One of my favorite things to do (besides read and write) is to get to know other authors. I enjoy learning about their lives and what the writing process looks like for them, as well as, how they got started writing. When I started this site to share the books I am reading, one of the things I really hoped to also share, is more information about the authors I am reading. So, when I was asked if I was interested in reading a new book by an author I was not yet familiar with, I jumped at the chance! I was thrilled when she was interested in answering my questions for this author interview. That author is Kathryn Schleich!
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Kathryn Schleich Interview
Tell us a little about yourself.
I grew up in Lincoln, NE, the only girl (and oldest) of five children. I am proud to say I won all of our fights! A girl has to defend her territory, after all. After receiving a BS in Journalism from Iowa State University, I moved to the Twin Cities for the first time. I met my future husband, and we lived in California (where I obtained a MA in Mass Communications) and Illinois before returning to the Twin Cities in 2002. I couldn’t imagine living anywhere else.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I always liked writing but didn’t really get serious until I went to Iowa State. Still, I wasn’t writing a lot except for articles. When I obtained my master’s degree and was writing my thesis, I remembered just how much I loved to writer. My husband became a Deacon in the Catholic Church so I had an inside view of the Catholic Church. Because of that my thesis was on the image of Catholic women in Hollywood films. My first book was a nonfiction work that evolved from that: Hollywood and Catholic Women: Virgins, Whores, Mothers, and Other Images. The 2nd edition was self-published in 2012.
Do you outline your books first or are you a seat-of-your-pants writer?
I have learned the hard way to outline. The first couple of books I knew what I wanted to say, so it was fairly easy. I wish I had outlined Salvation Station, simply because I kept putting it aside and would forget what I had written. That took a total of 10 years, starting as a screenplay. I wrote a detailed outline for the book I’m currently working on and will do that from now on. (Mystery novelist Anne Perry uses this approach and it seems to make sense).
Where do you get your ideas for your books from?
I get my ideas for fiction from a variety of sources, all based in reality. Salvation Station came to be because my then-husband would watch televangelists just because their phoniness made him mad. And I knew of people who gave all of their money blindly to the church. Shades of Darkness, Shades of Grace, which I will rerelease in 2021, was inspired by events that happened to my family. My current work is also inspired by people I’ve known. And the news is great for finding ideas.
How many books have you written/had published? Which is your favorite?
I have written a total of four books. Salvation Station is my current favorite.
Do you have a specific song or playlist you listen to while writing?
I actually need to have silence to write, although I did write my master’s thesis to classical music. I see people writing in my local coffee shop (when we could actually do that!) and I can’t fathom how they do it. I can’t have distractions.
What does your writing schedule look like?
Tough question! I wish I could say that I write every day at a certain time for specified amount of time. Unfortunately, life has a way of getting in the way. However, I will say, COVID-19 has provided a little kick in the behind. But some of my writing is for volunteer organizations I work with, keeping my blog current, and research. I tend to forget that writing articles for a nonprofit’s newsletter is still writing, just a different type.
If your newest book, Salvation Station were made into a movie, who would you want to be cast in the movie?
Great question. When I envision Linda Turner, I think of a Margot Robbie type, but a little older. I originally thought of Tommy Lee Jones as Reverend Ray – that smooth, southern drawl. Idris Elba would be my dream Malachi Johnson. Beyond those three, I honestly haven’t give it too much thought.
What authors do you enjoy reading?
Jane Harper, Gillian Flynn, Paula Hawkins, Jane Smiley, James Patterson, and Donald E. Westlake are all favorites.
What do you do in your free time when you aren’t writing?
Volunteer work in St. Paul, MN normally. But nothing right now is normal. At the moment I’m building a new home and trying to sell my current one. As I said earlier, life can get in the way of good writing.
Where Can I find Her Newest Book?
If you would like to read Salvation Station by Kathryn Schleich, check out Amazon! The book is available there on Kindle and in paperback form. I will be reading the book in a little while. Be sure to check back for my review!
Thank you Kathryn Schleich!