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September 10, 2010 / theoldsilly

VBT Writers on the Move Feature Post With Kari Wolfe

Time for my monthly participation in the Yahoo Group, VBT – Writers on the Move feature-a-fellow-author post. Today we have with us Kari Wolf. A little information about Kari:

Kari Wolfe is a writer and a blogger at Imperfect Clarity in whatever time is left over from being a stay-at-home-mom to a very precocious and energetic three-year old.  She blogs on a number of topics including writing, book reviews, interviews, and setting and meeting goals.

Currently, she is on a mission: to combine fiction writing articles with and articles on how she’s trying to live her life to the fullest and she’s going to bring you on that journey with her through her blog. She is a most interesting gal, who describes herself as …

” … an amateur, a wannabe, a talker.  I can talk it up and shoot the sh!t with the best of them, but when it’s all said and done, I am a fake.

“But at least I’ll admit it.  A lot of people won’t admit it for many reasons: they’re afraid of what people will think, afraid of what people will say, afraid of what they will do.  They’re afraid of what they themselves have to do to be what they’ve said they want to be.

“They’ve spent so much time building their house of cards–now they spend it being afraid of what’s going to happen when the cards fall.

“Admitting I have this problem has been such a relief to me.  I don’t have to hide behind what I’ve told people I am.  I can admit–to you as well as myself–I have areas of my life I need to focus on and to work on.  This leaves me free to write whatever I want to write, whether it’s for publication or myself.

“I’m going on the journey of my life–to be the best ‘me’ I can be.”

~~~~~

Yeah! Go for it, Kari …

Okay, peeps, here’s a short interview with Kari, who is currently working on an ebook titled, The Art of Procrastination, and a novel titled, The House:

Marvin: Kari, tell us a little bit about your background.

Kari: Well, I’m originally from Huntington, West Virginia, and currently live in Colorado Springs, CO.  Before moving to Colorado, I received my bachelor’s degree in science, majoring in physics and mathematics from Marshall University in my home town.

It’s always been my dream to write.  And, by dream, I mean I have written my entire life but always have been told that I should do something else.

That and I’ve had setbacks, mostly in school.

During middle school, I wrote erotica—not the most appropriate topic for a pre-teen—and my writing was confiscated by the guidance counselor who pulled me into her office for a good talking to.  I don’t remember what she said but I remember the embarrassment I felt.  I don’t write erotica anymore.

In high school, I co-wrote a book with my best friend, Mikie—my character would flirt with his character, his character would tell mine no and that we were just really good friends, etc.  So on and so forth.

As an adult, I kept a journal that was used against me by an ex-boyfriend who threw anything negative I wrote about him in my face.  Same guy who would take me to a secluded spot, make me feel guilty for whatever he was upset at me about and once I cried, he’d take me home.

When I married my husband, it took me a while to finally realize that I was safe.  If I didn’t want anyone to read my writing—regardless of what it was—no one would.  He wouldn’t go through what I’d written without my permission.  I participated in NaNoWriMo in 2008 and, with his encouragement, I won.

For my blog, Imperfect Clarity, I’ve interviewed some awesome people: Seth Godin, Peter Straub, Conrad Williams, Christopher Moore, Les Edgerton and more.

Marvin: Tell us about your current book project. Give a short summary and also how you got the idea for this book.

Kari: Realizing there is more than to life than observation, a voyeur kidnaps a struggling stay-at-home mother and her children only to fight the trapped evil spirit of the house they are hiding in through his possessed partner-in-crime.

For this work, I combined several different ideas.

First, the newest Tool album has a song called “Vicarious” about how some people watch the news and the worse the news is, the better they like it.  The idea is they are “living vicariously through the eyes of others,” a phrase criminologist Jack Levin used in a personal conversation with me about why people are so fascinated with the idea of serial killers.  The song reminded me of our conversation which gave me Jake, the story’s protagonist.

Second, I wanted to try my hand at a novel about a haunted house.  Easy as that.  As to what the house actually does… I took a subject I was interested in, memory, and started asking myself questions about what I could do with that subject.

Last, the overall theme of the story is forgiveness of self.  It probably took longer to come up with the overall theme than anything else.  Plotting out the book’s main points and what I definitely wanted to have happen helped a lot in discovering this.

Marvin: What is a typical writing day like for you?

Kari: I have a three-year-old daughter who is autistic, so in some ways, I really don’t feel like I ever have a typical day.  On Monday and Wednesdays, she goes to preschool and, after my own physical therapy, I have an hour before picking her up.  Tuesdays and Thursdays, we have hippotherapy and speech therapy.

Fortunately she takes a nap most afternoons—or, at least, I’ve instituted a rule of quiet time where she plays in her room.  This is when I do most of my writing.

After Natasha goes to bed, I have some time available then, but I use it for reading and relaxing mostly.  My husband is home, so it’s more difficult for me to concentrate on writing fiction.

Marvin: What do you enjoy most about writing?

Kari: I love to talk. You can ask my husband 😉

Seriously, I love to create.  I love to come up with an idea and to work it out on the page.  Recently, I’ve been inundated with new ideas and I keep jotting them down.  Hopefully one day I’ll be able to get to them all!

Marvin: What is the most difficult part of writing for you?

Kari: Sometimes it’s just doing it.  I freewrite, to get my hands flowing across the keyboard and to kickstart my brain.

Other times it’s just time—there are days I have no energy to focus on fiction and I only focus on nonfiction, blog entries, that type of thing.

And sometimes it’s focusing on the here and now.  Daydreaming about having your books in bookstores and name on the publishing lists is great—but you have to do the work first.

Marvin: Do you have a website?

Kari: Yes, Imperfect Clarity at http://www.imperfectclarity.net/

From the About Me page: (http://www.imperfectclarity.net/?page_id=4)

Imperfect Clarity is a detailed look at the thought processes of a fiction writer trying to improve her life and become successful by living her life to the fullest.

The idea here is to combine fiction writing articles with my own fiction and articles on how I’m trying to live my life to the fullest that I can. I am learning how to do this not only from different websites I have found talking about motivation but also by actually doing these things I talk about.

I’m in the process of branding it and hopefully will be able to institute those changes within the next month.  I’m really excited about it.

You can sign up to receive Imperfect Clarity both through email (http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify?uri=ImperfectClarity&loc=en_US) as well as through your favorite RSS reader (http://feeds.feedburner.com/ImperfectClarity).

Marvin: What are you working on right now?

Kari: Including The House (my fictional work-in-progress), I am currently working on a four or five-post series for my blog about resistance and procrastination. I have several nonfiction ebooks in the works as well as a guest posting position.

