Interview with thriller author K.V. Scruggs

author K.V. Scruggs joins me today to
talk about her new medical thriller, What
They Don’t Know.
K.V. Scruggs is an internal medicine
physician, blogger, and novelist. 
She is an alumna of Clemson University and received
her MD from the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston. She
completed her residency in Internal Medicine at the University of North
Carolina – Chapel Hill. She is currently working as a hospitalist and lives in
Raleigh, North Carolina with her husband, two sons, and ornery cat, Jules.
She enjoys writing about current medical
issues and uses her blog as a platform to educate patients and their
families. She is also a regular contributor to The Huffington Post.
In her fiction writing, Dr. Scruggs not only
draws from her experience as a physician, but as a wife, friend and
What They Don’t
is her first novel.
Welcome, K.V. Please tell us about your
current release.
What They Don’t Know is part thriller, part cautionary tale.
It’s about what could happen if control over healthcare decisions gets put in
the wrong hands, if people who are strictly financially motivated start calling
the shots. In some ways this has already happened, so it doesn’t take too much
imagination to picture it playing out that way. The story just takes it to
another, terrifying level.
What inspired you to write this book?
I work as a
physician in the hospital. Oftentimes, I think of crazy “what-if” scenarios,
and some of them develop into an entire story line. The crazier, yet most
believable, the better. I mostly write for entertainment, but I also really care
about the direction healthcare is going, and I think that comes across in my
writing. I have seen themes come out in my fiction writing that I didn’t
necessarily intend to write about but certainly agree with. For example,
electronic healthcare records are not the end-all be-all of providing
exceptional, efficient medical care. You still need a conscientious and qualified
professional on the other side of the computer. Another main theme of the novel
is that there’s no such thing as a free lunch. When you read the book you’ll
understand what I mean by that!
You can read an excerpt from What They Don’t Know here.
What exciting story are you working on
I have some
ideas about a sequel to What They Don’t
, and I’ve started plotting out the storyline. I am also working on a
psychological/domestic thriller. It’s a story about a preteen boy whose younger
sister is murdered in Smalltown, USA.
When did you first consider yourself a
I always
loved reading and writing growing up, but during medical school and residency I
wasn’t able to do much in the way of hobbies. Once I was established in my
career, I started writing. I just sat down to write one day and my journal
entry became a short story, which ultimately became a novel. That was in 2011.
I started What They Don’t Know, my
second full-length (but first published) novel in 2014 when my oldest son was
Do you write full-time? If so, what’s
your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find
time to write?
No, I also
work as a hospitalist physician (an Internal Medicine doctor that takes care of
people admitted to the hospital). When I’m actively writing or editing, I try
to commit to 1000 words (or a certain number of pages, if editing) a day. If I
don’t get to it in the morning or throughout the day, then I know it has to get
done before my head hits the pillow. For someone who loves to relax before bed,
it’s a great motivator! There are some days it just doesn’t get done, but I am
usually happy with 5 or 6 days a week, especially since it usually averages
7000+ words a week.
What would you say is your interesting
writing quirk?
Well, I sit
in the same spot on my couch to write pretty much all the time. It’s hard to
think creatively if I’m not in that one spot. I have several spots around my
house designed to be perfect writing havens, but I always seem to go back to
the couch.
I would also
say I get my best writing done when the pressure’s off. Sometimes sitting down
at the beginning of the 1000 words is super intimidating, but once I’ve hit
1000, or at least hit my stride, it’s much easier to continue. Probably for
that reason, I also find it easier to pick up where I’ve left off if I stop writing
mid-scene. The next day, the writing just flows naturally since I already know
what’s going to happen next.
As a child, what did you want to be when
you grew up?
A scuba
diver. And a writer, that was definitely a dream of mine.
Anything additional you want to share
with the readers?
It has been a
dream come true to publish this novel and have people read it. Truly, it is
such a privilege. So I just want to thank everyone out there for reading and
continuing to support the writing community.

Thanks for being here today, K.V.

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