INDY AUTHOR TALK WITH Kathy-Lynn Cross ~ Imagination Saved Me from Drowning

Indy Author Talk Indy Author Talk

Kathy 7

*** First I would like to say, “Thank you, so much for having me on Nerd Girl!” ***

Imagination Saved Me from Drowning

In 2009, my husband and I purchased our first home, the kids started new schools, we were on top. I considered myself blessed being able to stay at home with my family, help take care of my mom, and write.

Then my husband’s mom announced she needed heart surgery. It didn’t go well. Needless to say, we lost part of our souls. It was a bleak September in 2010. Our family was broken and the recovery process was slow.

My mother-in-law had been helping me edit my Merfolk story and every time I tried to return to it since her passing, I became flooded with memories. My mother, who was also very ill during this time, was equally devastated by the news of my mother-in-law’s passing. She gave up living and six months later my family was repeating the motions of loss as we buried another part of our souls.

Our already broken family was pulled even further apart and we lost focus instead of coming together in our time of need. I fell into the darkness and stayed there for three months. The only comfort I had was living in the land of ‘what if.’ What if this never happened? Then one night I tried to write again. I typed two sentences.

“You must save her. Don’t you understand? She could change your world if you would only spare her life.”

I couldn’t believe where my mind had drifted too. Surrounded in death, I thought ‘what if’ you could change the reaper’s mind and save their life? My fingers began typing. Emotions of frustration, loss, pain and loneliness poured onto the pages before me.

When I wasn’t writing I found myself reaching out to my family to ask their input on my story. Each sentence was another stitch that closed the gaping wound in my heart. Plunged into a fantasy of my own making, I built my own steps out of the darkness and I made it back to the land of the living.

My characters helped me find my way back to my family. If I had one wish, it would be to make them real so I could tell them, “You saved my life.”

Imagination is more than make-believe … it can be the power one needs to heal their soul. My pseudonym is in honor of my mother-in-law and my mom, two of the most important and influential people in my life that helped me find my wings to fly.

Best of luck and Break A Pencil!

Kathy-Lynn Cross

Indy Author Talk Author Bio


Born in Pomona, California, Kathy-Lynn Cross lived there for twelve years until her family moved to Las Vegas, Nevada—where she resides still to this day. Inspired by the backdrop of Sin City, Kathy-Lynn took her English professor’s advice and wrote about the hometown that she knew.
Kathy-Lynn wasn’t always a writer. In 2008, when her niece was hospitalized, Kathy-Lynn decided to do something special for her so she wrote a short tale for her to read. After devouring it in a single day, her niece and the nurses in the pediatrics wing quickly asked her, “What’s next?”
That was when a new chapter in her life opened up, and Kathy-Lynn realized that she wanted to become a Storyweaver.
Kathy-Lynn loves the color red and obsessively uses it in everything, including her bottle-blonde hair accented by red highlights. She has a knack for baking and cake decorating—that is, when her fingers are not busy writing mayhem. When recharging, you could find her curled up with a cup of coffee and a good book or spending time with her hubby of nineteen years, two kids, four cats, and the family dog.

INdy Author Talk QA

 Q.  Where are you from? Does the area you live in influence your writing?

I’m from Pomona, CA, but moved away when I was about six.

My mother moved my sister and me to Las Vegas in 1984, and I’ve been anchored here ever since. Now I live on the outskirts of Las Vegas, (aka. Sin City) Nevada … and don’t mistake us for New Mexico, they’re not as crazy as us here.

And to answer your second question, yes, what better place for my reapers to reside than Sin City.

Q.  Tell us your latest news??

My very first novel, So Shall I Reap, is a paranormal-young adult-fantasy. Book one, in the Unseen Series, will be releasing June 30 TH of this year. I’m also in my first anthology with my publishing house, Clean Teen Publishing. Nine authors from Clean Teen Publishing, and Crimson Tree Publishing, have come together to write a time travel anthology, called Twists in Time. It will be out this June as well. (Just in “time” for the upcoming convention UtopYA)

Q.  When and why did you begin writing? What inspired you to write your first book?

I come from a long line of “Storyweavers” in my family. Starting, I’m sure, far before my great-grandmother, on my mother’s side. As a family, we would come together, and listen to my great-grandparents; grandparents, even aunts and uncles tell family stories during the holidays. In short, I come from a long line of “talkers.”

My first “Ah-Ha” moment came while my sister and her three children were visiting from Alaska. Her oldest became sick and was hospitalized. My niece complained of being bored, so I went home and drafted a short love story between two Merfolk. (Since we were all reading the Twilight Saga at the time.) After she had read it, the nurses on the floor had asked to read it. Then the next day I was greeted with, “Well, what’s next?” The question launched me forward into a passion that has now become an addiction. As along as my fingers can fly, I will strive to be a Storyweaver.

Q.  What book(s) / author(s) have influenced your life and writing?

My second inspiration came at me during the Twilight Saga, when Stephenie Meyer was hitting her stride, just before book four was released. She said and not quoting verbatim here, “Even though I had a million things to do, I stayed in bed, thinking about my dream.” She took her dream and soared. Whereas my dreams turned into daydreams with characters that plagued me, not only at night but during the day as well. After a while, I thought my family might commit me until the characters began to talk through my fingers.

Q.  Tell us about your characters and how they came to be? Have they been in your head for a long time?

So Shall I Reap is not my first story. I started with a story about the Merfolk and their struggles under the sea. My mother-in-law used to edit it, and then once corrected, I would read the story to my mother. Our family lost both of them six months apart. I couldn’t return to the story without thinking about death and if given the chance to change it … would I? Then I thought if you could trick a reaper (Tevin) into saving someone (Alexcia) what would the outcome be? Now I can’t get Tevin and Alexcia to stop talking; therefore, the story is written in both points of view.

