DIY MFA Radio Episode 153: Interview with Karen Dionne – From Midlist to Breakout Author

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In this episode, Gabriela Pereira interviews author Karen Dionne. They discuss how to craft complex and believable characters in the psychological suspense genre, so that even the villain has their sympathetic moments for readers. Karen takes us behind the scenes of her breakout novel The Marsh King’s Daughter, and how shifting gears in her writing mindset advanced her career from midlist to bestseller. For more detailed show notes:


Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula:

Writing + Reading + Community = MFA

This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the MFA, all you need to do is: write with focus, read with purpose, and build your community. Read on to learn more or use the menu above to explore each category. We’ve also highlighted some key DIY MFA articles below to help you get started. is a hub for booklovers and dedicated to on-the-rise authors that readers may not have heard of. For readers constantly in search of new titles, authors and ideas for their next read, BookTrib will introduce them under-the-radar writers who might be a perfect match. BookTrib has it all: new and noteworthy, exclusive reviews, video interviews, the hottest book podcasts, and all the buzz to enhance readers' understanding and enjoyment of books and up and coming authors. Top-notch contributors. In-the-know content partners. Expert recommendations. Behind-the-scenes peeks. is produced by Meryl Moss Media, a 25-year-old literary marketing, publicity and social media firm. Visit

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