Saturday, 19 August 2017

The Write Stuff with... Karen King

This morning it's my pleasure to be handing the blog over to Karen King, author of The Cornish Hotel by the Sea, to talk about writing in different genres.

I’ve been a published writer for over thirty years now, and whilst nowadays I mainly write romantic novels and Young Adult books, in the early years I wrote solely for children.  Most people are fascinated to discover that I started my writing career with the iconic Jackie magazine way back in the early eighties but it was when I turned to writing for younger children’s magazines that I got my big break and was able to earn a living as a writer. I’ve written comic strips, stories, activities and quizzes for a variety of magazines – Rainbow, My Little Pony, Winnie the Pooh, Rosie & Jim, Barbie, Sindy, Postman Pat – and 120 children’s books. I’ve written for all age groups and in a variety of genres; pictures books, story books, activity books, joke books, educational readers, even a folder of 27 plays!

I’m often asked how I can turn my hand to writing for so many different genres, and the answer is that no matter what I’m writing my mantra is ‘know your market know your reader.’ I study the market, read other books in the genre I’m writing to get a feel of the characters and story plots that are popular, and I think about my reader. What are they expecting from the story? What age group are they? What are they interested in? This is especially important when writing for children, as the younger the age group the simpler the storyline and vocabulary, but it can also be applied to the different genres when writing for adults. Yes, people of all ages will read YA books, for example, but the average YA reader will be eighteen or under and the average chicklit reader will be early thirties or younger. So this is the readership that the storyline, characters and vocabulary need to be aimed at. If you write a story about the dating pitfalls of a thirty year old it’s no good marketing it as a YA, or a wartime romance as a chicklit. 

My final mantra is ‘Don’t be scared to try something new’. When I sold my article to Jackie magazine all those years ago I’d never have guessed that I’d write a romance novel of over 75,000 words – yet I’ve now written three. My latest one, The Cornish Hotel by the Sea was published on 13th July, my first one ‘I do?...or do I?’ was published last year and the third one, The Bridesmaid’s Dilemma, will be published next April – all by Accent Press, who have also republished two of my earlier, shorter romances, The Millionaire Plan and Never Say Forever.  It’s all about learning as you go and being brave enough to take a chance. The Cornish Hotel by the Sea actually hit the top 5 in Amazon Kindle’s Hot New Releases last weekend, I was so amazed and chuffed. And to think it all started with an article in Jackie magazine!

Thank you for hosting me, Sharon. 😊

Ellie Truman’s widowed mum is struggling to keep Gwel Teg, the family hotel in Cornwall, afloat.  Ellie is determined to do everything in her power to help her, even if that means moving back to the sleepy Cornish village she fled from broken-hearted a few years ago.

Things go wrong from the start and she’s grateful for the help from hunky guest, Reece Mitchell. But does Reece have ulterior motives? Will Ellie’s efforts be for nothing?

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for inviting me over onto your fab blog, Sharon. :)