Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Up Close and Personal with author KC Stone

KC Stone, author of Replaced by a Stranger, has been kind enough to answer some questions for me. Thank you for appearing on my blog, KC. I hope you have as much fun answering my questions as I had learning more about your novel.

Me: Can you tell me a little about when you started writing?
KC: In October of 2010 I finally committed myself to really writing. My sweet three and five year old foster kids went home and I suddenly had more time on my hands. :) So you could say that I am still very new at it.
Where do you get your ideas?
I guess that would be from my life experiences. I will be the first to admit that life has definitely thrown me some ...well, we'll call them "different" situations. My friends have always told me I should write a book about it. So that day in October, I sat down and started. I do occasionally come up with scenes for future novels but only after some crazy dreams (you know how everyone says shouldn't eat right before you go to bed... they're right!)

Yes, I know exactly what you mean. I call them ‘the voices in my head’. At times I wonder if my family thinks I’m crazy!
What is your writing process?

My best writing comes when I have a glass of wine beside me, cuddled up in my bed or in my favorite red chair. With Replaced by a Stranger, all I did was close my eyes, play the memories back, and let the words spread like wild fire. I would put myself in Emily Weston's shoes again, feeling her pain, emotions and desires. I loved trying to capture Emily's true feelings and thought process and wanted my readers to really relate to her. I have been known to write with the occasional SpongeBob in the background, but to truly grab my moment I need a quiet room and no distractions.
Do you write full-time?

No... Unfortunately I have to work as well. Life is so unfair.
If not, what do you do to pay your bills?

I work in telecommunications. Ok... now that I have impressed you with that word, here is the truth.
I work full time as the administrator for a nation-wide answering service.
My wonderful husband is a diesel mechanic. I like to let him think he pays for the majority of our expenses.

How did you come up with the idea of Replaced by a Stranger?
This novel is based on a true story. So basically I spilled my guts, added some characters and scenes to help it flow and... I had myself a novel!

You mention that it’s based on true life. How close to reality did you keep it?
I kept it so close that while I was extremely excited to finally have it ready, I was terrified to actually publish it. But I figured that if I am going to tell a story, I might as well tell the truth. With the exception of a couple characters and minor scenes, this novel is very real.

You are very courageous, KC. Adultery is so real, but not many people want to discuss it. I think that is why I enjoyed your story so much. You really got down to those feelings honestly and candidly. I bet a lot of your readers are able to relate!
How long did it take you to complete?

I completed it in December, so three months. I know that may seem like an extremely short time, but once I sat down I was committed to hours of writing. Each scene was so vivid and touchable that I just kept going and going. That does not include the time it took to edit and format the story for publishing. I was able to put it online and available for purchase in April of this year.
You mentioned that it’s still a work in progress. Can you explain briefly how you are revising it?

Well... I have always, and I mean always, been too impatient for my own good. I had two friends (one an English major) help me with the editing process and wouldn't you know, there are still small errors. So I am currently revising it... again... for the pesky little mistakes and flaws that may turn readers off to my writing. 
Yes, they get the best of us. It’s hard to catch everything, especially when your fingers are flying over the keys.

Infidelity is a difficult subject to approach. Can you tell me how you were able to paint Emily and Garrett into such lovable characters despite the problems that they face?
I guess the fact that they are real people with real issues draws readers in to them. Almost everyone can relate to the struggles that Emily and Garrett faced in their young marriage even if it did not go to the extreme as this one did. Emily's story opens up one's perspective on this very touchy subject. While her desires and passions were not being fulfilled, she knows that her actions are wrong. She even admits this to herself but yet she is still drawn to the excitement and lust... it's like an addiction. I think readers go from wanting to comfort and reassure her at times, to wanting to grab her and shake her some sense into her.

Garrett... well Garrett is special. While his is character is quiet and subtle, he knows the truth and he fights everyday with the decision of how to confront Emily.
He is the true victim in this novel but yet the hero at the same time. Who doesn't enjoy a good love story, twisted with unforgiving emotions, honest characters and the ugly truth to what an affair entails? I do!

