In your own words, please describe your book.
Security expert and self-made man Rafe McTavish has been asked by his old friend and Chairman of EcoMech, Aaron Goldman, to investigate why Aaron’s son, EcoMech CEO Leon Goldman, has pushed through the purchase of a dilapidated mining station in the asteroid belt. At the station, Rafe encounters hostile miners who believe they are the rightful owners, and Kamala Bhatia, an Oasis corp computer tech who claims to be updating the station computer systems.
Kama, a computer hacker and corporate spy, is surprised to see McTavish. She’s at the station to retrieve an invaluable lost document accidently sent to the station manager. She suspects that McTavish and Leon Goldman are there to acquire it. Because of the escalating aggression between Leon Goldman and the miners, she’s forced to help McTavish unravel the confusion over the station ownership while she searches for the manager—a man who’s gone mysteriously missing.
What genre/genres does your book fall under?
Calculated Risk is a mystery with thriller pacing. While it is set on a mining station in the year 2040, the focus of the story is on finding a murdering blackmailer and not on whiz-bang technologies of the future. The background assumes the discovery of faster-than-light travel and an Earth population decimated by an influenza epidemic fifteen years earlier.
Is this book part of a series?
Yes, this is a series. The sequel, Hostile Takeover, has just been released.
What was the inspiration behind your book?
Given the way large corporations have taken over influence of our government and many other aspects of our daily lives, I wondered what the future might look like. I was interested in exploring that in the context of two people, one an honest capitalist with sharp business skills, and the other a socialist who will use any means available to help the downtrodden trampled under corporate rule. Rafe believes in law and order, that it’s vital to the fabric of society. Kama believes justice trumps law. She’ll do whatever she can to protect little people from the profit-driven machinations of the men in charge at the mega-corps. They team up to solve mysteries in a world driven by corporate greed.
What led you into writing? Was it a lifelong ambition, or the result of some type of turning point in your life?
I loved reading, so it seemed a natural progression to write. I started writing stories when I was nine. But I put that aside to focus on other things. Then about fifteen years ago, I got a job as a tech writer. It reignited my desire to write fiction. I had a lot to learn about the craft before I was ready for prime time!
So far, what has been the greatest moment in your writing career?
Finishing Calculated Risk. It went through four iterations before I finally learned enough about the craft of writing fiction to capture what I wanted on the page. Nothing beat the feeling of mastery that gave me.
Are you self-published or published through a small-press? Can you tell our readers what led up to that and your publishing experience?
I’m an indie publisher. I sent out a few query letters to agents, but it seemed like I was putting my career in someone else’s hands, and I wasn’t comfortable with that.
What are you working on now?
I’ve just completed Hostile Takeover, the sequel to Calculated Risk. I have the first book in a supernatural mystery series, No Place Like Hell, in final edit. It’s set in 1968. It will ship in August. I’m also working on Undercover Madness, the sequel to Touching Madness, which is a contemporary/urban fantasy. Undercover Madness should ship before the end of 2014.
In your own words, please tell us about yourself.
But I’m boring! It’s my books that are interesting. I’ve worked a wide array of jobs: motel maid, veterinary technician, vocational rehab counselor, tech writer. I have enough college degrees to wallpaper my living room. When I’m not writing, I’m reading, gardening, or taking walks by the lake.
What are some of your likes and dislikes?
I like to read mystery, thriller, SF/F, and historical books. I’m not into romance, and I abhor books with insane serial killers who kill just because. I want motivated villains who are out to get something and see their crimes as a means that justify the end. I’m also a trailerhead. I love to listen to movie trailer music.
How can readers connect with you?
Through my website: http://www.ksferguson.net
Tell us one thing about yourself that we wouldn’t know?
I enjoy Bollywood movies. I’m fascinated with how stories are told in other cultures.
If there was one thing you could tell your readers, what would it be?
Buy my books! Seriously, I believe that experiences are more important than possessions and would encourage people to examine why they think they want what they want. Do we really need more of everything, or would we be happier with a slower, simpler life?