Author Spotlight: K.E. O’Connor and Chris Ward

We have many talented authors here at Instafreebie, and we’re really excited to introduce them to all of our readers. Instafreebie’s Author Spotlight gives readers the chance to meet some new authors and learn about their writing processes!

K.E. O’Connor – Cozy Mystery and Paranormal Author

Zombie Daze by K.E. O’Connor

Zombie Daze by K.E. O'Connor

What inspired you to write “Zombie Daze?”
I’ve never read a cozy mystery with zombies in it. I love a challenge, so set to work on creating Zee Town, the UK’s safe haven for placid zombies!

What inspired you create Stool the dog from “Zombie Daze?”
I love animals. Whether they have fur, feathers or snouts, I think animals are awesome. Stool is a key character in the stories. He’s Nick’s – the male main character – sometimes trusty sidekick and Stool has a funny stubborn streak and a love of food. He also has a mission of his own (to bring together Cassie and Nick – despite their protests) and will keep limping around doing just that. Why is he called Stool? He’s only got three legs!

Where does “Zombie Daze” take place and what inspired you to choose that setting?
“Zombie Daze” takes place in a southwestern part of the UK in a place called Cornwall. I’ve taken some of the stores and settings straight from real life. If you ever get the chance to visit Cornwall you have to go. It’s so beautiful there – amazing beaches, surfing, quaint little cottages and incredible sea views. I chose this setting because it’s one of the last places you’d expect to find a zombie rambling about. It’s also a great place to defend yourself against the less friendly zombies, with sea, cliffs and hills. You can always see a zombie coming.

What motivated you to become an Indie author?
I have so many stories in my head that traditional publishing is too slow. I can’t wait a year to read the next book in a series, I want it now! I love the independence and ability to see everything come together – from the first draft, cover, marketing and sales. The community of indie authors is also so supportive and helpful. I love that.

Why are you letting us read “Zombie Daze” for free?
Everyone deserves a little treat. I inhale books at a scary fast rate and that’s not cheap. I know some of my readers read 5-6 a week, so this is a gift for everyone. Sit back with a mug of tea and some cake and have a lovely time in Zee Town.

Chris Ward – Science Fiction Author

Ms. Ito’s Bird & Other Stories by Chris Ward

Ms. Ito's Bird and Other Stories by Chris Ward

What inspired you to write “Ms. Ito’s Bird & Other Stories?”
Ms. Ito’s Bird & Other Stories is a collection of short stories previously published in small press magazines. The lead story, Ms. Ito’s Bird, was published in Weird Tales 352, the year the magazine won a Hugo Award. The inspiration for each story was different, but for the lead story, it actually came from a dream about a rather strange bird. The character in the title, Ms. Ito, was resurrected and used as a side character in my forthcoming YA novel, Benjamin Forrest and the School at the End of the World.

Are any of your characters based on real people?
Some of them, but you won’t get me saying who!

How many hours a day do you write?
As many as I can but usually from 1-3. I work full time and have a family so my writing is usually done very early in the morning or very late at night.

What motivated you to become an Indie author?
I have been writing since I was a small child and while I had published several dozen short stories in magazines I was yet to get a break with a novel. When indie publishing came along, I figured I’d give it a try, and I’m glad I did. I like being in control of every part of the publication process.

Why are you letting us read “Ms. Ito’s Bird & Other Stories” for free?
Because the stories are in several speculative fiction genres and are a good introduction to my work. Some of the stories have been adapted into novels and series, for example “Tube Riders,” is a four-book dystopian series and my bestseller, while “Saving the Day” is also in development as a three-book series.

If you enjoyed the interview, please let the authors know in the comments! And be sure to thank them for their generosity by reviewing, sharing, and reading their work!