Wednesday, November 24, 2010

William Kent Krueger

William Kent Krueger is an award-winning author and crime writer, best known for his Cork O'Connor series of books. His books have won the Anthony, Barry and Dilys Awards.

From his Q & A with Craig Johnson:

Craig Johnson: In the newest edition of your series, you spend a sizable amount of time in Wyoming rather than your own Minnesota. What effect did that have on the process of writing your new book, Heaven's Keep?

William Kent Krueger: None. But the research was a blast. I've spent a good deal of time in Wyoming—the state of my birth, as a matter of fact—and it was fun to look at it from a different perspective, one that required I take particular note of the physical geography. What a beautiful place that state is. And unpopulated. Which is very enticing, especially when you consider that isolating characters in the wild is a great way to create suspense.

You put your protagonist through a great deal of torture through the potential loss of his wife, Jo. Do you enjoy writing characters on their emotional frontiers?

Emotional frontiers? You must have an advanced college degree. Every story, to be compelling, demands tension. And despite the fact that we work in a genre that general gets a lot of mileage out of putting people in jeopardy, I think it's really the emotional dynamics that drive readers' interest. I also think that characters reveal themselves most fully and most compellingly when their nerves are frayed and their deepest fears surface. I love Walt Longmire, for example, not because he cuts a dashing, daring image (unlike his creator), but because I know him and trust him emotionally, and I care about what happens to him and to the people he loves. I hope the same is true for those readers who enjoy Cork O'Connor.

Your usual stomping grounds are among the Ojibwa, comparatively, how was it dealing with the Plains Indian tribes of the Arapaho, Cheyenne and others?

I approached the Arapaho, who...[read on]
--Marshal Zeringue