Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Special Guest: Author Chris Karlsen

Hi all, 

I'm thrilled to welcome a special guest to my blog today. She knows how to handle handcuffs as well as a keyboard and took mercy on a character she'd already killed when begged to let him live. 
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Chris Karlsen!

The business ones

Please give us a short introduction about yourself
I’ve always been an avid reader and the desire to write was sparked in my teen years. By the time I reached college age, I waffled on pursuing a writing career as I feared I’d never make a living at it. I chose the safer path and got a degree in business. A few years later I joined the police department and worked for two different agencies over the course of the next twenty-five years. I never lost interest in writing. After I retired from law enforcement, I decided to finally pursue my dream. I started my first book, Heroes Live Forever, and also began taking writing courses to learn the craft.

What genre(s) do you write in and why?
I write romance but in two subgenres. My Knights in Time series are paranormal romance books and my Dangerous Waters series books are romantic thrillers.

Tell us about your latest release
My newest book is Knight Blindness. It’s book three in my Knights in Time series (all of which are set in England). The hero is a character from book 2, Journey in Time. I had killed him in that book (off page by reference). My critique partners loved him and insisted I let him live. I rewrote the scene and instead of making his death a certainty, I left it open as to whether he lived or not. Their reaction gave me the idea to give the character his own story, which turned out to be Knight Blindness.

Do you need a special setting to write in or do you have a ceremony to get you in the mood? What does it look like?
I don’t have a ritual and I’m not superstitious by nature. I have this little niche area between the living room and the dining room that I have my desk, computer, printer and a substantial cupboard for my reference books and bits and bobs for writing (some knick knacks and keepsakes along with small post it notes that I have stuck everywhere *grins* )

Describe your feelings when you learnt that your first book was accepted for publication
I was both thrilled and nervous. Now I’d discover if readers liked my story.

Has the release of your first book changed anything in your personal life? If so, what?
No, not really, not in my interaction with my husband but it has given me focus, a place to be in the afternoons and a goal.

Where do you find inspiration?
I am moved by history, both events and historical figures. I like to build stories around timeframes and folks I am most interested in, like the Battle of Poitiers. That battle is used as the groundwork for my Knights in Time series. Or, the Trojan War, Hector and Achilles, are a fascination I gave the heroine in my archaeological thrillers from my Dangerous Waters series.

Who is your favourite character and why?
Wow, tough question. I’d reluctantly choose Charlotte, my nautical archaeologist in Golden Chariot and Byzantine Gold. I’d pick her because a part of me believes if I could go back in time, nautical archaeology is a profession I’d have enjoyed going into.

A favourite line from one of your books
For me every book has a favorite line. From Knight Blindness I’d say: “Not all lies are bad. Not all truths are good.”

The nosy ones

How much of the real “you” is in your stories?
A fair amount in the heroines and a goodly amount in the heroes as well. I work at putting myself in their place as I give them different scenarios and problems and happy events. I am constantly thinking-What would I do? The characters have advantages I don’t at times and that helps. They can be younger, stronger, and braver.

Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character? Who was it?
Well, it is going back to my teens but I’d say I was rather smitten with James Bond. I read all Ian Fleming’s books two and three times. When they cast Sean Connery I thought it was perfect choice. I also think Daniel Craig is an excellent choice for the latest Bonds.

The steamiest scene from your books
There’s a love scene in Knight Blindness where the hero blindfolds the heroine by tying a silk scarf around her eyes and then proceeds to make love to her. The scene is done through all their senses except sight.

Favourite comfort food?
Potatoes in any form but mostly I love mashed. It’s safe to say I never met a potato I didn’t like *grins*

A person you admire
My late father. He was brave beyond imagining, honorable to a fault, and had a great sense of humor. He wasn’t afraid to laugh at life or himself.

If you could ask any person in the world one question of your choice, who would it be and what would you ask them? I don’t know that I can narrow my choice down that far when it comes to a person or question. If I got my hands on various people, I’d have a bazillion questions, some friendly, some not so much.
The fast ones

Favourite colour? Candy apple red

Favourite pet? Sascha, my geriatric doxie who passed away a few years back

Dog or cat? Dog(s) we have 5 rescues

Coffee or tea? Coffee

Hunky or chunky? Hunky

Suit & tie or jeans & boots? Suit and tie

Walk in the park or chat over cocktails? Chat over cocktails

Thank you for the interview, Chris. I loved getting to know you and I already know which book I'll pick next time I'm in the mood for some crime, lol. Let's take a look at your book now, shall we?

Knight Blindness 

Ready for battle, Medieval English knight, Stephen Palmer, charges into the French enemy’s cavalry line. Heeding a warning given months before, he hesitates as he comes face-to-face with the knight in the warning. Struck down in the year 1356, he finds himself landing in the year 2013. Grievously wounded, he’s taken to a nearby hospital. Confused by the new world surrounding him, he attempts to convince the staff he’s from another time, only to find they think him mad.

Rescued by friends, who, to his surprise, have also come through time, he must find a way to function in this odd modern England. He is quickly enchanted by the kind Esme Crippen, the young woman hired to tutor him. She too is enchanted by him. Tempted to deepen the relationship, she hesitates thinking him adorable, but mad. He must discover the means for getting her to believe the truth, all the while, unknown to him, he didn’t come forward in time alone. The enemy knight has also traveled to 2013.

French noble, Roger Marchand, doesn’t question why the English knight who charged him hesitated. That fraction of a pause gave him the advantage needed and he brought his sword down upon the Englishman’s helmet hard, unhorsing the knight. He moved to finish the Englishman off when the world changed in a rush of sensations as he is ripped through time.

Seeking a reason for the terrible event, he enters a nearby chapel. There, thinking God has chosen him for a quest to turn French defeat that day in 1356 to victory, he sets out to find the English knight. The man he is convinced holds the key to time. If he returns to the day of the battle, he can warn his king of mistakes that snatched victory from them.

Buy link: http://www.amazon.com/Knight-Blindness-Knights-Time-ebook/dp/B00E2QS488/ref=cm_cr_pr_pb_t 

About the author:

I was born and raised in Chicago. My father was a history professor and my mother was, and is, a voracious reader. I grew up with a love of history and books.
My parents also love traveling, a passion they passed onto me. I wanted to see the places I read about, see the land and monuments from the time periods that fascinated me. I’ve had the good fortune to travel extensively throughout Europe, the Near East, and North Africa.
I am a retired police detective. I spent twenty-five years in law enforcement with two different agencies. My desire to write came in my early teens. After I retired, I decided to pursue that dream. I write two different series. My paranormal romance series is called, Knights in Time. My romantic thriller series is, Dangerous Waters.
I currently live in the Pacific Northwest with my husband, four rescue dogs and a rescue horse.

Chris across the web:

Website: www.chriskarlsen.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/chriskarlsenwriter
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/chriskarlsen/


  1. Hello to Everyone,
    I want to thank Sage for inviting me today. I look forward to chatting with all of you. I'd love to talk books, movies, and most fun things.
    Chris Karlsen

  2. Chris, Great interview. I loved your anwsers, very intertaining.