Diving right in to getting to know my fellow Anitas (& Anito!) better, I asked long time Anita Factor member, Christina, the following two questions:
You’re a new addition to a box of crayons. What colour would you be and why?
[I would be] a deep tomato red. I love the intensity and vibrancy of the color and how it’s full of life.
Finished reading anything worth recommending lately?
The Septimus Heap series by Angie Sage. This series is a middle grade fantasy that is unlike any fantasy I’ve ever read. Full of unique characters and concepts.
Please connect with Christina:
Christina likes the quirky and the queer, and enjoys trying to come up with characters and settings that fit in her writing. She writes for middle grade children.
Christina and I have known each other a long time. We were both members of the Vast Imaginations writing group, prior to the formation of the Anita Factor. Christina is one of the most creative people I know, not only does she have excellent story ideas, but she’s creative in everything in her life – from writing, to DIY home renos and decor, to arts and crafts, to drawing. And most recently cake decorating – all self-taught. Her creativity oozes from every cell. She’s simply amazing!
I asked Christina the following two questions:
What was the last book you read and you would you recommend it?
The last book I read was Murder and Mistletoe by Robin Stevens, a middle grade read, part of a series, about two girls who solve a murder at their school. An enjoyable read.
What do you think about when your alone in the car?
I drive a lot of highway miles, leaving me free to think unhindered. And after a few minutes my creative mind kicks in and I start to work on whatever project I happen to be working on at home. Sometimes that means trying to sort a way to tackle a DIY home project in the most feasible and efficient manner, or a craft project I want to do. [Pictured: Christina’s book lamp and hand-bound journals.]
But often my brain turns to a writing project I’m in the middle of and almost lazily mulls over different aspects of the story to come up with quirks and details of the piece that surprise me pleasantly. The things my muse comes up with aren’t necessarily things I can work into the story but help me learn my characters better or my setting, which affects my writing positively.
Please connect with Christina:
Christina likes the quirky and the queer, and enjoys trying to come up with characters and settings hat fit that in her writing. She writes for middle grade children
Gabriele (Gabe) and I have been friends for about six years now. She was a fellow founding member of the Anita Factor writing group. Gabe’s commitment to a writing schedule and consistency is something I have long admired. At each Anita Factor meeting, we have time to read from our own writing for critique and Gabe is the one member who consistently has something to read at every meeting! And no, Gabe, it’s not “boring!” 😀
Isn’t this a gorgeous photo? I just love this one.
Anyway, I have asked Gabe two questions. One of them by now you’ll likely have noticed is consistent. What book did you last read and would you recommend it? I think it’s important to keep the word flowing about great books!
So, Gabe, which book was it?
“The last book I read was “Prussian Nights” by Alexander Solzhenitsyn (translated from Russian to English by Robert Conquest). 1977.
“It’s a 100-page narrative poem abut the Soviet attack of East Prussia during the final months of 1945. I picked it up for three reasons.
- It’s Solzenitsyn.
- It’s set in the exact area and time that my mom attempted to flee the Soviets.
- It’s research for my own writing.
“Now that I’m finished, I embrace more than ever the horror of war and the humanity of the ‘enemy.’ I appreciate the truth of Buffy St. Marie’s song, Universal Soldier. So, yes, read it. Short and evocative!”
What are your ethics of writing about historical figures?
“I explore the lives of ‘little people.’ This gives me room to be flexible—after all, I’m writing fiction. When it comes to famous figures, I rely on facts. When it comes to documented events, I turn to facts. I do a lot of research to make my settings, my characters and their worlds as true-to-life as possible. However, my books are an interpretation and not memoir. But here’s a question…aren’t all memories interpretations?”
Gabriele has two books published in her Katya’s Stone series [Rebelight Publishing Inc.]. The series is middle grade historical fiction based on the true events that happened to her mother during WWII. Click book images for links to Amazon.ca:
Gabe considers herself an explorer (reader), a gardener (writer), and a muller (as in mulling things over, preferably while walking). After years of rushing about madly, she’s embracing a slower, simpler life.