Today on Paws4Puzzles we continue our Shades of Fear interview series with up and coming author Krista Redmayne.
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself Krista. Something a bit ironic about me is that writing was not my first love. My first passion was music. But, like what happens sometimes in real affairs of the heart, my relationship with music became too painful. I found I could not take criticism of my voice gracefully at all, even when well-meant and fully earned. While I had always written and told stories to friends and family I had not considered writing as a possible profession, much less true calling. I knew I loved to read; I loved the adventures I would take in the pages of a book. My first girlhood crush was on Atticus Finch from Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird. The idea of my writing an adventure for others to read had just never occurred to me. Again, like any good relationship, it took time and work and commitment for my love of writing to dawn. My bond to writing stories was like that best friend that you take for granted, a best friend that you always love to have around and who makes you smile just to think of them, and who has always been there when you need them. I realized I was truly happy when I wrote. Now I cannot imagine myself doing anything else.
2. How did you get involved with Shades of Fear? I am currently a graduate student at Southern New Hampshire University working on a MA in English and Creative Writing. I have been fortunate to meet many talented writers in this program and among them are some of the writers for Shades of Fear. Desiree Scott very kindly extended me an invitation to join the group, and I have to say it was one of the best things that have ever happened to me. The support and camaraderie of my fellow writers has inspired me. It is an incredible group filled with smart, funny and caring people and I couldn’t ask for a better group to work with.
3. Who are your favorite authors? Wow, that is an amazingly difficult question. I have had a passion for books from when I was quite small. I remember being maybe three or four years old and sitting down in our living room to listen to my mother read aloud. She read books like Rudyard Kipling’s Kim and Nathanial Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter along with Dr. Seuss’s The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham. We didn’t even own a television until I was seven or eight year old. Books were my entertainment. I love someone from every genre, from the Bronte sisters to Cormac McCarthy, from Tolkien to Asimov from Janet Evanovich to Jane Austen and from Stephen King to Edgar Allen Poe. I do have a special place in my heart for Oscar Wilde.
4. Tell us a bit about your story The Collaboration: A Gothic Tale? This story was inspired by my love of the ambiguous gothic. I do love a good scratch your head and wonder “what the heck,” moment. I hope to create a bit of that for my readers with this story.
5. What inspired this story? Honestly what started this story brewing in my brain was a project I am involved in – a nonfiction collaboration on a woman named Sylvia Norris. It occurred to me that with two or more writers working on the same project together there is an exponential building of imagination, and while this is normally a positive, I wondered what would happen if something went wrong… something unknown, or evil entered the writers partnership?
6. Do you know what happened next? What do you think was in the cellar? It might seem counter intuitive, considering it is my brain child, but I don’t know. I don’t want to know. I want there to be quality of the surreal, the uncanny. I want to ask the question, are there things on this earth that are unfathomable.
7. Are you planning on continuing this story? I am glad you asked this question. I have already worked further on this story. Don’t get me wrong, I like it just the way it was, but I am still working on it, tweaking it. I am just that way with my stories. I never feel that they are completely done.
8. If someone offered you the chance to spend the night in a haunted house, would you do it? Oh yes! My older son and I plan to take a road trip across the US and visit the most haunted areas in each state we pass through. This is something we have been planning for about two years now. It will take a bit to save the money but it is ON!
9. Have you ever co-written a story – how do you think the process differs from writing by yourself? I am currently working on a nonfiction project, the one I mentioned earlier about Sylvia Norris, and it is a collaboration between myself and another writer. Sylvia was a photographer with the Hollywood Foreign Press for many years. She was one of the first women photographers who worked for Playgirl and she had a long and amazing career, particularly for a woman of that generation. Working with another writer has its challenges. Just finding time in both of our schedules is often difficult, but the ability to bounce ideas off each other and the excitement that builds as we get into the research is worth it.
10. What are your greatest fears and how do you deal with them? The thought of something tragic happening to one of my children is, without a doubt, my biggest fear. It is one of the reasons that the characters in my story all have their own issues with children or, in Edward’s case, issues with childhood. I am a bit too much like Edward in that I can obsess about the things that could be wrong. I often have to take a moment and remind myself that worrying about something that may or may not happen is a waste of time and energy.
11. What are you working on now? I am like quite a few other authors I have met, in that I can’t seem to just have one project going. New Stories, older stories, are constant companions that hang around in my brain. I am, as of THIS moment, working on a fiction novel told in short stories, the Sylvia project and two flash fiction stories. This may change two minutes from now when the idea for a story about a time warp where everything that has been written in the past is corrupted comes to mind… (hmm, actually, that could work…)
12. Tell us a little about your writer’s group – AV Pen 2 Paper. It is often said that writing is a solitary practice, which, for the most part is true. However writers, I think, crave the company of other writers, other philosophers and creative minds in general. Because my classes for creative writing were all online I was feeling cut off from that kind of interaction. I started e-mailing and Facebook messaging other people who were in Antelope Valley who I knew had at least thought about writing. I wanted to see if they might enjoy getting together and critiquing each other’s work. It started small, just three of us, but before our first meeting it had already gotten out that we were planning AV Pen 2 Paper and it just grew. It has been a great way to practice the art of writing.
13. How can readers connect with you? I admit I am a bit behind on the social networking that is mandatory if one wants to be an author. I don’t have a blog of my own as yet and I still need to start a twitter account and author page on Facebook. However I do have an e-mail account K.RedmayneAuthor@yahoo.com should anyone like to connect with me.