Welcome! Every month I feature an Indie Author and ask them to tell us a little about their books and their writing process. My featured author this month is crime thriller writer KT Galloway who writes the O’Malley & Swift crime thriller series. So grab yourself a cuppa, get comfy and let’s get chatting to KT.
Welcome to my blog, KT. Your series looks fantastic. Have you ever been traditionally published? If so, can you explain to us the main difference to you as an author, between the two?
I have indeed, in fact I still am. KT is my pen name for indie publishing where I can write about all things gory and scary, because I am traditionally published as a rom-com book club author!
There are similarities between traditional publishing and indie, the main one being that I still need to write and edit the words. Apart from that it does feel very different to me.
One of the reasons I wanted to do both, is that through an agent and publisher picking your book to represent and publish I feel validated. Which is silly really, as being an Indie author does this too. But it’s having that outside acknowledgement that what I write is actually good. (I don’t think I’m alone as an author always having that doubt that I don’t know how to write!) But I often get emails from my KT readers telling me how much they love O’Malley & Swift and that’s wonderful.
I am also a bit of a control freak, and once I’ve written the story much of the prep work is then out of my hands when it comes to traditional publishing. I get a say in covers, marketing etc, but not a huge amount of leverage really. But with my Indie books I am in charge and can choose how my brand looks, design my covers, choose my own titles. Though, this is a lot of extra work and I do get very distracted from getting words on the page when I’m fiddling with Photoshop!
Marketing as an Indie feels like a double-edged sword. Whilst I’d love to leave this in the hands of a publisher, as I find it all quite tricky, I enjoy being able to see the real time results. I dabble in Facebook and Amazon ads, which are mind boggling. But I love engaging with readers on social media and that’s my favourite way to market.
Can you talk us briefly through the processes of publishing your book?
Aside from the creative process of coming up with ideas and writing the books, the process of publishing through KDP I find quite straight forward (thankfully).
I always set my books up with a pre-order date so I have a deadline to aim for then I will write a first draft in around two months. This then gets a first round of edits from me before being sent out to two beta readers and an editor. While they’re doing their edits I finalise the nitty bits of KDP such as the paperback covers, the categories to ask Amazon to put the books in, the keywords, all those little extras that make a huge difference to sales and rankings.
Then I’ll work on edits as and when they come back. Do a final read through and cross my fingers and toes that I’m uploading the correct manuscript in the final minutes leading up to publication!
How do you decide on the cover and title for your books?
My books always start as a central ‘hook’. So, for CORN DOLLS it was a girl abducted and replaced by a corn doll, in FOXTON GIRLS it’s a spate of suicides at a prestigious boarding school. Once I have this ‘hook’ I then plan out the whole book and base the title on something that happens or the hook itself. The title sometimes comes before I’ve finished writing, sometimes before I’ve even started, and the same goes for the cover ideas. Sometimes, even the cover ideas have sparked a whole book. I have a great group of author friends and we tend to bounce ideas for titles and blurbs off of each other.
I had a cover designer work with me for the first two books in the series, and I have taken over since then. As an artist, I love to get involved in the creative side, but book covers are an absolute skill that is so different to my usual slap dash painting.
That all sounds fascinating. What was the inspiration for your latest book?
Unbelievably, I started plotting WE ALL FALL DOWN before the arrival of Covid. The idea of being exposed to a deadly virus that spreads amongst humans terrified me enough to know it would make a great storyline for O’Malley & Swift. Little did I know the whole world would be living it on publication! Though Bubonic Plague is treatable now, I still find the plague doctor outfits blood-chillingly creepy.
How difficult do you find it to market your book? What social media platforms do you prefer?
I love interacting with readers on social media. That’s one of my favourite things to do. And, although it’s not the kind of marketing we’re taught (ads, bookbubs etc) it’s definitely the most fun in my eyes. But I’m rubbish at selling myself, I feel daft even saying I’m an author sometimes because I feel like people will think I’m boasting. So it’s difficult to interact when I feel like that. Though my readers are all SO lovely, they make life much easier.
Ads I find tricky, but I’m slowly learning on the job.
Facebook is my favourite place to hang out as KT, so come and find me there and say hi. I do love Twitter too, but I get too distracted with the world news sometimes and that’s another horror story in itself.
What are your hobbies when not writing?
What with writing as KT, writing under my own name for my agent, and working part-time, there’s not a lot of extra time left for hobbies. But I do love watercolours, and I’ve recently treated myself to an iPad so I can attempt some online art with ProCreate.
Thanks for dropping by and sharing all this with us, KT. It’s a fascinating interview. Wishing you lots of success with your books.
We All Fall Down – Book 3 in the series that Alex Smith called ‘Blisteringly Exciting’.
Ring A Ring O Roses
When a young woman falls ill and dies after a night out, her friends blame a cloaked figure that had been stalking them in the streets. A masked face with hooked beak, immediately recognisable as a Plague Doctor.
Annie O’Malley is back in action with her broken ankle in plaster and a need to stay busy. DI Swift has been looking after her and they’re getting on each others’ nerves.
When a second body is found and the two deaths are linked to the Bubonic Plague, O’Malley and Swift find themselves on a hunt for one of the most deadliest killers known to humankind.
The other books in the series
House of Secrets (Bk 4) – Amazon
Foxton Girs (Bk 2) – Amazon
Corn Dolls (Bk 1) – Amazon
A native of Scotland, KT moved down south as a wee bairn and now lives in Norfolk with her daughter and their cats!
Corn Dolls is the first in the new O’Malley & Swift series, a thriller with a female sleuth and a brooding DI.
You can find her at