New interview with YA author K.C. Tansley

YA author K.C. Tansley is back! This time we’re chatting about her new YA time travel mystery, The Girl Who Saved Ghosts.
K.C.’s first
interview was in 2015 about her YA murder mystery The
Girl Who Ignored Ghosts
K.C Tansley
lives with her warrior lapdog, Emerson, and two quirky golden retrievers on a
hill somewhere in Connecticut. She tends to believe in the
unbelievables—spells, ghosts, time travel—and writes about them.
Never one to
say no to a road trip, she’s climbed the Great Wall twice, hopped on the Sound
of Music tour in Salzburg, and danced the night away in the dunes of Cape
Hatteras. She loves the ocean and hates the sun, which makes for interesting
beach days. The Girl Who Ignored Ghosts
is her award-winning and bestselling first novel in The Unbelievables series.
Kourtney Heintz, she also writes award winning cross-genre fiction for adults.
Welcome back to Reviews and Interviews.
for having me back!
Please tell us about your newest
Like the first
book in The Unbelievables series, The
Girl Who Saved Ghosts
is a fast-paced time-travel murder mystery novel that
combines paranormal and gothic elements to create a story full of ancestral
legacies, powerful spells, unexpected connections, and inherited destinies.
If I had to
boil it down to a single sentence: When an ancestor’s ghost begs her for help,
Kat risks herself—and the friend who’s sworn to protect her—by traveling in
time to nineteenth-century Vienna.
What inspired you to write this book?
I’ve always
been fascinated by ghosts and curious about the afterlife. This series was
created around all the things I loved in a book when I was a teen—ghosts,
spells, murder mystery, time travel, family heirlooms, legacies, and curses.
When I first started writing Book 1, I envisioned 6-7 books in the series. I
even took notes on them.
After Book 1
was published, I was immediately at work on Book 2. I knew that Kat and Evan
had a much bigger journey ahead of them. In this book, I wanted to show Kat
growing into her new role as the Langley heir and protector of the Radcliffes.
I also wanted to delve into her Langley family—the side she never knew. At its
heart, this book is about family: those we pick and those we are given.
What’s the next writing project?
The third
book in this series! I’ve got to get a first draft done by January. It will involve
a search for the Mallory heirloom and even higher stakes for Kat and Evan.
What is your biggest challenge when
writing a new book? (or the biggest challenge with this book)
With the
sequel, there is an entire book that came before, so I have to do a delicate
dance between gently reminding readers of what came before and beating them
over the head with Book 1 recaps. My editor really helped me pull back in
certain areas and succinctly slip in reminders to readers as needed. This book
wouldn’t be what it is without her guiding hand!
If your novels require research – please
talk about the process. Do you do the research first and then write, while
you’re writing, after the novel is complete and you need to fill in the gaps?
I’ve gone
down the rabbit hole of research where I learned so much that never made in
into the story. Instead, I tend to make notes in the first draft as I’m writing
and remind myself to research specific things like if a hotel in 1831 would
have a private bathroom or room service. I actually bought a book on the
earliest hotels that I could refer to as needed. For the clothing, I have
several books on fashion from across the centuries. It’s very helpful when
describing what my characters are wearing. The biggest headache was the streets
of Vienna in 1831. Paving stones or dirt? Well, it depends on where you were. I
did a lot of research, but ended up relying on paintings of key places from
that era.
What’s your writing space like? Do you
have a particular spot to write where the muse is more active? Please tell us
about it.
I have a very
comfortable high-backed burgundy chair with those cool buttons in the back that
belongs in a law office and a black secretary desk with my Mac on it. I tend to
do all my writing at my desk. I have a to-do list to my right and a cabinet
full of signed books and mementos from my travels above me. I also have my
Moonbeam Children’s Book Award hanging above my screen for moments of doubt. It
really helps to remember someone thought my book should win an award. I taped a
copy of “Invictus” by William Ernest Henley to the cabinet above my desk. Two
lines of it have helped me through the worst moments: “I am the master of my
fate. I am the captain of my soul.”
I have two
buckets of pens, pencils, and markers to the left of my computer. I prefer to edit
on paper and in my bed. I get epiphanies at random and tend to jot down things
when I’m doing laundry or on the treadmill. My muse tends to be rather sneaky
like that.
What authors do you enjoy reading within
or outside of your genre?
I tend to
read what I am working on so this year has been all about the YA paranormals.
Right now I’m obsessed with Rachel Caine’s Morganville Vampires series. I
devoured 5 in a week and am seriously considering reading all 15 this year.
They are so intense and end with cliffhangers that make it impossible not to
pick up the next book. I like a fast paced, action packed, intense YA with
layers of history and family lore like Paige McKenzie’s The Haunting of
Sunshine Girl trilogy. I am a fan of Dawn Metcalf’s Twixt limited series. I
love intricate world building and gray characters. Oh, and Cassandra Clare’s
Mortal Instruments series—they are so well done on so many levels.
Anything additional you want to share
with the readers today?
If anyone would like to receive author updates, they can sign up on
my website and I’ll immediately send them an unpublished short story, And Then There Were Three, and give them
the inside scoop on my books—new releases, sale days, free book deals,
giveaways, and behind the scenes info they can’t find anywhere else!

Thank you for coming back to Reviews and
Thank you so
much for having me back!

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