Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Aspiring Author Interview with Lydia Kang

Somebody LOVES the snow.
 First of all, let me just say we're in the midst of a SNOWPOCALYPSE right now. (okay so my favorite term for it right now is SnooooOMG)  First Blizzard since 1912 or something crazy like that.

I have this picture in my head of Laura Ingalls Wilder inching along a rope in the blizzard, not able to see anything in front of her and almost dying.  SO glad I don't actually have to make a living off my animals! Pretty sure we can't milk my dog anyway.  Actually I'm certain- he's a boy.

So while we're all holed up inside praying our pipes don't freeze in -12 weather, I'll warm you all up with a little piece I like to call, Aspiring Author Interview.

And this one is super cool you guys.  It's Lydia Kang from The Word is My Oyster.  She's a mother, wife, DOCTOR, and a writer.  Yep, I said doctor.  AND she has awesome posts on Mondays in which she talks about blood, guts and gore and the technicalities of ailments, death and any other medical condition you want to write about in your book.  She's a great research tool if you want to find out just how long it takes to heal after a gunshot wound to the calf, or what kind of drug will make a character unconscious for several hours.  Check her blog out for these great tips and other awesome writing-related doctorly type stuff!

Ooh ooh, AND she has a 600 followers contest going on right now!  Check it out!

1.      Tell us the scoop on how you got into writing novels.

 About five years ago I started writing non-fiction pieces about my day job and managed to get a few published in journals. Three years ago, I joined a writing group involving doctors, poets, and writers called the Seven Doctors Project and the love of writing poetry began. I got a poem or two published too, but it wasn't until about 18 months ago I decided to write a novel.
I always wanted to write a book but I didn't know how, and I didn't have any good ideas.I actually took a few hours one day and just thought really hard about an interesting idea that popped into my head. It was an urban fantasy YA plot, and after hashing out the basics, I thought, huh. Maybe I could try. Three weeks later, I had my first novel. After a bunch of small revisions, I queried widely and even spoke to an agent. But the novel wasn't ready, and by then, I had a new idea brewing, so I moved on. Since then, I've been writing nearly daily and learning the craft.

2.      What genre do you write?

I write YA. I started with urban fantasy, moved onto a historical romance that is still out with some agents. Now I'm revising a near-future sci-fi. I can't seem to stick to one sub-genre!

3.      What authors inspire you?

Suzanne Collins opened my eyes to plotting and pacing. Libba Bray, Margaret Atwood, and Jennifer Connelly (among many, many others) inspire me to work on my prose. I have a huge author-crush on Austen, all the Brontes, Laura Ingalls Wilder, L.M.  Montgomery, J.K. Rowling, Tolkien...
I used to be embarrassed that I loved so many middle grade and YA books. I've gotten over it. Waaaaay over it.

4.      How often do you write?

When I'm doing a first draft, I write every day for hours at a time. I lose sleep and lose weight. It's a bit unhealthy! Generally I write on my non-working days and after the kids are in bed.

5.      Are you a plotter or a pantser?

I'm 65% plotter and 35% pantser. I know what scenes and plot points must happen, but the scene itself is pantsed. Some of my crit partners actually beta my outlines now.

6.      Where do you write best, and do you listen to music while you write?

I can write almost anywhere (floor, bed, desk, teahouse, coffeehouse, bookstore) but I can't be confined. I need to get up and walk around, tuck my legs under, stretch. I listen to music sometimes but when I'm in the zone, I tune it out and forget it's even on.

7.      What is on your TBR pile?

I'm only partly done, but Dark Life by Kat Falls (won that from Carol Riggs, thanks!), Shipbreaker, The Book Thief, to name a few.

8.      If Stephanie Meyer and JK Rowling got in a cat fight, who would win?

Let's face it, they've got enough cash to hire their minions to fight for them. So I guess the question is, which would win, a wanna-be vampire/werewolf or a wanna-be witch/wizard?
I'd give it to the witch/wizard. You can do a lot of damage with that wand while the wanna-be vampire is spreading on the glitter and the wanna-be werewolf is attempting to wax his chest hair off.

9.      What is your “day” job?

I'm a part-time primary care general internist, a dying breed in the U.S. I spend a huge amount of my time praising the virtues of exercise and healthy food. 

10.  What can you not leave home without? (cell phones are off limits!)

My tea, either green or white. I drink about six cups or more a day. I joke that most people's bodies are 60% water; mine is 60% green tea. I'm a total snob about my tea too. Don't get me started on brewing temperatures and the horrors of bagged teas. 

11.  Mac or PC?

Converted to Mac one year ago, never looked back.

12.  Favorite dessert?

Oreos and cold milk. 

13.  Favorite desert?


14.  Where is your dream vacation?

New Zealand. I must visit Hobbit holes before I die.

15.  Finally, link us to your website, blog, fb, twitter and anything else you might like to shamelessly plug for yourself.
Shameless plug: If you haven't had a chance, enter my 600 Followers contest where I'm giving away gift cards or stuffed, fluffy diseases, risk free! Ends Friday Feb 4th.


