FAQs

 

The following are some common questions that readers may have regarding me as an author, the book itself and its most popular characters. This is a growing list, so I expect to be updating it from time to time. Do check back here frequently to see if any new questions have been added. And if you do not see a question answered that is making you scratch your head, send it to me. Email me at chris@chriskuhnauthor.com and while I may not be able to respond personally or right away, I’ll do what I can to answer your question here at the website, on social media or at my blog. Thanks!

 

***SPOILER ALERT***

Please note that the following list of questions may reference specific elements of the story or plot points, so if you have not read the book yet, you may wish to come back to this section later.

Q: What inspired you to write the book THE MUSE UNLOCKED?

A: This is a much more complex question than you might think. I’ve been making attempts to write a book since 2011. However, my first two go-rounds, I had planned a non-fiction book – more humorous and essay-based. Then in spring and summer 2012, I discovered the contemporary romance genre. First, it was Fifty Shades of Grey and then I moved on to Sylvain Reynard’s wonderful Gabriel’s Inferno and Gabriel’s Rapture. In time, I discovered other authors like Colleen Hoover, S.C. Stephens, M. Leighton, Rebecca Donovan, Jamie McGuire and many more. I fell in love with the genre before I ever came up with an idea for a book.

As I read more and more books, I discovered that while I loved this genre enormously, there seemed to be three elements I was not running into as often as I would have liked. (1) Most female protagonists were in college or fresh out of college – I clearly was way past that time and probably due to their age, many of these women were in my mind, weak, meek, mamby-pamby and indecisive (I so wanted to see a strong, smart, taking-life-by-the-reins woman in the lead role!); (2) most relationships featured a much older man and the young, virginal woman – just for once, I wanted to see two grown adults and so what if the woman was older than the man? That could work, too, I thought; and finally, (3) not that many of these books featured much humor within the relationship. I don’t know any couples who don’t have funny stories to tell about early dating or even sex that don’t involve some humor. Sex is funny so why shouldn’t contemporary romance books be funny as well as titillating? Granted, some authors do have a knack for injecting a little humor – such as Colleen Hoover and Tiffany Reisz, even whenthe subject matter can be really heavy. Once it dawned on me that something seemed missing and I knew that I wanted to write a book before, it all clicked – this was the book I needed to write. I began one scene at a time with no real initial plan but those three goals in mind.

  

Q: When you wrote the book, did you have a particular actor or actress in mind for the lead characters?
A: I have no intention of sharing WHO inspired one of my characters but will admit that it was upon seeing a young actor that I got the idea to create Oliver Sand. That’s never happened to me before where a simple sighting of someone immediately captured my attention and led me to want to write a book. I can tell you that it has happened again since, which completely floored me, and that will most likely be my next book or book series that I develop. (What is it with me and these good looking actors???)

As I wrote THE MUSE UNLOCKED, I did have a picture of this actor as well as a photo of an actress who I was able to early on see in the role of Cate Mullen and had photos of both actors within my view as I wrote every single chapter of the book. So I guess you could say that I had my own initial muse to start this book and the pair of them helping me along the way so I could finish it.

 

Q: How much of yourself did you write into the character of Cate?

A: I’m sure readers are going to assume because I’m a writer and similar in age (though admittedly, older) than Cate that I basically wrote myself into a story. This isn’t the case. There are certainly some things we share in common – I certainly love my wine and love 80s music and movies as Cate does. But she’s a very different woman from me – I wish I could be as successful and gutsy as she is on a few occasions in the book. I’m definitely not as brave, probably a little less openly snarky and I could only hope that I had her metabolism! Honestly, there are elements of a lot of characters in there that might take a piece from me – Jamie, Oliver, even Carl, though I hate to say it. I don’t know about other writers, but as for me, I don’t think you can write about what you don’t know without incorporating what you do know into the mix somehow.

But I can tell you, just as I write at the end of the book, that I am not Cate, my husband is not Carl (or Oliver, for that matter…damn! Just kidding, sweetie…) and that this is a fictional book with some elements of reality tossed in here and there to whip up hopefully a compelling story that looks and feels real to readers.

 

Q: How many books are planned in THE MUSE SERIES?
A: At this time, there are only plans for two books. However, as the second book is currently in development, it is possible that it could lead to a third book. We shall see! But I will keep everybody posted as soon as I know for sure.

  

Q: Why isn’t THE MUSE UNLOCKED available for The Nook and KOBO e-readers?

A: I absolutely hope that in the not-so-distant future I will be able to offer it in these other formats, as well as across other languages. For now, however, being a self-published author, one has choices she must make and in order to reach as many readers as I possibly could, it was necessary that I publish e-books at this time available only to the Amazon.com marketplace. This is no way intended to be a slight toward other readers, I merely had to go with an option that would reach the largest potential number of e-book readers. I hope that by the time THE MUSE UNGUARDED is available for release that I might have some other news about availability on other formats. For now, I apologize for it not being available in this way but do hope that perhaps you might enjoy it on an iPad or other tablet, or even consider purchasing the book as a paperback from independent bookstores in your area or online at Amazon.com or Smashwords.

 

Q: What kind of work did you do before THE MUSE SERIES?
A: I had the sexy job (yes, I’m being facetious) of being a work-from-home freelance writer and editor. Sometimes I wrote articles for local magazines and newspapers, other times I merely gathered content for special sections, calendars and blogs. The projects varied. The good thing about that is you never get bored because the job always changes and you learn a lot about many different things. But in my heart of hearts, I knew that I always wanted to write my own book, so I’m glad that I could at least make that dream come true.

 

Q: What other books do you have planned?

A: As I mentioned earlier, while I don’t have a story quite yet worked out, I do have another inspirational fella that I see in my head as a future character. As far as who he will be and what he will be doing, that remains to be seen. I do know that I would like to continue to do more in the contemporary romance genre, but I am not ruling out other genres, too, since my own reading tastes extend beyond this category. I also do intend to release a few non-fiction anthologies of essays or other creative works some time in the future, as well. I’d like to keep my pinky toes dipped in both the fiction and non-fiction pools, and certainly plan to keep it that way.
 

Q: Do you model your writing style after any authors in particular?

A: No, I really don’t. What I have found is that after being in the blogging world for so long, I have grown much more comfortable with words as dialogue, and have elected to produce a more conversational style of writing. For this reason, I know that I will have people who will absolutely loathe my writing – and that’s perfectly fine. I’m not a fan of stilted, flowery writing that sounds like a prepared speech either. Everyone has their own preferences and thankfully, there’s so many goddamned people on this planet (too many if you’ve watched the many Discovery specials and Al Gore PowerPoint presentations) and this means more opportunities to sell books, books and more books. Seriously though, much like other forms of entertainment – movies, television and music come to mind – we are living in a much more segmented, customized world where you can pick up a book precisely about the kind of people and plots you want to read about, whether it’s rock erotica or young adult paranormal romance (how’s that for a multi-genre recipe?) And I feel so grateful for the opportunity to write for you, for any of you who happen to like the way I throw a few sentences together.