I’m happy to share an author interview I did with Kayla E. Green with you today. Kayla and I connected on Instagram awhile back, and I have enjoyed getting to know her. Kayla writes Christian fantasy, a genre, as an author, I am dipping my feet into as well. I hope you enjoy getting to know Kayla too.
- What prompted you to pursue publication?
I was raised to be a storyteller. Through read-alouds and bedtime stories as part of our daily routine, my mother fostered a love for literacy in me from an early age. Even before I had mastered the skill of reading, I would make-up my own stories based on book illustrations. I wrote my first “book” in elementary school, complete with my own drawings about a guinea pig wanting a family, and I used electrical tape for the book’s binding. Later, in middle school, I won my first writing contest. Somewhere along the way, with the burden of growing up, I lost that part of me. But, like C.S. Lewis explained to his goddaughter about life, I one day grew old enough to start reading fairytales again. With my return to reading, I started writing again. I realized that I had been ignoring a great passion and ultimately a calling by trying to be what I thought I needed to be versus embracing the stories God was placing on my heart. My faith fuels my writing, and I want to share my stories, and my faith, with others. This ultimately led me to pursue publication.
- What inspired you to write Aivan: The One Truth?
An important scene in Aivan: The One Truth was inspired by a church sermon on Elijah and the prophets of Baal. I had a rough idea for the character of Rune, but it wasn’t until this sermon that I realized who Rune was and what story she was telling. Many Old Testament scenes inspired Rune and Rolf’s journeys in the novella.
- What was the most difficult aspect of writing your novel? The most rewarding?
The most difficult aspect of writing the novella was trying to weave biblical truth into a fantasy tale that young readers would love. Aivan: The One Truth is actually a prequel novella to the story of Reyna (I will be sharing some related news soon with readers). Trying to introduce readers to the world in a fast-paced, quick-read was challenging.
The most rewarding part, however, is seeing young readers connect with Rune and Rolf.
Before the novella was published, I did a short reading with a group of seventh grade students. They were hooked with chapter one and begged me to keep reading! That moment of seeing my target audience respond so positively to my story was extremely rewarding.
- What do you hope readers will take away from your book?
I hope readers, specifically young readers, walk away from the novella with a desire for growth in their walks of faith as well as in their character. I want them to see the importance of standing up for truth, even when society preaches lies. I want them to understand that hard things are possible. I want them to recognize that oftentimes our plans don’t work out how we want them to because they are flawed as we are only human and our foresight is limited. And, if a reluctant reader, I want them to see that reading can be, and is, fun.
- Which authors or books have inspired you the most as a writer?
Patricia Wrede’s Dealing with Dragons is the book that solidified my love for fantasy
stories. Maggie Platt’s Kingdom Above the Cloud is the book that showed me that I could not just write fantasy stories with Christian undertones, but write Christian fantasy – it opened my eyes to a whole new sub-genre. Other authors I love include C.S. Lewis, Roald Dahl, Ray Bradbury, E. B. White, and Janette Oke.
Hannah Carter, author of the YA fantasy The Depths of Atlantis, is one of my favorite authors. Her talent as a writer, her genuine spirit, her gentle candor, and her strong faith inspire me in so many ways. Hannah’s ability to handle hard, relatable topics with grace is something I aspire to emulate.
- What piece of advice would you offer aspiring authors?
You are not aspiring; you are an author. I struggled with labeling myself as an “author” for a long time. Instead, I told people that I “dabbled in writing” because writing wasn’t my full-time job. I realized it’s all pointless semantics. If you write, you are an author. Life is hard enough without stripping yourself of things you should take pride in; you are an author – wear that badge proudly!
A second piece of advice I have to offer is don’t let perfectionism keep you from writing. In the words of Jodi Picoult, “You can edit a bad page, but you can’t edit a blank page.”
- What do you enjoy doing when not writing?
When I’m not writing, or working on my never-ending to-do list, I’m usually trying to catch up on sleep. I very much like to sleep. I also enjoy reading, though oftentimes my dogs’ demands for cuddles distract me from reading. But those are happy distractions. I like to sing loudly and off-key to KLove Radio, country music, and Taylor Swift. Pretending I’m a unicorn, spending time with my family, talking with friends, napping, convincing my husband to take me to Logan’s Roadhouse for dinner on the weekends, and watching my favorite three comfort movies over and over are also things I like to do when I happen to have free time.
- What 5-10 adjectives would you use to describe yourself?
Sensitive, nurturing, imaginative, thoughtful, observant, helpful, air-headed, smart, authentic, and dog-obsessed.
- What’s your favorite color and why?
My favorite color is pink. It is bright, bubbly, inviting, and fun.
Thank you so much for reading Kayla’s interview. I hope enjoyed reading her answers as much as I did! If you’d like to learn more about Kayla or purchase her books, you can find her at: