Today we welcome author Sally Franklin Christie to the blog to discuss her writing space: Big Bird’s Nest, books that have inspired her, and tips for new writers.
Do you know the character Big Bird from Sesame Street?
I have what I call a Big Bird Nest.
I have my laptop in front of me on a cooler for laptops. That angles my keyboard and keeps the heat moving. The cooler sits on a bright green lap tray with wings that extend from the sides. Today on the left wing I have a chapstick egg, two pens, a crochet hook, eye drops for contacts, sticky notes and a remote control for the tv. On the right wing I have a bright green six dollar clip on fan aimed at the keys in case my fingers begin to catch fire from the action of answering emails and occasionally writing fiction, checking Facebook, you know the drill. I have a green iTunes player clipped there with the ear buds dangling down. I see a receipt for something, another chapstick egg, four pens, no, five pens, my Lamy Fountain pen is there, too.
Under the Green Layer is an old wooden Cutty Sark box filled with jibbles of what a quick look seems to contain more pens and small books to write in. The Cutty Sark box has sticky notes all over it. Some are grocery lists, one says Russian 99 Female 4 inches. Another simply says 28 July. I wonder what I missed? The wooden box is on top of a white file box that probably contains my character files for this book or that one. I am not going to move everything to disclose what is in there.
To either side of this Tower of Babble is my Ford Cares Cancer coffee mug, empty SnickerDoodles, a crochet pattern book, a plate with gluten-free sandwich remains, a day planner, a white board that has the words Blog Tour (Holly) sprawled on it, two electrical surge protectors, clutter, a dead laptop, blood pressure meds, clutter, more pens, a box of yarn. Four contact lens cases, I only wear one pair. Three contact lens solution bottles. More notebooks, a voice activated recorder, camera, a bottle of ink, more pens and a charging cell phone. (Someone needs to declutter!)
I live in my writing space. Everyone knows exactly where to find me and when the piles beside me get spread out enough to block my way to the coffee or bathroom I do a clean up.
This nest is right next to a window so I can watch the deer, birds, rabbits, chickens, stray horses and other creatures. I can see strange people who come up our out of the way drive and look lost.
Yep, I live in my writer’s nest.
Books That Have Inspired Sally
My favorite writing book is the first edition of The WeekEnd Novelist. For reading, The Stand. Everything I read inspires me in one way or another, it proves I am not alone in my craft. But I have to caution new writers to put those How To Write books away and practice. Find out who you are. Find your voice. Then pick the How To books up again and don’t spend too much time the second go around.
A Quick Tip for Novice Writers
A new writer needs to know that Practice is the Best Teacher. Not everything we write needs to be published or even read for that matter. I can prove that.
About Milk Carton People: The Journey
Milk Carton People is a paranormal thriller about people who suddenly find themselves invisible, able to observe things but unable to participate. Do they go mad? Maybe they find others. It is quite possible that there is no point in being invisible.
This is a book that plays on the very thin line of sanity and pure despair. The characters act and react to the new challenges and the reader gets to go along for the ride.
Genre: Suspense, Thriller
I’m going to wake up, now, and go about my day with my cup of coffee. By the time I get to work, the whole thing will disappear like all dreams. I won’t even remember it.
She turned away from the little tree and took a few steps down the sidewalk. She intended to turn back toward the book store
again, to somehow retake control of her destiny. As if turning back would give everyone one more chance to tell her it was all in
fun and she was such a good sport.
Just then, a woman in an electric blue colored coat, walked right into her.
“Excuse, me,” Ruth began and stopped speechless. For one long, drawn out, slow motion, nightmare second, her vision was
obscured by a brownish red filter which blurred everything before her. She felt hot, sticky, and confined. A cloying odor of spoiled
hamburger made her gasp for clean air. She tasted copper pennies in her mouth. At the same time Ruth heard a gurgling noise and
a squeak and as the whole event suddenly ended she heard a plop like pudding falling from a spoon back into the bowl.
A sudden cold sweat competed with stomach acid lurching into her throat. Ruth swallowed it back and turned to watch as
the woman in electric blue continued walking down the sidewalk without breaking stride. Ruth watched the woman in the electric
blue coat disappear around the corner.
“No,” Ruth said aloud with authority. “No,” she repeated louder, hoping make it all go away. “This did not happen.”
She walked to the nearest building and stood close to the cold bricks in the shadows.
I have to go home.
Find Milk Carton People, The Journey
About Sally Franklin Christie
Sally Franklin Christie has spent her life achieving incredibly average goals. Her challenges and choices have led to into the world of organizing for social change, civil rights and helping people navigate in a world filled with physical barriers and discrimination. She photographs and paints landscapes, when she isn’t at the computer researching, networking and writing. Special interests include Missing Children and Adults, Astronomy, Character Traits and Criminal Thinking.
A home schooling mother of children born eleven years apart has added to her liberal arts education. She’s had plenty of time to practice and refine the art and craft of writing coupled with opportunities to learn the marketing aspects of writing. She interned for a spell at WOW-Womenonwriting.com and currently has a position as a moderator at The Writers Chatroom. Various published articles appear in places like Pangia Magazine, Creations Magazine and other almost forgotton places. She writes one novel a year as a NaNoWriMo Participant and keeps a more serious project simmering year round.