Monday, February 12, 2018

Gini Koch Author Interview

Photo Credit: Nancee Lewis Photography

Gini Koch writes the fast, fresh and funny Alien/Katherine “Kitty” Katt series for DAW Books, the Necropolis Enforcement Files, and the Martian Alliance Chronicles. She also has a humor collection, Random Musings from the Funny Girl. As G.J. Koch she writes the Alexander Outland series and she’s made the most of multiple personality disorder by writing under a variety of other pen names as well, including Anita Ensal, Jemma Chase, A.E. Stanton, and J.C. Koch. She has stories featured in a variety of excellent anthologies, available now and upcoming, writing as Gini Koch, Anita Ensal, Jemma Chase, and J.C. Koch. Reach her via:


Was there a defining moment during your youth when you realized you wanted to be a writer? 
No. I actually never wanted to be a writer. The voices in my head just got so loud that I had to write them down to shut them up…and I’ve never stopped.

Why is storytelling so important for all of us? 

Not only does it entertain, but it can teach, expand our minds, and give us shared experiences, even if we’re nowhere close to each other.

What makes writing great for you? 

I get to let those voices in my head out and let them tell me their life stories. That’s a pretty great way to earn a living.

What advice would you give to someone who wanted to have a life in writing? 

Go to college and major in something that will provide a good income for you, because it takes a LONG time to make money in this business, and eating and having a roof over your head are pretty important to any creative process. The “romantic” notion of the starving artist is just that – a notion. In real life, it’s hard to do anything other than try to find food if you’re starving.

That said, if you want to write, write. Write down your ideas, your snippets of dialog or narrative, and never give up. Read a lot, and I do mean a LOT. Any time you hit a book you think isn’t good or feel that you could do better, remember two things: 1) someone thought that book was good enough to pay an author and publish it, so consider what it is that you don’t like and accept that your taste isn’t always going to align with an editor’s; and 2) if you think that you can do better, do so. Not via fanfiction, but via your own stories. Don’t rewrite the “bad” book, just write yours in a way that you think makes for a better story.

Your newest book is ALIENS ABROAD; can you tell my Book Nerd community a little about the novel? 

Kitty & Company are forced to go all over the galaxy and save the day for several small, off the beaten path, yet vitally important solar systems, while simultaneously trying to stay alive and save the galaxy and, potentially, the universe. Or, as Kitty calls it, a fun family outing sure to be remembered for years to come.

What were your inspirations for the character development? 

The characters themselves. I see all my characters as “real” so it’s easy for me to see how their lives can and do progress. Beyond that, there’s always inspiration from music, TV, movies, friends, family, a snipped of a conversation heard here, a flash of an image seen there. I don’t try to overthink it, because then it would be work.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating Kitty? 

That sarcasm is a beloved art form.

Which character have you enjoyed getting to know the most over the course of writing KATHERINE "KITTY” KATT Series? 

All of them, really. Who my “favorite” is depends on who I’m writing at the time. Some of the characters, like Benjamin Siler, are really mouthy and demanding in my head, which is kind of fun – which is how a character who was supposed to be in about two scenes ended up becoming a vitally important supporting character.

If you could introduce Jeff to any character from another book, who would it be and why? 

I think he’d really enjoy meeting Nanny Ogg from Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series. He’d be all kinds of impressed by Granny Weatherwax and totally respect her, but he’d really have fun with Nanny Ogg – she has his kind of sense of humor.

What do you feel is the most significant change since book one? 

There are so many… The characters evolve and grow and change, so it’s hard to pinpoint one thing that would be most significant. I think the ever-widening world is probably what I’ll have to pick, though. In Touched by an Alien, Kitty discovers that aliens are real and on the planet. By Aliens Abroad, she’s discovered life all over the galaxy, as well as the confirmed existence of the multiverse and more.

You have the chance to give one piece of advice to your readers. What would it be? 

Always be yourself. Unless you can be Kitty. Then be Kitty.

Do you believe in extraterrestrials or life on other planets? 

In a universe as big as ours? Of course. I can only hope they’re like the ones I describe, though I tend to fall on the more pessimistic side of the house and figure if they’re coming here, they want something and it’s probably not world peace.

