'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Monday 9 December 2013

Blog Tour: Kevin Burgemeestre -- with Kate

KBR warmly welcomes prolific picture book illustrator Kevin Burgemeestre with his debut novel, Kate, the story of a girl struggling to deal with her best friend leaving, a school bully and with the death of her mother. When a chance encounter with a battered, heroic hound and Mal, a troubled young man with a dark past, Kate is lead into more danger and excitement than she could have wished for.

Welcome, Kevin. Congratulations on your new YA novel!
Hey, KBR! Nice to visit Canberra. I haven't been here for a while. Thanks for the invite to visit and for your help with promoting Kate.

You have been illustrating books for a very long time and have since turned your hand to writing. Tell us, what is your writing process like?
Bashing keys and trying to keep up with a stream of thought. I no longer edit when I’m writing. When inspiration hits, I’ll just write and write till it dries up. It happens with such urgency, I’ll be miss-hitting keys, forming idiot words and all the while, I’ll be loving the journey.

I love that characters absolutely become real on paper. It’s wonderful to see what they will and won’t do. I also enjoy resolving prickly dilemmas that I’ve created in the story. Especially when it successfully links into something that has been implanted earlier in the tale.

What is the hardest part of writing for you?
My stories tend to form themselves in parts and sometimes at the end of the first part, the story dries up completely. I’ll often write the first third or half at such a furious pace, it feels like trying to hold on to a wildly galloping horse. Then, mysteriously, it will simply dry up.

From that point, I have to employ every trick in the book to reactivate my story. I’ll do plot structures, write backgrounds to all the major characters, sketch out probable scenarios, write out connectors for different characters and form ideas about what makes them act. And all that may still come to nothing. I hate that. I hate when I’ve fallen off the horse. Sometimes I may even do a drawing to entice that shy old nag to come back.

This reflection time does help me to deepen the characters. It does allow me to research the place or find a diagnosis for the quirks of a character. Even the bad dudes.

So in short, the hardest part is having faith that it will all turn out all right in the end.

What's the easiest?
Starting. There are so many possibilities!

What's next for you?
I have an interesting picture book that I storyboarded on a recent plane trip. The characters feel solid, and the action is strong (read in Yoda voice) and the story has some excellent surprises.

I have another storyboard for a book about an awesome Grandad but I can’t say anything about that!

I have a fantasy novel for young readers that is a little over half way. Then of course there is the anthology of tales of my growing up which is full of fun and danger. I just need to figure out how to illustrate that one.

Hmm... so much to do. But just at the moment, I need to help Kate out into the world. I’d love her to meet lots and lots of people.

As part of the Kate Blog Tour, Morris Publishing are giving away a copy of the book. To be in the draw, simply send an email with a comment related to this post to submissions@morrispublishingaustralia.com with the subject 'Kate competition'.

Kate Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday 3rd Dec 10  writing tips deescribewriting.wordpress.com
Wednesday 4th Dec Interview www.buzzwordsmagazine.com
Thursday 5th Dec Interview www.alisonreynolds.com.au
Friday 6th Dec Article sherylgwyther.wordpress.com
Saturday 7th Dec Interview bookmusterdownunder.blogspot.com.au
Monday 9th Dec Interview www.kidsbookreview.com
Monday 9th Dec Interview UncommonYA.com
Tuesday 10th Dec Review www.melissawray.blogspot.com.au
Wednesday 11th Dec Review www.karentyrrell.com
Thursday 12th Dec Interview www.sallymurphy.blogspot.com
Saturday 14th Dec Article clancytucker.blogspot.com.au
Monday 16th Dec Interview diannedibates.blogspot.com.au
Tuesday 17th Dec Interview elaineoustonauthor.com.au

Learn more about Kevin and his body of work at kevinburgemeestre.com.