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Friday, April 18, 2008

Interview with Rita Karnopp

Thank you, Rita Karnopp, for agreeing to an interview on Eternal Press Blog.

EP: When did you seriously sit down, and say to yourself, I’m going to write a novel?

Rita: I’d shared at other interviews that I use to dream up stories in my mind as an escape from my life as early as ten years old. So when I got ‘hooked’ on reading I’d often think, wow could I write something better? I started out writing children’s stories and the market was saturated. So I tried a YA and found that market was so bought up that books weren’t being released 3-4 years. It was about this time that a very famous writer, Margaret (Meg) Chittenden, said in one of her workshops, “Write what you love to read.” I took it to heart and wrote WHISPERING SUN, my Indian historical that Uncial Press is releasing this May. I haven’t stopped writing since! My second book was WIND SONG, an Indian historical that Eternal Press published in March 2008. I absolutely love this book and it’s getting great reviews.

EP: What do you find the most difficult to write? Dialogue? Back story?

Rita: Since I’m never at a loss for words, neither are my characters. I find dialog the easiest part of writing. But back story can be tricky…you can’t miss foreshadowing or setting up the time and tone of the story.

EP: Have you ever found that you didn’t like your Hero or your Heroine? If so, what did you do to change that?

Rita: Actually no. I’ve never thought about it…because we fall in love with, root for, and fell and cry with our hero and heroine. I’m not sure I’d write a story where my hero or heroine were unlikable.

EP: If you were to start again, with the knowledge you have now, what would be the first thing you do?

Rita: I’d have an agent already. I’d treat my writing as a business….but then again… it might have stifled my creative flow…

EP: Do you have the support of friends and family? Meaning, do they understand when you are writing that you cannot be disturbed? Or do you have friends that think since you’re home, you don’t work?

Rita: I’m so blessed here. My husband, daughter, son couldn’t be more supportive. All those years of walking past my desk, not interrupting, even though I know they wanted to talk to me. Years of my clicking at the typewriter and then keyboard. Early Saturday mornings when my printer loudly typed out my books. Not one complaint. And they couldn’t be more proud of me…than me! My sisters, brother mom, mother-in-law, relatives, and friends have been beyond supportive!

EP: What was the biggest hurtle you had to overcome in your career?

Rita: Seeing my books in print! I love ebook and I’ve enjoyed working for my ebook publishing houses. The book covers I’ve received have been incredible. I would love to hold my book in my hands. Soon Eternal Press will be publishing them in POD and I’m holding back the excitement until that day happens! Then I’ll let go and CELEBRATE!

EP: What genre do you write? Do you write more than one, if so, what?

Rita: I write Indian historicals and suspense. I also have written futuristic-Native American and a serial killer book. I have plans to write a story during the Holocaust.

EP: How do you research for your books?

Rita: I love research. I have to set a time limit when I start researching…or I might never stop. I love history. I love forensics.

EP: How do you develop your characters?

Rita: I start with a story idea and then think about it for months…jotting notes down. I get a feel for a situation and then think about what characters would find themselves in that situation and do the ‘what if’…soon I’m writing. I have a beginning, middle, and end in mind…but the characters often change that.

EP: Are any of your characters a person you’d like to be? If so which one?

Rita: Absolutely. If I had a chance to choose to be one of my characters I’d be Leota from WIND SONG. It was her duty to try and convince her chief to not sign the Treaty of 1855. It’s a time of history I just know I must have lived…sleeping in a tipi and respecting a most beautiful way of life.

EP: Who inspired you to write?

Rita: I started reading any book by Victoria Holt, then moved on to historical romances by Shirl Heneke and Janet Daily. I read Mary Higgins Clark and moved on to John Jakes….

EP: What is the most humorous writing experience you’ve ever had?

Rita: Ok… my son and I were shopping. We were talking and decided to go into a jaw breaker shop. I bought a couple and we popped them into our mouths. My got lodged behind my back jaw…so using my cupped palm …I popped it out…it bounced out of my mouth, rolled across the floor, hit the wall and rolled back to me. I picked it up…wiped it off and popped it back into my mouth!! My 8 year old son cracked up… we had to leave…we were laughing so hard! Great memory!

EP: If a new writer came to you for advice what would you tell them?

Rita: If it’s in your heart to write….write. There is nothing like typing ‘the end’!

EP: Do you have a book coming out? If so what? Do you have a web site? Do you have a blog? My space?

Rita: I’m so glad you asked! Eternal press is releasing RANSOM LOVE (Montana Territory-1868) in August, REVENGE (suspense) in November and KIDNAPPED (romantic suspense) in January 2009!

I love to hear from my readers. My email addy is

Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions for the Eternal Press blog. Good luck with your writing.


Mary said...

Thanks Rita,
Fun interview!

Sloane Taylor said...

Rita, Your passion for history and the beauty of Indian culture carries through to your work.

Thank you for having following your heart.

Ginger Simpson said...

Whew, changing from purple to yellow blinded me for a moment. *lol* I really enjoyed Rita's interview.

Even though I consider her a pal on the loop, it's always nice to learn more about our friends. Mary, thanks for letting me peek into what makes Rita tick. I'm so happy I signed with EP, if for no other reason than the great friends I've made here. Any company can publish a book, but it takes a team to keep people together and enthused. Rita is a key part of what will make EP a success. Her spirit is contagious and her writing is awesome.

Ellie Walker said...

Kia ora Rita

you are a telling such interesting stories keep it going. I don't live in the USA but still love those corageous Indians and the way they looked after their families. I love reading historicals and wish you many sales


Anonymous said...

Hi Rita,

Western history has always been my first love. It's good to see someone is giving the Natives and the women some time in the sun - they always got the short end of things before, didn't they? Best of luck to you. Dee Kirk