Yet another Sep 2013 spotlight…Little Miss really distracted me apparently!!! Oh and that was before Spawn #2 started school, so yeah. There ya go.
Let’s start with an introduction. I’m Kelly, or as more people know me, Kelpie.
And you are?
My pen name is Thyra10 and I also go by Thyra Dane but my real name is Dorte – which always gets me a lot of questions about pronunciation. So Thyra it is. My pen name is an homage to Viking queen Thyra Danebod (Danebod means “savior of the Danes”).
So, tell me a little about yourself.
I`m Danish but live in Norway with my Norwegian husband, two kids and a dog. I run a PR agency in Oslo, but I`ve also worked in Sweden, Greece, California and several other places. I love traveling but I also love coming home to Norway – a perfect country to live in if it hadn`t been for the weather (hence my need to travel a couple of times a year).
Apart from reading and writing, I`m interested in everything Vikingish, opera, rollercoasters, football (no, it`s not called soccer around here), cartoons, politics …. Actually I`m the kind of person who could be interested in just about anything.
What do you do with yourself when you’re not writing?
I work quite a lot (for a Scandinavian – we have short work hours) and keep wondering when I`m supposed to take the 100+ hours off that my job owes me. I also spend a lot of time with my husband and kids, going to the movies with them, skiing or just drinking a cup of tea and discussing our day at work/school.
Apart from that I go to the cinema every other week, I work out quite a lot (yes, this was my new year`s resolution this year and I`m still keeping it – yay me :-D), go out with friends or I`m planning my next trip abroad. Especially when it`s freezing, snowing, raining or windy – which would describe 350 days a year here – I tend to dream about all the countries I want to visit.
What are some things you never leave home without?
I very rarely leave my home without clothes. Mainly because I would freeze to death if I did. Or get arrested. Or maybe not – this is Scandinavia, after all.
Apart from that my purse is filled with things I may need and I very rarely leave my home without my purse. It weighs about ten kilos but I`m fairly sure that it contains anything I would ever need, no matter the emergency. Of course, the purse is so full it`s virtually impossible to find anything in it.
What are some of your favorite (non-SVM) books?
Hmm, I love a lot of books but if I were to mention a series that I love almost as much as I love the SVM series, it would have to be the Downside Ghosts series.
Favorite (non-True Blood) TV shows and movies?
There is only one perfect movie ever made and that`s Casablanca. But there are plenty of semi-perfect movies and shows.
If you were stranded on a deserted island and had 3 famous people with you, who would you choose and why?
Thyra Danebod, as I mentioned earlier, Queen Margrethe I of Denmark and Leif Ericsson. I would invite them because I am curious about the time they lived in and their personal history – and also because they were all survivors. They would know how to get off the deserted island (and my never-ending questioning would make them highly motivated to find a way to be un-stranded quickly).
What is 1 place you’d love to visit?
One place??! I have ten. No, a hundred. And every time I go to a place I`d love to visit, I think of ten new places I want to see. But I just did a count and I`ve now visited over 50 countries. Only a hundredandsomething to go
Do you have any pet peeves?
I have plenty. But the one I get teased the most about is how I always correct people if they use chance/risk wrong. There isn`t a 50% chance of getting cancer.
Tell me one random thing about yourself.
I love the color purple. Always have, always will.
Just for some insight into you pick one. Feel free to tell why or not.
Chocolate or vanilla? Chocolate. Does anyone answer “vanilla”?
Silver or gold? Silver. Sorry vamps.
Apple or PC? Apple though I own a PC.
White wine or red wine? Why don`t we do both ;-)
Liquor or beer? Uh, why don`t we do both here as well :-D
Coffee or tea? Tea, definitely. I hate coffee. I went to Columbia and Costa Rica this Christmas and they tried to “teach me” to drink coffee. I flunked.
Sleep in or get up early? What is this “get up early” I keep hearing about?
Okay, now for the good stuff.
Why and when did you start writing fanfics?
I was a regular at a fansite for Alexander Skarsgård (yup, guilty as charged) and we were discussing fanfics as well. I was sort of pushed/bullied into writing and publishing at that fansite and when my English apparently wasn`t as terrible as I thought it was (and one of the Alexander Skarsgård fans volunteered as my beta), I started publishing at FF.net as well. My first story was Dead in Denmark and it`s still my little baby.
Besides SVM/True Blood, is there another book, TV show or movie that you would write for?
I`ve been looking for something else to write fanfiction about because I really would like to write about other characters than Eric and Sookie, but I haven`t found anything yet. I have been writing quite a lot of original fics, though, and maybe one day I`ll publish that somewhere as well.
What kind of environment do you write in? Do you prefer using a pen and paper, a computer or some sort of mobile device to write?
I write on my laptop which I carry with me almost everywhere. I don`t have a lot of time to write but I do write whenever I have a few moments. My favorite place to write is on the train. Unfortunately I only take the train about once a month so I have to make do with my couch.
Ever write in your PJs?
