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Interview with K.M. Ruiz and Giveaway - June 18, 2012

Please welcome K.M. Ruiz to The Qwillery. Terminal Point, the 2nd novel in the Strykers Syndicate series, will be published tomorrow, June 19, 2012.


TQ:  Welcome back to The Qwillery!

K.M.:  Thanks for letting me stop by again!


TQ:  What is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

K.M.:  At this point? Trying to find the time to write! I have a really busy, stressful day job that sometimes requires copious amounts of overtime. When things die down, the second most challenging thing is trying not to get distracted by other books I want to read, movies I want to see, and the time-suck that is the Internet. Still, I’ll sit down at least once a day and try to pound out some words, even if it’s only for a short period of time. The next day might see me go back and delete those words in order to start over, but I’ll still try to squeeze in some writing.


TQ:  What do you wish you'd known when the 1st book, Mind Storm, came out that you know now?

K.M.:  That I need to win the lottery. (Don’t we all?) In actuality, I learned that while there’s always more you can do to help get the word out there about your book, sometimes it’s just not possible. There’s only so many hours in a day and only so much time off I could take when Mind Storm came out. I did my best to reach out for promotional purposes but I know there were avenues I didn’t or couldn’t pursue due to my own personal time crunch. I know those same issues are likely to come up again for Terminal Point’s release. Hopefully I’m more prepared this time around.


TQ:  If you were stranded on a deserted island for one year, which 5 novels would you want to have with you?

K.M.:  This is a torturous question. Only five? Cruel and unusual punishment! But if I had to choose, I’d probably pick these books:

Exiles: The Ruins of Ambrai by Melanie Rawn
On Basilisk Station by David Weber
Dies the Fire by S.M. Stirling
Squire by Tamora Pierce
Moon Called by Patricia Briggs


TQ:  Please tell us something about Terminal Point, the second novel in your Strykers Syndicate series, that is not in the book description.

K.M.:  I put my characters through hell. There is no moral, right answer to any of the problems they face, which might make some readers pause. It’s a product of the world I created and to give any of them an easy way out wouldn’t be true to the narrative. I basically went into the second book knowing I couldn’t pull any punches. In a weird way, that made it fun to write.


TQ:  Which character(s) in the Strykers Syndicate series has surprised you the most?

K.M.:  Matron. Honestly, I didn’t know she was going to be in the story until I got to the scene in the first book where Lucas is contacting her. I don’t plot out every detail when I write but I have a vague idea of what needs to happen. Instead, I tend to write towards major events in order to get to the end without knowing where the story is going to take me. When it came to Matron, I was just writing away and a mouthy human scavenger came into the story to talk back to Lucas. So I kept her.


TQ:  Are there any other genres in which you would like to write in addition to Science Fiction?

K.M.:  Fantasy and its sub-genres. I know enough about how I write that young adult isn’t something I could do. I don’t really have the voice for that, even though it’s a huge market and I love reading it. Writing it is another thing entirely.


TQ:  What's next?

K.M.:  I’m currently working on an urban fantasy novel, so we’ll see how that goes. I know the market is pretty saturated but I’m going to hope there’s still room out there. Fingers crossed it sees the light of day!


TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

K.M.:  Thank you for having me!



Strykers Syndicate

Terminal Point
Strykers Syndicate 2
St. Martin's Press / Thomas Dunne Books, June 19, 2012
Hardcover and eBook, 336 pages

Interview with K.M. Ruiz and Giveaway - June 18, 2012
Blade Runner meets X-Men in this follow-up to Mind Storm where humanity faces extinction and it’s up to a group of rogue psions to save society

Fans of Charles Stross and Hannu Rajaniemi will lose themselves in this adventure as Threnody Corwin and her team of rogue Strykers contend with the aftermath of the events in Mind Storm and the unlocking of a new kind of psion power. They’re on the run with Lucas Serca, who is closer than ever to destroying the World Court and his father’s grip on the planet. Targeting the hidden cache of the planet’s food supply meant to transform Mars into a paradise for the chosen few, Lucas triggers an escalating fight with the ruling government as worldwide chaos ensues. It’s up to Threnody to save society before it destroys itself, but the cost is high and in the end, there is no such thing as compromise.

There is only survival.


Mind Storm
Strykers Syndicate 1
St. Martin's Press / Thomas Dunne Books, May 10, 2011
Hardcover and eBook, 304 pages

Interview with K.M. Ruiz and Giveaway - June 18, 2012
The first in an exciting new sci-fi series that’s being described as Blade Runner meets X-Men

Two hundred and fifty years after the world was nearly wiped out by nuclear war, what’s left of society fights over the scraps of the Earth as the rich and powerful plan to ascend in secret to another planet. But the deadly new breed of humanity that the rulers have enslaved to protect their interests are about to change everything.

