Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Guest Blog: Debra Kristi

You may have noticed a trend around here lately . . . or maybe you don't pay attention, but either way, I'm highlighting YA Authors. We just don't get enough love, do we?

Debra Kristi has been a great supporter of mine. I think I may have been her inspiration (or butt kicker) to start her blog. Maybe I'm giving myself too much credit?

She's a great writer, and friend, and I'm happy to have her share a taste of her writing style with us today.

Make sure you leave her lots of comment love, and thanks for stopping by!

Debra: Hello, everyone! It is a pleasure to be here! I know most of you don’t know me from a jar of peanut butter, so let me introduce myself. I’m that girl who writes because the dead girl told her to. Have you heard of her? Well, that crazy one is me. In reality, that dead girl is the inspiration behind a story that has changed my life in more ways than one, and part of the reason I am here before you today.

I have been visiting Krystal’s blog since I took my first little steps onto the writing scene. It’s surreal to be on the other end of it now. When Krystal asked if I would share with her readers a sample of my work, I was delighted! I’ve admired her cozy niche in the blogging community for some time now. Because I absolutely adore Krystal, I have a special treat for everyone. On my blog I have rarely talked about any specifics regarding my book. One exception was back on November 17th when I made mention of a character by the name of Crystia, the sister of my protagonist. This was in a post about my own sister, citing her as a source of inspiration. Today Crystia will stretch her vocal cords and speak for the very first time in her own piece.

Although Crystia is usually a light-hearted, spirited individual, we are catching her at a rather heavy moment in a teen’s life. One that most will relate to. Now, without further ado, I give to you Crystia.

“Should I stay?” He lingers in the doorway unsure of what to do next. It’s obvious he wants to bolt. I don’t blame him. Things didn’t turn out as expected. Yet he hovers out of fear of what I might say at school tomorrow.

“No. Just go. I’ll catch you later. You can see yourself out, can’t you?” I wiggle into a more comfortable sitting position on the bed, pulling the covers tighter around me as he tugs his gray Henley t-shirt over his head.

“Yeah, sure.” He disappears down the hall only to reappear a second later. “Crystia?”

“What is it, Chris?” I try not to sound exasperated. He should already be out the front door.

“Was that okay? Are we okay?” He looks at me from across the room with worry set deep in his dark brown eyes.

I watch as he nervously runs his hand through his dirty blond hair and studies the scene of the crime – my bed. The place where he just stole my virginity.

“It’s fine, Chris. I’ll see you tomorrow. At school.” I wait for him to go, but he continues to linger. “Goodbye, Chris.”

“Yeah. Later.”

His footsteps retreat down the hall, across the house and out the door. Relief. He’s gone. That wasn’t what I thought it would be. I mean, yeah, they say the first time never is. But it was more than that. I wasn’t into him like I thought I would be - should be. I felt no desire. It was more like I owed it to him after tying him up in a relationship for so long. Now I question if I even like him. Worse yet, if I even like boys. Sigh. I feel so contaminated – grossed out.

Grabbing my robe from the hook on my bedroom door, I head straight for a hot shower. I feel a serious need to wash away all man stank. I could stay in the shower forever, letting the hot water turn me into flimsy noodle, but eventually my sister, Ana, will return home with family friend, Ryland, in tow. I smile inwardly. She should totally jump on him and stop fooling herself. He is HOT. And apparently into all the same over-the-top stuff she’s into. Maybe I should play matchmaker. Ha!

Stepping out of the tub, I stand in the steam of the bathroom and stare at myself in the mirror. Do I look older now that I am a woman? Tilting my head from side to side, my bleached blonde hair still mats in a wet mess as usual, my skin and body – well – I can’t see any changes. Still too skinny and lacking in curve. Wait. Leaning closer to the mirror, I examine my eyes more closely. Nah, false alarm. For a second I thought they were favoring one color more than another. Oh well. Pulling open the medicine cabinet I grab my contact lenses from the top shelf. Now they’ll be one color.

Back in my room I throw on some clothes and snap my crystal wristband in place as the phone begins to ring. Odd, was it my imagination or did the crystal just glow? I’ll have to ask Ana about that since that’s her thing. Speaking of… Ana’s name displays on the caller ID. My chest weighs heavily as I consider confiding in her about Chris and everything I’m feeling. But before I pick up the phone I know I’ll chicken out. How can she relate? All she ever does is make-out and who knows what else with some guy in her dreams. She hasn’t had a successful real date in ages. If anything, she hides behind Ry. Aren’t we a great pair of sisters? Clearly we have issues. I’ll probably just talk to Caesar about it tonight.

“Hey,” I say into the phone, trying to sound completely cool. “What’s up?”

I’m greeted by the sounds of crackles and static when Ana’s voice pops through the low noise. “Sorry. We are just getting back into town now. You know how it is along the desert roads - reception sucks.”

“Yep,” I answer shortly.

“Ry and I are swinging by the flower shop to take mom some grub. Would you like anything?”

“No, but thanks for asking. I have to work tonight.” I glance at the clock and a mild wave of panic runs through me. “I really need to get going actually. I’m running late.”

“For the cat house? What are they going to do, fire you?” she says half seriously. “You’re a volunteer.”

“I know. But I like working with the cats and I don’t want to be late.”

“Won’t it be dark while you’re working if you go in this late? Not sure I like that. We’re not talking about sweet kittens. They have some seriously big cats. Dangerous ones!” Ana is talking, but all I hear is buzzing. I know she means well, but she just doesn’t get it. Doesn’t want to get it. Not yet anyway. She’s resisting the truth.

“I’m perfectly aware of how big the cats are at the conservatory. Don’t worry about me, sis. I know how to handle them.” I shut off the phone before Ana has a chance to respond. I need to get going. I have a date with a Caesar, a beautiful white Siberian tiger. We have a lot to talk about.

I hope you enjoyed this introduction to Crystia and a glimpse at her rather personal backstory. You even got a tiny glimpse at my protagonist through Crystia’s eyes. I want to thank you all for allowing me to share this special moment with you. And a very special thank you to Krystal for the invitation.


I definitely thank you, Debra. I'm honored you chose to share something so wonderful with me and my readers. With writing like that, your book is SURE to be a hit. I can't wait to read more! Especially about those tigers.

Debra Kristi lives with her husband, two kids and a frog named Darth. She is currently working on her first YA fantasy. It’s a trilogy (currently unnamed) about a young girl coming into her own while trying to find herself and overcome a great personal loss. To get to know more about the author, stop in and visit her blog .


  1. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Thank you, again, for having me, Krystal. You are really sweet with the complement. Someday I will have a lot to say about my beautiful tiger. But it is much too soon for any of that now.

    1. I know the feeling about it being too soon. Can't wait till it's not. ;-)

  2. Debra and Krystal, two of my favorite ladies! Wonderful excerpt, enjoyed it very much.

    1. Aww *blushes* I'm telling you...I have so many questions. First about the crystal, second about the tiger and third, what's up with this boy? ;-)

  3. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Thank you Kelly! Thanks for stopping in. :)

  4. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Kelly so sweet, right?

    Krystal, You'll just have to put those questions on hold for now. Sorry.

  5. Enjoyed!! Really great--thanks for sharing. Love getting to know my friends in the blogosphere better :)

  6. Terrific excerpt, Debra. I can't wait to read the entire story.

  7. Wow Debra that was great! Can't wait to read the series.

  8. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Thank you so much ladies! So glad you liked it! It was fun to share and let everyone get a taste of my YA voice. Ana's voice is slightly different, in which the trilogy is written.

  9. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Nicely done, Debra! I think you nailed Crystia's first-time experience with a boy. I like how worried Chris is, and it sounds like he has good reason to be. The excerpt makes me want to know what happens next. :)

  10. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Thank you, Kristy. I enjoyed pulling it together and was pleased with the results. Krystal got me to dive into Crystia's backstory for this post. It was fun letting Crystia out so that she could talk about her experiences that don't get as much attention on the book.

  11. Thanks for sharing the scene, Debra! We get a good look at Crystia, and a glipmse of Ana. The ending is very intriguing. I hope we get to read the whole novel soon.
    Also, thanks for introducing me to Krystal's place. It's cozy in here, and I intend to visit again :)
    Excellent job, Debra!

  12. What a great scene, Debra. I really loved Crystia's inner thoughts and her relationship with her sister. I can't wait till you finish the book and share it with the rest of the world. :)

  13. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Thank you Fabio and Sheila. I'm so please you enjoyed reading her inner thoughts. I truly love writing from Ana and Crystia's POV.

  14. Wonderful Excerpt, Debra. Can't wait to read the whole thing - get writing.

  15. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Thank you Louise! You are all making me blush. Yes, yes. Write I must!

  16. I know you from a jar of peanut butter! ...LOL Loved getting to hear your writing voice!

  17. Anonymous1/25/2012

    I'm so glad you do! LOL Glad I could share it with you.

  18. That short extract sucked me in immediately. Good luck with your book Debra.

  19. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Thank you Emma! That's what I like to hear. :D

  20. O.M.G Crystia is fahhhhbulous!! I want to READ MORE immediately!! got some kind of talent there...I am super pumped to read your book!!!

  21. great post,book sounds great Debra.
    Dear Krystal I have awarded you a Versatile blogger award come to my blog to get your award.

  22. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Oooh thank you Natalie!!! You are so awesome!

    Thank you Sheilagh! So nice of you to say so.
    Wowza Krystal! Congratulations!

  23. Thanks so much for commenting guys! I've been unable to respond because I'm battling a NASTY migraine. I can't wait till Debra finishes these novels and puts them out there for us all to read. I'll be first in line to buy a copy. ;-)

  24. Debra, the beginning brought me back to my teenage relationship fears and blunders. And then the Crystia came completely to life for me, and I thought can't wait to here more about her.
    You have great ability with words and amazing promise. Keep up the great writing.

    Jim McGrath

  25. That excerpt definitely brought her to life! My secondary characters tend to be rather flat, and going through an exercise like this that digs out all the emotions as they go through a watershed moment like Crystal's is a great way to develop them, even if it doesn't make it into the book. Thanks for sharing!

  26. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Wow, thank you so much Jim. You don't know how much that means to me. I really appreciate it. I promise to keep working away at it.

    You are very welcome Jennette. Anything I can do to help! That's what we are all here for - to help one another.

    Krystal, we are all sorry about your nasty headache. I, for one, hope it goes away soon. :(

  27. Yay! Excellent teaser, Debra. Great to get a taste of one of your novels!

  28. Anonymous1/25/2012

    Well thank you, Kellianne. I'm so glad you enjoyed it. If you enjoyed Crystia, there's a fairly good chance you'd enjoy Ana's tale. Let's hope it doesn't take a decade to tell it. LOL

  29. Now I'm filled with questions. Can she really talk to the cats? If so, why? And what's going on with Ana's dreams?

    Thanks for giving us a peak into Crystia's world.

  30. Anonymous1/26/2012

    Hmm. Those are all good questions. And questions you are meant to have. See how evil I am? :D


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