Christina, tell us all about you! What would you most like your readers to know?
I hold a degree in Public Relations from Auburn University (War Eagle!). I worked in banking for four and a half years before deciding to become a stay at home mom to my two sons. Moving every couple of years because of my husband’s job, I’ve had the opportunity to meet all kinds of people and live in many different states, and fortunately writing is something I can take with me no matter where I live. I’m an avid reader of romance, young adult and anything having to do with pop culture. I believe a copy of Entertainment Weekly and a chocolate chip cookie can cure anything.
Are you one of those writers born with a pen in your hand and ideas flitting through your mind, or did your interest develop later?
I was late to the writing game compared to some. Though I’ve always had a love of reading, I didn’t decide to try my hand at writing until I was in my late twenties.
How long did it take you to complete your first manuscript? Did it fly from your fingertips, or did the story emerge slowly?
These days I can crank out about two books a year sometimes with a novella thrown in for good measure, but when I wrote my first novel, it was slow going. I started and made it about half way through before stopping. Wouldn’t you know I got pregnant? Due to a lack of sleep and a very cute little distraction, didn’t get back to finishing the book for a few years. Generally, I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, but that year I did. I didn’t understand what querying was at the time. I just wanted to finish it for me. I sure am glad I did. After lots of revisions and a huge learning curve, I ended up selling the book to Soul Mate Publishing.
Tell us about your writing process. Soft lights and music? White noise? Child-and-pet confusion? Locked in a room alone? What sets your writing mood and pushes you forward?
I am not someone who can work anywhere in the vicinity of a television. There are too many good shows and I’m a junkie, so I need to work where it’s quiet. Luckily, I have a green office where I can focus. Keep in mind this only works when the kids aren’t here. (Oh, and if you like green, may I suggest Fresh Apple by Behr? It’s bright and inspiring.)
What are some life experiences that have infiltrated your stories?
For me, it’s not so much experiences as it is places. I like setting stories in places I’ve been or lived. As it so happens, I’ve moved around a lot and done my fair share of traveling, so there is no shortage of choices.
Literary Inspiration: throughout your life, what novels have lifted you, made you think, “Someday I want to create something like that . . .”
I only wish I could write a story as well as some of the ones I love. For example: Alas Babylon, Rebecca, Little Women, Sins of the Flesh and Sins of Omission, Montana Sky, The Mortal Instruments, The Infernal Devices, The Dark Tower Series, The Lunar Chronicles, Harry Potter. I have a deep respect for incredible storytellers. I just hope to keep at it and keep improving.
What shining moment in your journey stands out the most as a real turning point for you as a writer?
Joining RWA was huge. I had and still have tons to learn and for a romance writer, I don’t think there’s anything more important than joining RWA. I attended my first conference in ATL a couple years ago and the experience was a game changer. I learned how to pitch, met my critique partner, and gained invaluable knowledge about the business through the workshops.
Writers face many time-constraint challenges. What are some of yours? What do you do to overcome them?
I have two kids under the age of seven, so yes, I understand time constraints. People know that when the kids are at school, I’m working. I may not be nominated mom of the year for volunteering, but something has to give. I make sure to go to the important things, but I don’t necessarily go on every field trip. For me, it’s about choices. My kids know I love them, but you have to carve out time to write or everyday life will get in the way.
What is the most thrilling aspect of the writing process for you?
I love writing the story and when a perfect moment or scene slips into place, there is nothing better. Editing on the other hand… let’s all be glad I have a brilliant editor backing me.
Tell us a little about what you’re currently working on.
Currently, I’m finishing up the last book in my Warm Springs trilogy. It’ll be bitter sweet to get to the end, but I have a couple of other projects that I can’t wait to jump into.
How about some faves of yours?
If you’re ever out and about on Twitter and want to chat about TV, movies, or books, I hope you’ll find me – @CKirbyWriter. I love nothing better than to chat about favorite shows, what people are reading, and what movies are coming soon. After all, the fall season is about to kick off which means all the films vying for the coveted Academy Award will be arriving in theaters.
Christina’s Second Book in the Warm Springs Trilogy, RUNNING HOME:
Small-town beauty queen Jenny Fillmore is a survivor. In the wake of having been kidnapped by a madman, she’s managed to put her life back together, complete with a successful career and a serious boyfriend. But, when her first love returns and hires her as his real estate agent, old wounds are torn open, making Jenny question whether or not she has the life she wants. It turns out broken hearts don’t heal so easily and old desires don’t always fade with time.
Professional baseball player Adam Hamilton didn’t expect a career-ending shoulder injury. Thrown a curveball in his prime, he returns home to Warm Springs and the one woman whose heart he broke to pursue his sports dream. But earning Jenny’s forgiveness won’t be easy. What he and Jenny once shared was real, but she’s moved on. With the new man in her life, time isn’t on Adam’s side.
BUY LINK: AMAZON
Christina, thanks so much for visiting with us today!
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