The Wind Riders by Kris Kramer

Welcome to Author Kris Kramer

Born in New Orleans, Kris Kramer has been a native of Dallas, TX since 1987 and graduated with a B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Texas at Dallas. Starting off his professional life as a programmer and web developer, Kris spent his free time writing stories and screenplays for all the crazy ideas he had in that hyper-imaginative brain. With the I.T. industry slowly sucking his soul away, however, he decided to make a go of his new passion for storytelling, and has been writing frantically ever since.

Having recently finished his first full-length novel, Sanctuary, Kris is now working on his 2014 slate of books, which includes the sequel to Sanctuary, an additional science fiction novel called Olympia, and the follow-ups to Tales of the Lore Valley, The Organization, and Rise of Cithria. In his spare time, he chauffeurs his daughter around, watches movies, and tries to catch some basketball on TV.

Interview

If you could travel in a Time Machine would you go back to the past or into the future?
I’d travel into the future first, subject myself to whatever bioengineering processes and drugs that have been invented to keep people alive forever, then go into the past. 
If you could have any superpower what would you choose?
Teleportation… because traffic is the bane of my existence
What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Cookies and Cream
What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast?
Bacon, eggs and waffles
One food you would never eat?
Monkey brains
Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?
Many, many, MANY other books in the works. For future projects, I’d like to finish off a couple of the book series I’m working on and get some comic books started up at the4threalm.com.
What inspired you to want to become a writer?
Actually, I don’t necessarily want to be a writer. I want to be a storyteller. Writing is just one of the tools that allows me to do that. But it’s also a tool that I enjoy learning to master. I would love to dive into a number of different mediums, though. Screenplays, comic books. Maybe I’ll even make one up.
What is your dream cast for your book?
Good question… never really thought about this before but I threw together a quick list.
Iago – Jason Statham
Galen – Not sure, but I’m thinking Tom Felton could do it. 
Jonir – Kellan Lutz or Jesse Spencer
Hal – Emile Hirsch
Saalis – Callum Kieth Rennie
Margis – Freddie Highmore
What was your favorite book when you were a child/teen?
Shogun, by James Clavell. I used to see that book on my dad’s bookshelf when I was growing up, and just the name and the simple cover design always made me wonder what kind of story it was. When I was in my early teens, he told me I could read it, and I ended up diving into that book, along with all the others in the series – Tai-Pan, Noble House, Whirlwind. Even King Rat.
What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?
Have a good story. Worry about the technical details, the writing skills and all of that later. Nothing is more important than having a good story that people WANT to invest their time with.
Can you see yourself in any of your characters?
I actually put little bits of myself in most of my characters. 
How do you react to a bad review?
I accept it and I move on. I’m usually pretty good at handling criticism, although I have been known to obsess over the details. But writers are really artists, right? And all good artists crave feedback, bad or good. So the key to make the most of whatever feedback you get, even if it isn’t glowing.
If you were a bird, which one would you be?
Hawk
You have won one million dollars what is the first thing that you would buy?
An expensive night out on the town for my family and friends. Second thing would be season tickets to the Dallas Mavericks.
What do you do in your free time?
Write. If I’m not writing, I enjoy movies. 
What’s your favorite season/weather?
I’m a big fan of the period between Halloween and New Years. I like the buildup to Christmas. I like the cold weather, the early sunsets, the lights everywhere. I’m a sucker for the holiday spirit.
Favorite sport?
Basketball
How long do you generally let a story idea ‘marinate’ in your brain before you start the book?
It depends on how complete a picture I have of the story. I’ve been able to just dive right for some stories, while others take FOREVER before I get a feel for that ‘hook’ that it needs to draw readers in.
What do you think of book trailers?
It’s a good idea…. when it’s done right.
What is your view on self publishing?
I love the freedom it inspires in people who’ve always wanted to write, and who now have that outlet available to them. However, that being said, the self-publishing world is a bit like the wild west, and there is a desperate need to bring some order to that chaos. That’s actually the exact reason I started the4threalm.com with my fellow writer buddies. To provide a sense of trust that people who come to us will be able to enjoy stories that are handled and written with care.
How do you overcome writer’s block?
I write something else. I rarely write in any kind of linear fashion. I write my novels based on detailed outlines, so I can jump around quite a bit. Also, I tend to work on several books at once, so if one book gives me trouble, I just jump to another one. That way, I make progress every single day, even if it’s on something different than what I intended at the beginning of that day.
Titles: do you write the books first and the title comes next or does the title come to you as you write?
Book first.

The Wind Riders by Kris Kramer 
A fantasy novel
The Wind Riders. Fabled pirates, who sail the skies on magic airships, protecting the weak and harassing the tyrannical Clerics who rule the nearby city of Tyr. Their very name conjures up dreams of freedom and whispers of hope amongst the slaves forced to mine Mergoran crystals in the mountains, the only known source of magic in the world. That is, until the Wind Riders are attacked and nearly destroyed by Tyr, who has somehow managed to build an airship of its own.

With many of their ships destroyed and their people dead, the surviving Wind Riders are forced to send a small group of volunteers into the heart of Tyr, the den of their hated enemies, to find allies who can purify crystals, the only way the Wind Riders can continue to fly their remaining ships. Failure would mean certain death for everyone ever known as a Wind Rider, as Tyr is busy preparing their next attack, one that will eradicate the Wind Riders from existence.

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