Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Writer Routine Wednesday: Kristen Painter

Hey, all!

It's another week of my new blog segment:Writer Routine Wednesday, where every Wednesday from now until the end of August, I will host an author. We'll get to know them better and their books as well as hear them describe their usual writing routine.

Maybe you'll pick up an idea they use for yourself!
Lots of great prizes are scheduled too!

So, please welcome author Kristen Painter today and hear about her writing routine!

BIO: I’m a former college English teacher, personal trainer, advertising exec, maitre d’, runway model and two-time Golden Heart finalist. When the characters in my head started to take over, I decided to exorcise them onto paper and share them with the world. My print books include a paranormal romance, ALL FIRED UP, from Samhain, and HEART OF FIRE, a book I chose to publish myself through Smashwords and Amazon. Both of those books were Golden Heart finalists. In October, I have a steampunk romance, MISS BRAMBLE AND THE LEVIATHAN, coming out from Samhain and in fall 2011 the first three books in my gothic urban fantasy series, BLOOD RIGHTS, will be out from Orbit. I’ve published short stories and poetry. The first publisher to pay me for my words was Cosmopolitan magazine.
If I’m not writing, I’m probably in the forum at, the award-winning site I co-founded. I'm on Twitter. You can also find me on my Facebook fanpage.
I live in FL with my retired Air Force husband and five feline dependents. I’m represented by The Knight Agency.

For more info, please visit:

Thanks for stopping by, Kristen!

Describe a “typical” writing day for yourself. A typical writing day for me often starts with me catching up on some DVR’d shows. I often work late and go to bed early, so most of my tv watching is in the morning. Is that weird? It’s my schedule. I used to feel guilty about it, but then I realized that I’m still working a pretty full day, just different hours. At some point, I workout, spend some time on promo, then I’m ready to write. Or edit, depending on what’s due next.
When I’m in “production mode” I try to write about 5 pages a day. That’s a good pace for me. Sometimes I can do more, sometimes not that much, but it evens out and keeps me on track without wearing me out. I write in my office, at my desk, but I edit in our library on hardcopy (don’t be jealous, library is our fancy word for a room with two bookshelves.)

Do you have another job outside of writing? (Being a mommie definitely counts!!) If the answer is yes, describe how you balance the two and how much time you devote to each.
I write full time. And by full time, I mean when I’m not cleaning up after my husband and our herd of cats.

Are you a laptop, PC, Alphasmart, or by hand kind of writer? I write on my PC, but when I travel, I use a laptop. I also do something I call “methodize” and that’s long hand on a legal pad.

Plotter or panster? If you’re a plotter, how much time do think you put into plotting before writing. I’m a pantser by nature and a plotter by force. I have to plot a little in order to map certain aspects of my Orbit series out – it’s a continuing series with the same main characters, so there has to be some continuity and arc. Also, I had to provide the publisher with a synopsis for each book, so they kind of expect me to follow it. They may be lowering those expectations now that they know me…

Some writers make collages or listen to or create music soundtracks for their work-in-progress? Do you do any of those or have you thought about doing one of them?
If that stuff works for you, great. I’m a sit down and see what happens kind of writer. I like to think of it as organic writing. I do listen to music to help me get into a specific mood, but I really like silence to write. In fact, I sometimes wear noise cancelling headphones.

What’s your favorite book on writing? I don’t think I really have one. That’s not to say I haven’t found craft books helpful, I just haven’t even read one straight through (save Stephen King’s On Writing). Most of them are kinda dry and boring. Or maybe I have the attention span of a gnat.

What’s your favorite fiction book you’ve read so far this year? Hmm. That’s a tough one. There are so many! I’m going with The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi. It wasn’t one of those books that gives you warm fuzzies, but it definitely inspires thought.

What’s your favorite way to reward yourself after you’ve finished writing a book? Spa day, baby! That’s pretty much my favorite indulgence for any reason. I love a good massage, a nice body wrap, a facial…whatever you’ve got, I’ll have one.

A Spa day sounds great! Thank you, Kristen, so much for sharing a little of your writing routine and life with us today!