I`m in my PJs now (but that`s only because I`m staying at a hotel tonight – I`m on a work trip – I never use PJs at home).
How bout naked? :o)
Since I never use PJs at home the answer is yes
Where do you find inspiration for your stories? Do you pull your real life experiences into your writing?
I find inspiration everywhere. I have way too much inspiration and way too little time to write. Sometimes I wish I could just plug my laptop to my brain and empty all the stories on my mind directly into Microsoft Word.
I certainly do use real life experiences. When I had my first mammogram I went straight home and wrote the fanfic The Mammogram. I think there are real life experiences in all my stories – though in the Viking tales the real life experiences may be a bit hidden.
Do you write on a schedule? If you do, how do you keep to that schedule?
Oh, I wish. Unfortunately my life is not on schedule. Instead I write whenever I have half an hour to myself. Which is not as often as I would have wanted.
Do you plan out your stories or just write whatever comes to you?
I plan my stories in my head but I only write down outlines to my non-fanfic stories. In original fiction there are so many more threads to keep track of than in fanfiction and I have to make strict outlines. I never stay true my outlines but at least I know the direction I want the stories to take.
How do you deal with potential writers block?
I rarely have writer`s block but I do have a desperate shortage of time which makes me stop writing from time to time. I still haven`t worked out how to deal with that.
Do you have any writing rituals or superstitions?
I`ve found that I write better when I listen to old heavy rock so you`ll often find me listening to AC/DC or Deep Purple when I`m writing. But it`s not really a ritual.
Is one genre easier for you to write than another? Is there anything that you just aren’t that great at writing?
I do write a lot of romance, though I try to keep it fairly real and not too sweet. I haven`t tried writing crime or mystery but I don`t think I would be very good at it. I`ve read a lot in that genre and I would find it hard to find that perfect balance between giving hints about the murderer but not giving the murderer away too early in the book. I tend to guess who the culprit is and it always disappoints me when I`m right and I don`t want to disappoint my readers like that.
What is the hardest part for you about writing fanfics?
Language, definitely. English isn`t my mother tongue and I would love to be able to write a more sophisticated English with plenty of subtext and layer upon layer of interesting sentence constructions. But I try my best and am lucky to have a great beta (Suki59).
Is there a method for coming up with titles for your stories and/or chapters?
The title is often the first thing I come up with. It`s often what defines the story in the first place.
Which character do you identify with the most?
Eric, actually, even if he is a cold [bleep]. It`s the Viking-thing.
Which of your stories is your favorite to write and why? Which of your stories is your favorite concept wise?
Well, I do love writing about the Viking age so Dead with the Vikings and Sookie the Shieldmaiden are/were fun to write. But I think my favorite to write was Dead on a Football Field. I used sex to define/describe how Eric and Sookie felt about each other and I loved writing that.
Concept wise it`s probably a couple of my one-shots because that`s when I can be my most playful. I mean, making Eric a sexual submissive – I had a ton of fun trying to make it credible that Eric the vampire Viking would clean Sookie`s bathroom because she told him to. Or imagining Eric cross-country skiing in a tight pink ski suit. Oh yeah, I`m giggling while writing.
Do you talk to your family about your writing? How do they feel about it?
I do and I don`t. I talk to them about writing in general but not about my stories. My daughter, who`s 11, loves to write as well and we often discuss writing techniques etc. I was one proud mother when she recently won a writing contest for teens (and she isn`t even a teenager yet). She writes fantasy and her stories are incredibly good, actually. I wish I had half her imagination.
Which is your favorite SVM book? Favorite True Blood episode?
I can`t choose. I love when they went to Rhodes because the whole ball was interesting and I loved how Sookie saved all the vamps but I also love so many scenes and details in the other books. Generally I prefer the books that take place outside Bon Temps – apart from book 4, of course. Yikes, yahoo, yum.
I don`t have a favorite True Blood episode. I stopped watching the series – in spite of liking Alexander Skarsgård – several seasons ago.
What is the best compliment you’ve ever received on your stories?
Someone once told me that she was reading my stories while waiting for her cancer treatment and I was very touched that she took the time to tell me that.
But in general I`m moved by any and all compliments I get. I think it`s amazing that people bother telling me they like my stories and I truly appreciate it.
How do you deal with the inevitable criticism?
I haven`t had much of it. Sometimes I agree and sometimes I think people are wrong. Generally I tend to forget about it very quickly because I know I`m doing my best with the talent and time I have and if that`s not good enough for someone then there`s really not a lot I can do about it.
Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
Write as much as you can and try to find your own voice.
Have any recommendations? What are you reading at the moment?
Fanfictionwise? I would always recommend anything written by Suki59, Misconstrued or Ooshka.
And lastly, where can all your rabid readers stalk you?
I`m Thyra10 on FF.net, I have a blog (thyra10.wordpress.com) and I`m on Facebook as Thyra Dane. You`re welcome to follow me/friend me and drop me a line.
Thanks so much for taking the time to answer some questions!
I absolutely love her answer for what she never leaves home without…she’s totally my hero!!!