Friends & Fiction
Friends & Fiction

Episode · 1 year ago

Friends & Fiction with William Kent Krueger

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Bestselling, award-winning author William Kent Krueger joins the Fab Five to talk about his novel THIS TENDER LAND. They each discuss their rituals after handing in a manscript, the influences of Huck Finn and The Odyssey on Kent's latest work, and how his study of childhood resiliency has informed his writing. https://williamkentkrueger.com/

Welcome to Friends and a fiction five best selling authors and the stories novelist Mary Kay Andrews, Christine Harmel, Christie Woodson, Harvey, Patty Callahan Henry and Mary Alice Munro are five longtime friends with more than 80 published books. To their credit. In 2020 they created friends and fiction to provide author interviews and fascinating insider talk about publishing and writing and to highlight independent bookstores. These friends discussed the books they've written, the books they're reading now and the art of storytelling. If you love books and you're curious about the writing world, you're in the right place. Good evening and welcome to Friends and fiction. Tonight we are all praying with peace and hope across our great nation. Friends and fiction is a place of refuge for us, and we hope it is the new two. I'm Mary Alice Munro, and I'm delighted to be your host. Tonight I upcoming novel is The Summer of Boston found I mean not Made in Heaven and I'm Mary Kay Andrews, and my forthcoming novel is the newcomers out. May 4th. I'm Christine Harmel, and my next novel is The Forest of Vanishing stars out July 6th. I'm Christi Woodson Harvey, and my next book is Under the Southern Sky, releasing April 20th and last but not least, I am Paddy Callaghan Henry, and my next novel is surviving Savannah in exactly eight weeks way. We've been looking forward to tonight to welcome the award winning author William Kent Krueger. A few announcements, let's begin by announcing, are highlighted. Independent producer. We have a cue. The bookstore coming up with it is called the Once Upon a Crime, and it is located in Minnesota. And many of you may not know that William Kent Krueger is also author of an award winning this spring, Siri's Park O'Connor mysteries. That's also said in Minnesota, So it's no surprise that his trust that would be a bookstore that focuses on once upon a crime primarily stocks mystery fiction. And if you love mysteries, they'll work with you to find that book you're searching for. But if you want to order a non mystery, they can order that, too, and shipped directly to you. And tonight, Once Upon a Crime is offering 10% off of William Kent. Krueger is books including Ordinary Grace and This tender land, as well as the recent and upcoming novels of the Fab Five, the five of us authors here and as a bonus, can't live near the store. So if you'd like a signed copy, let them know that when you order the link is on our Facebook page under announcements it and our presenting sponsor tonight for our show is Mama Geraldine's traditional Southern snacking. They're offering 20% off of orders with the code Fab Five on. That is a deal you were not gonna want to miss out on. I did want to mention I know a couple of you had some problems with the shipping price last week that has been all fixed on. I think if you paid extra shipping, they have refunded you also. But if you went last week and you thought, Oh, my goodness, the shipping is really high Go back because you're gonna wanna have these treats. My personal favorite is the consummate ease, but the cheese straws air also to die for thank you. And now to the person we are all eager to me. William Kent Krueger is the celebrated award winning author of The New York Times bestseller Ordinary Grace and his latest best selling novel, This Tender Land. It is also the author of The long running court O'Connor, Mr Siris, for which is one multiple avoids, including back to back Anthony Words, the coveted Edgar Award Mystery Writers of America and the good reads Choice Aboard For the Street and Phillips. I Love This Office Bio, and I took It Right from his website. Susan Williams at Kroger briefly attended Stanford University before being kicked out for radical activities. After that, he logged Timber. Don't you love values? Love him for that alone. After that, he logged timber. He worked construction. He tried his hand freelance journalism and eventually ended up researching child development at the University of Minnesota. He currently makes his living as a full time off. He's been married for over 40 years to a wonderful, marvelous woman was retired a tuning. He makes his home in ST Paul that he really loved. He may claim he doesn't have a degree yet his novel to reflect a scholarship in the cost. Several great now tips are mentioned when discussing this land. Virgil's...

...odyssey with the stories Epic journey, Charles Dickens and Inequality and Abusive Boys in School on Steinbeck brings to mind the desperate poverty Depression era. Mark Twain with Huckleberry Finn and the vagabonds adventure about Mississippi River. Sinclair Lewis's Elmer Gantry religious revival Finally, L. Frank Baum's The Visit of Eye On That's pretty heady company, and it explains why this tender land has the feel of class it Waas. And I'm honest about this. It was my favorite book. So it's for me a really great pleasure introduced William Can't Kruger. Thank you so much for having me. Yea, having hearing your thank you really, truly love your books. And I'm sure if everyone out there who hasn't read it yet, Is there anyone out there who hasn't You will thio. Well, in the past few weeks, most of us here have finished in hand and into our publishers, publishers in the novel, and finishing a novel is followed by all of us with this great sigh of relief. So what I'm asking all of you, including you can't can you share what you do after you push send and is it harder for you to send in the unedited draft to your editor knowing edits are coming or in the final past pages, knowing you won't be able to work on it any longer. E don't know about all of you, but for me, it's a never ending process. E until I actually have the finished product in my hand. You know, everything is up to grab eso when I have finished the first draft of the novel. Typically, I'll try to set it aside for a while so that I can come back to it a bit later with a French er I, um Then I'll send the manuscript off to my agent for her comments, goes through revisions. Then I send it to my editor for his comments. It goes revision when I sent, Then I get the copy edited manuscript addressed all of those. And then finally those final the the first past pages and second past pages come have to be honest with you. By the time I get the second past pages, I'm pretty tired. A soon as I have finished all of that process, I have to move onto the next project. I don't know about you. I feel so at sea if I'm not actually at work. Well, that's interesting. That really is. But you don't give yourself in a horde like today I'm gonna by myself in your ball cap or something. E have a whole collection of ball caps that have nothing in writing. It's all because underneath there, there is this really shiny of ball hate that is, with the camera life. Where where? E By going out and buying a few donuts and chocolate milk. Actually e love that you're walking the Ron Howard look z a good luck. Yeah, that's very sexy. We like them or anybody else want to confess what they do when they pushed send, which they prefer? Well, I celebrate sending it in the first, finishing it and sending the first draft off. I don't do multiple dress. I finished the book. Then I sent it to my agent in my editor simultaneously and I always celebrate with the same thing which is re C cups. And when I and when I can get my hands on it, wink grapefruit, soda e Don't distribute wink in Georgia where I lived, they did when I lived in North Carolina. But yeah, recent cups is how I celebrate. Then I'm like you. Can I go right? It's you know, Plus, I think all of us air. We're on a fast track. We're all on a I think we're all year schedule. So there's there's there's really no time to go out and buy ball caps. I'm sorry. E need a new celebration ritual. I clean my office. I left the wing way better. Usually by the time those last first past pages are sent in my office...

Looks like a bomb went off in it because I've ignored everything. So there's this great flurry of I'm going to clean it up. Um but yeah, and then immediately, because usually I think all of you all to there's been something brewing, right. It's been on that back burner and you've been thinking so a soon as they're handed in and it's never the end when you hand them in. But you know you want to jump in. Yeah. You know, I feel like by the time the first pass or the final past pages come to you, months have elapsed from the time you turned in your first draft and then you're at it like time has passed. And if you weren't writing in the meantime, you've now wasted a few months on your next book, sort of, or at least on the next idea. So, honestly, by the time I'm doing final past pages, I feel like, Oh, no, this is kind of taking me away from the working hands Like the work I'm really feeling about now. Yeah, yeah E feel that exact same way. And I have this thing Where before I have a book handed in, I have to be at least like 10,000 words into my next manuscript. Are start getting kind of panicky because I'm like, I'll never have another idea. They'll never be another back like so I have to kind of take a step back and work for a little bit. But I think for me, it's much more nerve wracking to send in that first draft than it is to send the final one. Because by the final one, e feel like I've gotten enough people's opinions that like it's probably not just terrible, you know, like that many people cannot have read it, and it be just terrible. So I think it's, but they both come with their own sense of sort of challenges. Christie. It's the opposite for me, like after I've hit send on those final past pages, I will literally be woken up in the middle of the night by nightmares that I've missed, like one word that I translated incorrectly or one detail wrong. That's gonna ruin the entire book. And now it's too late to fix it, e acknowledged. E. I have to remind this week I'm so panicked now and I'll wake up with the cold sweat there like everyone's going to hate it and it's full. And I mean, I definitely have all of that, but I think the the knowing that there's something about knowing that it's just out of your hands. To me that's different than knowing all the work that's about to come. I get that follows when you turn it in and it's being prepared for. Production is I don't know about you is the worry about Okay, So what are people going to think of this? What is the way of this? And I have Ah, I have to admit I'm impressed. 80 books between U E. I only have 20. I feel like a slack. Well, way wouldn't have invited you. And you only had 20. You're outta mistakes way 20 Timberland is 2020 20. I think it's 20 even 20 maybe 21. I'm not sure. Lucky Number 21 e both read this tender land, and I listened to the audiobook is back to your friends and fiction. I raved about the audio. I think that's a really great narration. So will you please give our viewers a brief summary of this epic tale, this tender land? So the Stender Landis set in the summer of 1932 during the Great Depression. It's the story of four orphans from the walking A a terrible crime, but for the right reason, they know if they take to the roads to get away, they're gonna be caught rather quickly because a huge manhunt has been launched to capture them. They're afraid to ride the rails, as everybody was doing back in the Depression, because the railroads back then were patrolled by private cops called bulls, and the bulls had a reputation for being incredibly cruel. So so the kids decide instead Thio to take to the rivers. They canoe a river called the Gilead to the Minnesota. They could do the Minnesota River to the Mississippi and their plan is to canoe all the way down the Mississippi River to ST Louis, where they believe they have family and they'll be safe. I've always wanted to write an updated version of Huckleberry Finn. This is my blueberry. You did it for sure. I say that. I see that. Yeah, well, I think I hope you all can hear. Um, this is the part of the show where we get to ask you questions on. I've listened to a lot of the interviews and you always have such great answers. So I'll start. Can you all hear? I know that you, my great so can't what a bunch of...

...vagabonds you created with this group. You have Odysseus or OD the clever, cunning body than his brother Albert, who's being mechanical whiz and kind of the boy in charge responsible. And I love most the native Indian whose voiceless about the name our family unable to speak and Little Emmy who everyone loves and she is a seer. So I I'm big Dickins fans, as everyone knows, and this is like the Children in Dickens's books. These Children endured really harsh, unspeakable Lincoln into Chinese school and during their journey all along the Gilead, they were treated harshly. There were quite scary moments. So I'd like to have you discussed how the Children shared this trauma that united them and how they also had this shared vision or idea of home. And how close to the addicts. And did you really stick as you wrote this? Now, um, several questions in there. Um, let's take the Odyssey question first. The Odyssey was where my thinking began. E have tried to write a couple of times across. My my career is a writer, and and I was never able to sink my teeth into the story. I have to tell you honestly, this is a story I wanted to write. Since I was 11 years old, I was 11. That would have been in the fifth grade. Our teacher read to the class the adventures of Tom Sawyer. She did it by reading our after lunch every day. I love that book. Here was this kid and he was just like me. And it was out there on the Mississippi River having this really great adventures. And of course, after that I had to read Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, which I loved even more on DSO. Ever since then, really, I wanted to write a story that would pay homage to Mark Twain. That might be, as I said, in a way, an updated version of Huckleberry Finn. Uh, but I When I tried to write it, I couldn't sink my teeth into it because I didn't know the structure. My father was a high school English teacher, and when I was quite young, instead of reading, you know, the Hardy Boys and Nancy through, he had me reading The Iliad and The Odyssey never cared much for the Elliot. But I love the Odyssey. And so the idea came to me, Um, why not use the structure that Homer used in the in the Odyssey? And and then I began to envision a story in sections in which each section would be an adventure that these vagabonds would have that would mirror an experience that Odysseus had in his long journey from Troy back to Ithaca. And that's really when the story began. Thio come together. Um, let's see, what else did you ask me? Oh, myself about the trauma and I really think you earlier Children education. You must think about things right, Thank you for because nobody has ever asked me this before. But one of the things that I studied the lab in which I worked, studied at the University of Minnesota. The Institute of Child Development was resilience in Children and what we found. Children are incredibly resilient, given the proper support. And so what happened across the course of the summer for these for vagabonds is create family and the family becomes their support and they love one another and care about one another. And that's what gains them and gives them the resilience that allows them to deal with all of the harsh circumstances that come their way. I love that answer. It really makes it. It really rings true for me. Thank you Can't. One of my favorite characters in this tender land was most the mute Indian represented the Native American, the voiceless. Could you tell us more about the rial effort of cultural genocide? It in the United States the real effect of cultural genocide in US, including the off reservation boarding schools for Native Americans that inspired the London's the Lincoln School? I think that for me, was, You know, as Mary Alice said a really Dickens ian institution. Yeah, very much. So, Um, I won't go way back because a lot of this history, everybody knows we really as a za nation of European immigrants, did our best to eradicate all of the indigenous people who were here because we moved farther and farther west, we pushed them farther and farther west than if if we didn't push them, we did our best to kill them. Really? That's the truth. Um, and, uh, and when all of that didn't work in in in the end, what they did waas because they couldn't they couldn't do it any other way. In the end, they came for the Children. And that's what the Native American boarding school system...

...was all about was, although so that the Native American boarding school system began in the late 18 eighties. It was the brainchild of a guy named Colonel Henri Richard prouder Richard Henry Pratt. Andi convinced the federal government to allow him to open a boarding school for Native American boys in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and the government considered it such a successful endeavor that they began opening up other boarding schools across the country following the the format that Pratt adopted Prats Kratz idea was this. Kill the Indian, Save the man. His belief, you know, I have to believe really thought it was a sincere effort to help the native people. His belief was is that the only hope for the native people was to fully in incorporate them into white culture. And that's what the Native American boarding schools were meant to do in truth, what they turned out being. They were supposed to train native Children to become productive members of our society. And in truth, what they turned out to be was free labor for local farmers and and other people think education was poor. The nutrition was poor, the conditions were horrible. Onda punishments for speaking their language of practicing the religion were horrific. Eso yeah, and and that lasted for almost 100 years. The boarding school system for 100 years of American parents and the government came and said, We're taking your Children away, and we're gonna cut them off to a native to a boarding school hundreds of miles away, and you won't see them for a while. Or maybe never There was nothing you could say law. Until 1978 when the National Indian Child Welfare Act was passed, that was the law that is just being powerless is the powerlessness of these kids, I think is a is a recurring is a recurring thread through through this narrative. And I love the fact that it's on Lee when they lead that school that they find their own power. Yeah, you know, he always he's always pushing back. Yeah, yeah, but he never gives up. He really has it in for the Black Witch. Yeah, the black, which was really great. I mean, that's what kids would have seen her as a witch. You kept the kids. That's one of the things I love, too, is you kept the mindset of the kids in the first. They weren't adults in kids bodies, they were kids. And they had the kids fears, which I really loved. And I was right along with them on the journey. Good. Oh, good. I think that the when I first was reading about the Lincoln School, I was hoping you had made that up about our history, and I went and looked it up and realized that you hadn't so another one of the themes that runs through the book A Rivers, Rivers. The River is a really deep metaphor in this novel. I've poems about them and photos them all over my office. I'm obsessed with the rivers and this line in your book Speak so much to me. You say there is a river that runs through time and the universe vast and inexplicable. Ah, flow of spirit that is the heart of all existence. So I want to know about your history with Rivers and why you chose this river. And if you knew, it would be a metaphor for the whole story. Oh, don't we all? As as writers love rivers because they're metaphor, so many things. Andi, in this tender land. Certainly it's a metaphor for the Children's journey to the discovery of what's important to reach them on finding that it's a metaphor for, um, the journey and creating family. It's a metaphor for have the spiritual journey that certainly odious on um, I grew up on Rivers and rivers have always just hold this mysterious appeal for me. Eso if you read the companion novel to this tender land is the novel called Ordinary Grace. The river plays a significant role in that as well. I may never write a significant novel going forward without putting a big river hard. Uh oh. Patty's gonna love that. Yeah, tell me there's a river in it. Put a river in the title. And you like Thio. You actually went on the river in your canoe. You said, Yeah, I don't know about all of you, but I try never to write about a place or an experience. I haven't had myself. With the exception of the murders in the Cork O'Connor's Theo E. You know, when I I knew I was gonna have these kids on the rivers. I'm a canoeists and that that's...

...one of the things I love about Minnesota. Great. Great area for Canadian. Uh um, But I canoe primarily lakes, but I wanted to get out there on the river so I could feel what the kids were feeling. I wanted to know what what they smelled and what made them afraid all of those things. So, yeah, I got on a kayak and I kayaked Minnesota River, and then my wife and I together canoed that section of the Mississippi that the kids canoe in the story. Uh, that's a section Well, and, uh, and ST Paul is a very busy The Mississippi River is very busy in Saint Paul, it's heavy barge traffic. And in the wake of all of these big barges, there are these huge, you know, waves these huge weights. So two or three times, while my wife and I were doing, I was sure we're gonna get swap A. But you know that the book spoiler, he did not. Unless this is the ghost of William can't you know, you can always tell when a writer really was in the in the water, on the land, you can always tell. And it was so vivid. Well done. Okay, so, you know, I spent a lot of fun in Southern Minnesota. Uh, one because I love the area into just soak up all of the details that make it come to life. But there's a thing in this story in which Tony O'Banion says a kiss with my best associate with results in love with On a Rock on the hillside I sat on that lock e loved that e thank you for sharing. That s o Can you mentioned just a moment ago, the Siris of mystery novels you wrote before you decided to write your first? Or was it your first standalone novel, Ordinary Grace? Was that your first stand alone or had 1/4 published novel? Was what in the business we call a standalone thriller. It was a political okay, Nothing like ordinary grace of this gender land. So what? What what made you switch genres? What brought you from the decision to shift from a very successful award winning mystery? Siri's to writing a literary masterpiece. Basically, how did your publisher respond? And, um, what was sort of the reaction internally And what was the thought process when I proposed the idea of the ordinary grades for my public because I didn't want it told me that the New York City and kind of a panic and set me down in 10 minutes one focused on a novel Come here. E knew it could be a risky proposition. I wrote that manuscript not under contract. E spoke to the intestine telling the way that I knew I had Thio had to write it for across the course of the next few years. Every minute that wasn't voted for contractual obligation of micro funny story has spent composing the manuscript for ordinary today. Now they Even though they didn't want it, I would have to send it to my editor, 76 there when it's been a little bit, uh, published that they did Northern Racist just have this sort of remarkable reception from critics and readers alike. Uh, one times of awards when it came out. It's been translated into more than 2000 foreign languages. Um, somebody told really million copy. So what it did was open the door for me. Oh, good for you. That's remarkable. That have kind of followed your heart into the kind of book you want to write that zone. Incredible way to kind of guide the ship of your own career. And can can you just tell briefly? Also, that was the success of ordinary Grace, And then you're going to write a follow up to it. That's a good story. Can you share that with us? Sure. So when my publisher saw how well ordinary grace was doing, but did they want another book? Just like, uh, tell us and what not to do until we do it right? Exactly. That's so true. So I signed a contract for a companion novel. They gave me a shitload of money on uh and I spent the next two years writing what I thought would be the companion novel that that management was contractually due to my public for five years ago. Two months before that contractual deadline, I set up a meeting in Chicago. We talked to my agent about revisions to the peace because there were problems with that and you see me with two days before we got together. I sent her a note saying, When we meet, I don't want to talk about how we devised this piece. I want to talk about how we stupid from being published, because it wasn't the story I thought it would be. I didn't know how to make it that story, e u. My publisher turned out to be really understanding. They said, Fine, you don't have to give us this manuscript, but you still owe us a companion novel. So here's the deal with what was going on, and maybe you've experienced this too. The expectations for that follow up novel were enormous on the whole time I was trying to write, the story just got crushed by the weight of all those expectations, Really, what I was...

...doing when I was writing it was trying to meet everybody else's expectations instead of writing the point that spoke to me from my heart. But as soon as all that weight got lifted off my shoulders and I felt free again, E was also clearly the story. I should have been writing that story that spoke to me since I was 11 years old. Wow, that's what I wanted you to tell. I love that story. It z clearly to all all authors. I think you know za story. I like telling younger writers because, you know, there's so many voices out there telling you what you ought to be writing, what's gonna sell? What's hot that e tell younger writers. The only voice you should be listening to is the one that speaks to you from your heart. Yeah, well, and that's a really perfect Segway into my question, Ken. So thank you for that. But spiritualism is such another really important player in this novel. The nature of God as well as the character's relationship with God has big consequences. For example, ODIs, Tornado, God, Sister Eaves forgiving God. And then there were the Sears, which was one of the most fascinating parts of this book to me, Sister Eve could touch a hand and know the person's history and their greatest fear young Emmys fits could deliver her a vision of the future and possibly a means to alter the future. Can you discuss the roles of God and Sears on this epic journey? And you also revealed that your own there was a seer. Can you tell us about her? Sure. Um, you know, I have. Ah, when I created them is the seer. I knew they were gonna be certain readers. That would go give me a break. Uh, because they didn't grow up the way I grew up. Uh, yeah. I grew up in a house where my mom, my mother, was the sear. It was when I was a kid for the telephone ring, and she would say, um, there's trouble with Angela. An and sure enough, uh, tossed and turned in bed for Silverlight. Since you would say something's going to happen, and it's not gonna be cool if something would happen and it wasn't good, so s. So it wasn't difficult for me. I have to tell you a little bit about me. And he came late to my thinking is a vagabond I had initially created here simply to be a daughter for Cora Frost because I thought core Frost was a woman who would have a daughter like Emmy. But the more I wrote the moment vote scenes with her in it, the more fell in love with her. And when it came time for the vagabonds Thio leave the school, I thought, Oh, crap, They're gonna leave her a do that. So trying to give her a part to play and I decided I was gonna make her t o um again. Part of the reason for that was just that when I was when I was a kid. Among the many things that my father had me read were three epic journeys he wrote in heroin. And so one of the things I remember this that on many of the journeys that a hero heroine takes, he or she is accompanied by a senior somebody can look into the future and offer advice whether it's taken or not. So I made. I mean, like, here. I just thought that was absolutely incredible. And I think it's really hard to do that in the novel, because it's like you said, You know, people in order to make that believable. You know, when you see it in real life and you experience it in real life, it sort of takes your breath away. But to be able to put that on a page could be really, really difficult. Yeah, e if I have just a moment, let me tell you this. Yeah, yeah. What? When? When this tender land came out, I did a reading in a book store. I won't tell you what the bookstore was or where it waas. But the bookseller at the end, when everybody cleared out, she called me over into an isolated I'll just just her and me. And she said, I have to tell you, I absolutely believe Tell me, because I have seen visions all my life. Uh, it has been a difficult thing for me all my life. Um uh, And then she shared some of the difficulties with me, and I'm thinking it would be so. Here is not necessarily a good thing. Yeah, it's a great responsibility. I'm sure. It's also of responsibility to hear that story is, Well, you know, that was a confidence. Yeah. Blessing. That's right, Mary Kay. Well, thank you for ladies for asking your questions. And now we get to get questions from our viewers. And we pulled a few questions from our Facebook page from our members. And if you're watching now, please leave a few questions and the life leads. So, Christian, why don't you begin asking a question from them? Yeah. Kent and Parks Lin would like to know are the Cork O'Connor mysteries based on real events or true stories? Um, many of them are based on true situations. Um used important elements off our culture here in Minnesota to create the story. So I have written about Native American. Uh, you know, in fact, that that's had both on the subway population around the white population, written about the ongoing battle we have here in Minnesota over hunting and fishing treaty rights...

