Today we have with us Kristina Riggle, acclaimed author of Keepsake and the new thought-provoking and heart-wrenching novel inspired by real-life events, The Whole Golden World (Wm Morrow/ HarperCollins).
Please start us off by telling a little about yourself...
Kristina Riggle: I write, I parent, I read, I volunteer, I run (slowly and not very far). I also have a dog which I never thought I'd say about myself, but it's amazing what your family can talk you into.
Lia Mack: Can you tell us a little about your book?
Kristina Riggle: It's about two families and a town torn apart by a teacher-student affair, told from the points of view of Morgan (the teen-ager), Dinah (her mother) and Rain, (the teacher's wife).
Lia Mack: What was the most challenging aspect of writing this particular story?
Kristina Riggle: Making all the characters understood. It's told from three points of view, and they are so different from one another. I had to make the reader feel for each of these characters, even the ones whose perspectives seem totally skewed, from the outside looking in.
Lia Mack: What are you working on now?
Kristina Riggle: Researching, preparing and drafting a new book that no one has seen a single word of yet, so I won't say any more.
Lia Mack: Can you describe a bit how your venture into writing looked like?
Kristina Riggle: I started out as a newspaper reporter, which at the time seemed like a more viable way to earn a paycheck. I quit when I had my first child and I was burned out on newspapering, and started to come back to creative writing in earnest. (I'd never really stopped, though.)
Lia Mack: What does your typical writing day look like?
Kristina Riggle: Drop off the kids, run or other workout, and then writing plus business-type tasks (like this interview, for example). It would be easy to fill up a whole day with administrative type chores, and home chores, but I do my utmost to guard that writing time and give it priority. Right now I still haven't put away my (non-melty) groceries. I got home from the store three hours ago.
Lia Mack: What are your thoughts on authors needing to build a platform?
Kristina Riggle: It's a different world for fiction and non-fiction. For novelists, I'd say not to get distracted by thoughts of platform until you've written the thing and spit-shined it. It's too easy to get distracted by marketing and publicity. Once you know your novel shines... It's a tough one. What's a novelist's platform supposed to be, anyway? An expert in writing novels? There are lots of those already. An expert in your subject? Maybe, if your subject lends itself to a non-fiction hook. But otherwise? I don't know. This isn't really an answer, but it's all I've got.
Lia Mack: If you could go back in time, what advice would you give yourself if you could speak to the aspiring writer you once were?
Kristina Riggle: Take the long view. Any one rejection is only one rejection.
Lia Mack: Perfect advice. And thank you so much for being our guest author today.
If you'd like to learn more about Kristina Riggle and her books, please visit her online at: www.kristinariggle.net, Twitter: @krisriggle, Facebook: Facebook.com/RiggleNovels