Are you working on something right now that excites you?
Yes, I’m putting together a podcast that will be going live soon. The podcast is all about stories. Stories I’ve written and will be sharing each week. It’s an exciting project and has entailed learning new skills such as sound engineering and narration. The stories will unfold over several episodes. There will be a page on my website with the episode schedule and recordings. I also plan on uploading the podcast to several platforms so my listeners have a choice of how to listen.
I’m also working on a new novel.
Adam: I’m looking forward to hearing the podcast, it sounds like you’re busy with all sorts of exciting new things at the moment.
Christine, What to you makes good storytelling come alive?
A story comes alive when the words on the page not only propel the story along but also create visual images that allow the reader to experience the story both intellectually and emotionally. When a reader identifies with the characters and feels what the characters feel, that’s when the magic happens.
Adam: I love the responses so far in this series, we’ve already received an excellent variety of perspectives on the craft of writing.
Can you give us an example of the power of story and how it’s affected your life?
Stories ignited my mind from a very young age, making me want to go deeper into whatever reality was on the page before me. Stories expanded my understanding of the world, the world inside me and the world at large. Stories made me think on a different level and become more aware of who I am and how I fit into the universal picture.
Stories connect us to each other.
What is one thing you would recommend for aspiring writers who are just starting out?
I would recommend that a new writer continues to develop and exercise their observational skills and use those observations as material to create a story that resonates with their readers.
Adam: I’m reminded here, of advice I once overheard from a film director to a fledgling indie film student. Chiefly, all that leads to becoming a more well-rounded human being – beginning with observation – is also good for story and character development. It sounds like you’re echoing that sentiment here.
Christine: I certainly agree with what that film director said and his advice would fall within what I recommend for new writers. But my recommendation zeros in on developing and exercising observational skills.
I have a quote from Henry David Thoreau in the front of my book Fading Grace that says: “The question is not what you look at, but what you see.”
We are not always conscious observers.
To look is to direct your eyes at something. But to see is to become aware of and understand what you’re looking at.
You’ve talked about stories that engage, transporting the reader through visual imagery. Would you care to elaborate on that and share with our readers one such story that leaps to mind for you?
When I think of a story that comes alive through the use of visual images, I think of John Steinbeck’s Cannery Row. When I read that story, I became a short-term resident of Cannery Row. Through the use of imagery, Steinbeck invites the reader into the Row to see its life, its pulse, its heart.
5) How do you rank books as companions?
Books have been a constant companion to me for as long as I can remember. My parents encouraged me to read as a child and I brought a love of books with me into adulthood. I have traveled around the world in books and books have traveled the world with me.
So, to answer the question, books rank ‘extremely high’ on the Companion Meter. Of course, my dog ranks ‘extremely high’ also.
Adam: Actual dog’s ears are all the better for petting, right…Plus, we like to discourage the other kind around here, and freely offer bookmarks instead.
Lastly, Any hints about the upcoming novel, or will we have to wait and see?
No peeks until the unveiling!
In the coming days & weeks, you’ll see more interviews as part of our Spotlight Series Featuring; local authors, publishers, & editors. This is Adam Thorsfeldt, Signing off for the Port Orford Public Library.
Christine will be presenting at the Indie Press Writer’s Conference, 4/21/2018 10:30AM-6:00 PM
Christine Roney began her professional life by earning a Juris Doctor degree in California and practicing law at the trial and appellate levels. While writing briefs for the courts and advocating for her clients gave her much satisfaction, she eventually realized that she wanted to take a more artistic path.
She completed the professional screenwriting program at UCLA Film School and has written several screenplays. And although she loves the screenplay format, Christine decided that writing novels would allow her to delve much deeper into the characters that play around in her head.
When her high-heels were not echoing in the halls of justice, Christine studied sculpture at Otis College of Art and Design. So when she is not musing over her stories or pounding away on her laptop, she is sequestered in the quiet inner sanctum of her studio, with hammer and chisel in hand, searching for that one clear note, that poetic line that can only be expressed in stone.