K.M. Ruiz’s Mind Storm is the rip-roaring tale of Threnody Corwin, a “psion” with the ability to channel electricity like lightning through anything she touches. As a solider-slave for the human government, Threnody is recruited by an unknown enemy: the scion of Earth’s most powerful (and supposedly human) family, the Serca Syndicate. But Lucas Serca is far from human and he intends to make Threnody and her fellow psions meet their destiny, no matter how many people he has to kill to do it.

Mind Storm is the first of two books chronicling the fight for survival by the psions and other “gene-trash” humans, before they’re killed by the racist world government, or left to die on a crumbling Earth.




About K.M.

Interview with K.M. Ruiz and Giveaway - June 18, 2012
K. M. Ruiz lives in California with a cat or two for company and the occasional earthquake. She earned a B.A. in English and a minor in American Indian Studies from San Francisco State University. She likes her movies loud, her music louder, and when not writing, spends the rest of her time looking for her next cup of coffee.

K.M.'s Link

Website: http://www.kmruiz.com/
Blog: http://km-ruiz.livejournal.com/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/KM_Ruiz











The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  One commenter will win a copy of Terminal Point (Strykers Syndicate 2) from K.M. Ruiz!

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

What are some of your favorite post-apocalyptic novels, movies, comics, etc.?
(You can list just one!)

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1)   Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2)   Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3)   Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. You MUST leave a way to contact you.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Monday, June 25, 2012. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

Interview with K.M. Ruiz and Giveaway - May 12, 2011

Due to the Blogger outage this interview has been reposted and the date for giveaway entries extended for 1 day. If you have already entered, please note that I have your comment, but you are welcome to comment again.

Please welcome K.M. Ruiz to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge interviews.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

K.M.:  Thank you for letting me stop by! As for a quirk, I guess you could say I have a habit of writing in layers. I’ll write bare-bones stories, then go back and fill in more details. I assume the reader doesn’t need or want every last nitty gritty word in my head, so I’ll write ten words when I should really be using more. Then I’ll print it out in hard copy and continue adding stuff. It’s a weird process.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

K.M.:  Melanie Rawn, C. J. Cherryh, David Weber, Karin Lowachee to name a few. I fell in love with Melanie Rawn’s Exiles series as a kid. C. J. Cherry’s Foreigner series is amazing. She writes really strong character focused stories that are just brilliant. I learned a lot by just reading her.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a panster?

K.M.:  I’m kind of a mix. I’m a plotter, in the sense that I’ve got an overall idea for a series and I usually know how a book will end before I figure out the beginning and middle. I’ll have a few major events that I know have to happen and I’ll write my way to them, which is where the punster part comes in. The mixture gives me a little more freedom. I find a chapter by chapter outline to be restricting, at least for me, but for the most part I do know the major things that need to happen before I start writing, I just have to get there.

TQ:  Describe Mind Storm in 140 characters or less.

K.M.:  Post-apocalyptic tale where human and psion survivors of nuclear war fight for their future but the best answer isn’t always the right one.

TQ:  What inspired you to write Mind Storm?

K.M.:  I loved comics growing up as a kid. Even though I haven’t been into them for quite a few years now, comics are still a big inspiration. I liked how a lot of the big plot arc questions in comics were never answered until the very end of the story (if then), but I also liked how there wasn’t always a clear-cut answer. Comics are great when it comes to the morally gray area and I tried to emulate that here.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do for the Strykers Syndicate novels ?

K.M.:  Actually, quite a bit now that I think of it. I did some research on certain incurable diseases and how the body changes because of it to help differentiate psions from humans in the story. I’ve always been really into the sciences dealing with the human body, though I’m not an expert by any means. I wanted to try to ground psion powers as much as possible within the confines of the human body and digging through medical possibilities helped me with that. As much as I love comics, I wanted the story to be less fantastical in some ways.

I also did some research on the aftereffects of nuclear fallout, how it shows up as disease even generations down the line and how those same people are treated, both medically and culturally. In light of what happened recently in Japan, I won’t delve too deep. I will say that the tragedy in Chernobyl and a photo essay book called Chernobyl Legacy done by photographer Paul Fusco helped me form some ideas for the segregated society in Mind Storm. Even today people discard others who don’t fit their vision of normal and I wanted to bring that into the story.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Mind Storm?

