Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.
Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?
Randall Krzak, 62 years old/young, depending on how you look at it.
Fiona: Where are you from?
Originally from Michigan, but have lived in a number of countries.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I have a bachelor degree from the University of Maryland. I also have two master degrees from Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh. I’m married to Sylvia, who is from Scotland, and also a writer. We have one son, Craig, and five cats: Oliver, Hope, Charlie, Lola, and Flora.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news. Busy working on Dangerous Alliance, the sequel to my debut novel, The Kurdish Connection.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
During my working career I spent countless hours doing technical/expository writing. I began writing my first novel in 2011/12 but put it aside after about 200 pages. It remained in electronic storage until 2015, when I dusted it off, basically rewrote the majority of what I had already completed. By April 2016, I had the manuscript ready to submit to publishers.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I would say 2015 when I really began to work on my novel.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
A longtime friend and work colleague suggested I write a novel when I retired. So I gave it a try.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
I looked for something not too long and conveyed a bit about the story.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging? I try to have a balance of narrative and dialogue, usually leaning more toward having my characters tell the story rather than the narrator. Learning to write interesting dialogue was one of my toughest challenges.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Perhaps half the book is based on historical events, organizations, locations, and personal experiences. The rest was decided by the characters.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
Although I had no idea I would ever try to write a novel, the main setting for The Kurdish Connection is in Turkey, where Sylvia and I lived for a number of years.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
The cover used for The Kurdish Connection was handled by my publisher, Moonshine Cove Publishing, LLC.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?Not a specific one, but readers have pointed out they enjoy learning about the different cultures used in my work.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest? Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?
I’m reading several new authors:AJ Wallace, who is working on a mystery and crime series called Sideways Eight (two novels published thus far). Descriptive passages, realistic action, outstanding characters are all traits of AJ’s work. Another is Preston Holtry, who has a four books published under The Morgan Westphal Mystery series. Like AJ, Preston uses vivid scenes, colorful characters, and plenty of action to convey his stories. I go back and forth on who my favorite writer is. The group includes Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler, Brad Thor and a few others. They’ve all had a positive impact on how I write.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
The long-time friend and colleague who suggested I write a novel in the first place.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career? At present, I’m treating it as a hobby, but one I must rein in or it will take over everything else. I already have synopses created for additional novels.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I don’t think so. I had plenty of guidance as I was writing and I’ve using the advice to continually improve my writing.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Writing the book is the easy part. Editing, finding a publisher, and marketing take even more time, but all worth the effort. While self-publishing is always an option, I wanted to try the traditional method first.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
This is a tough one. If they were much younger–Sean Connery or Harrison Ford.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Never give up. Create you first draft, get feedback from others, and edit. Continue obtaining feedback and editing until you think you’re done. Then edit again as you will have missed something.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Get ready for a wild journey through different cultures, with characters you can love or hate, and plenty of twists and turns.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I can’t provide the name right now, as the book hasn’t been released. It’s by Preston Holtry, and it’s part of a historical fiction series he’s working on. I’ll be providing a blurb for his publisher’s use when it’s released.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
No—I’ve read hundreds over the years. Some I’ve read more than once, especially those written by Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler, and Brad Thor.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Any of my favorite authors. I’d like to learn more about how they’ve succeeded with their writing careers.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Candle making, pyrography, traveling/sightseeing
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I like action/adventure thrillers and documentaries
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
I like trying food from different cultures. My favorite so far is Turkish cuisine. Blue is one of my favorite colors. As far as music, I prefer songs which tell a story (and I can actually understand the words).
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
Go back to my other hobbies or find new ones.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
LOL. Never thought that far ahead.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
Yes. My website is www.randallkrzak.com.
Along the top of the page is a number of categories, including Randall’s Ramblings, which is my weekly blog. New updates are posted to my blog every Sunday.
My Amazon Authors page (I need to get this updated!)
The Kurdish Connection, is available through this link on Amazon: