Special NaNoWriMo Interview: Kate Colby

Posted: January 30, 2015 in 2014, Interviews, NaNoWriMo
Tags: , , , , , , ,


So this is a special interview that I’m only running a month or two late on posting.  I know, I know, I’m lazy and worthless, my wife tells me all the time.  I had put out a request on Twitter that I wanted to interview some people participating in NaNoWriMo in 2014.  I’ve never personally participated (I intend to at some point) and I think it’s a fantastic contest and the winners deserve to be celebrated.  Kate doesn’t have any works officially published yet (soon to change this year), so the only thing I’m promoting here is her hard work and success this past November.  You can bet I’ll have her back when she publishes her novel so that everyone can go purchase it.

The interview was a lot of fun and we covered everything from the greatest candy bars in the universe to mind control and Jedi powers to why global warming is as big of a conspiracy as the Apollo moon landing and the alleged death of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls.  Kate is from Kansas, but we won’t hold that against her (I’m from Oklahoma).  It’s better than Texas after all, even if my boys in Norman constantly put a whipping on everything Kansas has to offer.  Well, other than Jayhawk basketball I suppose.  If you get a chance, please drop a comment to tell Kate congratulations on finishing her novel.  You can also find her contact info at the bottom if you’d like to keep up with her progress and news on release of her work.  Here’s the interview:

Will:  Tell me about yourself.  Married?  Kids?  Family?  Tell my readers something about you that isn’t listed in your bio.

Kate:  I am a born and raised Kansan and proud of it. I live south of Kansas City with my husband, Daniel, and our feline son, Thomas. I began writing stories around the age of eight, simply for fun. I kept writing, and eventually someone clued me into the fact that I could be a writer when I grow up. This led me to obtain my Bachelors degree in Creative Writing, English Literature, and Sociology. Right now, I’m spending my days as an administrative assistant, my nights working on my writing, and the in-between dabbling with social media and playing Diablo III.

Will:  You participated in NaNoWriMo.  Congratulations on finishing, that’s a huge accomplishment.  Was this the first time you participated?  Tell me about your experience.  Did you have an outline going in?  Did you ever get stuck, or frustrated?  How rewarding was it in the end?  Do you plan on publishing your novel once it’s edited?

Kate:  This was my first time “really” participating in NaNoWriMo. I signed up two other years, but I promptly gave up before I even began. I like to blame those failures on being in university. I spent the weeks leading up to NaNoWriMo blogging about it to inspire others and create enough social obligation to make me feel forced to give it a real shot.

I went into NaNoWriMo with a rough outline for all my major plot points and a map of the world I created. This plan helped me write quickly and without getting stuck. However, on day two or three, I lost the entire first chapter of my novel (around 2,000 words), but after a short break down, stayed up late to re-write it.

I “won” NaNoWriMo on November 19th, but my book wasn’t done yet, so winning was pretty anti-climatic. I finished my book (barely) on November 30th, which felt great. I am a little embarrassed to admit, I actually cried.

Currently, I am editing my NaNoWriMo novel. I hope to have all my edits done by the end of January and my revisions written by the end of February. From there, I will find a professional editor and send the manuscript to beta readers. I intend to independently publish no later than this November.

Will:  Was this your first book?  Do you have any other works published?  If yes, can you tell us about them?  If no, do you plan to publish books?  Or do you just enjoy writing?

Kate:  My NaNoWriMo novel, The Cogsmith’s Daughter, is the first book I have finished. As I said in the previous question, I intend to independently publish it this fall. It will be the first in a six book series. While I do enjoy writing just for fun, I also enjoy working from home and being my own boss, two goals I hope writing will eventually help me obtain.

Will:  What is the greatest candy bar in the world?  Why?  What sets it apart from the rest?

Kate:  Kit-Kats. First and foremost, the name has a double “K,” and K is the best letter in the alphabet. Second, it’s kind of like getting four candy bars in one — assuming you break it into four pieces rather than eat it all at once like a heathen. Last, it’s layered and crispy and can be eaten in several creative ways.

Will:  What is your writing process like?  Do you outline?  Bang out a first draft?  Stand on your head in the corner and dictate the words to your computer?

Kate:  My stories come to me first as a theme or message, then the plot generally emerges in backwards order, and then the characters file in. I find this ironic, since I am normally a linear thinker. I begin my writing journey by searching for visual inspiration, and then I outline the major plot points. From there, I like to write the first draft as quickly as possible (lest my internal editor catch on to what I’m doing), and then research, edit, and revise a month or so later.

Will:  What are your thoughts on mind control?  Do you ever try to alter people’s actions using Jedi mind tricks?  Don’t lie to me, it’s a proven fact that 100% of people attempt this at least twice weekly.

Kate:  Guilty. Mostly, I try to telepathically “yell” at people to get them to do what I want. However, if this proves ineffectual, I will resort to hint-dropping, subliminal messaging, and blatant emotional manipulation. My husband is probably the most frequent and willing victim of these atrocities.

Will:  Do you write full-time or do you have a different job during the day?  What type of work do you do and what drew you towards that?

Kate:  During the day, I am the finance department assistant at a company that sells redemption prizes (like you get in arcades). I obtained this job while in university (through nepotism, as my mom is one of the accountants). I stayed after graduation, because I needed to have a stable source of income while my husband applied for his permanent residency (no joke). I continue to stay while we wait for my husband’s graduate school applications to come in, because I don’t see any point in changing jobs if we are moving across the country in a few months.

Will:  Last and most important questions:  Why do you think global warming is the biggest hoax the Earth has ever seen?  Do you think there is anything we could do to actually make it man’s fault?

Kate:  Global warming is a hoax, because the earth isn’t moving any closer to the sun, so it can’t get hotter. Plus, the dragon who lives inside the earth’s core is still dormant. Obviously. Personally, I see no way this could be man’s fault. We should all just keep doing what we’re doing – driving our 4×4 trucks, mowing down the rainforest, and pillaging coal mines. After all, the dinosaurs kept everything “natural” and look what happened to them. Extinction.

If you’d like to keep up with what’s going on with Kate and hear news about how the novel is coming along, you can’t find here contact information here:

author website:  click here

twitter:  click here

facebook:  click here

goodreads:  click here

linkedin:  click here

instagram:  click here

google +:  click here

pinterest:  click here

youtube:  click here


  1. Thanks so much for having me, Will! The interview was a lot of fun, and I can’t wait to come back on your site later this year and pimp my published book like a proper indie author.


  2. Reblogged this on Kate M. Colby and commented:
    Happy Friday, everyone! Today, I am interviewed on Will Marck’s site about my NaNoWriMo experience! Will does lots of fun interviews with indie authors, and you all should definitely start following his site. But, before you jump the gun, try him out by reading my interview!


  3. ofopinions says:

    Great interview, Kate! My first feline “older brother” was called Thomas too, or affectionately, Tom. I miss him everyday.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thanks, Amrita! I, too, refer to my pets as siblings. It’s nice to feel closer to them, but definitely difficult when they pass. My Thomas’s nickname is “Tommykins,” but his “street name” is “Tommy Two-Tone,” because he’s grey and white.


  5. Very very lovely interview! Loved the questions and loved loved the answers!

    Liked by 1 person

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