Episode 30: Make Your Setting Come to Life – with Kathryn Holmes

by Gabriela Pereira
published in Podcast

Hello and welcome to another episode of DIY MFA Radio! Today is an extra special episode because I’ll be interviewing a fabulous author and my good friend: Kathryn Holmes. We’re going to be talking about how to create a setting that feels real to the reader, a subject you’ll find she knows a lot about.

Kathryn Holmes grew up in Maryville, Tennessee, where she was an avid reader and an aspiring writer from an early age. She now lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband and piles upon piles of books. A graduate of The New School’s MFA in Creative Writing program, Kathryn works as a freelance dance journalist, among other writing gigs. The Distance Between Lost and Found is her debut novel.

On a more personal note, Kathryn and I were in the same class in the MFA program and because the Writing for Children division was so small we got to know each other quite well and became fast friends. From day one in the program, I knew Kathryn was a superstar and would do amazing things. This book is the first of many for her, I’m sure, and I was so thrilled to attend her book launch last night. (Check out pictures below!) The Distance Between Lost and Found such a great book–truly a master class in setting–and I’m so delighted to see it out in the world.

In this interview Kathryn and I discuss:

  • Her new book, The Distance Between Lost and Found, available February 17, 2015.
  • What it’s like to create a believable setting based in real life or in fantasy.
  • Common pitfalls of world building that beginning writers should avoid.
  • Techniques for creating a world that engages all five senses of your characters and readers.
  • Kathryn’s #1 Tip for writers, and more!
“Make your research as personal as possible so that your characters can live in a three-dimensional space.” @Kathryn_Holmes

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Resource Recap

distancebetween_final cover_4_1.inddLink to Episode 30

(Right-click to download.)

The Distance Between Lost and Found releases Feb 17, 2015.

If you want to connect with Kathryn online, you can follow her on Twitter, Goodreads, and Facebook, or you can visit her website.

Also mentioned in this episode:

What We See When We Read (Vintage Original) by Peter Mendelsund

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Until next week, keep writing and keep being awesome.


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