Hi, and thanks for your willingness to appear on my blog. I’m looking forward to sharing your knowledge and advice with the rest of the world (at least with the small portion of it that follows my blog). For starters, please tell us a little about yourself.
Hi! I’m Carol, and it’s great to get to “talk” to you today. Well, I’ve been creating stories to share since I was two years old. I used to write for FAMA (Freshwater and Marine Aquarium Magazine). My first book was published on CD and is a care guide for raising seahorses.
I’m thrilled to get to share my work with you! I hope that you will enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed creating them. I like hearing from my readers and questions are always welcomed. At the moment I have three fiction books that I have published. I’m writing another book right now.
On a personal note, I love coffee and a good book!
How did you start writing?
I think I have known since I was very young that I would write books. I felt it more and more as I grew up. I started making up stories at the age of two. Once I could write, I was frequently creating stories. In my teens, I found out I loved research papers and writing was becoming a passion. I quickly became enthralled with English classes once I was in collage, and my minor for my Bachelor’s degree is in English. Every homework assignment was one more chance for me to write another story. My grades were the hardest critique of my work possible.
Why did you start writing?
I started writing because I have so much that I wanted to share, and I didn’t always remember it all later, so it had to be written down. Stories are amazing ways to communicate and I enjoy being able to communicate more with a bigger group of people.
How did you select your genre?
I can’t say I selected a genre to start with because I am in more than one. I started out with a certain book that took me eight years to finish. I had a few pitfalls that held me back. My first published fiction book came from a contest I entered. I didn’t win, but I did decide to go ahead and expand the ending and publish it. I have kept progressing from there.
What is your writing day like?
I try to carve out times that I feel inspired and write. I tend to get lost in my writing and if I have an easy supply of food along with coffee on hand. Thus far, we found out that I can write up to 10,000 words or more in one weekend. That was an exceptional weekend! More often I am very happy to get about 2,000 words or so down in a week. It really varies wildly, that is something I am working on.
How do you organize your writing (outlines/note cards/post-its)?
As organized as I am in other ways, I haven’t been using outlines in my writing. I have notes I jot down into the notepad of my phone, but no post-its or much else besides ideas in my head and in my phone. I have a tendency to “gel” the majority of the story in my head before I ever start typing. It is sort of like a rough draft that is all done mentally. From there I type it out.
What’s the most surprising thing a character has “told you?”
I have regrets about how my life has been. So many bad decisions, and yet I have made them of my on free choosing. (That is coming in up a book that isn’t released yet.)
Do you have a list of characters that you’re saving for future use? What kind of information do you keep on these characters?
YES! This one I do have! I sometimes come up with a creative name for a character and have to jot that into my phone so I don’t lose it. Most of the time it is just their name, or a super short description because how they fit into the story I’m mentally writing is not something that I can forget. Anywhere my laptop and I happen to be.
What does your work space/office look like?
My room, den, even a hotel if I have had to travel, it’s ever changing. If I have a major idea strike, it can be the notepad or email app in my phone wherever I happen to be sitting and waiting. It’s far less about what it looks like, and far more about how well my mind and muses are flowing.
What is your go-to snack when writing?
Coffee! Oh, that isn’t a snack exactly. Veggies straws are one snack I really like. I think the sweet potato ones are the best, then the spinach and finally the potato ones.
If you could only recommend one NOVEL, what would it be? Why?
Not. Fair! How am I ever supposed to pick just ONE novel when I am connected to so very, very many? How about I go with one that has had a lot of impact on me. I feel bad to not list others. This is not an easy question! (Hmmm, that one is a trilogy so that doesn’t work….) Ok! For today, I will go with Immanuel’s Veins by Ted Dekker. Why, that would be because it is such a strong book about love and sacrifice, and a husband loving his wife like Christ loves us, in so much that He died for us.
I think you mean books about how to write books? I haven’t really read them and so I can’t recommend one. I have no idea what to recommend for you regarding this question.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Yes! Thank you so much for having me, and thank you for reading! I hope you will read my books if any of them look like something you would enjoy. I thoroughly enjoy connecting with people, so you can find me on FB on my author’s page, or on Amazon if you want to keep up with my work. If you have a suggestion or a topic you would love to see worked into a book, I enjoy hearing that kind of feedback as well.
Before I go, I have to make sure you know about something. Back when the VCR was young and people rented movies on tapes, the rental stores all had slogans. “Please be kind and rewind.” Today it seems that the world has become extremely review driven. Where people once would walk in and try out a store, now the phone is pulled out and the reviews checked before exploring that place. So what does that have to do with anything? Authors need star ratings and reviews, or we just get lost among the masses. All authors are dependent upon their reviews, and independent authors are even more in need of them. I’m watching some amazing people struggle every day because they need reviews. So now I, Carol E. Keen, am going to give you a new slogan to help encourage you. “Please be kind and leave a review! We would be grateful and pray added blessings upon you!”
Thank you so much for spending your time reading this blog today, so that you could find out a bit about me. It is very appreciate and I hope you had fun!