Welcome, Karen, Tell us when you decided to become a writer? In other words, what made you actually sit down and write something?
Nine months after my husband and I were married, he was diagnosed with cancer. I needed a way to process, so I started reading. After tearing through dozens of novels, I decided to try writing one. I finished it in six weeks, and I’ve been writing ever since.
Every writer is eventually asked this question, but where do your ideas come from?
Everywhere. My debut novel was inspired by the setting. My sophomore novel was inspired by a question (Could I take a historical romance trope and make it work in a contemporary setting?). I have a completed manuscript that started with a dream (which became a scene in the novel) and was inspired by nights watching Dancing with the Stars with my aunt. Literally, anything can and does become inspiration.
Why do you write what you do?
I write clean, lighthearted romance because there’s enough drama in the world. If I want to see sadness, pain, and suffering, I can turn on the news. For me, fiction has always been a way to escape, so those are the types of stories I write.
What is the hardest thing about the creative process of writing?
First drafts. I really enjoy editing, but sitting down and writing the first draft is almost painful for me. I don’t know why, but I have a hard time doing it.
If you’re a Christian, what are the challenges you believe Christian writers face now and in the future?
Fewer people identify as evangelical Christians these days, and they’ve been the primary readers of Christian fiction. That means the audience is shrinking, so publishers don’t have as many spots for new authors. Writing a good book is much harder than most people think, so it’s harder than ever to break into the traditional publishing market—although it can be done.
If you would, please tell us what was the hardest thing about writing your last book? How long does it typically take you to finish your books?
I’m a painfully slow writer, but I’m working on it. It usually takes me 12-18 months to write a novel, but that’s really my fault–it’s hard to commit time and energy to something when you’re not seeing results (I was unpublished for many years). Now that I have a couple of books out, however, I realize I need to write more quickly. My goal for my next book is to get the first draft down in a month, and then take three to four months editing it. We’ll see how that goes.
Name your three biggest frustrations about the writing business.
• The ease with which people can self-publish (thereby flooding the market with books).
• The misconception that publishers are greedy and price gouging. Therefore, books should only be $0.99 (as if I can make a living spending 6-12 months writing a book to only sell it for a dollar).
• The expectation that unknown writers should be able to develop audiences and online followings before they publish books.
On the flip side, what excites you the most about the creative process?
Being able to create different people in different locations and throwing them into any situation I want. There’s really no limit when it comes to writing fiction.
What are you reading now, and who are a few of your favorite authors and why?
I’m currently reading Wish by Jake Smith. He’s a local author whose book I bought several years ago. I’m just getting around to reading it. Right now, I’m enjoying books by Karen Witemeyer and Jennifer Peel. They both consistently create unique characters and wonderful romance stories. I haven’t been disappointed by any of their books yet.
Can you tell the readers how they can purchase your book?
My debut novel can be purchased at https://www.amazon.com/Summer-Plans-Other-Disasters-Karin-ebook/dp/B07H1YRQP4. My latest release can be purchased at https://www.amazon.com/Practically-Married-Karin-Beery/dp/1645262367
Karin Beery grew up in a small, rural Michigan town where she wrote her first novel in high school. She’s still writing today, telling contemporary stories with a healthy dose of romance. When she’s not writing fiction, she’s editing or teaching it. And when she’s not doing that, she enjoys time at home with her husband and fur babies, once again living in a small, rural Michigan town.
You can connect with Karin on the following sites: