Interview with Katharine Giles, author of “A Perilous Quest, an Archer Adventure”

A common misconception entwined with authors is that they are socially inept, how true is that?

Their work requires a more solitary lifestyle than most but I wouldn’t call all writers “socially inept”.

Do all authors have to be grammar Nazis?

The more proficient they are in use of their chosen language, the easier their task. That being said, all obstacles can be overcome.

If you could have been the original author of any book, what would it have been and why?

The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran. This book speaks to everyone no matter their circumstance.

What makes this particular genre you are involved in so special?

Speaking of The Archer Adventures, I take after my mother…and choose not to grow up. Adventuring is a lifestyle.

How important is research to you when writing a book?

I write fantasy set in the 4th and 5th dimension. There is no research available for Archer’s world.

When did it dawn upon you that you wanted to be a writer?

I never wanted to be a writer…until the draft of my fifth book (The Desert Sun, An Archer Adventure) hit the page.

What inspires you to write?

I wrote poetry for years and one of my poems inspired the first book of The Archer Adventures. It mushroomed from there.

Do you have a set schedule for writing, or are you one of those who write only when they feel inspired?

I like early morning and write until I hit a snag.

Writers are often associated with loner tendencies;is there any truth to that?

There has to be a little truth in that statement because of the nature of their work.

Do you set a plot or prefer going wherever an idea takes you?

I let the book take me where it wants to go which is why I like to write fantasy. The things that happen constantly surprise me.

Over the years, what would you say has improved significantly in your writing?

I found a list on the internet of The Words to Never Use In Creative Writing, That helped me more than dozens of books I read trying to improve my craft.

Do you proofread and edit your work on your own or pay someone to do it for you?

Both. I’m a retired Administrative Secretary with extensive editing experience.

Have you ever designed your own book cover?

As an artist, I’ve designed and created all of my book covers.

Do you recall the first ever book/novel you read?

The Arabian Nights I loved to read about Sinbad the Sailor and his wondrous adventures.

What books have influenced your life the most?

The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale.

How do you see writing? As a hobby or a passion?

The Archer Adventures have been a passion. I’ve written ten books in this series.

Do you like traveling or do you prefer staying indoors?

I’ve done quite a bit of traveling and have been to every U.S. State except Alaska.

Name one book that you like most among all the others you have penned down.

I have 3 favorites: The Lost Kingdom, The Fire Sled (unpublished)and The Black Pagoda (unpublished).

Is writing book series more challenging?

I didn’t find that to be the case because the books kept writing themselves…they had a lot to say.

How did it feel when your first book got published?

It was a cookbook and I was disappointed. I didn’t like the way it looked.

How critical are you in your evaluation when you are reviewing someone’s work?

I express my feelings about the work in an honest fashion. That being said, it’s difficult to review something I don’t like no matter how well it’s written.

Does it get frustrating if you are unable to recall an idea you had in your mind some time earlier?

That’s why ideas need to hit the paper and the file folder immediately. Gems can easily get lost.

Doesn’t it bother you that when books are turned into movies, they are often changed to suit the audience needs?

An author should retain artistic rights to film adaptations when writing material that might easily be rearranged to lose context of the story.

Can you tell us about your current projects?

In my spare time I’m pursuing my artwork that had to be neglected during the creation of The Archer Adventures.

Did you ever have a rough patch in writing, where nothing in the story seemed to fit or make sense?

That happened when I tried to rearrange events and wound up putting it back the way it was.

If you’re writing about a city/country/culture you haven’t physically visited, how much research do you conduct before you start writing?

I recently inserted a story into one of my Archer Adventures that was set in ancient Egypt and needed to make the setting believable.

Did you have a lot of differences with your editors in the beginning while you were still becoming used to getting your work edited?

My editors had a high degree of difficulty with the concepts I introduced in my work and deleted everything they didn’t understand. My young readers love the images and ideas in The Archer Adventures because they send their imaginations soaring.

How long do you take to write a book?

First 100 page draft is usually finished within 2 to 4 weeks.