Kristen's recent Samhain e-book ALL FIRED UP is out in print now at MyBookStore and More and and B&N! Here's a little bit about it:

Desire can heal the coldest heart-or burn it to ashes.

Alrik Gunn knows from bitter experience that change isn't always for the better. From the woman who annihilated his Viking clan to the goddess who tricked him into centuries of slavery, betrayal has dogged his existence. The Goddess of Love is going to let him avenge his family, but for a price. As a Phoenix-a merchant of change-he must grant a human woman three chances to change her life.

When former Irish dancer Calleigh McCarthy tosses a carved-bird statue that belonged to her ex into a roaring bonfire, she unwittingly summons an honest-to-god Phoenix. A sexy, irresistible Viking who offers her an unbelievable bonus-three get-out-of-her-crappy-life-free cards. She'll take it, even if it means guarding her cautious heart against the dark pain behind Alrik's eyes.

Alrik has vowed never to let love sway him again, but Calleigh's innocence and kindness throw him off balance. Yet even as his need for revenge fades and his love for her grows, he is bound to let her make her choices without interfering.

One wrongly chosen word, and any chance for happiness-for either of them-will go up in flames.

Sounds great, huh?

CONTEST: Kristen has generously offered to give away a copy of her book
ALL FIRED UP--which I bought and read and absolutely positively enjoyed--to some lucky commenter!

Please leave a comment below to be entered to win. The giveaway contest will run from now until Thursday 11:59PM (EST). I will announce the lucky winner this Friday!


Good luck and get into your writing routine!


patti said...

I love Kristen's nonconformity and original approaches!

Thanks for sharing!

Kristen, you go, girl!


MaryC said...

Hi Jennifer and Kristen. Thanks so much for sharing your routine. I'm a night owl writer also though this summer I'm trying to work earlier in the day when I have solitude at home.

ALL FIRED UP sounds really intriguing. I'm off to check it out.

Diane said...

Love me some Viking adventure!!! Her routine seems to work well for her. Good luck on every future project. :O)

estrella8888 at roadrunner dot com

Terri Tiffany said...

Well I love Kristin cause I've met her before in person and we happen to come from the same town in PA! And we didn't even know it! Love that she is doing so well as a writer:))

Leah (aka Mary_not_Martha) said...

Thanks for a real-life "peek" into the life of a writer. The book sounds fantastic!

Leigh Duncan said...

Kristen, love, love, love your books! Can't wait for Blood Rights to be released!

I sometimes find it's easier to write in long-hand than to compose directly on the computer. You mention that you're primarily a computer gal, but use a legal pad for "methodizing". What's that all about?

Karen Lange said...

Thanks to both of you for sharing this. I love to hear how other writers work. :)

Lanae T. said...

Hi Ladies! Kristen is a new author to me, but I am very excited to find her. I am adding All Fired Up to my to-read list!

Great to "meet" you both! Thanks!

ftatman5 at

R.M.Gilbert said...

Jennifer, thanks again for hosting authors on your blog, it's been fabulous.

Kristen, I love that you type the '5' a day. I try to do the same with whichever of my two manuscripts tugs at me the greatest.

And your book sounds wonderful. Best of luck with your upcoming series.

Froggy said...

Kristen Painter is a new author to me but I look forward to reading her books! Its always fun to find new authors!

Thanks for the chance to win!

*yadkny* said...

Hi Kristen,
WOW you sure have alot of accomplishments:) The book sounds fabulous and the cover is gorgeous. It will be going into my TBR pile no matter what.

Thanks for the great contest Jennifer!

Jemi Fraser said...

I'm a sit down and see what happens kind of writer too - nice to hear from a published author that follows the same style!

The book sounds like a lot of fun - but I can't enter the contest as I'm Canadian. Good luck to the others! :)

Bethanne said...

I read the book All Fired Up. It's awesome! You want to read it!

and yes, I almost got jealous. :D

Jennifer Shirk said...

LOL, Bethanne! I loved her book too!

Debora Dennis said...

