Kay Marshall Strom is the author of thirty-six published books, including her most recent, The Second-Half Adventure: Don’t Just Retire-Use Your Time, Skills & Resources to Change the World. Her writing credits also include magazine articles, short stories, prize-winning screenplays, booklets for writers, and anything else that will help make the house payments. Kay is an in demand speaker at events throughout the country. She and her husband Dan Kline love to travel, so Kay encourages writing and speaking assignments in far flung corners of the globe. To find out more about Kay, or for contact information, check her website at www.kaystrom.com and her blog at http://kaystrom.wordpress.com
Q: Thank you for this interview, Kay. Can you tell us what your latest book, The Second-Half Adventure, is all about?
Well, here’s the subtitle assigned to it: Don’t Just Retire—Use Your Time, Skills & Resources to Change the World. I think that’s a pretty comprehensive description! It is basically a call to Baby Boomers to use the second half of their lives to make a difference in the world.
Q: Is this your first novel? If not, how has writing this novel different from writing your first?
Actually, I just finished my first novel trilogy, but this is non-fiction. My 36th book. All of my last dozen books—fiction and non-fiction alike—have been about finding our footing in an increasingy global world.
Q: How difficult was it writing your book? Did you ever experience writer’s block and, if so, what did you do?
Because I give many stories of how people actually move their lives on to eternal significance, writing The Second-Half Adventure required a huge amount of personal interviews. Some I could do by phone, but sitting and talking face-to-face worked better. Of course, every story and every quote had to be checked and double checked for accuracy.
As for writer’s block, I’ll have to say, I don’t believe in it. Hey, if I were a dentist and I had dentist’s block, what would I do? I’d get busy and work on teeth. That’s what I do as a writer. I get busy and write.
Q: How have your fans embraced your latest novel? Do you have any funny or unusual experiences to share?
This book has spurred an amazing number of personal contacts. People send me their situations and say, “What should I do with the rest of my life?” I could start a “Dear Kay” advice column!
Q: What is your daily writing routine?
That depends on how closely my next deadline is looming. But even at the most pressing, I usually start the day with my husband in our outdoor spa, reading and talking. Then I check my email, add to my blog, and get busy writing.
Q: When you put the pen or mouse down, what do you do to relax?
Walk. Watch a movie. Walk. Read a book. Walk.
Q: What book changed your life?
Sounds funny, but A Tale of Two Cities, by Charles Dickens. I was assigned the book when I was in eighth grade, and it opened my eyes to the crippling power of a story.
Q: If someone were to write a book on your life, what would the title be?
Q: Finish this sentence: “The one thing that I wish people would understand about me is…”
…that I am passionate about my responsibility to fulfill the job God has put me in this world to do.
Thank you for this interview, Kay. I wish you much success on your latest release, The Second-Half Adventure: Don’t Just Retire-Use Your Time, Skills & Resources to Change the World!