Please enjoy my Q & A with author Cindy Koepp
- How long have you been writing?
Oh, most of 33 years. My mother has an old short story I wrote when I was six or seven. The hobby continued on since then.
- What are your thoughts on critique groups?
I’ve been in a few. One was ultra-competitive. That was pretty useless. The deal was that you’d upload a chunk of text then review others’ works on the site to earn credits so yours would be reviewed. Writers reviewed each other and ranked the work on a 5-star system. That sounds interesting, but many people ran afoul of glowing feedback to go along with low ratings. Some people were the recipients of a copied-and-pasted review. There was some handy feedback, but it was a lot of work for a little return.
Another group critiques on a volunteer system. That works okay.
The third group has been really useful. We take turns critiquing half-novels. I get the most useful feedback from this group. It takes ~8 months to get feedback for a whole novel, but what I get has been immensely helpful.
- Who is your favorite author?
One is definitely Gordon Dickson. I enjoyed the Childe Cycle. Each story stands alone but all of them work together for an ultimate purpose. Bruce Hale’s Chet Gecko series is hilarious. Jude Watson’s Jedi Apprentice series had excellent characterization.
- Do you find a part of your personality sneaking into any of your characters?
Definitely. Many of my lead characters are disabled in some way. How they deal with their physical ailments is often related to how I deal with mine. One of my stories has two characters with my weird sense of humor. Another has a lead character who doesn’t want to fit in with society’s “normal” view of girls.
Very often people I know make it into my stories, too.
- Can you share any upcoming projects with us?
I have a book called Remnant in the Stars under contract with Under the Moon. It’s about a navigator searching for his missing child and a pilot dealing with an undiagnosable illness. If all goes according to Hoyle, we’ll finish the editing process by the end of December, and it should see print in the spring of 2012.
I’m also working with a group of writers on an anthology.
- Tell us a little about yourself. What do you like to do when you are not writing? What is your temperament, etc.?
When I’m not writing or doing prep and paperwork for school, I sew, crochet, do needlework, play computer games, and try to find recipes for things I can actually eat.
I tend to be the quiet, keep-to-myself type, but I can get pretty goofy when I’m with people I know well.
At work, though, I’m more out-spoken. Diplomacy is not a skill I was gifted with.
- Where can readers find your books and contact information?
I have a Facebook author page. http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cindy-Koepp-Author/136438443108872?v=wall
I also have a webpage at ckoepp.com and two blogs that I update when I have something interesting to say: ckoepp.xanga.com and ckoepp.blogspot.com.
- Thank you for visiting with us today.
Great fun had by all!