If I came to your house and looked in your closet/attic/basement, what’s the one thing that would surprise me the most? 

How much luggage and how many purses I have. It’s a condition.

Tell me about a favorite event of your childhood. 

I learned to sail at 9 and I loved it. So any time I was sailing was always a favorite event.

What did you do for your last birthday? 

Well, my last birthday was just about a week ago (Jan. 25th) and the hubs and I went to Fogo de Chao for lunch, did a little shopping, then relaxed at home and watched movies. It was really nice. Sometimes we do bigger things, but this year, that was just the right combination.

What decade during the last century would you have chosen to be a teenager? 

LOL, babe, I WAS a teenager during the last century. I was a teenager at the best time to be one, too – late ‘70’s and early ‘80’s. The things we could do and get away with when cell phones didn’t exist…good times…good times…

1. It’s fun
2. It’s funny
3. Kitty kicks butt and takes names while wielding sarcasm like a weapon and an art form
4. Kitty saves the day using her knowledge of pop culture, comics, hairspray, and rock ‘n’ roll
5. The main aliens all look like supermodels, only better
6. The series builds on itself, so while some things stay the same, all the characters change and grow
7. The series goes all over the world, all over the galaxy, and all over the multiverse
8. There’s steamy sex for those who like it and plenty of action, adventure, humor, and romance for those who don’t
9. Kitty thinks so far outside the box that she may not even know the box exists – meaning you get some wild and hilarious solutions to a variety of different problems and situations.

The series has, with Aliens Abroad, 16 books and counting – currently contracted through Book 20, and there’s no reason to stop there – so plenty of adventures to keep you happily reading.

With the human population growing and alien refugees pouring in from around the galaxy, Earth is becoming too overcrowded to sustain itself--and the solar system is filling up with the alien overflow. Advanced technology from the Alpha Centauri and Vatusan systems offers one possible solution. It's time to explore new planets and see if any uninhabited ones can be claimed. 

The President and First Lady, aka Jeff and Kitty Katt-Martini, aren't supposed to be on this mission, but what looks like a snafu during a political photo op on the newly christened Distant Voyager spaceship turns out to be a call for help from a planet that might be Earth's salvation...or its destruction. 

The discovery of a world at the opposite end of the galaxy that seems like it could be a twin to Earth creates the usual issues for Kitty & Company. It also raises questions of Z'porrah and Ancient influence--not to mention cloning, the multiverse, and, scariest of all, whether or not the Black Hole Universe Police are starting to take too much of an interest in this particular universe.

Praise for the ALIENS ABROAD

“Gini Koch’s Alien books remind us why we read: it’s fun!” —Kirkus

“A series that shows no signs of slowing down.” —Publishers Weekly

“Aliens, danger, and romance make this a fast-paced, wittily written sf romantic comedy.” —Library Journal

“For those craving futuristic high-jinks and gripping adventure, Koch is an absolute master!” —RT Reviews

“This delightful romp has many interesting twists and turns as it glances at racism, politics, and religion en route. It will have fanciers of cinematic sf parodies referencing Men in Black, Ghost Busters, and X-Men.” —Booklist

“Campy, hyperactive, implausibly entertaining, there’s a lot of fun here, and more fun to come in future installments.” —SF Site

“Gini Koch has created a monster with the Katherine ‘Kitty’ Katt series that continues to grow.” —Gizmo’s Reviews

“Twelve books into the Katherine ‘Kitty’ Katt series and Gini Koch is still able to deliver a fast-paced, action-packed thrill ride that stays true to what faithful readers love about the series but still manages to throw in some unexpected twists and turns.” —Under the Covers

You can purchase Aliens Abroad (Katherine "Kitty" Katt #16 at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE for making this giveaway possible.
Winner will receive a Copy of Aliens Abroad (Katherine "Kitty" Katt #16) by Gini Koch.


  1. "If you had one day in your life to live over, which would you choose and why?" It would be that one really terrible day, I think!

  2. I don't know maybe one of the days when I was slacking in Uni which caused me to need an extra year there.

  3. I would happily follow Kitty and Co to any and every otbp planets just to hang with the group.

  4. I can't really think of one particular day I'd like to do over. It's more like certain periods of my life. I'm a lot wiser now than I was when I was younger.