Today is the fourth installment of my Friday series on successful authors from QueryTracker.
Some of the authors I'm spotlighting have agents, others have found success in less conventional ways. But one thing they all have in common is the utilization of the QueryTracker website to help make their tracks in the publishing world.
I'd like to welcome Kathy Bradey (known as kathy_xoxo on QT) who has recently signed with agent Suzie Townsend of FinePrint Literary Management. When I first read Kathy's book premise on her QueryTracker Success Interview, I knew I wanted to have her as a guest. This book is right up my alley -- complete with an incredible title -- and I'm looking forward to when it hits the shelves so I can devour it ... no doubt in one sitting. ;)
AGH: So glad you could visit us, Kathy! Could you give us a quick summary of the book which snagged your agent?
Kathy: ICE CAROUSEL is a YA fantasy inspired by the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. On the surface, it is a story about traveling to the land between life and death and bargaining for the life of someone you love. But if you look deeper, it is a story about a girl finding her feet in the world and discovering that she is stronger and has more substance than what she originally believes.
AGH: Before you signed with your agent, how many books had you tried to query?
Kathy: I queried a high fantasy novel for about a month in 2008. I only sent out a couple of queries. I think I knew the book wasn’t good enough!
AGH: What genre(s) do you write?
Kathy: I love writing YA. I gravitate toward fantasy, post-apocalyptic and paranormal. And romance is a huge part of all my novels because that’s what I love to read!
AGH: What inspires your book ideas?
Kathy: Music and feelings. Sounds corny, but it’s true. I like to capture a certain emotion when I write – whether it be heartbreak, joy, confusion, doubt, whatever. Music often brings that out in me and kick starts a story idea.
AGH: How do you come up with titles?
Kathy: It’s very important for me to have a title that I love before I start writing. I like pretty titles. Haha. I also like the title to mean something, so I find it easier to have the title upfront and work it into the story. But, to answer the question, I don’t have one method. I just think about words and ideas and pick what grabs me!
AGH: What books / authors have most influenced your own style and concepts?
Kathy: I’m not sure! I read lots of different authors: Wilbur Smith, Matthew Reilly, Anne Rice, J K Rowling, Amy Tan, Suzanne Collins, Ken Follett… to name a few. My favorite reads of late have been ‘The Sky is Everywhere’ by Jandy Nelson and ‘Anna and the French Kiss’ by Stephanie Perkins. I guess they’ve all influenced me in different ways, but I couldn’t pick exactly how. The best answer I can give is that amazing authors/books inspire me to keep writing and revising to the best of my ability.
AGH: How did you find QueryTracker, and how did it help you in your effort to get inside the publishing doors?
Kathy: I can’t remember when I found QueryTracker, but I used it to read about agent interests, statistics, success stories, comments from queriers about agents… and everything in between! I’ve found it incredibly useful.
**Five for fun**
AGH: Which would you rather do: carry an umbrella or sing in the rain?
Kathy: Sing in the rain beneath an umbrella. Pretty much sums up my personality. I like to be free and impulsive – within reason! :)
AGH: What’s your favorite breakfast?
Kathy: I love toast with peanut butter, toast with vegemite, toast with cream cheese and smoked salmon… Go the carbs!
AGH: What video games do you play?
Kathy: Dead or Alive 2 is an old school favorite of mine. I’m also quite partial to those ridiculous games where you are required to build a theme park from scratch and keep all your visitors happy.
AGH: When would you go to if you had a time machine, and why?
Kathy: Ancient Greece, Egypt or Rome. I love history and beautiful places. However, I’d only like to visit!
AGH: If you were tight with one of the Greek gods, which one would it be and what favor would you ask of them?
Kathy: Hermes. I’d borrow his winged sandals.
Thanks so much, Anita! <3
And thank you, Kathy! I felt a kinship while reading your breakfast preferences. I'm a bit of a toast enthusiast myself.
I look forward to buying your book one day! Such a unique concept. Much luck to you on the rest of your writing journey.
If you have questions for Kathy--or would like to congratulate her and show your support -- please leave a comment below. Also, dont' forget to follow her blog and cheer her on as she climbs to the bookshelves.
And be sure to pop in next Friday, because our QueryTracker visitor is somewhat of an online celebrity who's found her success in a less traditional way -- sans the help of an agent. (Hint: Much like our guest today, her ititials are K.B. Oh, and she holds the fates of many authors in the pads of her busy fingertips...)
Happy Friday everyone!