1. So, kittgirl, what do you do when you aren't writing Knight Rider fanfic?
I work as a assistant gas station operator in Helsinki Finland. When not at the computer, I ride and compete in western riding and attend dog shows. Oh, and there's that black box that goes everywhere with me: the camera.
2. When did you first get into Knight Rider?
I got into Knight Rider when I was a kid. I fell in love with the car, so to speak. When all the other little girls drew houses, families and flowers, I drew Pontiacs with red scanner lights. I was teased quite a lot in school and while others would write in diaries about such things, I used to write to Kitt, mind you I never sent those anywhere! I used to force my mom to watch it with me, and she couldn't understand why I could love the show so much, still can't actually :-)
3. Is there a particular reason why Knight Rider was the first fandom you took a stab at writing in? Or is it the only fandom you can see yourself writing in?
Well, Knight Rider fan fiction was the first fan fiction that I stumbled on. I got my internet connection about a year and a half ago. I typed "Knight Rider" into a search engine, and that's how I found fan fiction. For me, KR fan fiction was the logical place to start. I knew the characters, general plot lines, and the overall essence of the show. Since I had dreamed up stories about the KR cast in my head many times I suddenly saw, that there were people out there, who might be interested in them. For now, I'll stick to writing KR fic, but I might try my hand at Star Trek TNG fic sometime.
4. You say on your website that you read most of the KR fanfic out there before trying your hand at it. What prompted you to go from fanfic consumer to fanfic author?
Like I said in question 3, I had *written* fan fiction in my head many times. Now I had a reason to write it down. It's no fun writing for yourself. There was a whole audience of people on the net, so I decided to give it a go.
5. What, to you, is the hardest part of writing a fanfic?
Finding a good ending! It took me ages to come up with a decent ending to Friends in Unlikely Places and I'm still not sure I'm satisfied with it. Also, I find it hard to find time to write. I ride 2-4 times a week, then there's work. the usual drill.
6. What's the most rewarding part of writing fanfic?
Ohhh, this one's easy : FEEDBACK! I love to know that people really do read it. I'm not expecting in-depth analyses of the plot and so on. A simple, I liked it, or I didn't like it, is just as rewarding.
7. During the course of writing your first story, you wrote responses to a couple of challenges. Was that helpful for you in the process of writing your first story?
Yes, most diffidently! I love those challenges, I wish there were more of them. Challenges takes one of the hardest parts of writing fan fiction and hands out the solution on a silver platter. The part I'm talking about, it "What am I going to write about? What will the characters be going?" Every time I responded to the challenges I wrote a paragraph or maybe even a chapter to Unlikely as well. Challenges are diffidently food for the imagination.
8. What was it like to post your first chapter of Friends in Unlikely Places? Was it exciting? Intimidating? Was it easier or harder than you thought it would be?
Actually posting was thrilling of course, then came the wait for the reviews. I'd check fanfiction.net two to three times a day to see if anyone had reviewed it.
9. Forgive me here, I'm fascinated by people who can write in a second language. You learned English as a child, but you live in Finland now. What is it like to write in a language that you don't speak every day?
If you're asking is it difficult or not, I can't answer. I learned to read and write English before I learned to read and write Finnish. I don't believe I could write fan fiction in Finnish. I follow the series in English, I follow the dialogue in English, and as I *think* in both languages I can switch between the two without much of a problem.
10. Is there a certain set-up in your writing space that gets you in the mood to write? Pictures? Music? That kind of thing?
I work on my story plots mostly while driving. I love to drive and the car is a good place to think up storylines. As soon as I get home, I open the computer and write whatever I've thought up. There's always the delete button if it doesn't work. Also reading fic by other writers also has a funny effect on me. The more I read fan fic the more I want to write it.
11. How do you approach writing a story? Do you write chronologically or skip scene to scene? Do you outline?
I outline in my head as I've never been too good at making mind maps on paper. I always write chronologically. Sometimes I might write only half a paragraph, sometimes, like with "Times Gone By", I wrote the whole story in one day.
12. How do your story ideas come to you? Is it something conscious or something that just happens as you start to write?
That depends on the story. Friends in Unlikely pretty much happened as I wrote it. Times Gone By practically jumped on me at work one day. I fiddled around with the idea for a day, drove home and wrote it down. I have a pretty good imagination, and I can *see* things happening as I write, often
I can even hear the dialog.
13. Do you have a different approach for writing short stories versus longer
Hmm, I've written so little, that I really can say yet. Ask me again after 10 stories J
14. Is there one character who is easiest for you to write?
Kitt. As I said, Kitt was the main reason I got into Knight Rider. Kitt has a very distinct personality, and a sense of humour very close to my own. When watching the shows, I watch and listen to Kitt the closest.
15. How about the hardest character for you to write?
Michael maybe. Though Michael Knight has a large part in the show (oh, sorry, he has the STAR part in the show) I could never really get inside his head. He seems like a typical man, and as a woman, I've yet to figure just how much he uses emotion. Most of my fics up to date have had a very
16. Any grammar rules that you have a hard time with? Being bilingual, are there things that give you trouble that maybe other authors wouldn't have to deal with?
Of course I make the same type-o's as everyone else does, but the fact that English is not my native language shows up the following ways: I have absolutely NO idea how commas are used in the English language. My comma use is strictly based on Finnish grammar. I mix up certain words that sound the same. When writing in any language I write in Microsoft Word 2000. It automatically checks my spelling and underlines any obvious mistakes. I usually know when a word isn't spelled right, but without the computer's thousands of alternatives it would take me ages with a dictionary to figure out just how it is spelled.
17. Which of your own stories is currently your favorite?
Times Gone By. The idea for the story came to me one day at work and after fiddling around with it in my head for eight hours (don't let my boss know where my mind was that day J) I came home and wrote it down.
18. What about a good fanfic really draws you in and makes you keep reading? Is there any one thing you can point to?
Any fic that really digs deep inside the characters. I like to know what the characters think not just what they do. Stories in which Kitt is treated as an individual are favs of mine.
19. Is feedback important to you?
Check back to question number six!
20. Do you have any suggestions for new writers in the fandom? Any particularly good resources?
As I'm a relative newcomer to the fan fic circle I can't really give any new suggestions. As for resources, read fics by other authors! That's the best way (for me at least) to get your creative juices flowing! Oh, and read the Fan Fic Tips at http://krfoundation.com/fanfictips.htm. You can't get better advice then that!