I have to say, interviewing Kim Nathan made me a bit home sick. Washington… will you waiting for me? A couple more years until my high school reunion. Let’s hope I can make it there. Until then, I’ll have to live vicariously books which take me back. 🙂 Speaking of which… Welcome to the next stop of the Dreaming Montana tour!
In a single day, Cara Gallagher experiences an erotic dream about a man she doesn’t know and has a premonition of her identical twin—at the exact moment her sister dies in a car accident. To escape her grief and a loveless marriage, Cara accepts a temporary job reassignment in Seattle, where she continues to have sensuous dreams of the unknown man. There she encounters an angel who claims to be sent by her dead sister to help her find the man in her dreams. Meanwhile, photographer Jay Amiens sees angel wings on his film and has recurring intimate dreams about a woman he doesn’t know—but would love to meet in person. Set in 1993, Dreaming Montana invokes the spirit of Seattle at the height of the grunge era, with the city as the backdrop for Cara and Jay to potentially cross paths.
Reena Jacobs: Welcome, welcome, Ms. Nathan. Tell us about your debut novel.
Kim Nathan: Sterling Redmond is the story that made me want to be a writer. Those characters have been running around in my head since I was twelve. The historical novel takes place in Maryland, just north of Baltimore where I grew up.The main setting, the Redmond’s country home of Northampton, is based on an actual place, Hampton National Historic Site. I spent many years wandering the property and touring the mansion, essentially walking through the setting of my novel. I know the place and the geography around it. That story is in my bones.
RJ: In my youth, I was never a fan of history. Not until college, when I took a women’s history class, did I really begin to appreciate the past. I can understand your fascination. Funny how time changes people. 1993, Seattle, grunge. 🙂 You’re talking about my teen years! Pearl Jam, Nirvana. Oh… that brings me back. What about that era inspired you while writing Dreaming Montana?
KN: I think I may be slightly older than you (wink). I actually wrote the first draft of Dreaming Montana in 1993, after I visited Seattle and fell in love with it. I moved there six months later, and I still love that music and living in the city. It was fun to listen to all those songs again while I was working on the final draft of the book this year. The music still moves me.
RJ: Now you’ve got me on Pandora cruising music. 🙂 How does your faith affect your writing?
KN: This definition of faith by Brene Brown resonates with me: “Faith is a place of mystery, where we find the courage to believe in what we cannot see and the strength to let go of our fear of uncertainty.” That’s what writing is for me – trusting that when I confront the blank page, the creative force and I will connect and something meaningful will happen.
RJ: That’s a beautiful quote. Give us a brief description of a story you have hidden in your skeleton closet? And will it ever see the light of day?
KN: I have boxes of old stories, most of which will see the shredder before they see the light of day. There is an old novella with a reincarnation theme that I might revive at some point. It has good bones fundamentally and I could build on it. But all the skeletons make their way into your writing, one way or the other, if you know what I mean.
RJ: I do. Like a scrap box of ideas to draw from. Random question: While you’re reading, what are your cats doing?
KN: Mostly sleeping nearby. Sometimes sneaking drinks out of my water glass. They tend to be demanding at inopportune moments.
RJ: Share with us your favorite video of Nia dancing.
KN: Honestly, I have yet to find one that conveys what an actual class is like, but here’s one with Debbie Rosas, the co-creator of Nia.
RJ: That looks so fun and freeing. Uh hum… and sexy. Do you have any advice for other writers?
KN: Believe in yourself and do the work. Make sure you get out of the house once and awhile. Mingle with people and listen to their stories. That’s where the good stuff is.
RJ: Anything special you’d like to say to readers?
KN: Thank you for going on the journey with me. I couldn’t do it without you.
RJ: What are you working on now?
KN: Enjoying summer in Seattle and catching up on gardening and house stuff. But I’m already being haunted by scenes and characters so the next stage is to start jotting down notes in a spiral notebook. At this point, I could do either a sequel to Sterling Redmond or follow up Dreaming Montana with another contemporary piece set in the Pacific Northwest. I could go either way.
About the Author
Kim Nathan is an American author of historical and contemporary romance fiction. Her first novel was Sterling Redmond, a historical romance. Born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, she relocated to Seattle, Washington in 1994, where she lives with her husband and cats.
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