Thursday, October 18, 2012

Riveting, Poignant Stories Filled with Suspense, Love,and Hope

Have you ever read a book that has kept you awake late enough to see the first rays of the sun begin to peek through the sky because you just didn't want to put it down? Keeping Guard and The Last Target by Christy Barritt were both riveting and kept me wide awake well past the time I should have been sleeping. Christy writes poignant stories filled with dynamic characters, gritty suspense, love amidst the chaos, and hope: the hope that comes from God. It is my honor to introduce to all of you talented Christian author Christy Barritt. 

Who is Christy Barritt?  
I’m a girl who loves God, who loves my family, and who loves writing. I feel so blessed that I’m actually able to make a living doing what I love to do. I’m usually perky, sometimes too sensitive, always singing without realizing it, and fiercely protective of the people I love.

What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I have two little guys at home, so I love spending time with them. Right now, we’re learning music for the children’s Christmas musical and church and I absolutely adore doing that. I’m also a music lover. I play the guitar and sing. My family loves taking walks together, playing with our dogs, and traveling.

Where do you draw inspiration from for your characters?
Everywhere, really. I love watching people, and I really love unique people. I’m constantly storing away information that I want to use one day in one of my characters. Inspiration is everywhere!

Of all the characters you’ve created, which one do you identify with the most and why?
I’d have to say that I love Gabby St. Claire, the protagonist from my Squeaky Clean mystery series. After three books, I really just feel like I know her so well—she’s like an old friend now! But I love her spunk, and her quirks, and the way she speaks her mind. I love that she struggles and that she’s not perfect.

What is your newest release?
My newest release is Ricochet, and it’s part of the Love Inspired Suspense line. The book takes place at a Christian summer camp. My main character, Molly Hamilton, had some of her best memories while at summer camp as a teenager. After false allegations are made against her, she returns there to work as a nurse for the summer. She doesn’t know that her ex-boyfriend—the man who broke her heart—is now the camp’s director. Crazy things are happening at the camp and danger always seems to lurk nearby. Together, Molly and Nick are determined to save the camp—but first the must save themselves!

I spent many, many summers at camp as both a camper and a counselor, so I had lots of experiences to draw on for this book. I had a great time writing it. Who doesn’t love a good camp story—especially when there’s danger involved?

Who is your favorite author and why?
I love Linda Hall. I think she’s such a subtle writer. I get to the end of her books and think, Wow, I never saw that coming! That says a lot because, as a writer, I’ve trained myself to look for certain patterns in stories (which really kills some of the fun sometimes!). But Linda always surprises me.

How did you get involved in writing?
I’ve always loved to write. Seriously. I remember being in elementary school and writing stories about Myrtle the Turtle. In high school, I wrote two or three books (that will never, ever see the light of day!). I went to school to study communications. I knew I couldn’t simply get a “job” as a novelist, so I became an assistant editor at a Christian publishing house. I kept writing and writing and writing in the process. Eventually I got my first contract.

What do you enjoy most and least about the writing process?
I enjoy starting new books the most! I really do. Starting a book is so exciting. I love thrusting my characters into the middle of crazy, intriguing situations. I have to say that I enjoy editing and revising the least—however, I do like how editing and revising truly makes the book shine. In the end, all that hard work is worth it when you read the final product.

What advice would you offer an aspiring author?
Don’t give up. I’ve seen a lot of good writers get started, but at the sign of that first rejection they walk away. Rejection is a part of the process. You have to get used to it. I still get rejected today, even though I have 15 books either published or contracted to be published. Stick with it. The more you write, the better you’ll get.

What story ideas would you like to explore in the future?
I have several books that I really want to work on. Some of the ideas that really fascinate me often revolve around people who are placed in gut-wrenching situations. For instance, I met someone the other day. She was in her early thirties. Several years ago, her husband and baby were killed in an auto accident. All I could think about was, how does a soul recover from something like that? How do you find hope throughout that pain? I like creating characters with tragic backgrounds, putting them in a situation where they have to face their fears, and then seeing what happens from there.

What has God been teaching you lately?
So much! I’ve faced some challenges in the past year that really knocked me off my feet. I felt very betrayed by some people who I’d considered friends. God is teaching me to put my total confidence and faith in him, though. He’s shown me that he’s faithful and that he takes care of me and that he has a plan for my life.

Where can readers learn more about you and your books?
I’m pretty active on Facebook. Sometimes I’m on Twitter and Pinterest. I update readers on my writing at: While you’re there, sign up for my newsletter!

Thanks so much for the interview, Kelly!

It was my pleasure, Christy. Thank you for joining us today. Thank you, readers, for stopping by my blog today as well. May you all have a glorious day!
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