Monday, June 8, 2015

Conversation 29: K. Williams

Greetings all! Please help me welcome author K. Williams to the blog today.

Here is a bit about K. from her website to get us started...


Born in Saratoga Springs, New York,  K.Williams embarked on a now twenty year career in writing. After a childhood, which consisted of voracious reading and hours of film watching, it was a natural progression to study and produce art.

K attended Morrisville State College, majoring in the Biological Sciences, and then continued with English and Historical studies at the University at Albany, home of the New York State Writer’s Institute, gaining her Bachelor’s Degree. While attending UA, K interned with the 13th Moon Feminist Literary Magazine, bridging her interests in social movements and art. Topics of K’s writing include the environment, animal welfare, gender limitations, racial disparities, and the trauma of war. To see some of her favorite causes, click here.

Published novels by K include the Civil War drama Blue Honor, the Second World War spy thriller OP-DEC:Operation Deceit, and the controversial science fiction/fantasy series The Trailokya Trilogy. In addition to writing novels, K enjoy’s the art of screenwriting and has worked on the screen spec 8 Days in Ireland, and the adaptations of her current novels. 

Currently, K has completed the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies program for Film Studies and Screenwriting at Empire State College (SUNY), and is the 2013-2014 recipient of the Foner Fellowship in Arts and Social Justice. In 2015, K. Williams became an official member of International Thriller Writers.


Q1: I was delighted to discover, looking at your blog, that you are a gifted photographer. When did you take up this particular art form, and how is it different, expressing yourself by looking through the lens than, say, capturing your ideas on paper? 

KW: I started in 2005 when I was trying to recover from a bad bout with depression. My aspirations for writing weren't coming along quite as I had pictured them and some life issues had come to a head and left me drained. Photography probably saved my life, so my perspective through the lens is grandiose. 

The thing about this art is that it is pretty solitary, unless your subjects are humans. I intentionally stick to wildlife, plants and objects for the peace. There is nothing quite like spending the day outside just walking around noticing things around you--it really gets you out of your head-space. That, in my opinion, is great therapy for depression. For me, being inside my head was taxing because the same concerns kept going around and around without answer. You can beat yourself up pretty good on a lonely night, even with cartoons in the background and good music. 

An art instructor colleague of mine perused my gallery and noticed that much of my work focuses on "The One", singles. That's something I hadn't noticed for myself, but I think that sums up how I express myself through the lens. I focus on these single objects most of the time, macro level study. If that isn't a reflection of my own head! 

Compared to my writing, I think the photography is more personal than I had ever gotten with my art. I was talking about what it was like to be single, alone, the one in focus before whatever lens doing the documenting. However, instead of beating myself up, I was discovering the beauty in these lone objects and not why they were alone, or fearing they would be alone always. It helped me to come to terms with being single...again. But to also find strength and beauty in that, and not to reach to another to complete me. I am one and whole. 

Q2: You are also an amazing jewelry designer! What drew you to design, and how long have you been making jewelry? 

KW: I like putting things together. if I could learn how to carve gems, do wire work and smelt, I think I would be a self-sustaining jewelry maker. I love fancy jewelry--not expensive, just unique--steampunk, Victorian, vintage--character-full pieces. I don't care if they're cheap, so long as they look interesting. 

About six or seven years ago, I got into designing the pieces because it was exhausting trying to find something to go with my outfits that really suited what I had in mind, color and metal. A former colleague of mine had started beading while we worked together, and that was when it first entered my mind. I didn't start making my until several years later. Do you know how hard it is to find orange beads/gems/glass in silver findings/chains/etc? Ever since that first orange piece, I've been learning little by little. If I had more time, I would devote it to wire work. 

Q3: If you could have a fifteen minute conversation with anyone from any point in history, who would you choose, and why? 

KW: Ooo. That's really tough. There are a lot of people out there, past and present who would be stunning to chat with. I think I would pick my great grandmother, even though it would so difficult to let her go again. I just want to know one more time how very much she loved me and to sit close. 

Q4: What do you turn to, to calm and soothe your nerves when everything around you seems to be in chaos? 

KW: I turn into my room and crawl into bed, snuggle up with Sadie Sue Shagbottom (my golden retriever/yellow labrador mix) and binge some netflix. Usually what I need is some time to just calm down and let it work out in my brain without me focusing directly on it. If I am not stressed because of some problem that has manifested, just feeling overwhelmed by responsibility, then it's perfect because it makes me take some time for myself. My dog is the perfect companion for me time, happy as could be to do whatever I feel like so long as she can come too. 

Q5: *bonus question for everyone* Do you collect anything? If so, why? 

KW: I am a rabid action figure collector. It's true. I have a problem. My mother was going to disown me over it while I was still living at home. Instead, they got me storage. It's really bad! I mean really bad. I can't help how much I love them. 

Thank you so much K. for giving us such wonderful insight into your life and your art! 

You can learn more about K. Williams by visiting her here:

Join us on Wednesday for our next installment of the Clockwork Conversations June Extravaganza!