1. Do you have a favorite character in your book?
That’s a hard one. The answer is yes, but more than one. I have a really deep attachment to Hawk, Icarus, Fin, and Sensei. Each character has taught me something from writing them, and each one has a little something special about them. In Hawk and Icarus, I see much of myself. Hawk in her personality, and how she strives to be strong in spite of her weaknesses, and Icarus in how he just longs to be who he was made to be-- and he’s frustrated when he feels like he falls short. He’s full of doubt, but there’s a heck of a lot of hope under that skin of his, too.
Sensei because… where do I even begin? There were many instances when I began to feel as though it wasn’t even me writing his character anymore, but that he was his own character speaking to me through the pages I was writing; giving me advice that I desperately needed to hear. During the editorial process, there were so many times when I would read back over a line I didn’t even remember writing, and think “wow… I needed to hear that.” There’s something divine about his character, and I feel that God put so many words in his mouth that I needed to hear. I hope perhaps they’re words that others may need to hear as well.
Fin because he is honestly one of the most beautiful people I have ever created. He’s constantly pumped up on hope, even when things are crashing down around him. He’s a loyal-till-the-ender type, a fearless fighter, yet no one will ever love as hard as he does.
2. How long did it take you to write the Blood Race?
It took me about five months, I believe. It’s funny, because I usually don’t keep track of time very well, and I really don’t pay attention to it when I’m on a roll with a book. But looking back, it was about a five month process from the idea’s inception to the finished draft.
3. Did you ever have days when you just didn't feel like writing? What did you do to get yourself back into the writing mood?
Oh, yes. I definitely had those days - don’t we all? Some days are just low energy days, or my head will be in a thousand places and I have a hard time pinning it down to the page. I find that doing something completely different usually helps get me back into my groove - and that tends to be anything that will get me out of the house. (#hermitlife). Grocery shopping, going out for coffee with my husband, or a hitting the track for a run, anything that gets my mind thinking about something other than whatever it is I may be stuck on.
I’m also a firm believer in talking it out, and my sister (a brilliant writer herself, and an unabashed creative) is usually instrumental in helping me get back into the right headspace I need to be in to write a story well.
And when all else fails, there’s British television.
4. What inspired the Blood Race?
Tough one to answer! I feel like it wasn’t really any one thing in particular. I was literally just sitting in my living room one summer afternoon and the idea for the entire story just “dropped” into my head, so to speak. And I was like “dang. I need to write that thing.”
Beyond that though, I’m incredibly passionate about the idea that we are powerful. That we are all warriors beneath the skin, just as Sensei tells Hawk in the novel. We all carry the potential to be who we truly are inside of us already. And who we are is beautiful, is enough, is capable, and is, heck yeah, powerful.
5. What tip can you give to all the aspiring writers?
Just write you. Stop listening to/reading/studying ALL the advice, stop all the self criticism, stop constantly critiquing yourself, and just write like only you can. Regardless of what anyone tells you, there is no right or wrong way to write; it’s an art. So make your art. Make it in a way that makes your heart hum. Make the art that only you can. If it’s bringing you joy? You’re doing it right.
Thank you so much Katie!! I hope you all go read this amazing book!!!!!!!!