Wednesday, February 18, 2009

In the Spotlight-- KZ Snow

This week, I'm hosting KZ Snow, star of Changeling Press and other publishers too numerous for a simple introduction. This woman keeps busy, busy, busy! I enticed her with coffee to sit with me for a few minutes.

Thanks for stopping by, KZ. Let's get right to the questions.

When did you know you wanted to be an author?

As soon as I got into writing my first novel (as an adult), I was hooked.

How long did it take you to complete the first novel you attempted?

The very first one was in high school, and damned if I can remember!

Are you a procrastinator, or do you set time aside everyday to write?

It depends on what book I'm working on, what else is happening in my life, what my mood I'm in, the weather . . . Yeah, I can be a procrastinator, but I can write like a demon, too.

Do you have any helpful methods or rituals you would like to share?

Other than drinking oceans of coffee, none.

LOL!! I hear you on the coffee. People are astonished that I actually own and daily use a restaurant-sized coffee urn.

How many publishers did you query before one of them snatched you up?

I have to divide this answer between the two or three distinct writing periods in my life. There was no such thing as e-publishing when I started seriously writing fiction. (Poetry came before that, and I got some stuff published in small journals.) I first tried my hand at contemporary romance but just couldn't seem to tap into the formula that prevailed at the time. Then I had an itch to tackle something more ambitious with no genre strictures. I managed to impress a couple of agents and actually had representation for a while. Ended up with some very encouraging rejections from editors at good-sized NY houses, including Knopf, but never moved beyond that. I just ran out of steam. A decade of zero productivity went by . . . and along came e-publishing. I kind of got a flurry of acceptances all at once.

What was the hardest part about getting published? What was the easiest?

The easiest part, when it came to e-publishing, was getting work accepted. Everything else was difficult -- picking a publisher (e-books were still pretty much in their infancy, and I didn't know squat about what constituted a good house); dealing with inexperienced owners and editors; figuring out how to promote my work without spending buckets of money.

How has your life been affected as a result, if at all? Has your confidence in your writing changed?

I've been spoiled for "real" work! And I socialize less, get out less. Yes, my confidence level has undergone an enormous change. I used to be bursting with self-assurance. Now I more or less feel like one of the herd. And it's a BIG herd. Publishing is an incredibly humbling business.

What advice would you give a writer just starting out?

First, keep the day job. Unless, of course, you have a sugar mama or sugar daddy. Then, do your research when it comes to publishers, never get complacent and assume your work is good enough, be patient, and seek good counsel from industry professionals (this can be as simple as hanging out at worthwhile blogs and chat loops). It also doesn't hurt to find yourself a comfortable niche and stick to it. Genre-jumping can make it difficult to establish some kind of name for yourself. Believe me, I'm speaking from experience.

I'll back her up 100%! Whew! I stick within a fairly limited frame and occasionally surprise myself and my readers with something new, but for the most part it's wise to stick with what you do best.

I hear new genres are opening up. Can you tell us about some?

Boy, that's a tough question. Consumers are fickle. Every day, it seems, I come across readers clamoring for different things. More contemporaries! More historicals! More lesbian fiction! More yaoi! Once I realized each subgenre has its supporters as well as its detractors, I kind of stopped paying attention. Now I write what I like.

What have you published and where can I get your books?

I've published all kinds of stuff in a variety of genres. I currently have books available at Loose Id (, Ellora's Cave (, Cerridwen Press (, Changeling Press (, MojoCastle Press (, and, as K. A. Schuster, at Samhain Publishing ( and Double Dragon Publishing (

Do you have anything currently under contract?

If you mean under a new contract, yes, I just signed with Liquid Silver Books. They'll be publishing a large m/m urban fantasy, InDescent. For those readers familiar with my characters Jackson Spey and Adin Swift (from Plagued, Tormented, and Obsessed -- the first from EC and the last two from Changeling), InDescent is the next leg of their journey together. And it's a significant one!

Anything else you’d like to tell us?

The second novel in my Utopia-X series for Loose Id, Seeking Something Wicked, is coming out March 3. The first, Looking for Some Touch, is currently available. The third, Exploring Savage Places, is currently on my editor's desk. These books are m/m futuristic urban fantasies, not to be confused with sci fi, and all have lots of delectable manlove! I also invite everybody to visit my blog at

And there she goes flying out the door...LOL! Thanks, KZ!


K. Z. Snow said...

Just wanted to say Good Morning, Lena, and thanks for inviting me to your house!

Lena Austin said...

Good morning KZ! You're a pleasurahle guest! I'll have to entice you with more coffee another time.

Jeanne said...

Morning, ladies!
KZ makes me tired just reading the titles!
I am so glad she found a home with LSB for InDescent.

K. Z. Snow said...

Hi, Jeanne! Thanks for stopping by.

Yeah, I'm pretty excited about InDescent. I think it's one of the best things I've ever written. The ball's rolling now, too; I was just assigned an editor and sent my preliminary editing material.

Time to write some blurbs, methinks!

Lena Austin said...

I hate like fire writing blurbs!


K. Z. Snow said...

Aren't they a bitch, Lena? I have to do three of varying lengths. Tough when the book is nearly 70k words!

Lena Austin said...

My friend Cynnara Tregarth tosses beautiful blurbs like confetti. I'd kill to have her skill.

I prefer to do three blurbs myself, starting with the longest, then condensing down as I go in hopes of squeezing down to the shortest I can make. The very thought is enough to make me sweat!

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