place for self-publishing alongside more traditional publishing. There are already agents who work with both, and publishers are a little more open to authors who have self-published. I think when you are a self-published author you learn a lot of skills to get you through the process; I think those skills will be seen as increasingly valuable to a 'regular' publisher when working with an author.
I also think ebooks will continue to see a rise in popularity, and that print books will always have a special place in our hearts. In short, I think there are endless possibilities for the future of book publishing and that there won't ever be a return to just one way of doing it.
What genres do you write?: romance, gay romance, contemporary romance
What formats are your books in?: eBook
MK Lee Home Page Link
All information in this post is presented “as is” supplied by the author. We don’t edit to allow you the reader to hear the author in their own voice.