Among our first guests on Season Nine of the Crime Cafe is the writing team of Addison McKnight.
Learn more about their process for writing the novel AN IMPERFECT PLAN in the Q&A below.
You can enter their book giveaway by sending an email with the subject line “podcast giveaway” to email@example.com.
A Conversation With the Two Co-Authors….Behind The Pen Name: Addison McKnight
What inspired you to write collaboratively?
Nicole decided to write An Imperfect Plan, but as she got started, she asked Krista a lot of infertility research questions. Because Krista had gone through secondary infertility, Nicole said, “Just try writing one of the characters…” And the rest is history.
How do you collaborate? Do you both write separately or bounce ideas off each other?
We meet once a week to hash out ideas and talk about what we want to happen next, and then we go on our own and write 1–3 chapters. Then, we share our chapters, give each other edits, and brainstorm again. Our brainstorming is often on the side of the baseball field or in a diner over breakfast.
What has been the most challenging aspect of writing together?
It was hard at first to figure out how to collaborate, as we both have different writing styles and techniques. But now that we are on book three, we have a smooth system that works for us. Sometimes we disagree creatively, but we usually table it and circle back and find a way to compromise in the end. It’s usually trivial stuff that can be easily hashed out. Sometimes we play tennis and whoever wins, gets their way creatively.
How have you managed your family, writing, work and other aspects of life?
We have six jobs and six kids between us, so it is definitely hard to squeeze everything in! Krista wakes up early and writes and Nicole writes later in the evening. Our families have learned to acclimate to our new writing schedule and they are supportive, but sometimes things go by the wayside. We joke that while we wrote An Imperfect Plan, we would give the kids chicken nuggets for dinner a little bit more or let laundry pile up, but everyone survived! We are both very respectful of each other’s work and family schedules; if one of us wants to meet to work on the book but the other one has to go to a baseball game or date night with their husband, we both know that family takes priority.
What are the benefits of writing together?
There are so many benefits; we cannot even imagine doing this alone. We have built-in editing and built-in writing partners to bounce ideas off of. Also, we get to go do all of the fun book events and appearances together, and we have each other to lean on when we are stressed out or struggling throughout the process. This fall we are even making a trip to see our favorite author speak and things like that are fun to do with a friend.
How do you come up with new ideas for future books?
We read voraciously in our genre: thrillers and psychological suspense. We are also both in industries where we talk to people all day. Krista is a life coach and military spouse coach, and Nicole is a makeup artist and realtor. We love connecting with people and hearing their stories, and all of that reading and communicating helps us to come up with great ideas.
What advice would you give to other authors who want to collaborate?
Do it! Just be prepared to give up a little bit of control. It is hard to work creatively with another person, but the benefits far outweigh the negatives once you figure out the most effective way to work together. Try to enjoy the process, even when things get stressful.
Do you have other books in process?
Our second book is titled The Vineyard Remains and is part thriller, part soapy drama. It shines a light on the dark underbelly of an otherwise picturesque place, Martha’s Vineyard, and will come out in the spring of 2024. Make sure to follow us on Amazon so you can enjoy launch date with us.
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