05 June 2011

AOTW- Kit Iwasaki

Kit Iwasaki

About the Author:
Kit was midway through premed when she realized she loved the heart, but hated blood. It took her a few more years to figure out what to do with her freewheeling life, most of which is not fit to print in a bio. She decided to get back to what she was always doing anyway, and had been as long as she could remember: telling stories. Now she furiously scribbles out books for the Vampire General series, as well as other projects that will jump out at you when you least expect it.

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Interview with Kit Iwasaki

HP: Kit Iwasaki, you have recently published your first novel in your series Vampire General. From your blog I see that you were once a premed, but now mostly tell stories. Can you tell us a little more about yourself?

Kit Iwasaki: A long time ago, I thought I was going to be a doctor. Well, it wasn't so long ago, but it feels like an eternity now. I used to perform surgery on my dolls like any well-adjusted kid would do, idolized doctors and all they did for people, but when it came time for me to take that step myself, I realized I wasn't so much in love with medicine so much as the people who did it. And that's when I started writing stories like Vampire General. Because the only thing more exciting than cardiothoracic surgery is a hot cardiothoracic surgeon who can't concentrate on his work because of a broken heart.

HP: What is your favorite quote, by whom, and why?

Kit Iwasaki: “We are all a little weird and life's a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love." – Dr Seuss

I love quotes about love, and funny quotes, too. Even better when someone can combine the two. So many people take love really seriously, but if you think about it hard enough, love is a pretty strange thing. After all, love isn’t only about huge sacrifices or devotion or all-enduring emotion, it’s also about being able to be silly together.

HP: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

Kit Iwasaki: Writing has always been something I’ve done on the side, scribbling little stories in my notebooks in high school, daydreaming about the ‘what ifs’. I guess I’ve always been into story-telling, from way back when I was a toddler and inventing stories about why my teddy bear needed a heart transplant, and how the surgery would make him fall out with his step-cousin. As I grew older it just seemed natural to start writing everything down.

HP: What do you consider the most challenging about writing a novel, or about writing in general?

Kit Iwasaki: In my case? Consistency and medical accuracy! The character drama pretty much writes itself, and it’s great fun to invent transhuman diseases and patients and cultures. The problem is that I try to make all the science as realistic as possible, which takes a lot of research! For example, I spent ages reading about fish and dolphin anatomy for Intern With The Vampire, because one of the patients is a mermaid.

HP: Your book Intern With the Vampire came out April 12th 2011. Can you tell us a little about the world you have created and the two main characters Aline Harman and William Rocque?

Kit Iwasaki: The world of Vampire General is really our own world, but where transhuman creatures (vampires, zombies, mermaids etc) roam around freely. Not that they're seen often, because they take great pains to stay out of sight. Generations of persecution drilled that into them.

Aline is a human doctor with most things under control in life. She's at a great hospital, has a great boyfriend and looks to be climbing the ladder to a spectacular career when things are derailed by Rocque, who ends up getting her fired. He invites her to come work at Grace General, a special hospital set up for transhumans. And it's a bit of a shock for her, to say the least. Even worse, she has to pretend to be a vampire herself, because humans aren't allowed inside Grace General.

Rocque is a kind of mentor for her, but not the useful kind. He makes things harder for her than they need to be, except in situations where her secret might be exposed. And even then, it's almost like he's looking out for himself more than her. He's a tough nut to crack that way.

HP: Where did you get the idea for this book/series?

Kit Iwasaki: From a friend of mine, actually! He’s allergic to garlic, so we always joke that he’s like a vampire. It got me thinking about what it would be like if vampires were simply suffering from bizarre medical conditions. How would a doctor help a patient who’s highly photosensitive, allergic to garlic, and dependent on blood?

As soon as you start thinking about the supernatural in medical terms, it becomes really fascinating. There’s so much potential for really weird medicine, and the fact that most of the doctors in Vampire General are transhumans too only adds to the fun, because they all have their own problems to deal with.

HP: Who designed the cover for your book Intern With the Vampire?

Kit Iwasaki: I wish I could claim the credit! It’s the handiwork of MCM. On top of being my publisher and the founder of 1889 Labs, he’s an author, an illustrator, a script-writer, and all sorts of things. I don’t know how he manages to do so much all the time. The man is seriously insane!

HP: How do you promote your book?