Amie B said...

i love lydia! thanks for hosting this interview so we could learn more about her :) i'm sure she's going to be very successful with her writing career!

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Thanks, Abby, for a wonderful interview. You asked great questions. And, Lydia, the answers were light, bright, and full of humor -- as I would have expected. I, too, dream of going to New Zealand, hoping to see glimpses of Galadrial and Xean, of course. LOL. Both of you stay warm and safe. And thanks again, Abby and Lydia.

Lydia K said...

Thanks Abby for inviting me for the interview. I had a blast answering the quetions!

Bryan Russell (Ink) said...

Wonderful interview. And be careful with those low ceilings in the hobbit holes.

Melissa Bradley said...

Great interview Lydia, Abby. I'd give it to JK, too. I have to visit Middle Earth before I go as well.

I'm a total pantser, Lydia, but your way of plotting sounds pretty cool and I just might have to give it a try.

Milking the dog, Abby...LOL I love Laura Ingalls Wilder, but I'm so happy I don't have to live like her.

Melissa said...

hahaha O man! I laughed so hard at the Stephenie Meyer? JK Rowling showdown this week! Lydia is hilarious. And I so agree, she is awesome! She makes me love mondays!

Ps. Love that picture of the dog. Hope your family is still doing all right Abby!

Carol Riggs said...

Fun and lively interview, Lydia and Abby! Uh-oh, now I'm wondering about the horrors of bagged teas. LOL
(brrr, Abby, -12 is downright COLD!)

Matthew Rush said...

You're going to love Ship Breaker. Best YA novel I read last year.

Angela Felsted said...

What a great interview. Lydia rocks!

Meredith said...

Such an inspiring writer! I love that you can't stick to one sub-genre, Lydia--I'm the same way! Great interview!

Sondrae Bennett said...

Now I'm craving Oreos and milk! Great interview.

Lisa said...

I love Lydia's site - you're right, Abby, that it has great info on medical issues.

And, of course, anyone who loves Austen is all right in my book!

Candyland said...

Haha. Love Lydia. And I'm a coffee snob in re: to temperature:)

Colene Murphy said...

Hope you're enjoying another lovely snow day!!!

Lydia's interview was awesome! I loved getting to know her better, she does have one of the beset blogs out there (besides you of course!!)

L.A. Colvin said...

Great interview and I love her blog and yours of course. She has lots of info on medical stuffies.

Elana Johnson said...

*waves* to Lydia. She is the greatest. I'm glad to see a mix of plotter/pantser. I'm getting more mixed up too. :)

And oh my heck! The image of Laura Ingalls Wilder holding onto the rope is so vivid in my head right now.

Nas Dean said...

Thanks for hosting this interview so we could learn more about Lydia!

Ok, the wizards vs vamps and werewolves?

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Not fair! I don't lose weight when writing.
Good interview, ladies.

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

Lydia is awesome! It was fun to read her answers to your interview questions. Thanks to both of you!

You have a great place here. Following!!

Jennie Bailey said...

Great interview - I love Lydia!! She's so cool. Sign me up for the losing weight while I write thing, please.

Fingers crossed for no freezing pipes during Snowpocolypse!

The Golden Eagle said...

Great interview! Lydia is one awesome blogger. :)

Anonymous said...

Squee--Mac and New Zealand--love, love, love both!!!!!!! :D

Great interview! :D

Guinevere said...

Great interview! It was a lot of fun to read.

New Zealand is an awesome pick for a dream vacation spot - I went there in 2001 but I'm still trying to get back. Beautiful and fun, lots of outdoor activities and culture, and the people are so nice.

Saumya said...

Aw, I love Lydia!!

Lynda Young said...

Loved the interview. Cool questions and answers :)

Sam said...

Great interview. :P Also, HOLY MONKEYS, THE SNOWPOCALYPSE. We are still stuck in the house.

Donea Lee said...

Hope you're staying warm, Abby! Great interview, ladies! Lydia - I would love to see some hobbit holes, too.~ :)

Madeleine said...

Great interview I like the idea of being 65% plotter and 35% pantser!
BTW I have a 200+ followers giveaway at mine. :O)

Bee said...

LMAOing at #8!

Liza said...

That 65% 35% breakdown sounds just right to me!

Lisa Gail Green said...

Yeah! I love Lydia, and now I'm glad I found you too. Thanks for the wonderful interview!

Kindros said...

Great interview. :)

Karen Lange said...

Great interview! It was fun to learn more about Lydia. Thank you, Abby and Lydia, for doing this.
Have a great weekend,

Kelly said...

Very fun learning more about Lydia!
And what in the world are the horrors concerning tea bags??!

alexia said...

Great interview! I've got interviews all this week at my blog if you want to stop by!

Anita Saxena said...

Awesome interview. I'm already a follower of Lydia's blog, but always nice to learn more about the people we follow.

Gail said...

Love Ms. Lydia! Great interview, Abby! I'm a follower of you now!!! Got to find out about the white tea from Lydia- can't find any here that isn't fruity. I don't like stuff mixed in my tea!

Come check out my blog some time