Welcome to Readers Write to Know! I asked you, my readers, what questions they would ask their favorite authors if given the chance. This week, I am super excited to introduce to you R. Kyle Hannah. Kyle and my husband, Gregg, were deployed together in Afghanistan in 2002, and served together for many years (in fact, I have a hard time calling him ‘Kyle’, because in my mind he is ‘Major Hannah’). I am so honored that he has joined us here. His most recent novel, Time Assassins, releases this week. You can find the links for it at the bottom of this post.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
First, thank you Hallee for the opportunity to talk to your fans! My name is R. Kyle Hannah and I am celebrating the release of my second novel, TIME ASSASSINS. I am married with two boys and I have been in the military for almost 27 years. I’ve been writing since Jr. High as a way to beat boredom…I never really thought I’d now be a published author!
Tell us about your current release.
TIME ASSASSINS is a time travel, alternate history thriller with a twist…you already know how it ends. I wanted to do something historical yet entertaining…something that might accidentally teach a fact or two while keeping the reader glued to the page. So, I came up with an alternate history storyline that morphs into our own history…all of the alternate stories happen in other timelines. I don’t think anyone has approached it like that before, and it really does make a good story.
What inspired you to start writing, or did you always want to write?
As I stated in the first question, I’ve been writing since Jr. High school as a way to combat boredom. You know those kids that are bored in class…they doodle, they act out, right? Well, I can’t draw a stick man and I knew if I acted out I’d really be in trouble at home, so, I decided to write little stories about this and that. Space aliens, martial artists, shooting bad guys…whatever happened to be on my mind that day. The stories are absolutely horrible (I still have them in a binder) but it was a start. And now, here I am!
How did you determine whether to self-publish or seek a traditional publisher?
I actually self-published my first book. As a new author, I had no idea what I was doing. Without editing, without real proofing, I just ginned up a bunch of query letters and out they went. Imagine all of the rejections I received. So, I researched self publishing companies and went with one…cost me a sum of money but it taught me several valuable lessons. I did get the book out, but I think, in retrospect, I could have done it better.
For TIME ASSASSINS, I hired an editor and then sent out the query letters. Had a few possibles with agents, but nothing really came through…so I started submitting to small publishers – the Indie route. The lessons learned from the first novel, combined with the better story and editing of the second novel led to two different Indie publishers vying for my book. I chose Dark Dragon Publishing and well, the release is on the 27th!
Now, I’m going to take all of these lessons and maybe, just maybe, third time is a charm!
Do you have your plotline and character development already laid out before you begin writing a book, or do they develop as you write?
I do lay out a storyline and characters before I start. I know the basics of the story and where I want it to go…but once I start writing, the characters take over. I make many, many revisions to the first storyline (much like editing and re-writing the story) as I write. For instance, in TIME ASSASSINS, I knew I wanted my rogue assassin to kill a President, but I didn’t have a good reason. The rogue himself provided the reason during the writing and it worked out so well….
What advice do you have for aspiring writers?
Don’t give up. Keep writing, the more you write the better you will get. Make sure you edit, edit, edit and then hire a professional to edit some more. And do your research, there are many con-artists and wannabes out there that will take your money (for the edits) and then give you a disastrous product. Make sure your editor is reputable!
What is your preferred method of writing? (computer, pen & paper, etc.)
I’ve done both. TO AID AND PROTECT, my first novel, was written with pen and paper. My first round of edits was when I typed it. For TIME ASSASSINS, I wrote it on the computer. Both are fine, it’s just what your comfortable with.
What is your inspiration for writing?
I have a very vivid imagination…sometimes it’s a dream, sometime it’s just an idea (like TIME ASSASSINS). But I’ll tell you, lately it’s been the absolutely horrid writing for TV and movies. I see a TV show or a movie that has great potential but unbelievable situations and writing, and it sets me off. I have to grab a pen (or the laptop) and start writing. I want the reader to be entertained, but I want the story to be as believable as possible—minus the sci-fi aspects of course.
Where’s the strangest place you’ve ever had a great writing idea?
Ideas come to me all the time…I now keep a notebook and pen by my bed. The idea for TIME ASSASSINS came to me driving to work one day. I literally had the title before I had a story. I was driving, so I grabbed my iPhone, found voice memos, and just started talking. That was two years ago…now, it’s a reality!
Do you write your books for your own enjoyment or more for what you think people would want to read?
In Jr. High and High School, I wrote them for me. After I published my first novel, I started getting reviews and feedback from readers. I had a teenager come up to me and church and told me that he really enjoyed my story….that is now why I write–for the fans, like that young man, who read my book.
Thank you again, Hallee, for the opportunity to talk about my writing and especially TIME ASSASSINS, which will be officially released on October 27th. I would like to invite your fans and readers to check out the book and follow me on facebook, twitter and on my website
TIME ASSASSINS is available at the following retailers and websites:
And as always, please support your local Indie author—only purchase the novel from valid retailers and always, always, always leave a review!
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