Q: First tell us something about yourself?
I was born in Helsinki, Finland, in Dec 1969 – so kinda Santa Klaus – and I live there, too. I´m a teacher for RE, Philosophy and Ethics from Comprehensive Schools to High Schools.
Q: How and when did your journey start as a writer?
I´m especially interested in writing plays and fairy tales but I´ve written a novel parody of Harry Potter, two sci-fi short stories and some philosophical texts and some newspaper columns and radio programmes. My website klauskuurinmaa.com has also some information in English.
Q: When did you write your first story? Is it published or not?
I self-published Gruelling Times in Finnish as a paperback 1999. I had one thousand copies and sold them for $6 or so. Without marketing I ended giving them away for free. So much of being a cunning businessman. The Miser has always been on my website only. Finnish books are there for free and the English translations of the first stories of these books are there, too.
Q: Tell us something more about your books?
These two books of four fairy tales are written in a classic style if I’m allowed to say so myself. My tales are short or even shorter, suitable for to be read as good night stories or at school or kindergarten. Kid-tested; I´ve read them to children as a teacher. They contain two longer tales and two shorter ones.
Q: Why do you choose kids as your reader ? is there any specific reason?
Classic fairy tales are for people of all ages. We remember how we were told those stories as a kid but we still enjoy them as an adult also on a different level.
Q: How did these stories and characters come to your mind?
Ideas can be found anywhere and everywhere. You can stimulate your imagination many ways like I do by reading or walking in a circle (this might sound crazy – I do it indoors just to avoid falling and staring at people). When I saw scouts cooking pancakes I thought of porridge which was the beginning of an idea of Gruelling Times. Life´s a Gamble is a love story of a dice and an hour-glass which were on my table. Looking at a lamp on my floor was the start of The Candle and the Lightbulb. The Kitten was a goodnight story for teens in a summer camp where I was a teacher. The Miser came into my mind while reading old poetry. Not-a-Chance´s idea came when I remembered an old Finnish story our teacher read to us when we were eight years old pupils. Trains have been good places to write: I had a couple of hours on a train to write a story for my goddaughter´s birthday so I wrote The Backwards Princess. I had to finish it at a railway station. I wrote The Fairy and the Spider on a train to meet my girlfriend who got it as a gift. I thought flowers wouldn’t survive.