...written about really bad situation that exists here in the Twin Cities and in many large studies with a significant data population that involves the sexual trafficking. Ah, vulnerable name, uh, women and Children. So I often use a real situation and create a story around that so that I can present this issue to a readership that may or may not be aware of it. But but try to inform them in a way that at least gets them thinking about it. Yeah. Hey, Patty. Yes, well, I'm sitting here nodding like pork. Siri's. I just I just think it's fascinating that you could write these mysteries Siri's and dive into being kind of events of, of death and and mystery, and then write this tender a bigger and I'm like, Where's your twin brother? What's going on? That is not the question. Jump on that per second patty, because actually, you brought up a really good point when you're writing your way when you are on, Are you a book a year for your mysteries? Or do you? What is? You have to put your epic novel in between that Stop. You do? Yeah, like most, uh, sense, I would say most writers in my genre the mystery, John, but it sounds like in your area to book of years. Commercial speed. That's what you're expect you to deliver. So both ordinary grace and this tender land were written between contractual obligations. Now, I have signed a contract for a third companion novel and thank you. Built into the contract. A deadline that would allow me a full two years to do nothing but focused on that particular words. Great. Yeah. Otherwise you're going to die way. It would be difficult to be away from Cork O'Connor for that long, but I'm willing toe to make that sacrifice. Yeah, alright. I'm sorry for interrupting you, Patty. Now you could ask your question. No, no, that's fine. Plus, I like the name Cork O'Connor e o Don't read my books. It might show up. E you can't Everybody else read them, but can court e kristen voice in e. I am sorry for butchering that middle name Keuren asks. Can you please tell us where you got the character of the pig scarer? I'm wondering the same thing, actually. Sure. If you remember your odyssey. One of the adventures that Odysseus and his men have is an encounter with a Cyclops. Paula, fema's uh, s O Paulo. FEMA's when I Jack is my pal a FEMA? Because if you remember E, let's see. How does how does oh DCs escape? He gets Paula FEMA's drunk. How does OD escape? You know, they feed when I jacked the corn liquor, you know? So on that note, who are the sirens? The sirens aren't really in there. I had initially believed the sirens were going to be part of that. That section that takes place on in hopers Ville? Yeah, And there would be a number of people that ODI would the music would come into it. Instead, I decided to focus in that section on, if you remember your Odyssey. At one point on his journey, Odysseus meets a sorceress named Calypso. And he falls in love with calypso and Calypso falls in love with him. And Calypso nearly seduces Oh, DCs away from his journey home as May best Scofield nearly does. Right? That was a close call, right? E hated that. You assume all of us have read our odyssey some of our while. E will not mention we're reading Victoria Holt novels E When I set out to structure the Odyssey I knew it was probably going to go over the head of most readers, you know, because you're right. How many people remember if they ever in fact read the Odyssey? You remember the honesty. I'm being like a four out of five of us. Read it. Then there's Look what a failure you've been. Is the result very e doomed. You're writing life e o. What went on the better the...