Kit Iwasaki: I talk about it on my Facebook page and on my blog, but honestly, most of the heavy lifting is being done by 1889 Labs. I'm happiest when I'm writing about surgery and make-out sessions, so I leave the promotion to the experts!

HP: Where can we purchase Intern With the Vampire?

Kit Iwasaki: You can grab a copy from either Amazon or Smashwords.

HP: You have a second book coming out in June 2011, Slash and Burn. Can you tell us a little of what this book is going to be about?

Kit Iwasaki: Slash and Burn picks up exactly where Intern With The Vampire leaves off, and follows Aline Harman’s adventures during her second shift at Grace General. She’ll have new patients to handle and even more difficulties with her colleagues—expect some jealousy, unrequited love, and near-ruined friendships! And yes, there’ll be more of sexy Dr Scott.

HP:
Can you share a little of your current work with us?

Kit Iwasaki: Here’s a teaser from Slash and Burn:

“It’s easy for you to criticize,” Aline said, defensive. “You’re an immortal. You’re one of them, a transhuman. You belong here and I don’t!” She turned away, wrapped her arms around herself. “I don’t,” she repeated, quietly now.

Wolls grabbed her shoulders, spun her around to face him. “Don’t you get it? It should be the other way around. You’re normal, healthy. You should be happy!” He searched her eyes as if he could read into her expression, his grip on her shoulders tightening. “You don’t have to worry about outliving a loved one, or passing on your disease to your kids.”

“Yeah, because immortality is such a hardship,” she snapped back.

He let go of her as if her words had burned. “Ask the vampire doctors what they used to drink before synthetic hema was invented,” he said flatly. “Ask them how many men they killed.”

HP: Though your book is supernatural fiction, have you included any of your life experiences, even friends, in the plot?

Kit Iwasaki: There's a tiny bit of my friends in the story, but I try to keep that to a minimum, or they'll come after me with scalpels. "Do no harm" is such a subjective concept, really. But seriously, most of the stuff I write about medically is extremely speculative, and even though I've had moments in private with dangerously attractive men here and there, none of them have ever tried to suck my blood. At least not yet. Wink wink.

HP: Where do you see yourself in five years?

Kit Iwasaki: Rich and famous! No, wait, that’s not me I’m seeing, it’s someone else. Let me get my binoculars and look again. Looking, looking.... Nope, can’t find myself. So I’ll do my best to guess: in five years’ time, I’ll have finished writing all nine of the planned Vampire General books. I may or may not be alive after that, depending on how readers react to the killer ending.

HP: What do you think are some of the best tools available today for writers, especially those just starting out?

Kit Iwasaki: I don’t know that I would recommend any actual tools per se. The best ‘tools’ for a writer are patience, motivation, dedication, and sheer stubbornness. Those four will get you the farthest. Fancy dictionaries, notebooks and word programs are all just trimmings. Get your novel written first, and then you can worry about the other stuff.

HP: Do you have anything you would like to say to your readers?

Kit Iwasaki: Other than thank you, thank you, and thank you? How about: “I love you, but I still won’t give away any spoilers because I’m secretly kinda evil.”

HP:  What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing?

Kit Iwasaki:
Seeing my name on a book cover! That has to be the greatest feeling ever, even though a part of me is still convinced someone is going to run up and snatch it all away, and tell me it was all just a dream.

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Books by Kit Iwasaki
Vampire General Series
#1: Intern With The Vampire

The Simple Truth-- Free short story, here.

Coming Soon
Slash and Burn (Vampire General #2)-- Expected publication: June 2011 by 1889 Labs

Also find Kit at:
Goodreads
Her Wordpress
Facebook


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Giveaway

Kit Iwasaki has offered to giveaway TWO Ebook copy's of her debut novel Intern With The Vampire!!!


Book Description:

"Human medicine is easy. On her first day at Grace General Hospital, new intern Aline Harman risks vampire infection, demonic possession, and having her heart torn out of her chest... and this from her colleagues.

Juggling transhuman politics only becomes more difficult when a patient's life is at stake. With a zombie to resuscitate and a mermaid in critical care, Aline has her hands full. At least the doctors are good-looking."



Giveaway Details:
  • Giveaway is open to US & Canada and International.
  • Giveaway will run from June 6th 2011 - June 19th 2011.
  • The winner will be chosen on June 20th 2011. The winners will have 48 hours to contact back before another will be chosen.
  • One entry per-person please!
  • Giveaway is provided by the author.


To Enter:

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