Interview with Kathryn Boyd, Runner Up in the WOW! Winter 2023 Flash Fiction Contest

Tuesday, July 04, 2023

Kathryn’s Bio: 

Radio station continuity director. Advertising agency copywriter. Freelance copywriter. Kathryn’s career had its ups and downs but was never boring. And all the while she studied the art of writing fiction until bold enough to make it her life’s work. 

As of now, she is in the final stages of rewrite for an upper YA near future eco-fiction novel. The working title is Great Plains Desert. The Darling Axe served as Developmental editor. 

Kathryn’s husband, Mike, is also an avid writer. They live near grown daughter Molly, who astounds them as she continually challenges herself to excel in every facet of her life. 

Home is Olathe, Kansas. This is where the North American Eastern deciduous forest transcends into the Western tallgrass prairie and its rich source of stories waiting to be told. 

*****interview by Sue Bradford Edwards*****

WOW:  First of all, I hope that anyone who hasn't read your story, "Too Many Kids," will take the time to do so.  In the meantime, what was the inspiration for this story? 

Kathy: The actual problem/solution conversation happened between a mom of seven kids and her oldest daughter. I decided it would make a good story if a kid actually accepted the challenge -- Which one should we give away? 

WOW:  That's a doozy!  It is vital to pick the right POV character in a story. With so many characters, how did you know “Too Many Kids” was Jeremy’s story to tell? 

Kathy: With the combined families, life had changed dramatically for every member of the family. Yet I felt adapting to an expanded family was hardest for Jeremy. He’d been displaced as the oldest boy in the family. He had to share a room with his little brother and a teenager. 

Jeremy’s complaint of ‘too many kids’ implied ’not enough Mom’. He worried about being left out now that additional kids and a new baby clamored for attention. 

WOW: I think we've all felt displaced at some time so that's something that clicks with readers. How did your story change during the revision process? 

Kathy: I heightened Jeremy’s confusion and doubts about which kid the family could do without. In so doing, emphasis is added to Jeremy’s difficulty answering what he originally thought would be an easy question. 

WOW: Your bio says that are also working on a YA novel. How does writing a novel inform your flash writing process?

Kathy: Love. Fear. Greed. These are the three emotions uppermost in my mind when crafting a story of any length for any market. Basic emotions motivate humans and make for great stories. 

WOW: Now I'm going to look for those motivators in the book that I'm reading. What do you know now that you wish you had known when you started writing fiction? 

Kathy: The value of a constant reminder to Show Don’t Tell by having it tattooed on the back of my left hand.

WOW:  That's definitely something I need to remember as well.  I hope our readers will soon have the opportunity to read your young adult novel.  Thank you so much for taking the time to share your ideas about writing.


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