Thursday, March 4, 2010

Interview With Joyce’s Client Christy Barritt

I’m pleased to introduce my client Christy Barritt to you. Christy has just recently received a contract from Steeple Hill to write a story for their Love Inspired Suspense line. We believe this is only the beginning of her career with Steeple Hill. Christy writes really good mystery stories. Her Squeaky Clean series published by Kregel Publishing was a favorite with my church book club.

Tell us about your family and your ministry.

I’m married to a wonderful man named Scott, who’s a teacher and youth minister. We have a three year old boy and another baby on the way this summer. When I’m not writing and spending time with family, I’m very active with our church. I’m also on staff part-time there as a worship leader.

What do you write besides books?

For the past seven years, I’ve been writing for my local newspaper. I write feature stories about people doing positive things in the community—I love it and have gotten to meet some wonderful people through these articles. I also freelance for various magazines and publications.

What book are you writing presently?

I’m currently working on a book titled “Keeping Guard” for Love Inspired Suspense. The book is about a woman who goes to a small Virginia town to escape a man who’s been stalking her. While there, she works for her brother’s best friend, a former Coast Guardsman who’s taken over his father’s restaurant. Their past relationships have tainted their view of each other—and of God. They both must work to overcome their pasts in order to save their futures as a madman closes in.

Where do you get your inspiration?

The better question might be “Where DON’T I get my inspiration?” LOL I seem to find inspiration in so many things—from watching the news, to eavesdropping on conversations at the hair salon, to visiting new places. For me, ideas always come pretty easily.

Is there an area in your writing that you are working on developing more?

Even as a published author, I’m always working to develop my writing more in every area. I have to say that plotting comes pretty naturally to me. I have to constantly work on characterization, however. I can see characters in my head, but I have to remind myself to express their thoughts and explain their actions within the book. Having both a strong plot and strong characters is so important to a well-developed book.

What is your all time favorite writing ‘How To’ book? One that you would like to recommend to other authors.

I really do like Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Browne and King. I think I discover a new gem in that book every time I read it! It’s loaded with so much helpful information, both for new writers and seasoned ones.

Have you had to overcome any obstacles in your writing journey?

I’ve had to overcome discouragement many times before. Writing isn’t an easy business and I daily have to surrender everything to God and trust that He’s in charge. Balancing writing with family can be a challenge also, so my mantra is that people always come before projects. God will take care of the rest as long as loving Him and loving others is my priority.

What has been your best and your worst advice?

I think it’s funny because in high school, people always told me that no one could make a living with either writing or music, that I should find a “real” career. I’m happy to say that today I’m making a living with a combination of both music and writing! So, even though I know what the intentions were behind that advice, it was probably the worst advice I could have listened to. The best advice I’ve received would be “Don’t give up!” Giving up can be very tempting when rejection letters pile up! Tenacity is a required trait for those who seek to be published.

What is the most important thing on your current ‘To Do ‘ list?

It’s not writing-related, but honestly, right now the most important thing is just to have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby! Since I’ve had some pregnancy hypertension issues, this means I have to take it easy. Not easy for a Type A!

Tell 3 things that we wouldn’t know about you.

Three things? Hmm…I love potato chips (almost any kind), but I wish I didn’t, I’m clumsy—as in, I can trip over lint clumsy, and I sing or hum constantly—without even realizing I’m doing it sometimes!

What led you to the career choice of becoming a writer?

I’ve always loved to write, ever since I can remember. In fact, I wrote two or three novels in high school (that will never, ever see the light of day, by the way!). I knew I couldn’t make a living as a novelist, so I went to college, studied communications and got a job as an assistant editor with a Christian publisher. When my dad became ill, I decided to move back home (12 hours away) so I could be near him. This move propelled me back to my love of writing. I began freelancing and working on my books again. Eventually, many rejections later, I got my first book contract! To this day, I simply love stories. They’re my passion!

Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?

Hartline is a great agency to be with. They truly care about their clients and I’ve never once regretted signing with them! Having a good agent is so important nowadays.

Where can we find you on the web?

My website is I’m also on Facebook and Shoutlife! I love connecting with readers there.
Thanks Christy – it’s a joy to work with you. I love your writing.
Christy’s Squeaky Clean series from Kregel is available on her web site or on Amazon or Barnes & Noble. Book 1 – Hazardous Duty was an ACFW book of the year in the mystery/suspense category, Book 2 – Suspicious Minds won the Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Suspense and Mystery.


Carrie Turansky said...

It was great to learn a little more about Christy and her writing journey. Congratulations on your new book with Steeple Hill!

Diana said...

Christy; I echo Joyce. Our book club is looking forward to your next book. We really enjoyed your two previous titles! Congratulations on the newest soon to arrive Family member also!

Anonymous said...

It's a pleasure to "meet" you, Jill, and get to know you a little better! Big kudos on your sale to LI, and I'm looking forward to reading the book soon!