Today, I have debut author Christy Raedeke with me. She is the author of Prophecy of Days, Book I: The Daykeeper’s Grimoire. Check out my review of her novel.
When and why did you begin writing?
I began writing decades ago, simply because I loved it. I was a Journalism major in college and I thought I’d go on to be the next big thing in ad copywriting (blame it on the obnoxious, late 80’s TV series called thirtysomething). Instead I became a marketing copywriter in the world of high-tech. But in my free time I started writing short stories and those grew and grew. Finally, in about 2002, I set out to write an actual book—the book that became Prophecy of Days.
What was the most challenging aspect of writing Prophecy of Days, Book I: The Daykeeper’s Grimoire?
The most challenging aspect was breaking down really sophisticated information into digestible chunks. I mean, I hope it’s digestible! I read a lot of really complex books and tried to distill that knowledge down. I know I throw a lot of information around in this book, but I love that kind of stuff. I really set out to write the book I would have devoured as a teen.
It seems like this book would have a lot of research involved. What was your favorite aspect of the book to research?
Without a doubt, the best part of the research was traveling to Chiapas, Tabasco, Quintana Roo, and the Yucatan to visit Mayan ruins. There is simply nothing like being at the amazing city of Palenque in the misty early morning and hearing the Howler Monkeys throwing their voices around in the jungle, or watching bats appear as the summer solstice sun sets over El Castillo in Chicchan Itza, or jumping into a cenote—basically a massive limestone sinkhole filled with water rain water—knowing that Mayan kings had bathed there centuries ago.
What is the hardest part of writing for you? What’s the easiest?
Revising is the hardest part because it feels more like work. For me, since I don’t really outline, I absolutely love writing a first draft. Remember those magic pictures from when you were a kid –you’d drag your pencil lightly over the blank page and a picture would appears? For me, writing a first draft is like that. Things magically appear! I really don’t know the specifics of what’s going to happen until I write it, and later I often cannot remember writing some parts of what’s on the page. I know that sounds kind of weird, but it’s really just a matter of getting into the flow and letting my mind take over my fingers.
Do you have any writing “must haves”?
I must have a stretch of uninterrupted time. It takes a bit for me to get into the flow, and once I’m in it I want to stay there. I have two kids, 9 and 6, who are like automatic interruption machines. As soon as they hear my fingers flying on the keyboard they come running in to my office! I prefer to write in long stretches if I can, so going away for a weekend to write is incredibly productive for me.
What do you like to do in your spare time, when you are not writing?
I love to travel, I love to ski, I love to camp. I really love rafting and kayaking, or anything that involves a nice, cold river. But when I’m looking for something a bit closer to home, who can deny the great pleasure of a good dinner/movie combo?
Thanks for inviting me over to your blog, Kristen! I’m thrilled to be interviewed here.
It was great having you Christy! I can’t wait for the next book in your series!