~~~~~

Thanks, Kari! All right, peeps, time to show Kari some love in the comments gallery. She will be bopping in a few times this afternoon and evening to interact with y’all, so fire away with any questions and leave anything you’d like to discuss with him. Thanks again for sharing with us today, Kari, and chow gang!

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40 Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. Alex J. Cavanaugh / Sep 10 2010 6:21 am

    That’s a unique storyline for a book!

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:28 pm

      Thanks! I tried hard to make it so! 🙂

  2. Donna McDine / Sep 10 2010 6:24 am

    Fantastic interview and interview! I enjoyed getting to know Kari.

    Keep up the great work!

    Best wishes,
    Donna

  3. Margaret Fieland / Sep 10 2010 7:02 am

    Great interview. Kari, hats off to you, managing to find to write with a three year old. I’m eager to read your series on resistance and procrastination.

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:30 pm

      Thanks! I’ll be posting more on my blog about the series. Sign up for blog emails and I’ll make sure you get more information! 🙂

  4. Jane Kennedy Sutton / Sep 10 2010 7:43 am

    Enjoyed the interview Marvin and Kari. “House” sounds like an interesting story and I’m already looking forward to your series on procrastination.

    • theoldsilly / Sep 11 2010 3:01 pm

      Thanks, Jane – and yes, I’m looking forward to the series, too.

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:31 pm

      Thank you! Have you signed up for my daily posts through email or RSS? That’s the easiest way to find out more! I’ll be posting information pretty soon.

  5. Nancy Famolari / Sep 10 2010 8:31 am

    Great interview. Procrastination is something we all face. Should be a great series. Thanks Marvin and Kari!

  6. kathy stemke / Sep 10 2010 9:11 am

    Very interesting interview Old Silly.

    I love the name of your blog Kari, “Imperfect Clarity.” We’re all on the road to discovery, if we know it or not. Your frankness is refreshing. Good luck.

    • theoldsilly / Sep 11 2010 3:02 pm

      ‘Preciate ‘er, Kathy!

