Jun 8, 2013

Shades of Summer: Destiny


“The world is dark, and light is precious.
Come closer, dear reader.
You must trust me.
I am telling you a story.”
                                  ~Kate DiCamillo, The Tale of Despereaux

This summer, travel with me to incredible new worlds through captivating stories and delectable desserts. Find yourself being swept up into these novels that mimic the treacherous winds of a tornado where authors empower our minds and influence our emotions through their complex characters and unexpected plots. You will be captivated by the characters’ self-discoveries and their fulfillment of their destinies. So grab a comfy chair, a cup of coffee or tea, and join me as we read these kismet titles and follow the writings of Thomas Merton: “Love is our true destiny. We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone– we find it with another.”

The month of June focuses on destiny.  


 I am excited to introduce and interview
Kathryn Fitzmaurice

About the author:

When Kathryn was thirteen years old, her mother sent her to New York City over the summer to visit her grandmother, who was a science fiction author. After seeing how her grandmother could make the characters in her books into whomever she wanted, Kathryn decided that she, too, wanted to become a writer someday. Years later, after teaching elementary school, and taking many classes, she now writes full time and lives with her husband, two sons, and her dog, Holly, in Monarch Beach, California.

Interview Questions:

How do you feel destiny plays a role in life?

Regarding destiny, I believe people’s lives are mostly planned by God, that there is a path that has been set up for each person with everything that person needs to learn and understand in order to become the best they can be. There are great and lovely events on this path, such as falling in love and helping others to achieve what they want, but also there are difficult events, things that can cause pain but need to occur. Each person has a different set of events, picked just for them, because everyone has to learn exactly what they need to in order to become the best version of themselves. 
However, I also believe we have what is called free will, and are able to step off of this path and do what we want. So destiny can be easy, or it can be arduous, depending on the person. I’ve asked people, as I was writing Emily’s story, and found that everyone has their own opinion. It’s very interesting to see what people believe about how much we’re able to control, or not control. In the end, you will get so many different answers, and each one is important.
I just decided one day to stop teaching and become a writer. I remember sitting on the floor in my bedroom, going through my grandmother's old manuscripts and thinking, I want to try this, just for year, and see if I can do it. It was a huge challenge, but I loved that year, and never went back to teaching.
How did you obtain the concept for your novel?

KF:  I took the idea from a book my grandmother gave me wherein she wrote the inscription, “E.D. is a revered poet.  Perhaps the same will be said of K.H. one day.  Happy birthday, Gramma Eleanor.”  I kept thinking she had predicted what my future might be and decided to use her inscription as the center of my novel. 

Are you named after someone famous in hopes that you would become like them as Emily was named after the Emily Dickinson?

KF:  I am not named after anyone famous.

Have you ever given away something significant to you in order to help someone else further his/her destiny?

KF: When I stopped teaching elementary school, I gave away all of my file boxes with lesson plans and a huge box of bulletin board cut-outs and letters to the girl who used to babysit my two boys.  She had just finished college and was training to be a teacher.  I wanted her to have everything because she had been the best babysitter ever!

Who are you favorite authors?

KF: Kate DiCamillo, Sharon Creech, and Gary D. Schmidt

What is your favorite book read so far in 2013?

KF: A CONSTELLATION OF VITAL PHENOMENA by Anthony Marra.  It’s a book for adults, and so well written, that I have to gasp at some of his beautiful sentences. 

What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

 KF: Don’t ever give up.  Sometimes it just takes one more revision to make the story work.  Also, try to attend as many writing conferences as you can, and if possible, get into a critique group.  They help tremendously. 

What do you consider to be an occupational hazard of being a writer?

KF:  Over-thinking things!

Are there any specific people in your life who have impacted your destiny?

KF: My grandmother, Eleanor Robinson, who taught me to write what I know, and gave me unending support while she was alive.

Are you writing any new novels?

KF:  Yes, but I have to revise the current WIP because it needs some tweaking!

Are there plans of any of your novels to be made into another form such as a movie or graphic novel?

KF: My second book, A DIAMOND IN THE DESERT, has the film rights sold. 
    Hopefully, one day, someone will want to make it into a movie. 

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