Friday, 16 December 2011
The One-Link Lowdown on...L K Hunsaker!
My guest today is writer L K Hunsaker. A passionate champion of independent authors, L K writes 'literary fiction with an artsy twist,' and as her own blog by-line rightly proclaims, 'not all romance is graphic - not all literary fiction is stuffy.'
Having read some of her work, I can tell you that's true. It's deep and emotional, hugely perceptive and wonderfully descriptive, and sticks in your mind long after you've read it.
Her latest work is Moondrops & Thistles, a 'short & spicy edition' military romance. I urge you to seek out her work - it's so wide-ranging and varied, I'm certain you'd find something wonderful that speaks to your heart. Please join me in welcoming her to my blog, and enjoy one of the most candid and thoughtful interviews it's been my pleasure to host this year. Welcome, L K!
If you could retrieve one thing from your childhood, what would it be?
I was an odd child. One of my most prized possessions was a big plastic file tub where I kept postcards, letters, magazine clippings, recipes, statements from my starter bank account, that sort of thing. It disappeared somewhere along the line. Those things don’t matter, other than the postcard from my first crush before he also disappeared somewhere. ;-) But it contained much of my first writing: some bad poetry, various story ideas, and the first scenes I ever wrote for my Rehearsal series, plus a little story I called “Hollywood Heroes” that I liked a lot. There wasn’t much to it yet, but it still crosses my mind at times as a comedy with some potential. I would love to have those back.
What would be your perfect day?
Waking up in a beach cottage to a cool ocean breeze coming through the window, having a leisurely light breakfast I don’t have to make or clean up from, writing for a couple of hours while sitting on the porch that overlooks the ocean, going for a swim in a pool by myself and swimming laps until my muscles say it’s enough, resting under the sun until dry, a change of clothes, a quick lunch, and then back to writing. By dinner time, I’d be ready to join my family for a leisurely meal full of lightly cooked veggies to listen to their day’s excursions. As they settle in for the evening, I’d take a good book back to the porch and read until dark, write a bit longer, then sink in to a plush pillow with the ocean breeze lulling me to sleep. I haven’t tried this yet, but it sure sounds good!
I so agree. Falling asleep to the sound of the sea is wonderful. As you drifted off, what would we find on your bedstand?
A lamp, the book I’m currently reading at night and maybe one or two that are waiting, pens, notepad, pencil, sticky notes for marking passages in the books I want to find again, dust (what can I say?), reading glasses, the cordless phone, a radio alarm clock, a tissue box, scented pillow spray (aromatherapy for relaxation), and the one thing that has been beside my bed ever since I got it: a little white Bible that was a treasured gift during my teen years with some of my favorite passages marked in the back.
L K< I know you're a huge music lover, and musicians and their work have featured in your books before. Can you tell us what’s your favourite piece of music?
Oh, I’m fully music obsessed and I like a lot of genres, so it’s impossible to name one favorite. I can say right now I’m quite into David Garrett’s rock violin CDs and am anxiously awaiting his next. It’s great for writing because it’s inspiring and uplifting and has no lyrics. It’s also nice for cleaning music because it’s relaxing and lets my thoughts wander as I work. At times, I simply sit and listen to it, focusing on every nuance I can pick up. On the other hand, I’m anxiously awaiting Sawyer Brown’s newest as well as Nickelback’s newest.
I envy you being able to write with music playing - I can't do that, but I do use music as fodder and inspiration for writing, so I'm right with you there. Well, let's move to less arty matters for a moment! Which household chore would you happily give up for ever?
Putting clothes away! I don’t know what it is about putting clothes into drawers or hanging them up that I detest, but I detest it. I’d rather clean the toilet, actually.
Aside from clothes chores, what else drives you seriously nuts?
When people listen to rhetoric without doing the research themselves. It’s so easy to manipulate words and ‘facts’ that everything most people ‘know’ is what they hear at the end of the telephone chain – you know, that game where a line of people whispers a phrase one by one to each other and it comes out completely different than the way it started? That’s what we’re taking as truth, and it’s sad. It drives me seriously nuts.
What’s the best review you've ever had?
I’ve been fortunate with reviews and although I don’t have a lot of them, they are all very nice (other than the 1 star for a free read short story because it was too short!), but the two that stand out are actually personal emails about two different books. A few years ago and again very recently, I was told that my book meant so much to someone that it was on their bedstand at the end of their fight with a long illness, and it meant a lot to their families that it meant so much to their lost loved ones. I can’t imagine anything better than that as an author, to know you touched someone who needed to be touched during a very difficult time.
Neither can I - how wonderful. L K, what's your guilty pleasure?
Dancing With The Stars. Although I don’t like reality shows in general and rarely spend time watching TV at all, I’m hooked to the show. I get tired of the drama and iffy voting/scoring, but I love watching the pro dancers. Also, I took dance for many years as a child/teen and it gets me how fast the non-dancers learn the complicated ballroom steps. I can’t imagine having the energy to practice so many hours in a day for so many days at a time and I can’t help a grudging respect that they do it while I’m sitting on my tail just watching. But mainly, I love the pro dancers. Maks, especially. Wow is he incredible to watch! My husband knows and even calls him “your guy,” so it’s all okay. Now if they’d get a novelist or two on there to help promote books!
I should have asked you for a list of novelists you'd like to see there! Knowing you as I do as someone who thinks deeply about things, let me ask you this - if you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
Okay, do I admit this or not? I have talked about it to an extent, but although I’m fairly comfortable with myself in general, I do have one thing I would truly, truly love to change. I’m social phobic. I get nervous talking with friends in person or on the phone, and strangers are harder. Casual acquaintances are the hardest. Heck, I get nervous typing to people online if it has any kind of little confrontation involved. My hands shake. My heart races. If I speak to a small group in person, I can feel my face get hot and I know it has to be red. The room gets fuzzy and it’s all I can do to concentrate on forming a complete sentence while I feel suddenly disassociated from where I am and from my bearings, as though I’m in a swirling tunnel sweeping me away. I hate how hard it makes everything that “normal” people do on a daily basis without any thought, such as grocery shopping or sitting at a football game. I hate that it makes me look like a snob in public. I’m not. It’s just honestly that hard to talk to people. But ... I’m working on it, and it is better than it was. I still don’t accept talks when someone asks me to do one for my books, but I do signings and they are easier than they used to be. I often end up with a migraine the day after a signing from the incredible stress, but I keep going out there hoping it will change, fighting for it to dissipate. In the meantime, most of my book promo is online and I’m thankful for the many opportunities to interact without being face-to-face.
What single invention would change your life for the better?
The transporter from Star Trek. My family and friends are scattered in different states and countries, and it would be incredible to pop in on them now and then. I also love to travel but I don’t like car trips and I hate to pack! I love where I live now, except for being away from everyone, so if I could go visit for a day or go sight-seeing anywhere in the world for a day and then return to sleep in my own bed at night, that would solve one of the hardest things I’ve had to deal with ever since I left my family homestead. At least we now have the internet!
L K, thank you for being here - I've loved doing this interview with you very much! Which One-Link would you like to leave for everyone today?
Thanks for having me, Jane! I’m leaving you with the link to my Facebook author page, where I post my events and projects and enjoy ‘talking’ with readers.
And I know they'd enjoy talking with you as much as I do. Thanks again, L K - good luck with all your future projects.