04 September, 2020

#Interview with Ken Kuhlken, #Author of Supermen - @kenkuhlken


About the Author:

Ken Kuhlken is all about questions. His latest obsession is latest obsession is seeking to grasp why Feodor Dostoyevski claimed beauty will save the world. When he isn’t questioning, he plays golf with his daughter, worries about what will become of him when she leaves for college (as soon as her college opens up for the class of 2024) attempts to grow and cook vegetables and pesters his cat. 

He has written and published many novels, short stories, articles, poems, and essays. Lots of honors have come his way, including a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship; Poets, Essayists and Novelist’s Ernest Hemingway Award; Private Eye Writers of America Best First Novel and Shamus Best Novel; and several San Diego and Los Angeles Book Awards. 

Ken Kuhlken writes about characters most authors wouldn’t touch.” Raymond Carver 

“Elegant, eloquent, and elegiac, Kuhlken’s novels sing an old melody, at the same time haunting and beautiful.” Novelist Don Winslow

Ken on the Web:

Interview with Ken Kuhlken

How did you come up with the idea for your current story? 

Supermen is probably as close to autobiography as I'll ever write, although Otis is a better pitcher than I was. I threw hard but hit too many batters.

Are there some stories tucked away in some drawer that was written before and never saw the light of the day? 

Yep, and they will stay there if I can help it.

What is your favorite scene in the book? Why?

Either Otis (the narrator) in Williamsport, PA, watching the final game of the little league world series and knowing he could be playing if his dad weren't so honest; or Otis in Disneyland when a troop of Boy Scouts mistake him for Charles Manson.

Do you read? Who are your favourite authors and how have they influenced your writing style?

I am quite fond of Kurt Vonnegut and suspect that some elements of his style have rubbed off on me. For instance, he would much rather appear simple than pretentious. And Patricia Highsmith with her Ripley novels certainly gave me some encouragement to write series books. And I have long admired the way Flannery O'Connor and Raymond Chandler use description.

What is the best piece of advice you have received, as a writer, till date?

When I was having doubts, my friend Don Purviance asked "Are you in it for the long haul or not?"

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?

"Number one is patience, number two is patience, number three is ..." and so on. That came frequently from Tae Kwon Do Master Jeong.

Can you share with us something off your bucket list? 

I long to travel and maybe golf at Pebble Beach and in Scotland  if I ever get  get good enough to justify those outings. Meanwhile I will settle for road trips across the country (and maybe across Canada) to watch my Zoe play softball. She will be pitching for MIT in Spring, if sports resume.

Tell us three fun facts about yourself.

1. My daughter's friends call me Cool Ken. 
2. Though I'm not generally known as a humorist, I would like my tombstone to read, "A funny guy."
3. I think librarians are the most fascinating people.

What do you have in store next for your readers?

Beginning in October, my series of Hickey Family Crime novels will come out in ebook. Yesterday, I finished proofing book one, The Biggest Liar in Los Angeles and was delighted and astonished at how relevant it is to what's going on with America and somewhat disturbed at how little corruption, racial discord, and the clash of religions has changed over the past hundred years. People who follow me on BookBub will be notified about release dates and bargains on books in the series. 

About the Book:

Readers accompany Otis Otterbach on a road trip to the little league world series, share his torments prompted by sex and other facts of life, follow him and his best friend and catcher Casey through the MLB draft and on a mysterious mission directed by Casey’s mother, the deranged and homicidal Cyjnthia Jones.

Book Links:
Goodreads * Amazon

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