Today we travel to Wellington, New Zealand to chat with Kate Haley about how different worlds, imaginary friends, fighting monsters, vivid dreams, Terry Pratchett, Gargoyles, steampunk fantasy, and endings come together as part of Kate’s writing life.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
Kia ora! (‘Hello’ from Aotearoa/New Zealand) my name is Kate and I am an author from Wellington, New Zealand. Despite loving my hometown, I have never been able to stay in reality very long. I can’t stop wandering between different worlds, and I started putting them on paper so that I could share my imaginary friends with others. I’ve never looked back.
In which genre do you write?
I predominantly write fantasy, but dabble in horror and sci-fi. Which I guess means anything that will let me fight monsters.
How many published books do you have?
I currently have 7 books published – the complete War of the North saga, which is epic fantasy for young adults. I have another two stand alone books scheduled for release later in 2021.
Where did the idea for your most recent book come from?
Interestingly enough this answer is the same for pretty much every book I’ve ever written… they all started as dreams. I dream vividly, intensely, even lucidly. The War of the North Saga was born from a strange dream I had about a fantasy battlefield. I also had a weird dream last year about goo, which seems to be developing a page count…
If you could have a fantasy tea or coffee date with an author from the past or present, who would it be and what would you ask them?
Terry Pratchett. He’s been my favourite author for a very long time now. I don’t think there’s another sense of humour in the world that I admire as much as his. There’s no particular or pressing question I would want answered, but I would have loved to pick his brain and chat. I would have told him how much I loved his work and what it meant to me (even though we write very different things), because I think authors always need to hear that, no matter how often, and I’m sorry that I never got to let him know.
If you were trapped in a cartoon world from your childhood, which one would you choose and why?
Gargoyles. If you haven’t seen it, you should. Watch from the beginning all the way through to the end of The Gathering, Part II. It is still some of the best writing I have ever seen, even as an adult. You can go to Avalon, sail the whole world, meet mythical figures and gods, and best of all – there are gargoyles.
If mars or another planet was livable, would you accept a one way ticket there? why or why not?
I would not. I love traveling, but part of that love is being able to come home. I have friends and family that I could never bring myself to leave behind forever. Besides, if I want to visit completely alien worlds, I can read a book – or even better, write one!
If you could ask your pet three questions, what would they be?
Why do you keep trying to eat plastic?
You know it’s wrong, why do you do it?
WHY DO YOU KEEP TRYING TO EAT PLASTIC?!?!
(My cat is still very young… and special. Thus life is new and full of wonderous things to chew.)
Camilla: Oh my gosh! My cat ate plastic, too. I could not have real plants because she ate them, so I switched to fake plants. She ate those, too! She would also chew on the fake Christmas tree. She was a strange one. We were a perfect match! HA!
What are you currently working on?
I am currently writing a steampunk fantasy book. I’m really excited about it. There’s magic and politics and romance and family drama. It’s delicious. I can’t get enough of it, which is such a wonderful place to be when you’re creating. It is for an older audience than The War of the North, but I’m hoping 2021’s releases will help me target new audiences anyway. I want to do more stand alone books because I prefer them to series. I like being able to sit down to a book and enjoy it without worrying about when and where I can get the next one.
My next releases will be Welcome to the Inbetween – a new fantasy adventure aimed at a 12+y/o audience. June 2021.
And Gateway to Dark Stars – an action horror novel in the vein of Cthulhu meets The Witcher. November 2021.
Tell us about your most recent book and where we can find it.
My most recent book is Gods & Dragons: The War of the North Saga Book Seven. The epic conclusion to my dramatic teen fantasy series. The entire series is available on Amazon, and free on Kindle Unlimited.
I have to say, it was a mission to get here. I would obviously recommend that anyone curious should start with book one Steel & Stone, but I am so proud of the end of this story. I have been told a few times that it is an unusual ending, and I know what they mean, but I love it and everyone who told me it was unusual said that they really enjoyed it. That was always what I wanted. Endings are everything to me. What comes first is important, but the real trick is nailing the last 15 minutes. I learnt that doing screenwriting.
It was wonderful learning more about you and your writing style. Wishing you all the best and much success! – Camilla
The end is here.
Satinka and her friends have finally made it to the Five Stars of the North. There is nothing left but to rescue Memnyir and face Sunne in a battle to the death.
In this thrilling conclusion, the team confront Sunne and Āni in a fight they know could cost their lives. The Age of Mankind is tested, and the battle of gods and dragons commences. One way or another, the War of the North will be won, and the fate of the world decided.
Where to find the series:
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