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:32 pm

      Thank you! On frankness, I really don’t know how to be anything else. 🙂

  7. Darcia Helle / Sep 10 2010 9:39 am

    Great interview Marvin and Kari! I can be a master of procrastination, so of course your book title ‘The Art of Procrastination’ intrigues me!

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:33 pm

      Darcia, I think we are all masters of procrastination 🙂

  8. L. Diane Wolfe / Sep 10 2010 11:25 am

    I hid the fact I was writing again from my husband for two months. When he finally caught me in the act, he encouraged me to continue, and is now my biggest cheerleader.

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:35 pm

      Awesome! It took my husband a bit, but he encourages me a great deal to follow my dreams 🙂

  9. Cactus Annie / Sep 10 2010 12:19 pm

    Loved the book idea, Kari. 🙂 And really enjoyed this interview, both of you!

  10. Leeuna / Sep 10 2010 1:29 pm

    I enjoyed the interview, Kari. I will also be stopping by your blog to read more of your work. I totally love the book idea. I hope to read it someday. Now you have to finish it for us. 🙂

    Great interview, Marvin. Thanks for sharing.

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:38 pm

      Leeuna, finishing is always what seems like the hard part, huh? 🙂 Thanks for the encouragement!

  11. Arlee Bird / Sep 10 2010 11:39 pm

    Great interview! Good luck with your books Kari. I’ve been a big fan of the topic of procrastination. I keep meaning to start a book about it. I will someday.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

  12. Helena Harper / Sep 11 2010 7:12 am

    Very interesting interview, Kari and Marvin. How Kari manages to do half of what she does seems amazing to me! And the fact that in spite of all the negative responses she got to her writing in the past, she hasn’t let that stop her writing. That’s very inspirational!

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:40 pm

      One step at a time, that’s how I do it. And, believe me, I have my down moments too. But sometimes it’s a matter of just doing it. 🙂

  13. Karen Cioffi / Sep 11 2010 10:38 am

    Wonderful interview. Kari really has her hands full, but positive projection and perseverance are great tools just about all aspects of life, including our writing.

    I like the idea of your book about procrastination – my sister sufferers with it. 🙂

  14. Marcus Franks / Sep 11 2010 2:59 pm

    Great interview. Love the blog title, lol. And procrastination IS indeed a fine art – been honing it all my life!

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:43 pm

      Marcus, the title started out as “Perfect Clarity” and was originally the title of a book I never quite developed. Later, I realized that sometimes it’s really not that clear (it being the “nebulous it”) and thus came “Imperfect” 🙂 I think procrastination is something we all do really well. It’s the people who don’t procrastinate–ever–that I don’t get. 🙂

  15. Helen Ginger / Sep 11 2010 6:14 pm

    Sounds like a very interesting book. I like the theme of self-forgiveness.

    • Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:45 pm

      Helen, I chose self-forgiveness because it seems that it’s so easy to forgive those around you–it’s a lot harder to forgive yourself. We all have things in our past that can hold us back if we don’t let them go–and forgiving yourself is the biggest step in moving forward past those actions to the future.

  16. Dallas Woodburn / Sep 11 2010 6:36 pm

    What a great interview! Kari, “The Art of Procrastination” sounds like a helpful book for many, many people! I’m looking forward to its release!

  17. Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 6:46 pm

    Marvin, thank you so much for hosting me! I apologize for the delay in my comments and responses–everyone has been so gracious here. 🙂

  18. heidiwriter / Sep 11 2010 7:23 pm

    Congrats on all the “big names” you’ve interviewed–awesome! And I admire you for your persistence in writing, even while raising a 3-year-old!

  19. Kari Wolfe / Sep 11 2010 7:43 pm

    @heidiwriter, thanks! Wanna hear a secret? I got those interviews through email and Twitter 🙂 I asked them if they would be willing–sometimes people responded, sometimes people didn’t. It pays to take a chance, you know? 🙂 My daughter Natasha is a joy to be around… and exhausting. But when she goes to bed at night, look out! 🙂 That’s when I write a lot of the times. She’s also in preschool for three hours and she still takes a small nap in the afternoons 🙂

  20. tashabud / Sep 12 2010 8:17 am

    Great interview, Kari and Marvin. Interesting titles. I’ll be hopping over to
    your blog as soon as I’m finished here.

    Wow, Physics and Mathematics! These are very challenging degrees. My hats off to you.

    Tasha

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