ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Judy Christie is a writer and consultant who lives in Northwest Louisiana. Gone to Green is her debut novel and launches this month as part of the new line of inspirational fiction from Abingdon Press. It is the first of a series set in Green, Louisiana. Judy is the author of the Hurry Less, Worry Less nonfiction series (also Abingdon Press) and loves to help busy people slow down and enjoy each day more. Her next book, Hurry Less Worry Less at Work, comes out in September. Judy likes to poke around flea markets, write in her journal and sit in the porch swing with a cup of coffee.
JA: You've written several non-fiction books, but this is your first novel. How do you feel being one of the debut authors for Abingdon Press's new fiction line?
JC: Thrilled. Scared. Hopeful. Thankful. I have enjoyed working with the wonderful Abingdon team on several nonfiction projects, and it’s a real blessing to be part of the fiction launch. Plus, the new Abingdon fiction writers are such a fun group. We have a great time!
JA: Gone to Green is about a big-city newspaper editor who moves to a small town to take over the local twice-weekly paper. How much of your own journalistic background came into play as you were writing the book?
JC: I was a reporter and editor for nearly 30 years and can tell you about the ink stains on the floor, the mold in the newsroom refrigerator and how to write a headline or a news story. That certainly came into play when I wrote Gone to Green. But I also called upon my many years as a Southerner and my love of small-town people. What surprised me as a new novelist was how the characters took on a life of their own and shaped the story in unexpected ways.
JA: Lois Barker finds life in Green to be nothing like she expected. What's your favorite thing about Lois?
JC: What I love most about Lois is that she is a strong, uncertain woman who is trying to find the right path for her life – and she needs a course correction here and there to become the woman she was created to be.
JA: What do you hope people take away when they finish reading Gone to Green?
JC: I hope readers are encouraged to see life as an interesting adventure and to take a leap of faith or two along the way. I know different readers receive unique messages from novels, depending on where they are in life, so I look forward to hearing what they get from this story.
JA: What's next for you in the writing arena?
JC: I’m happily and nervously working on Goodness Gracious Green and Green Through and Through, the next two novels in the Green series (2010 and 2011), and getting ready to start on Hurry Less, Worry Less for Moms (Spring 2011). I’m also looking forward to the release of Hurry Less, Worry Less at Work next month (September 2009) and Hurry Less, Worry Less for Families (Spring 2010). Whew! I need a nap!
JA: As the author of the Hurry Less, Worry Less books, what's one tip you can share with readers today to help them get more enjoyment out of life?
JC: Make a quick list (no over-thinking!) of what gives you energy and what drains your energy. Then do more of the first and less of the second. Remember: When you say “no” to one thing, you are saying “yes” to something else. (I can talk about this all day, but I believe we’re supposed to enjoy each day and have fun in life. If you’re not doing that, consider what needs to change.)
JA: The current theme of my blog is The Year of Dreams. If you could realize one life-long dream right now, what would it be?
JC: Love that theme and believe in dreaming big! The release of Gone to Green is a dream come true. I’d sure like to see Gone to Green and the rest of the series on the NYT and USA TODAY bestseller lists!
JA: Last but not least, how can people keep up with your latest publishing news?
JC: Visit me at http://www.judychristie.com/ and sign up for my free e-newsletter. Visit me on Facebook (I love FB friends) or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Come on down to Green!
WIN THE BOOK
If you’d like to be entered to win a copy of Gone to Green, just leave a reply to this blog. I’ll pick a winner at random on September 7th. Please leave an email address so I can contact you if you're the winner. (To prevent spammers from trolling for your email, please use this format with the brackets--you [at] yourmail [dot] com--or something similar.) Good luck!