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Meet the new boss

by on May 21, 2014

I’m a bit nervous today, as I am welcoming (not in any sycophantic way you understand) one half of my publishing team, Kim Maya Sutton. I’m trying hard to be a bit more respectful than normal here guys, so you in the audience: sit up properly, Jim: straighten your tie, and pay attention.! Actually, Kim’s lovely and only mildly scary.

Here’s Kim, in her own words:

Kim Maya was born in Berlin and now lives with her husband Will, their dog and foster children in Wilhelmshaven near the Wadden Sea National Park. When she is not writing or working, she loves to go on long walks on the beach and cook complicated dishes for her friends and family.

Kim for Web

Usually I ask if you have a book out, but since you co own Safkhet Publishing Ltd, I’m aware that you have several books out… Are you the author of any of them?

Yes! the more interesting one is a biography. Other than that, I have some academic titles out.

Title: Entschuldigung aber ich bin nur Kinderarzt

Blurb: The book tells the story of Eberhard Neumann, born in Stettin during the Second World War and commonly gave as an answer to many questions “I’m sorry but I’m just a pediatrician” with a laughing smile. His story includes his birth during the War, his deprivation of his mother, his doubts about the existence of God and his resolve to be a doctor. As a pediatrician, he saved the lives of many people and fell terribly ill with Parkinson’s Disease. His personal highlight in life is the birth of his daughter, who tells his incredible tale with many individual short stories.
Kinderarzt is a moving (auto)biography written by Dr. Neumann’s daughter. The book is similar in its background story to Julia Franck’s “The Blind Side of the Heart,” but differs in style and content. Readers interested in biographies, and people who are interested in the Second World War, the search for God and answers, parent-child relationships, and medical work will get their money’s worth withEntschuldigung aber ich bin nur Kinderarzt.

Sales link:


Other books?
Like I said, the other books I wrote are academic and possibly not that interesting to you. I am currently working on a fantasy novel though and hoping to complete the damn thing soon, before it drives me crazy.

Obviously I know you best as a publisher, may I ask what made you start writing?
The crayons on my table! No… actually, that’s not true. I started with lipstick on a mirror and suppose it was just the availability of the material. Later, I wrote short stories and the reason was that they just needed to leave my head. I also wrote for the pupil’s paper because I wanted to become a journalist. How’d that go, you ask? Well, it didn’t at first. I studied computer science instead (money in the bank, I thought). Then noticed that if I had to install one more computer, I’d instead shoot the thing, and studied international management. Thought there’d be a large portion of international whatever in that and was appalled at all the accounting, controlling, … ahem, yes, I just remembered who is interviewing me here. Pardon me! I actually enjoy doing my taxes, but I hate double bookkeeping and such like. Anyway, then I studied publishing and got back into writing. The biography was easy and a mere result of countless hours of my father telling me his life from his perspective.
Now that we live in Wilhelmshaven, I also finally get to write for the local newspaper, as a freelance journalist. Some detours, but hey ho, right?

What was your inspiration for this book?
My dad and his numerous stories.

Writing: are you a plotter or a pantser?
Depends on what I am writing. Plotter when academic, pantser otherwise, particularly when answering interview questions. I often read my answers later and wonder who the heck wrote that?

What do you find most challenging about your writing?
Making time for it. There is so much I want to do and even my day has only 48 hours.

What do you find most satisfying about your writing?
Clearing my head, being someone else in my stories, and the potential to entertain others.

How did you meet your characters?
Oh, the ones for my fantasy novel I actually met in person. We play Dungeons and Dragons with some friends every Saturday and this book is based on the story we play there, with a few artistic adjustments.

Are any of your characters based on people you know?
Always! Although they are a mix of many people, except of course in the bio.

Which of your characters would you most like to take to the pub?
My Dad!

One of your characters discovers that you plan to kill him/her. Does he/she get in first and kill you – and if so, how would they do the deed?
They’d probably serve me mussels, that would work quickly and they could shrug their shoulders and say, “Well, she didn’t have to eat that!”

What would your characters say about you?
That I am crazy. Eccentric, colourful, different. That’s what my friends say, so I guess my characters would say that too.

How did you decide on the Title?
My managing editor did that for me!

What is your favourite line in this book?
Entschuldigung, aber ich bin nur Kinderarzt. As if that’s worth an apology, that you are “just” a pediatrician! Pah!

What is your favourite book?
My most feared question. There are too many to list. As a kid, I loved “Mondpferd” by Federica de Cesco; as a teenager, I devoured Astrid Lindgren stories and anything Michael Ende wrote; as an adult, I like many. It depends on my mood, where I am, why I am reading,… but obviously, I enjoy all the books of our authors at Safkhet, otherwise, I wouldn’t publish them!

What are you working on now?
This interview, obviously!

How do you do your research (if any…)?
Ask, dig, read, try out myself,…

Do you have a favourite place to write? If so, where?
In the garden or on the balcony. Sadly, I haven’t got a garden yet, but that will change SOON!

If you could go anywhere in the world to write your next book, where would you choose?
I would fly out to Guatemala, lie down in a hammock in the jungle and go at it.

Have you ever written naked?
Ahem, I believe you are once again the wrong Will to ask me this question. Of course I have! *This Will moves hastily along*

When you are not writing, what do you like doing? And with whom?
Walk. Swim. Walk again. Eat pistachio ice cream. In that order, with my Will. And Mozart of course, the dog and the composer.

If you had to be Lost on a desert island, who would be your dream companion?
Will. And Mozart!

Who is your favourite author?
Remember when you asked me about favourite book? This one’s just as bad.

What is your favourite film?
Equally difficult. Depends on mood, day, color of the balcony flowers, wuppdidity of the earth’s crust, …

What is your secret ambition?
I WILL have a PhD some day. But that’s not a secret.

How do you stay sane – and write?
I beg your pardon. I am NOT sane!

What is your favourite childhood memory?
Having Santa Claus deliver a huge Panda bear stuffy, just as I had requested. I still have it and am very proud I stayed her friend for so long.

What is the most blatant lie you have ever told?
I don’t lie.

Kim, it’s been a pleasure and great fun having you on my blog. I’m looking forward to seeing your fantasy novel, and very grateful that I live a long way from the other Will when he starts editing it…


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  1. kimatsafkhet permalink

    Reblogged this on Safkhet Publishing and commented:

    meet me over at Will’s if you want to find out more about me as a writer 🙂

  2. We’re so glad you’re not sane, Kim. When can we get the biography translation is the next question. Love your pic! Thanks for sharing, Will. 🙂

  3. Maybe Google Translate, Sheryl?

  4. I was sitting up straight, honest

  5. Rebecca Douglass permalink

    Can we eat while we read? is that respectful?

    You have confirmed something I long suspected. People like Kim really do have more hours in a day than mere mortals!

  6. I was concerned it might have been mine Jim…

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