Finally! Someone else who writes in silence like I do! Great interview Kristen :)

Susan R. Mills said...

Great interview! Thanks to both of you.

Lydia Kang said...

Great interview, and wonderful meeting Kristen!

CrystalGB said...

Great interview. Thanks for sharing with us. I love the cover to All Fired Up.


Kristen Painter said...

Thanks to Jennifer for having me and thanks to everyone who's stopped by and commented so far! It's a little unnerving to reveal parts of yourself sometimes, but hey, we're all weird in our own way, right? lol

Kate said...

Sounds like a great book by a great writer. Thanks for introducing me to her.

flchen1 said...

Wow, Kristen! Congrats on All Fired Up! I love the sounds of the story!

And thanks for the interview, Kristen and Jennifer! It's always fun to hear about the authors behind these books--what a blessing that you can write full time! Given your 5-page-a-day goal, about how long does it take to complete a book? Has writing gotten easier/harder or is it the same as when you started?

Thanks for sharing about your writing with us! Hope you're celebrating All Fired Up with a nice relaxing day at the spa!

Kristen Painter said...

flchen1 - How long does it take to complete a book? Too long. ;o) Anywhere from 4 - 6 months for a draft that I'm happy enough with to send to my editor. Over all, the writing is probably a little easier in that I'm more confident with myself, but some days it's harder because I've become more critical of my work. How's that for an answer? lol

December said...

Such great focus on a delightful author!
Thanks for the interview!

T. Anne said...

I heart, heart, HEART Kristen! Hear that Kristen? I really, really, really want to win this too. But if not I'll figure out where to get it. It looks too hawt to miss. ;)

Kristen Painter said...

Loud and clear, T. Anne, loud and clear. lol

Carolyn V. said...

Great interview! I love that Kristen is a plotter by force! I totally relate. =)

Kimberly Franklin said...

I love that cover! I think we need more covers like that in the world. I also love the fact that TV is apart of her writing routine. LOVE IT!

Kimberly Franklin said...

I love that cover! I think we need more covers like that in the world. I also love the fact that TV is apart of her writing routine. LOVE IT!

Anonymous said...

Hey Kristen,
great post. I know I've heard you speak on your "methodizing" before, but can you briefly tell us about that? It's an excellent tool.

Julie Musil said...

I'm a bit distracted by the book cover. Hmmmmm...where was I?

Thanks once again for a great interview. I liked learning that she's a pantster, but that she does do some plotting.

Kara said...

Sounds like a great book! Thanks for sharing some of your writing life with us:)

Jen said...

I'm jealous that Terri has gotten the opportunity to meet her in person because of all her awesomeness!!!

What a great post, I love learning about everyone's writing routines!

californiameaghan said...

a day that starts with dvr-ed tv is my kinda day! thanks for the interview and giveaway!

meaghan_koci (at) yahoo (dot) com

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flchen1 said...

LOL! That does make sense, Kristen! It's harder to do it well when you know what well looks like :) Thanks for taking the time to chat, and best wishes with hitting exactly the sweet spot for your pace and quality!

Em-Musing said...

Great interview and a great story!

Jessica Nelson said...

A pantser by nature, plotter by force. Love that!
Thanks so much for the great interview. It's fun to hear how your day goes. I can't wait to read your books!
Too funny about craft books. I'm the same way.
Thanks ladies!

Kerrie said...

I love that you watch tv in the morning and that you stopped feeling guilty about it. I think it is awesome that you found a routine that clearly works for you.

Linda Kage said...

Nice to meet you, Kristen. I love the cover of your book.

Kristen Painter said...

Thanks to everyone who stopped by! I'll be talking about "methodizing", what it means and how it increased my productivity as a writer over on my blog ( in the next few days, so if you're interested, add my blog to your reader or become a follower so you don't miss it.

Dawn Simon said...

Great interview! Super interesting to read your approach, Kristen!

I'm too late to enter the drawing (by less than an hour, but fair is fair), but your book sounds great!

Thanks, Jennifer, for sharing this with us!

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