Monday, March 5, 2012

Guest Post: Author Callie Kingston Shares Her Story!

Today, Callie Kingston is back, sharing with us the story of her journey as a writer :). She recently published her first novel, UNDERTOW

Take it away, Callie!

My mother passed away unexpectedly a few years ago. For a week afterwards I stayed up late each night to write her eulogy, after having spent the day planning her funeral, cleaning her apartment, and taking care of myriad details. I hadn’t written anything for years, although I had wanted to be a writer since I could hold a pen.

Something gave way in those midnight hours. I haven’t stopped writing since.

The months that followed found me turning over plots and characters in my mind. Twilight had taken the world by storm, and I started imagining Belle as a young girl who was suffering a delusion, a girl on the brink of a psychotic break. What would that be like, I wondered? What if the story was not about her union with a magical creature, but instead focused on her resilience and recovery from a mental illness? Undertow was born.

At first, I wrote in secret. In longhand. Months later and at risk of developing carpel tunnel, I had a rough draft. Finally, I shared my “hobby” with others and discovered an amazing community of supportive writers. Rounds of critiques and revisions were followed by the standard next step: querying agents and pitching editors.

My timing couldn’t be better. Traditional publishing was just getting hit by a tsunami of incredible proportions.  The rise of indie publishing, the demise of the legacy model, and the massive implosion caused by the recession; all of this was eroding the likelihood of a new author like myself getting picked up. Especially with a genre-bending novel about a girl in college who was losing her mind.

The indie publishing journey has been a wild ride, and one I wouldn’t give up. I like the freedom, the control, and the fact that my work remains mine and true to my vision.

Thank you so much, Callie, for sharing your journey with us :). You've been through a ton, and it's inspiring that it brought you to such a great place, publishing your novel!

Check out UNDERTOW, Callie's fascinating debut!


Callie Kingston said...

Thanks for inviting me to stop by your blog today!


Jemi Fraser said...

Great story. It's amazing how many writers have found their passion for writing through grief. Putting our thoughts down can really help us deal with so many emotions :)