A Chat with Bestselling Author Vicki Hinze

Bestselling author Vicki Hinze is the talented author of more than 25 books, published in 63 countries, with more than 1 million books in print! And it’s no shock. Her good books are, as she described, “destined to thrill, fated to heal.” They’re not only thrillers, they take each character and theme to a deeper level.

And she’s been so fun to get to know. She’s not only wonderful, she’s full of wonder.

Which is why I’m so happy to have an interview with her today! Without further ado, dear readers, may I introduce to you Vicki Hinze:

You’re a thriller writer. Tell us about some things you find thrilling.

Politics, science, history, space, but mostly people. Issues they face, challenges that confront them, coping skills.  I am totally fascinated by people. What they think and do, how they react in crises (some consider good things crises, too), what makes them tick and what ticks them off. People thrill me. They’re just so different and interesting.

How long have you been writing, and what was your very, very, very first book like?

I started before I started school. To read the Sunday comics, I had to read the front page of the newspaper and discuss the issues of the day with my dad at dinner. If I did so all week, then on the weekend, I could read the comics. That’s where my love for writing began. I started writing little essays about my reactions to what I read. Later moved into poetry, and then into novels. I love novel writing.

My very first book was awful–and I loved it. It was called NIGHT VISIONS and was about a psychotic recreating his parents’ past to change his future. A technical mess. A mechanical mess. But I so loved that book. That did it. I was and remained hooked on writing.

You’re in jail and you can have one book to read for the next 10 years, what do you choose?

Jail?  Ellie, I refuse to do jail!  Stick me in jail and I’m not going to read, I’m going to focus on getting out of jail.  Mmm, Law for Dummies, I guess.  I can’t read just one book, Ellie.  That’s torture–even if sequestered in a penthouse.  I need variety.  Thrillers, mysteries, romance–books that inspire and lift up.  Those are as essential as air.  I’d have them even if I had to write them on the walls or in my head.

What’s one magical thing you wished were real?

I’d say utopia but it’d be uninhabited since so long as there are human beings, there will be conflict.  That nixes that.  So I’ll opt for a teleport system that lets me travel hassle-free and instantaneously–and since I’m feeding my fantasies here–through time.

What’s your writing space like?

Cluttered, messy, and yet organized. <g>  Huge oak desk (I’ve seen the top of it, but it’s been a while), another desk, two bookshelves, two file cabinets, two chairs, two closed cabinets, one open one, and stacks everywhere.  Books waiting for endorsements, manuscripts, proposals, books and magazines I want to read, and more stacks.  TV on the wall in the corner which is typically on the news, phone and fax, laptop and desktop with a huge monitor (so I can’t see more stacks).  An altar, which my father built before he died–a sacred space–with items on top that mean special things to me.  One is a compass, so I never lose my way or lose sight of what most matters, and a collection of crosses and tapestries. That whole corner of the room is filled with things that inspire me.  And I have framed book covers on the wall (so when I’m writing and thinking I can’t do this, I’m reminded I can because I have).  And my treasure is in the corner near the altar.  It’s a pot filled with little branches and twigs my grands gave me as gifts.  I have angel ornaments hanging on the branches because I’ve always called the grands my angels. Treasures, those.

What do you love about your job?

The license to daydream, the illusion of control, the ability to write through fears and issues that matter to me.  I love the potential in sharing something that might be just what someone else needs to read or hear at a given moment in time.  To shine light on dark things so they’re not dark anymore.  I often imagine whatever I’m tackling being isolated with me in a dark hallway.  No light, lots of doors, but I can’t find them or see them.  But by the end of the book, some of those doors are open and there’s light shining in from the end of the hall:  a constructive way out exists.  I love those images.  They both inspire me and make me determined and disciplined.

What don’t you love about your job?

Spending so much time alone.  I love people, enjoy them, and, as I said, am fascinated by them.  Writing requires a lot of time alone, lost with the people inside your head.  That’s an amazing adventure, but I like adventures with people who exist outside my head, too.

If you had to swim across a sea of any beverage, what would it be?

We’re gonna need a gazillion more cups.

Probably coffee. (I’m figuring fresh water doesn’t fit into your plan here.)  With coffee, I’d have a 50/50 shot of drinking myself to the other side.

In your opinion, who is the best character . . . ever.

This is so hard.  How do you compare a Batman to a John Coffey (The Green Mile) to the classics.  I can’t do it, Ellie.  I just can’t.  I love many characters, but there are many who are best at what they’ve done.

Do you have a favorite book that you’ve written, or are they like children in that you love them all equally?

I have one writing rule.  I will not write a book I don’t love.  That’s it.  So I do love them all.  I love some things in each of the books more than others, but I love all the books.  Explaining:  In HER PERFECT LIFE, I wrote about a female POW who was deemed dead.  Six years later, she is discovered, rescued, and returns home.  Only home isn’t there anymore.  Her husband’s remarried to a great woman, the heroine can’t even hate.  Her children are strangers and consider the new wife their mom.  Her life is gone, her family has been claimed by another, and she’s lost.  But she rebuilds and discovers she hadn’t lost her perfect life, she’s only now found it.  I love that.  Then in NOT THIS TIME, the heroine, Beth, has torn loyalties.  She doesn’t trust her best friend and partner’s husband, and it causes all kinds of conflict.  When he goes missing, is kidnapped, and reported murdered, she’s the primary suspect–and she’s fighting torn loyalties as well as false accusations and betrayal.  But she sucks it up and does what she has to do, and really battles with herself on taking the high road or the easy one.  Battles and conflicts we face all the time.  I love that–that she’s conflicted and has to choose, like the rest of us.
Tell us about your latest book!

That would be NOT THIS TIME. :)

 What’s on your horizon?

I have a book out nearly every month for the next 13 months.  Some are new, some are reissues.  I’m also seeing my own imprint, Magnolia Leaf Press, release GIRL TALK: LETTERS BETWEEN FRIENDS, a women’s fiction novel that spans from 1962 to the mid 80s.  It’s different for me so they’ll be released as Vicki Hinze writing as Kali Kaye to cue my readers these aren’t inspirationals or thrillers or military suspense.

As you can see, I’m still experimenting, doing what I love and respectfully thumbing my nose at those who say I have to write one kind of book.  That’s just not me and it’s not my purpose in writing.
Thanks so much for the lovely interview, Vicki! Please check out her awesome website, and peruse her list of books for sale. There’s sure to be one that’ll catch your fancy.
She’s also a great tweet to have ( @vickihinze ) and like her page on Facebook!
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