Monday, February 6, 2012

Author Interview: Kristen Simmons - Article 5 Blog Tour

I'm so excited to welcome Kristen Simmons, author of the amazing Article 5, to the blog!

Welcome Kristen!

Hi Christie!

Thanks for letting me stop by and visit with you and your friends. I’m excited. 

Would you consider your debut novel, Article 5, to be dystopian, post-apocalyptic, or something else completely?

Oh something else entirely, of course! Who wants to fit in the box? Not me! Ha!

A5 doesn’t cleanly fit into either topic, even though it’s written up as a “Dystopian Thriller.” It takes place in the US closely after a war, but unlike other post-apocalyptics and dystopians, life is otherwise very similar to the way things are now. With the exception of course of a new military regime that’s targeting civilians who are out of compliance with their moral rules, that is…

Honestly, when I wrote it I thought it was going to be marketed as a romance, so there you go!

Does your background as a mental health advocate play a part in your writing?

Absolutely. It plays a part in everything I do actually! Mental health is JUST as important as physical health – the brain is connected to the body, after all – and to ignore it, or downgrade its importance, or even worse, stigmatize those who struggle with their mental health, hurts us all.

When I write, I’m constantly aware of the mental health of my characters – they’ve been through some traumatic things, and as a result, are dealing with some pretty hefty emotional consequences. Things that anyone might feel after experiencing what Chase and Ember have. But, like with anyone struggling with a hardship, there is hope, as long as they can learn to trust and support each other.

If you had to tweet a less than 140 character description of your main character, Ember, what would it say?

Wow. This is hard. Okay, here goes. (lol – I just wrote a 140 WORD description and then realized that wasn’t the point of the exercise. Twitter moron, right here.)

Ember had it all figured out: soup kitchens, inspections, the moral statutes. Now she’s on the run, and her survival depends on the one boy who broke her heart.

Do you ever struggle with ideas or creativity while writing? If so, what are some ways you have found to “jump start” your muse?

Oh yes. This definitely happens sometimes. Ok, there are a couple go-tos for when I smack face first into the brick wall. The first is exercise. I teach fitness classes and can always find some mental relief in shakin’ my groove thang. On the other side, I’m sort of a cookie addict. I LOVE baking cookies. So I’ll do that if I get stuck. (Sometimes we have a lot of cookies in our fridge.)

But one of the best things I’ll do is call an author friend of mine. She always knows what to say to get me through it – even if her advice is to turn off my laptop and do something else.

What is the most beautiful place you’ve ever visited?

The most beautiful….hmmm… I am really partial to the beaches in South Carolina at sunset. There’s something so romantic about that. In fact, I just wrote a scene for A5: Book 3 where Ember and Chase are on a beach at sunset…

Thanks for stopping by Kristen!

Thanks Christie! I’m so glad we got to chat – this was so fun! I hope you enjoy ARTICLE 5!


Article 5 is available now and this is a book you don't want to miss. It is that good!

Add Article 5 on Goodreads

Kristen Simmons on the web:


  1. Awesome interview and questions. I like the 140 characters or less question and answer. Very succinct.

    The beaches in SC are lovely.