Q.  What motivates you to write?

This answer will be short and sweet; my kids, my hubby, and music, music, oh, and more music. To find out what kind I listen to, just go to my website. Alexcia and Tevin each have their own playlist. :)

Q.  What is the hardest part of writing?

To stick to a schedule. The characters in my head don’t necessarily talk when I need them to. Normally it’s when I’m in the middle of driving, or shopping, tapping into the social media feed, or at the doctor’s office when I’m … well, you get the idea.

My dad gave me the best advice, “Always be prepared for your ideas; have pen and paper handy at all times.” I keep notebooks, paper, journals, in the car, by my bed, in the kitchen, by the couch, and yes, even in the closet. ( I bet you thought I was going to say somewhere else?)

Q.  Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?

Yes! I found me again. During my darkest time, after losing both my mom and second mom, it became a way to help me deal with my emotions. And just like Alexcia says, “Writing is cheap therapy.” My characters helped me from the murky emotional waters I sank into and pushed me towards the surface so my soul could breathe again.

Q.  Where do you get your ideas?

I play, connect the dots. Okay, I hear you laughing, but it’s true. I start with an idea; that’s “1.” Then I come up with a setting; that’s “2.” Research; is “3.” I’m sure you can see the pattern. I take the same approach on the characters I create as well. Outline! Always have one but remember an outline is never set in stone, there is always a delete key, eraser, backspace button; because plans change, ideas grow, and universes expand.

Q.  What does your family think of your writing?

My husband is not a big fan of reading. He would rather see my stories on the flat screen. Still, his support is strong, and he helps me when I’m stuck. It’s good to have someone there to push you out of the ‘mind mud.’ My kids are awesome! Did I say that my kids are awesome? I read my chapters and pages to them. “Read out loud!” It helps you feel the emotion of the character while listening for grammatical errors, plus it also gives your fingers a rest. Most of the time, they are more than willing to listen and yet others I get the eye roll. It makes my heart soar when my husband and kids say, while smiling, “I’m proud of you.”

Q.  What is the best advice you would give to inspiring authors?

1.)    Observe your surroundings. You never know what may be beyond your nose to inspire you.

2.)    Keep writing. Have something to write on at all times.

3.)    Remember whatever you decide to write … it is your creation, and you can change, delete, and mold it to your will.

4.)    Don’t let the blank screen intimidate you. In-other-words, “do not push.” If the characters are strong, and your work has even the slightest heartbeat … it has life.

5.)    And don’t worry about admitting you hear voices … It is one of the hardest challenges for a writer; to tap into the character’s inner voice is a talent. (lol) {My characters are all agreeing with me.}

6.)    Be a child of discovery, and have fun with it.  Keep an open mind; even imagination needs fresh air.

Q.  What book are you reading now?

I’m a multitasking reader. Since I try to cram real life, writing, social media, research, and reading into every day. I’m reading four books right now. Descending; by Holly Kelly, Kindling Flames: Stolen Fire; by Julie Wetzel, Dollhouse; by Anya Allyn, and Haunted: the Arnaud Legacy; by Lynn Carthage. I will have reviews for these stories shortly.

Indy Author Talk Author links


Here is the Book trailer for So Shall I Reap

Main websites, blog, social media, and contact email.

Instagram; kathylynncrossbooks

Tumblr; keeperofmyreapers

Goodreads Giveaway ~

And I would love it if you followed me on Amazon

INDY Author Talk Extra

 by Kathy-Lynn Cross

Series: The Unseen Series
Release Date: June 30, 2015
Genre: Young Adult / Paranormal
There is no protection from the Unseen.
Las Vegas, Nevada can’t contain Alexcia Crystalline Stasis, who is living the ideal teenager’s dream as the school’s elite socialite. That is, until a fatal car accident changes everything. Now Alexcia’s emotions are on the verge of combusting. As if mourning the loss of her boyfriend isn’t enough, she is also dealing with extreme night terrors that leave her wondering if she just might need to be fitted for a straightjacket.
Tevin isn’t your normal daemon. He’s the leader of his clan, and he also happens to be a very active Grim Reaper. He never wanted to be charged with babysitting the one girl who can sway Creation’s Balance. Tevin has known and kept Alexcia safe most of her life. Now that he has to become even more personally involved in her protection, Tevin finds himself having a hard time separating his sworn duty and pure curiosity. What does make Alexcia tick?
Will Tevin be able to keep Alexcia safe from the Unseen? And will Alexcia’s emotions eventually help Tevin attempt to understand what being human is all about? Or will the entities and assassins’ of the Unseen get what they want … her dead.
Don’t forget to add So Shall I Reap to your TBR List

Want to READ MORE from Clean Teen Publishing? Check out our huge selection of amazing reads! There’s sure to be something for every reader!





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The NerdGirl

Blogger, Reviewer, Promoter extraordinaire, I don’t think you will find ANYONE that loves books more than her. Gladys will read anything but prefers paranormal and fantasy. She likes historical and some contemporary ….. as long as its not predictable.
  • Kelly A Risser

    OMG…The Facebook icon with the reaper? LOVE it! Great interview. I can’t wait to read So Shall I Reap. It sounds fabulous, and I always love a story (YOUR story) with a happy ending. Keep writing, Kathy!

  • Sarah Bird

    You are So Amazing!!!❤️❤️

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