Thursday 24 March 2011

An Interview with No.1 Bestselling Kindle Romance Author, Kenneth Rosenberg...

Back in January, I grabbed a last minute flight and needed some Amazon Kindle books to take on my trip. One of the books I downloaded, after skim reading a couple of reviews and seeing some five-star ratings, was Kenneth Rosenberg’s No Cure for the Broken Hearted. It seemed like my kind of book. I wasn’t disappointed.The love story between Katherine and Nick, which had began when they were teenagers together in a small town in Connecticut, is reawakened twelve years later, when Nick is engaged to be married and Katherine is determined to focus on her career rather than dwell on her broken heart. I was engrossed. Today, it is my pleasure to introduce to you the man behind the book, Kenneth Rosenberg.

Kenneth, have you always written romance novels and is it a genre in which you will continue to write?
I’ve always had a soft spot for romantic stories, though this isn’t something that is easy to admit for a man.  I remember once when I was working as a seaman in the merchant marines, I had a copy of Bridget Jones’ Diary along with me.  It had a big close-up picture on the cover of a woman’s lips.  I had to keep that one pretty well hidden!  I enjoy writing romance, but I also have varied interests.  The next book I’m working on has a strong romantic element, but the one after that is more of a thriller.

What gave you the idea for the story and inspired the characters?
I tend to find myself thinking back about the past a lot and what my life was like at different periods.  There are always those romances from a person’s life that just didn’t quite work out, and in retrospect you sometimes wonder why they didn’t.  There’s a pretty strong well of emotion to work from as a writer.  As for the two main characters in my novel, I think they’re both drawn from different aspects of myself.  Peripheral characters are mostly based on people I know.

The book has been in the Amazon Kindle bestseller charts for months and has lots of great reviews - but how did you start out - how have you achieved this level of success as an indie author?
First I became involved in the forums over at  That is a fantastic source of information, with a very supportive community of independent writers.  They have a Book Bazaar where you can promote your work and a Writer’s Cafe that is full of informative threads.  The next thing was that I was lucky enough to have received some very positive reviews on Goodreads.  The community over there took me in to some extent and helped promote me, especially the Clean Romance group, to which I owe a lot.  The next thing was having book blogs agree to review my book, and hold giveaways to help promote it.  The last thing, which is very touchy, is that I took part in some discussions at the beginning on the Amazon forums.  People over there really despise self-promotion, though.  If you take part in those discussions, you have to be careful about mentioning your book, or risk being brutally flamed.  I think a few discussions over there helped me quite a bit, though, in the beginning.

How much personal experience do you put into your novels and how much is research?
A lot of both.  I’ll take personal experience from one place and use it in another.  For example, the town on the lake in Connecticut in my novel is actually based on a town I’ve spent time at in British Columbia, Canada.  The experiences of the kids in that town, and the characters of the kids themselves, were all based on summers I spent growing up in coastal California. For specifics, the Internet is a lifesaver when it comes to research.  If I need a restaurant for my characters to go to in New York City, I just look one up, along with photos, and I can describe it as it is.

Where is your favourite place to work?
I split my writing time between home and coffee houses.  Writing is such a solitary pursuit, sometimes I just need to get out of the house and join the world of the living.

To plot or not to plot – how much of a planner are you?
I’m a big planner, but my books rarely turn out quite as planned.  One of the most important things I’ve learned as a writer is how important it is to listen to your characters.  Sometimes you might have an idea about where a story is supposed to go, but when you get to a certain point, you realize that your characters wouldn’t go there at all.  They’d go someplace else entirely.  You have to be able to listen to them, and revise your plot as you go, or you run the risk of your story feeling contrived.

Can you tell us about what you are working on now and when it will be available?
My next novel is called Sweet Ophelia and the Tinseltown Blues. It’s about a homeless guy in Hollywood who sneaks onto a set looking for food and ends up with a part in a movie.  This one has a theme of unrequited love as well, but from a completely different angle.  I’m really excited about it, and I hope to have it finished and available within the next few months.

Kenneth Rosenberg is a California writer whose work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Surfer Magazine and other publications. Kenneth attended UCLA where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature. When he is not writing, he spends his time surfing, snowboarding and travelling the world on a shoestring.