Q1). A little bit about myself and how did I get into writing.
Just a little? Wow. There is so much that I don’t know where to start. I’ve been through a lot. I’ve experienced so many adverse circumstances that I had to sit down and develop a new perspective, which is why I chose a degree in marriage and family therapy. Originally, I was amazing in math and many people saw me in a more technical field, but here I am, trying to figure it all out. What I do learn, I love to pass on, which is why I write…
I began writing mostly by chance – a long story, but… I decided to write stories because I felt people learn through experiences, even other people’s experiences, and I learned that people fight grown when it is expected. If you put the two concepts together, it’s better than peanut butter and chocolate – you get entertainment and growth. A self help book can help people, but so can a good story. If you get one lesson, or just feel a little better about yourself, in one of my stories, then it was all worth the effort.
Q2). What inspired you to write this book?
Adolescence is a difficult time for many people. Long story short, I believe this book has the opportunity to facilitate a feeling of acceptance and normalcy.
Q3). What theme or message do you hope to convey?
I put the theme right smack in the dedication: “fitting in.” The entire book – from the love story, the school, the parental aspect, and even in little pockets – was designed to support the theme of a young woman trying to find where she fits in regarding her immediate situation and in the outer world. It’s not about witches, love, shoes, or even the individual characters: it’s about how Natalie begins, how she negotiates the circumstances, and where she ends. An example is: some people wanted more love in the story, and some people wanted less love, but the love interest was perfectly designed to help Natalie feel like a normal teenage woman. Also, the reader may notice how Natalie’s shoes coincide with her influence over the other girls; the more she is accepted as one of them, the more they wear her style of shoes.
Q4). What drew you to this particular genre?
I didn’t begin in this genre, and I’m not fixed in this genre, but there seemed to be an opening for more empowerment in Young Adults. Fantasy seemed the perfect catalyst. I thought I’d experiment with a first chapter, and I liked it. From there I set aside my other projects to finish this book; and the second one.
Q5). If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?
This is such a fun question. My characters are made from envisioning extreme personalities, and picturing how each would react is exciting to think of.
I love knowledge, and Ms. Haggle knows everything, but she also has no patience for, well, anyone, and can be very temperamental. I’m drawn to people who need help, and I see myself drawn to Melissa; but I wouldn’t ask her why she’s so angry, that wouldn’t be smart. I think I’d ask her, “how can I help?” But she’d probably just reply, “by leaving me alone.”
Q6). What social media sight has been the most helpful in developing your readership?
Goodreads by far. The bloggers there have been patient, honest, and extremely helpful. Their sites are fun to read and informative. I think if this book has a great start, it’s because of them.
Q7). What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?
Do not quit, and do not stress about it? Advice I still need to follow. I have walked away from writing and come back so many times, but I just keep getting better. This story was actually written about five years ago, but it is now just coming out. Also, I wrote another book before this one, but was frustrated when a similar story came out before I published it, even though it was about four years in the making. Maybe it wasn’t meant to be. I think my stories get better each time anyway.
Q8). What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?
Yes, yes, and yes. I am working on about ten different stories at the moment. I piece them together in my mind until they are complete enough to start a treatment. I am always building them and have numerous treatments written down. I promised myself I would publish the second book to Scarlet Reign next year, which has been written and needs to be revised, but there are several more I can’t wait to complete. There are four books in this series, so we’ll see where it all goes, but first I must consider writing as a hobby because I have other responsibilities. I am happy with my financial situation and would be ecstatic to just have a fan base even if I don’t make money, but the truth is, books will come slow in my current routine. I will do everything in my power to have one Scarlet Reign book come out every year. It shouldn’t be hard as the last two are all pieced together and ready to be written – but there may also be a spinoff. I have already put forth great effort to piece them together so that they connect as a complete story. Book one is filled with set-ups that are very imperative to the other seven (yes, seven) books.
R.D. Crist is a psychotherapist who generates creativity via long walks and majestic views of nature. True inspiration to write, however, derives from personal hardships that have sparked a desire to help others manage life’s various struggles.
Although R.D. Crist has only released one book, three have been written and several more begun, which span a variety of genres. The focus of these stories are intended to center on Crist’s favorite dynamics of a story – personal conflict, relationship development, inner growth, and social revelation. Each story is created with a greater purpose to stimulate a person to reflect on common challenges, be they personal, interactive, or in principle.
Childhood influences include Ray Bradbury stories and character conflict movies like Twelve Angry Men.
Socializing, listening to people’s stories, spending time with family, and relentlessly exercising (as if those last ten pounds cared) are some of Crist’s favorite ways to pass the day.
Thank you again and I hope this helps,