For the record, I adored Garrett J.
Can you describe Emily and Garrett in a few sentences? What are they like? What do they want? Goals, strengths, weaknesses, etc.

Emily had good intentions but somewhere along the way, she lost sight of what truly mattered to her. She is very loving, passionate, goal driven and knows that her future holds a great story of her past. Friends love her and she would do anything for anyone. She wants to be successful, leave her mark in the world, have her children grow up healthy and respected, and to look back and know that she made a difference. Is that asking too much? lol
She is stubborn and strong-minded, her glory and her doom.

Garrett is strong, proud and his family is his only concern. He is quiet and can be judgmental at times. He wants nothing more than to see his beautiful boys grow up, with Emily at his side, and provide everything they will ever need. His goals are somewhat restricted with Emily's choices in life, but he loves her nonetheless. This too... is his strength and weakness. That woman is going to be the death of him!
What about Troy? Can you describe his motivation and character?

Troy is someone who wants all the praise and glory but his reputation is built on lies and deceit.
"No" is not an answer he can easily tolerate and his personality reeks of manipulation and control. Emily is a challenge for him and he loves challenges. She offers him just enough of herself to make him go crazy for more.

He wants her in his life, forever, one way or another, but he can't understand why she is holding back. He sees himself as having a great job, charming personality and a sexy body. What more could a woman want, right? Wrong!
Are you still writing? If so, what will your future projects entail?

I have started my second novel which is the prequel to Replaced by a Stranger.
Psychologist will have a field day with this one!
This novel will answer many questions that my readers may have in regards to how Emily has been brought up, dealt with a troublesome childhood, and had love dangled in front of her for years. Would you like a hint? Emily is faced with extreme situations at such a young age. She has to fight for her childhood innocence, her family’s reputation and if that wasn't enough, she also has to fight back the memories of the cold blooded murder that keeps creeping its way into her thoughts.

Where can we find you online?
My website is
Facebook: KC Stone, and Twitter: kcstone2.

Where is Replaced by a Stranger available for purchase?
Kindle & Hardcopy

Do you have a release date for your next book?
I wish! Trying for December, but I will keep everyone updated.
And one more little note... KC Stone is actually a pen name. :)

Thank you again, KC. I loved hearing more about the inner workings of Replaced by a Stranger. I can’t wait for your next novel. Keep me posted!


Kate Evangelista said...

What a great interview. Thank you so much for putting it up. :-)

Collette said...

Good times, for sure! I love learning about such interesting people.

Jodie B. Cooper said...

Great interview! I enjoyed it.

Thanks for the e-mail you sent from Book Blogs!

Stop by my blog sometime and say hi. :)

Sídhí World News Blog

Collette said...

Hi Jodie,

Thanks so much! I tried to comment on your blog to say congrats on your third, but everytime I try to post under Google it returns me to the sign in page :(. I'll contact you on GR.

Donna said...

Great interview. I posted it to My Life. One Story at a Time. on face book. Feel free to post book updates on my page. I'm a new follower here and look forward to reading more. I would love for you to visit/follow my blog. I write book reviews and stories about my crazy life. Hope to see you there. Donna

Collette said...

Thank you so much, Donna! That's great for KC. I'm looking at your blog now :)

jenny milchman said...

What an interesting--and important--book. I'm interested in the distinction between novel and memoir--sounds like this is some of both?

Collette said...

Hi Jenny,

Yes, and I think that is what I liked so much about it. It was very frank, honest, and real. Her characters are not perfect, and they know they make mistakes. It is very easy to sympathize with them because of that.

doreen said...

Wonderful Interview!

I love your "Forever Sunshine" Trailer!

Nikki said...

Great interview!! Hi and welcome! This is a great blog. Stop by and say hi over on mine if you get a chance. I am hosting a giveaway.

Sharon Henning said...

Very interesting review. I always like to hear how other people write. Found you on book blogs and following.

Collette said...

@Doreen, Nikki and Sharon - thank you ladies so much! I hope to have many more interesting and talented people appear :)