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Saturday, November 3, 2012

Author Interview: Ryan Hunter

Today I am pleased to present to you all the twenty-eighth in a series of Author Interviews. Recently I sat down with the very active Ryan Hunter and our conversation went something like this:

Paul:  I like to start my interviews by asking if you have any writing rituals?
Ryan:  Yes. To get into my writing zone I check my email, check FB, drop by Pinterest for a few minutes and my mind begins to focus. I start seeing my book, my characters, thinking about my plot - and I open my manuscript and begin to work.

Paul:  What types of books do you like to read? Who are your favorite authors? Why?
Ryan:  I enjoy suspense and some dystopian but I love reading psychological thrillers. As for my favorite authors... right now Dan Wells tops the list. I love his writing style and his characters. He’s also got this great humor that pops up in his novels and I seriously laugh out loud as I read some of his books. 

Paul:  If someone had the power to step into your creative mind what would they see?
Ryan:  Chaos. I think I have a bit of ADD. I can’t stay focused on any one task for long, so as I write, I get a few pages out, flip over to FB, flip back and write again... I browse random search terms and look up my dream home... My mind wanders in a hundred directions as I write and I think that actually helps my creativity even if it slows down productivity sometimes.

Paul:  What is a typical day for you?
Ryan:  I have four children at home so they keep me busy in the mornings. Once they’re off to school, I run about five miles, sometimes throw in some strength training and then I get ready for writing. Running helps me work out issues and clear my mind so I’m more productive when I sit at the computer.

Paul:  Do you have a favorite character in each of your series, aside from the lead? If so, which one and why?
Ryan:  Outside of my main characters, I do have one favorite in my newest novel, inDIVISIBLE. He only makes a brief appearance but becomes quite important in books two and three. I can’t say much more about him because it would give away too much.

Paul:  How do you find the time to write?
Ryan:  I write when the kids are in school and my husband’s working. I've been writing so long now that they recognize the blank expression I have when I'm deep into writing - one that means I won’t be able to focus on their needs anyway at that moment, and they give me the time I need. My husband also takes care of the kids whenever I need some serious writing time and I leave home for a few days to cram. 

Paul:  What is one thing you hope I do not tell the readers?
Ryan:  Hmmm – all I can think of right now is that I don’t want them to know the ending to inDIVISIBLE, so don’t give that away.

Paul:  If you are self-published, what led to you going your own way?
Ryan:  I went with traditional publishing twice but wasn’t really happy with my publisher. I’ve been working with other authors helping them be successful with their ebooks so it only seemed natural that I go that route with my newest book.

Paul:  Do you plot your stories or do you just get an idea and run with it?
Ryan:  I usually plot as I go, staying a few chapters ahead. If I try to plot an entire novel, I feel like my writing is stifled and I don’t write as fully as I otherwise could.

Paul:  Do you have to do much research for your stories?
Ryan:  I do some research for my novels, but most just comes from my head. The research I do most of is to explore the areas where the stories take place so I can capture realistic sounds, sights and smells.

Paul:  What is your most recent book? Tell us a little about it.
Ryan:  inDIVISIBLE is a dystopian about a 17-year-old girl who believed her life is much like a fairy tale, until her father’s murder. Life in One United unravels as she tries to understand her father’s death. As she realizes all her freedom has been stripped away, she becomes aware that she’s been placed on an Alliance kill list and must leave everything she knows behind to try and save her own life and the ideals her father had secretly fought for.

Paul:  What inspired you to write this book?
Ryan:  The story came to me in a dream. Throughout the next day the details filtered in and I began writing them down until they formed an entire plot... one I’d never expected to write.

Paul:  Do you have any pieces of work that will never see the light of day?
Ryan:  I believe all good authors have work that will never see the light of day. Writing is a learning process and you have to be able to take a look at what you’ve done and determine which works were educational and which were meant to be shared.

Paul:  How much marketing do you do for your published works or for your ‘brand’?
Ryan:  I do a lot through social media but little through paid marketing. I believe that if my work is strong enough, the efforts I make through social media will make my book a success because those reading it will spread word for me.

Paul:  What do you do when you’re not writing? Do you have any hobbies or party tricks?
Ryan:  When I’m not writing, I spend time with my family. We’re close and do a lot together like hiking, running, and kayaking. We’re an active family and love to get outdoors and explore. I love to travel and dream of one day living on the beach.

Paul:  Many thanks, Ryan. I wish you every success for the future.

About Ryan Hunter: Ryan Hunter has been writing most of her life as a novelist, journalist and freelancer – enjoying every bit of the writing scene except for the brief stint as ‘product description’ writer. Her earliest novel appeared on construction paper, bound with staples and followed two kittens on a journey of self realization. She was eight.

Ryan enjoys hiking, swimming, traveling and spending time with her family. She’s the mother of five children and currently lives in southern Utah.

Ryan's Blog: Ryan Hunter
Ryan on Twitter: @RyanHunter45
Ryan on Facebook: Ryan Hunter
Ryan's latest book: inDIVISIBLE (Amazon)

1 comment:

  1. A really great interview both. Good questions and great answers.Well done.