...dustbins of history. I'm sorry, your hero's journey. All right, let's move from the live viewership. I think Mary Kay you have? Yeah. Wait, Chris is it whose turn is that? I'm losing track way, Barbara Byrd says. A common theme of the ordinary grace and this tinder land is redemption and forgiveness and how major plays a role in this. Can you elaborate on this theme? Well, it's interesting that that the comment is is that nature plays a role in this because I'm just a Z. The comment comes in going well. You're right. It does. Doesn't the tornado Yeah, well, the I I just have to tell you that one of the ways in which I have been able to survive the coronavirus is by being outside as much as I can I In the days when it was nice enough here in ST Paul to bike, I was out on my bike every day. Um, now I'm out of my cross country skis as much as I can, or out or walking. Okay, so there's something about nature that is solace for the soul. You know, it is so comforting to be out there in nature. And so, as the kids are going through their epic journey, there are so many moments when OD notices the beauty of the natural world around him, and it gives him hope. I'm thinking, for example, about the moment that he shares with EMI when they see the yield of fireflies. I was thinking that same thing, that such a that was such a memorable snapshot. Well, I have to tell you, Mary Kate, I was taking it from real life. My wife is from Omaha, and we have always gone down many times, and I remember one year many, many years ago after we headed down after work. So it was dark and as we uh, came up to the crest of a hill in Iowa, the Iowa farm country and started to send the field. The valley on the other side was nothing but fireflies. As far it was like you come down to Earth and a yes, that was a all right. Mary Kay. Yeah. D Walsh wants to know what you are writing. Right this minute count. What are you writing? I'm working on number. What will be number 19 in my corporate Connor Mystery Siri's. I haven't got a title for it yet, So if you guys want to suggest a title to me e just ask Christian. She's are a get on the phone afterwards. A you in five minutes. You know, readers, maybe our viewers Constituent Bible for you can. Well, my title my coca Connor Siris are always two word place names that have a significant, um, play a significant part in the story. Haven't quite from the one yet, but it will come to me. It'll come to me. Oh, we'll follow you and we'll wait for it. All right, E um, now we get to the part where we really enjoy. This is the writing tip. And a lot of our viewers are writers as well. So we'd love to hear, but you bit of advice you'd like to offer all of us. Sure, Um, here's my piece of advice on it's going to take a bit, but there's a story, I think, a really good story associated with it. So I think as writers, we need to think of ourselves as artists and words are, and I don't care if you're an artist. I don't care what your medium is. I think if you're going to accomplish anything, you have to approach it in a disciplined way. So I am a very disciplined writer for many, many, many decades now. My alarm clock has gone off at a quarter of six every morning, seven days a week. We've got myself up and dressed before the coronavirus. I would go to a coffee shop where we spend the first, uh, hours of the day writing. Um, now there. When I began that process, there was a very practical reason for my wife had just entered law school and I became the sole support of the family. I was the guy who had to keep a roof over our head and food on the table, but I wanted desperately developed as a writer, so I had to come up with a way to meet my responsibilities as a family man. And also way we're living with that point of just a couple of blocks from an iconic Catherine and ST Paul to think they're broiler that opened its doors at six o'clock every morning, seven days a week. So I pitched this idea to my wife. I said, Honey, if you're willing to get the kids up and dressed and fed and off to school first thing so that I could go right, I swear to you, when I come home from work at the end of the day, I will be the best husband, the best father you can...

...possibly imagine. She bought it, so they're e s. So there I was in the boiler at six o'clock every morning with my pen and my notebook in hand. Because this was this was long before we even imagined laptop computers. Um, they would seek me in Booth number four. Always Booth number four. They saved it for me. Your book title? What was that? There's your book title. A a different book, Different book. I would open my notebook. Pick up my pen and I would from from 6 15 until seven o'clock, I would write from six until 7 15. I would write, closed my notebook, pay for the coffee, go out front where it's 7 20 of us, picked me up and took me to the university where I was working day in and day out. I did that which helped me establish the discipline that I think it's so necessary to being a writer. But, you know, when I look back finally, on all of those years, I realized that it had done something even more important for me. What I realized when I look back was that if I wrote first thing in the morning, I was feeding something in me that needed to be form thing, energy to go out into the world and get what you know, whatever I had to give to it, to keep a roof over our head and food on the table because I taken a care of this very elemental part of my pain. What I realized this writing had become the way I center myself in every day and create the energy to go out and meet the world, and that's still one of the greatest blessing that I take away from my writing. So, to any writers out there, my my best piece of advice is been to the work every single day, every day. You know, we all. We all discovered that the five of us discovered that during the pandemic and locked down, we started doing these seven AM writing sprints can. I was never very disciplined about my writing times. I was all over the map. And honestly, I think that that discovery came really late in my career. But it is, I think, so. Helpful. It helps you stay connected to the energy of the peace. Yeah, absolutely Well, in the mornings are so are much quieter unless you have a two year old running around. And there's a time where your four year old work 22 year old e pretty quiet with a 22 year old. He's still asleep, right? E gets up in about a half an hour, this'll sense in the mornings of this, in between time, that really allows. I think Thio dive into the peace in a different way, so I love that right Yeah, it's like stolen moments that you could e have to admit. I borrowed it from Ernest Hemingway, who was a very early influences way was that he loved nothing better than to rise at first light and spent two hour writing. He thought it was the most creative time of the day. And at least for me, I have to say I agree. Yeah, so can our readers are love toe Ask what our guest authors are reading. So do you have a book that you can share that you love to recommend with everybody? Um, the do you know what I'm reading these days? And I'm guessing you are in the same boat almost entirely are a RCs or bound galleries. Writers works that I have been asked to read with an eye to offering a dust jacket, quote a blurb. So if I told you about what I was reading now you months and months, Who knows before you see it? But I will tell you the novel that I last read that really knocked my socks off with a novel by least the wind gate called before we were yours, for me was kind of a kindred story because, like this Sunderland, except during the Great Depression. And it's about resilience of Children struggling against enormously. Yeah, she's She's a friend of ours here on the show. That's good to hear that you like that. Yeah, it's such a good book. We have a few announcements. So everyone out there make sure to stay with us. You will not want to miss a miss are one final question for William Kent Krueger. Um, But before we dive into those quickly, I just want to tell you the book. I just finished its Christie's under the Southern stuff waiting. Oh, good. Oh my gosh, it's by Christie Woodson Harvey. It comes out in April. I said it in the news letter this week. I've always loved Christie is a writer, but this is Christy at the top of her game. This is This is a step up. It's beautiful. It's I cried buckets, Iet's just so good. But we'll be talking plenty more about it. But I couldn't let tonight pass without e e have to loan you. Sorry. Well can hear...

