This week’s featured StoryDam Author, KG Waite came to the world of publishing a bit later than the fates intended. She said she planned on starting when her kids got into preschool, but talking about those plans to others pulled her back. She said,”An acquaintance told me that ‘it’s really hard to get published,’ and, while I knew that intuitively, I took her response to heart, thinking I’d never be good enough to be published so I let it sit on the back burner for too long.” Luckily for readers, she got past it! KG Waite has self-published two books so far and is currently working on a third.
The two books Waite has to offer, The Loneliness and Downriver, each have their own personality. Waite says “The Loneliness is a book of short and depressing stories, all, obviously, exploring the loneliness that each of us may sometimes feel. The second, Downriver, combines a short story with a series of essays about growing up in a small town and on a 40-acre farm, an experience that really influenced who I am today.” Waite’s experience on the farm undoubtedly continues to influence her as she writes her third book, a nonfiction book dealing extensively with nature, the details of which she is keeping to herself during the crafting process because she says, “enthusiasm for a project disappears for me as soon as I start discussing it.”
KG Waite’s Love of Nature
If she wasn’t writing, Waite says, “I’d probably be a biologist or a botanist or do something involving nature.” This comes as no surprise when you find out that she counts Wendell Berry as one of her great writing influences. ” He lives his values, eschewing much of modern technology, including the computer,” she said, adding, “He inspires me because he writes across a tremendous range: poetry, fiction and nonfiction. Finally, Berry manages to write while managing an extensive farm, proving that ‘no time to write’ is not an excuse for many of us.” Most of her other writing influences – Wes Jackson, Wallace Stegner, EB White, Studs Terkel, John Muir, John McPhee and Rachel Carson – echo these lessons in life and in writing.KG Waite is becoming an influence of her own. She was recently invited by her college to read some essays from Downriver which has yielded some favorable reception from the environmental community. Due to this response, Waite said, “I’m currently in the process of editing Downriver and offering it in print.”
KG Waite’s Writing Life
KG Waite has been writing for as long as she can remember. She told me, “I have a ‘book’ of poems (torn paper scraps of various colors bound in Manila paper and secured with lots of staples) that I put together when I was ten or so. Around that same time, my mother brought me a fabric-bound journal from a visit to her own mother in California. That journal got me started on regular writing and is a great mirror to my past–and future–selves.” While I’m sure she’s moved on from that first journal from her mom, Waite continues to journal today.
Journaling for at least twenty minutes each day is one part of Waite’s preferred writing habit. After journaling, she she said, “I try work on edits for at least 30 – 60 minutes a day. I try to work on my current project (reading, researching and writing, a couple of hours a day). Finally, I participate in weekly writing challenges/prompts as a way to improve and also to meet other writers. The exposure is great and the community of writers is terrific.”
In addition to the online writing community, Waite also credits her family as great contributors of support. She said, “My parents and siblings take the time to respond to my writing and are there to cheer me on. My husband and children do likewise and also give me the space and time to write.”
KG Waite’s Writing Advice
In an effort to provide some support of her own to new writers, Waite said, “Don’t stop. Believe in yourself.” Through her own experience in writing she said she has learned patience and how to filter through the good and bad advice she’s been given. She said, “Apply what makes sense and discard the rest. Put the work to bed for awhile before coming back to it.”
Reading KG Waite
If this interview is your first official introduction to KG Waite and you are looking to get further acquainted, then you should begin with her books which can be found on Amazon and at Barnes & Noble. In addition , KG Waite also writes regularly on her website Writing In The Margins, Bursting At The Seams.
If you are a StoryDam member who has published any books and you are interested in being featured on the StoryDam website, contact Nicole Rivera either on twitter @riverand, or via e-mail: BlogWithNV@Gmail.Com.