Exclusive Interview with
Karen S. Bell
When did you start writing?
I seriously started writing about twenty years ago.
What makes writing your passion?
I love the process if finding what right word, the cadence of a sentence and bringing to light the visuals I an see in my mind.
How long have you been writing?
twenty or so years
What was the feeling when you published your first book?
A strong sense of satisfaction that I actually completed an entire novel. It was very emotional and brought tears to my eyes as I typed the last period.
What’s the story behind your choice of characters?
My characters just come to me out of the ether. They lay in wait for me to start writing and nudge me into their existence. A strange and wondrous process. As they form they take on some characteristics of people in my life including myself. Or at least what I am aware of in myself.
What annoys you the most in pursuing a writing career?
Trying to get traditionally published and what a closed door it is. And marketing.
How do you get over the “writer’s block”?
Just sit down and write when I've put it off to long.
We all know the writer’s path is never easy, what makes you keep going? What advice would you give to new authors?
Write because you love it and need it. Have a thick skin because what you really want only is achieved by very few writers. The odds are against you. Keep your day job and write for the pleasure of it. Making a living is not a given. Not even close. Amazon has allowed my writing not to be a total hobby and my work has won some awards.
If you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say?
Apply to a prestigious writing program at a university and start to network.
Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with the bad ones?
I read them all and relish in the great ones and learn from the scorching ones. Sometimes I learn that the great ones interpreted my work at a level not intended and the scorching ones didn't understand the story or seemed to read a different book.
What is the feeling when you get a good review?
Elation and fist bumps that someone who is not personal friend actually thought I was good at my craft.
Have you ever incorporated something that happened to you in real life into your novels?
All the time.
Which of your characters you can compare yourself with? Did you base that character on you?
Sunspots is a tragic tale about a young women who loses her spouse after just a few years of marriage. That happened to me and was a way for me to deal with the pain of that loss.
What do you think, the book cover is as important as the story?
I choose a book on reviews and plot summaries. The cover is of no importance to me.
Do you connect with your readers? Do you mind having a chat with them or you prefer to express yourself through your writing?
I would love to interact with my readers who aren't friends. So far that has not happened.
How do you feel when people appreciate your work or recognize you in public?
I love being appreciated but I'm basically an unknown.
Who is your favorite author? Why?
I love authors that write with a love of words and intelligent themes and plots. Towles, Picoult, Updike, Hoffman
What’s the dream? Whom would you like to be as big as?
It's too late for me. I'm already too old for those dreams.
Would you rewrite any of your books? Why?
No. It would be too annoying.
If you could switch places with any author – who would that be?
Any one who gets every book published and sold in stores.