...me. I'm sorry I disappeared. I lost power in the house. E you can't do you have any recommendations of what you reading lately? Way. Mary Kay is just about to tell us about this week's indie bookstore, anyways. Love When You about this week's indie bookstore, which is once upon a crime in, um, many Minneapolis right cat. Yeah, um, and that they are offering 10% off all of Kents novels and the recent titles of The The Rest of Us, the F N F host. The link can be found on our friends and fiction Facebook page and like, I'll tell you, it was a long time ago, but I've actually done assigning at once upon a crime. I was back when I was writing, um category mysteries. Yeah, it's a great it's a great town and and a great book store. So maybe when things get back to normal, can't we'll meet up and at the roaster is at the name of the place at the ST Clair Broiler, the ST Clair Broiler. I would love broiler. They have closed the doors, had to find a new place to write. Oh, Christie, can you tell us a little bit about next week's show? Yes, so I'm hosting next week. I cannot wait. It's a just US episode. Where we're going to celebrate are debut novels. Andi. Also we're going to introduce to you three debut novelist Sarah Pinar, Nancy Johnson and Pamela Terry. And in keeping with the theme on January 24th on our Sunday bonus episode, we're hosting two fabulous Debut author Susan Dorinda, who is the author of Bells for Eli and Alison Hammer, the author of You and Me and us So it's gonna Be a great week to talk about debuts. Yeah, it was a good friend of the group, too, So that was exciting. Yeah, it's gonna be great. And we also wanted to say Thanks again to our sponsor, Mama Geraldine's. So remember to use the code Fab Five at Mama Geraldine's dot com to get 20% off all online orders. And as Christie said, the shipping issue from last week is all resolved. Shipping is a great rate. Eso go and get your cheese straws. They're delicious. Head on over stock up and as they say, snack on y'all and I'm a northern translate e. Okay, e got it. Can't now we get to ask you the final question and in your bio. It reveals you had an eclectic approach to learning lifelong learning, which I love. So I'm especially curious tonight to hear your answer to a question that we ask most of our guests. What were your family's values around? Reading and writing growing up. And how do you think that shaped you as the writer you are today? Great question. But before I answer that I want to say this. I just want to thank you for all of the good work that you're doing for the for the writing community. All of us. Thank you for that. And thank you for all the help you're giving to the independent booksellers these days. Because as much as we all want them to still be there when we come out of this dip Endemic. So thank you for that. Eso If you were to ask me, Mary Alice, why I am a writer. I would say it. Speak up from my parents. Oh, that's what attribute. I'd be afraid, innit? Dream, though, because I blame everything on my parents E hope. Like your parents read to you as a child. I never went to bed at night. I never went down for a nap without a story being read to me. So I grew up thinking of the world in terms of stories. For whatever reason, I always wanted to be one of the storytelling. That's beautiful. And your father, you said, was an English teacher. Indeed. Iwas. Well, that explains a lot going into the classics. Thank you. Thank you Was such a treat. I knew you were going to be genuine and beguiling, and indeed you were. And we all had such a wonderful time. Thank you for being our guest tonight. Can't thank you so much. Thank you. Let's do it again soon. Yeah. Let's bring all face E on. Bring Cork O'Connor E. I highly recommend you all to read this tender land. And if you want to get assigned to copy or personalized contact once upon a crime and if you enjoyed our program, please...

...join friends and fiction on our Facebook page or our website and give our podcast. So listen now with original new interviews. And don't forget we're on instagram too. Thanks so much for joining us. Everybody See you next week. Until then, happy reading. Happy reading, everybody. Yeah. Thank you. for tuning in. Join us every week on Facebook or YouTube, where our live show airs every Wednesday night at 7 p.m. Eastern time. And please subscribe to our podcast and follow us on Instagram We're so glad you're here. Good night.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (203)