Melody Knight is one of the most unique authors I’ve had the pleasure to interview. Born in California “sometime in the 20th century,” she spent her childhood constructing flea circuses—but she could never find enough fleas, so she used insects, instead: praying mantises, stick bugs, waterbugs, and snails. As an adult, her collection tastes shifted from insects to fungus and plant cuttings—if she had mycology lab space, she’d grow fungus to her heart’s content.
For the past 17 years, she’s lived in New Zealand, where she writes to the background sounds of the noisiest nightclubs in Auckland—usually some kind of rock, easy listening, karaoke, or metal. But the noise doesn’t bother her; she loves it.
At one point, Ms. Knight was a popular painter, with people collecting her work, but it was too much pressure, so now she just paints for fun—along with creating innovative fiction. Her favorite things include spending time with her kids, visiting with friends, archeology, mycology, reading any kind of scientific paper, history, flowers, and meeting new people.
I can tell that Ms. Knight loves life and loves to laugh because of the witty sense of humor she brings to the quirky romances she writes.
On Writing, in Melody Knight’s Own Words:
What or who inspires you to write?
Research. An idea in a science journal will trigger a cascade of ideas. I like to write edgy stuff—to take my characters into places of hazard and danger that may end in a blind alley or a fall off a cliff. I don’t plot anything ahead of time, so if I write myself into a corner, I research like mad to figure out how to write myself out of it.
Why did you begin writing?
I walked into a library, checked out 11 books, and couldn’t “get into” any of them! So I decided to give it a try and write what I wanted to read.
Which author inspires you?
Michael Crichton, for his wonderful use of science in fiction, and John Steinbeck, for his marvelous portrayals of grandeur in the commonplace.
What do you find most rewarding about writing?
I’m able to explore in-depth a number of research areas that I probably wouldn’t find time for otherwise. I’ve also made hundreds of friends around the world from interacting with writers and readers. I’ve recently begun to notice that some writers treat me with respect, since I’ve passed the 25-book mark. It’s odd, but they seem to think I might know what I’m doing. How very strange to get this kind of feedback from other writers! If writing and researching have taught me anything, it’s how very quickly life and technology change, and how much I’ll never know.
When is your next book due, and what’s it about?
I’ve had two books released so far this year: In Flames, the sequel to In Trysts, came out January 1st, and ErRatic, my Five Star paranormal thriller, was released February 20th. The Hollowing, a time travel thriller, is scheduled for release April 17th. The Hollowing and ErRatic are penned by N. D. Hansen-Hill, whereas both In Trysts and In Flames were written by my pseudonym for romance, Melody Knight.
Here’s an introduction to The Hollowing:
Shawn Walsh’s problems don’t arise from his own troubled past but from someone else’s. In fire and flood, in drownings and bone-rattling quakes, he’s an unwilling and horrified participant in worlds, eras, epochs long gone. His problems have everything to do with family and his rather questionable heritage, a birthright he’d rather know nothing about. He refuses to give up hope. There is still a chance he’ll be able to resolve his issues without dying, given the right place…and enough time.
Shawn has a rather questionable gift that skews his reality and affects not only him but the people around him. He doesn’t realize that he’s not the only one aware of his abilities, or that—as family tradition dictates—he can be used. All he knows is he needs to find a way to survive long enough to fight back.
Please read my review of In Trysts, and then visit Ms. Knight online at MelodyKnight.com to learn more about her work.