Kristian Parker has written for as long as he could write. In fact, before, when he would dictate to his auntie. He loves to read, and create worlds and characters.
He lives in the English countryside. When he's not writing, Kristian likes to get out there and think through the next scenario he's going to throw his characters into.
Inspiration can be found anywhere, on a train, in a restaurant or in an office. Kristian is always in search of the next character to find love in one of his stories. In a world of apps and online dating, it is important to remember love can be found when you least expect it.
In today's interview, Kristian Parker discusses what readers can expect from his latest novel.
What inspired you to write this novel?
KP: When I was planning my Queens Crescent series, I came up with ten different story ideas. One got cut so there will be nine now. I really wanted to write an ethical politician. I feel that with all the media coverage, we forget there are decent people on all sides, trying to do their best. So I wanted to celebrate that. I didn’t want him to live on Queens Crescent. That would be a bit showy. I love the opposites attract trope and what better than a PR CEO? I hope they make an interesting combination.
What is your writing process like?
KP: I am a big planner. I have spreadsheets for everything. That isn’t to say I’m not open to ideas all the way through the process. In Pole Position, I realised that Charles had to be recovering from rehab to raise the stakes big time for him.
Then I do a first draft, edits, send to my editor, drink coffee and bite nails, work through her edits and send for proofing, work through any proofing changes and send for formatting. I started traditionally published and have tested the waters self-publishing with Queens Crescent. I think I’m getting the hang of it.
How do you approach writing your characters and bringing their relationships to life?
KP: I have a document that works every time. My editor, Rebecca Fairfax, sent it to me. It pushes me to explore their wants and needs, why are they spending time together, who are they. After that, I’ll find a photo of them on the internet. That is such an important thing for me. To be able to see them, helps me drop them into all sorts of situations.
What was an early experience where you learned that language had power?
KP: When my parents would read to me at night. I used to love losing myself in the words of Roald Dahl or CS Lewis. Then when we discovered The Hobbit, I was lost.
What is the most challenging part of your artistic process?
KP: I can find the first draft a slog. I’m quite impatient and would love to just download my thoughts. For Let It Breathe, I really struggled to find the dynamic between Simon and Rodrigo. It took a lot of editing to get that one right. I’m proud of it now though. Usually my books are filled with commotion. I wanted to write one that was more about their circumstances than what the rest of the world has to say.
What do you hope readers take from this story?
KP: As I said earlier, I would like us all to see past the noise of politics otherwise I don’t see how we can move on.
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
KP: Stop making “sensible” decisions. I took a very long route to writing fiction which is really all I’ve ever wanted to do. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to have my day job to fall back on as I wouldn’t be able to support myself with words.
I got my MA in TV and Radio Scriptwriting back in 2013 and then drifted for eight years. I did a lot of freelance journalism which was unpaid. Again, not a waste but it doesn’t put fire in my belly.
So just that. Don’t work for free and do what makes you feel alive.
What’s your favourite under-appreciated novel?
KP: I wrote a story called Sun, Sea and Spotted Squid for a holiday romance collection with Pride Publishing in 2021. I really love that story. We were deep in lockdown and setting a book in sunny Valencia, Spain, made me remember the time I spent there.
It’s a lovely story too that I’m proud of. Imagine going to work in a world class aquarium for the summer and finding a handsome German called Wolfgang.
What would your advice be to any aspiring writers?
KP: Be prepared to work. There are so many things you have to learn, sometimes very quickly. The writing is only a part of this life. There is promo, social media, learning to self-publish, accounts, planning. The list is endless.
But it’s worth it all. I love being able to share my ideas with the world. Every time I release a book, it’s a rush.
What are you writing next?
KP: I’m drafting a two-parter for 2024 which will be a prequel for a trilogy in 2025. I haven’t got my blurb ready yet but basically billionaires are going missing, Patrick Hardy escapes capture. But as a New Yorker in London, he doesn’t know what to do. He goes to the police but the mysterious gang set him up and he runs for his life. The only person he can call on is Adam Stone. They had a torrid affair until Adam cut all contact six years ago. Will he even help?
London is in the grip of a heatwave, but something else is causing Nihal Varma’s temperature to skyrocket.
The CEO of a PR agency, he’s used to dealing with glamourous and beautiful people. He’s woken up with a lot of them too.
Yet when Carl Carrington, MP and candidate for leader of the opposition, walks into his office, Nihal finds himself a bag of nerves. And that never happens. He soon discovers that not only is Carl stunning to look at, he radiates decency. In Nihal’s world, that’s a very rare commodity.
When Carl insists on working with Nihal only, he’s entranced. Could this MP be interested in a man whose past is…chequered, to say the least? Nihal ‘I don’t do relationships’ Varma really hopes so. Even if getting involved with a client, especially such a high-profile one, is not just crazy. It’s insane.
But for once Nihal is out of control and that makes a man do very strange things…
Thank you again to Kristian for a wonderful interview. Make sure to head over to his website and sign up for his newsletter to get five FREE stories.