Where did the idea for Minder and the Ganzfield series come from?
I've always had a fascination with the paranormal, but the core of the story developed as a thought experiment: could a telepath have a romantic relationship with someone who wasn't "the only person whose thoughts she couldn't read." Harris's Sookie Stackhouse and Meyer's Twilight series both played on that theme. But I wondered what kind of person could a telepath fall in love with--and what kind of guy would be comfortable being in a relationship with someone who knew his every thought?
If you were a student at Ganzfield, what power would you have?
I'd probably be an RV (remote viewer). It'd be handy at this point in life, too. As a mom, it'd be great to know where my kids were and what they were doing--not to mention I'd be able to find out where they hid my husband's keys.
Project Star Gate is supposedly a real (or used to be) government psychic spy program. How did you hear about it and will we see more government conspiracies in the series?
If I told you, I'd have to kill you.
Seriously, though, it was a real program that was declassified in the 1990s. There's a book called Reading the Enemy's Mind that chronicles it. It was a bit annoying that the name had already been adopted for a sci-fi movie and series that had nothing to do with the program. The actual program focused primarily on remote viewing against the Soviets during the Cold War and may have started as the result of bad spy intel.
As for more government conspiracies in the series, I'll give you a hint. I'm writing book 5 now, and the working title is Operative. :)
I read that the Ganzfield series is slated to be six books with a possible seventh from Seth's perspective, so do you already have the entire series all mapped out?
I have the major arcs worked out so that most of the open plots get tied up in the six books. However, the big picture is a skeletal outline--I flesh it out book-by-book. Since Seth and Maddie take different paths in the second half of the series, I'd love to tell his story, too.
How would you describe your writing process? Do you write for long periods or in short bursts? Are your characters in the driving seat or do you keep them on a certain path?
I'm a plotter and I usually write in bursts. While I usually know where I want each scene to go, in Adversary (book 2), I had the climactic scene all set up in my mind, but the characters decided that they weren't going to do it that way. I had to scrap the original plan and come up with a new one--much the way the characters did in the book.
Is there anything you absolutely need when you're writing? (Certain beverage, snacks, maybe a blanket like Linus from Charlie Brown)
I have a playlist of music that sinks me back into the Ganzfield world. The song "Mad World" seems to unlock my ability to write the series when I get a bit stuck. I've listed the heart of my writing playlist on the background page at Ganzfield.com.
Do you have any ideas post-Ganzfield?
I've got notes for Boola Boo, a book set at Yale (my alma mater) in which the main character sees ghosts. I may have to call the school "Hale" University though, so I don't get sued.
And just for fun: The name of your blog is Disgruntled Bear...do you think a disgruntled bear could appear at some point in the Ganzfield series? NH has bears. I've never seen one in my neck of the woods, but I don't live around North Conway. I figure a bear could pop up around the Ganzfield campus looking for some food or maybe a game of Fireball. A bear decided to surprise a guy taking out his trash in August, so why not have a bear get all disgruntled when the Sparks tell him he's too flammable to play. I could see it happening...
Yikes! I'm glad the guy is okay, because black bears can be mean. I've never seen one in New Hampshire, though. One of the main characters in my first (and still unpublished) novel Bagastana was a grumpy, talking bear, and she inspired my nom-de-blog.
As for a bear at Ganzfield...hmmm. Maddie would be able to hear bear-thoughts, and perhaps Trevor could wrestle it. :)
I'd like to see Trevor wrestling a bear :D
Thank you so much for the interview Kate!
Make sure you check out my review of Minder as well.
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