K.M.:  Some of my favorite scenes would give away too much, so I’ll skip those! I like the scene between Lucas and Matron (a human scavenger), where they’re sitting in an abandoned weather station right before everything goes to hell. I like how it shows their motivations and how far they’ve come, that a psion and a discarded human can actually work together.

TQ:  Who was the easiest character to write and why? Hardest and why?

K.M.:  Lucas was the hardest character for me to write because I never got into his head. He’s very much a driving force of the plot, but I unintentionally wrote him with having a distance from the reader that was frustrating at times. And then I had to keep writing him like that for both books. Talk about wanting to strangle a character! Threnody was the easiest because I knew what motivated her, but I never got deep into her head either. She’s a soldier and soldiers are supposed to obey without question in this story and I wanted to showcase that attitude by not delving too much into her emotions. Threnody does learn to start questioning the status quo and that’s what made her easier to write than pretty much everyone else.

TQ:  How many books are planned for the series?

K.M.:  Two books are planned so far. The second book is coming out sometime next year. I don’t know when yet, but I’m hoping spring.

TQ:  What's next?

K.M.:  I’m working on the second book, though I don’t know what title we’re going to use. A lot of the questions I purposefully left unanswered in Mind Storm get addressed in book two, I promise! I’m also working on a proposal for something else that I don’t want to say too much about since I’m still in the planning stages of it. It’s something I’m really excited about though.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

K.M.:  Thanks so much for having me!


About K.M.'s Books

Mind Storm
Strykers Syndicate 1
(May 10, 2011)
Interview with K.M. Ruiz and Giveaway - May 12, 2011
After the world was nearly wiped out by a nuclear war 250 years ago, what’s left of society fights over the scraps of the Earth as the rich and powerful plan to secretly ascend to another planet. But the deadly new breed of humanity that the rulers have enslaved to protect their interests is about to change everything.

This is the story of Threnody Corwin, a psion with the ability to channel electricity like lightning through anything she touches. As a soldier-slave for the human government, Threnody is recruited by an unknown enemy: the son of Earth’s most powerful human family.

But Lucas Serca is far from human and he intends to make Threnody and her fellow psions meet their destiny, no matter how many people he has to kill to do it. Mind Storm chronicles the fight for survival by the psions and other gene-trash humans, before they’re killed by a corrupt world government or left to die on a crumbling Earth.


Strykers Syndicate 2 will be released in 2012.


About K.M. Ruiz

Interview with K.M. Ruiz and Giveaway - May 12, 2011
K.M. Ruiz lives in California with a cat or two for company and the occasional earthquake. She earned a B.A. in English (concentration in Creative Writing) and a minor in American Indian Studies from San Francisco State University. She likes her movies loud, her music louder, and when not writing, can be found traveling, looking for new ideas.

K.M.'s Links

Website: http://www.kmruiz.com/
Blog: http://km-ruiz.livejournal.com/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/KM_Ruiz





The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  One commenter will win a hardcover copy of Mind Storm generously provided by K.M. Ruiz.

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

Science Fiction, science fact, or both?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1) Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2) Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3) Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Friday, May 20, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

2011 Debut Author Challenge Update - April 25, 2011

Here is the latest addition to the 2011 Debut Author Challenge. K.M. Ruiz will be at The Qwillery for an interview during 2011.

K.M. Ruiz

Mind Storm
Thomas Dunne Books
May 2011

2011 Debut Author Challenge Update - April 25, 2011
The first in an exciting new sci-fi seriesthat’s being described as Blade Runner meets X-Men

Two hundred and fifty years after the world was nearly wiped out by nuclear war, what’s left of society fights over the scraps of the Earth as the rich and powerful plan to ascend in secret to another planet. But the deadly new breed of humanity that the rulers have enslaved to protect their interests are about to change everything.

K.M. Ruiz’s Mind Storm is the rip-roaring tale of Threnody Corwin, a “psion” with the ability to channel electricity like lightning through anything she touches. As a solider-slave for the human government, Threnody is recruited by an unknown enemy: the scion of Earth’s most powerful (and supposedly human) family, the Serca Syndicate. But Lucas Serca is far from human and he intends to make Threnody and her fellow psions meet their destiny, no matter how many people he has to kill to do it.

Mind Storm is the first of two books chronicling the fight for survival by the psions and other “gene-trash” humans, before they’re killed by the racist world government, or left to die on a crumbling Earth.

You can keep up to date on the 2011 Debut Author Challenge happenings on the 2011 DAC page.
Interview with K.M. Ruiz and Giveaway - June 18, 2012Interview with K.M. Ruiz and Giveaway - May 12, 20112011 Debut Author Challenge Update - April 25, 2011

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