Lilah and the Locket
An Interview with (the real) Kristie
I thought readers might like to get a behind the scenes look and insider information about Kristie from Lilah and the Locket. Kristie and Nathan are real people and Lilah is their dog. I used information about each of them to create the main characters in Lilah and the Locket.
Kristie agreed to answer some questions for you and I want to share them. I hope it will give you some additional information about the story and the main characters in the story.
Kristie, Nathan and Lilah live in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia and they vacation on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Rachel Deragon, the artist, who painted the picture for the cover also vacations there. We all have ties to the area and I feel that makes the story more special to each of us.
1 - You may not know this, but I had an idea for a murder mystery set at Cape Hatteras for a long time and I thought of that the moment I opened your entry envelope. This all started because you entered some pictures of your Shepherd Lilah in a fundraising event that I organized for the Charlottesville/ Albemarle SPCA. Why did you choose the picture of her at the ocean?
We chose the photo at the ocean because she just loves the beach and water. She goes everywhere with us and this was a picture of her first trip to the beach. She loves playing in the ocean and digging in the sand.
2 - I remember the day when I called to tell you that your picture was chosen for the story. But, I never got to ask what you thought when your family was chosen for the story.
We were thrilled. Our dog is like a child to us and to have a story written that included all of us was very special. What a great item to have on our bookshelf. And the way the book is written, with detailed about the things we do and the ways that Lilah acts, it just adds to how special it is to us. It's something we can always read and use to remember our special bond with Lilah even long after she leaves this earth.
3 - In order to make the details about the characters more "true to life", I asked you to fill out character worksheets for each of you. Can you tell us about filling out the character worksheets for yourself, your husband and Lilah?
We just tried to be as detailed an honest as possible. We really wanted the story to be true to who we are and how we act and react to different situations. It's not often you get to have a story written about you, so we wanted it to be a true reflection of us and our relationships.
4 - In what ways do the characters remind you of your family? Are there any aspects of the story that are more special to you and Nathan?
Well, you really took our personalities and put them on paper and that in it self reminds me of our family. Even down to the things that Lilah does on a daily basis, that fact that Lilah really does go to work with us, and my husband does work in construction. The interaction between the myself and Lilah in the beginning of the story is great. You really captured the true relationship she has with both my husband and I. I also really liked the way you incorporated Nathan and Lilah meeting and the relationship that develops between Nathan and I from his friendship with Lilah.
5 - Are you happy with the setting of the story? If so, why or why not?
Yes, we love the setting of the story. One of our favorite places to spend time is at the beach. We are there as often as possible fishing, playing in the surf with Lilah, and walking the beach.
6 - How do you think you will feel the first time you see the story about you, Nathan and Lilah in print?
I can't wait for that day! We'll have a lot of feelings... what you've done by writting this story about us is very special and something we'll always cherish. I can't wait to buy copies for my whole family for the following Christmas. I'm already getting requests for copies.
7 - Did you learn anything about the writing process from this experience?
I learned how important it was to give as much detail as possible in order to make the story really have a true impact and hold a special place within us.
8 - What do you think when you hear that several reviewers were captivated by the romance between Kristie and Nathan in the story?
It's very exciting. I've never had anything like this done for me or my family before and to hear that people love the idea, story, and the relationships that developed make the experience even more special. I love that people are interested in the romance between myself and Nathan. The way that the relationship falls together in the book is really cool because Lilah is a very important part of our lives and our romance very well could have developed in the way it is portrayed in the book. It shows what a strong bond the three of us have with each other. We are ecstatic!
I hope that you enjoyed getting to learn more about how this story came about and more about the real Nathan, Kristie and Lilah.