Hey there everyone, hope you had time to relax at the weekend.
We are coming in hot this week with another fantastic Author Interview full of creativity and an abundance of fun books to read.
Please give a warm welcome to author Kristina Rienzi and learn how she handles writing life.
Thanks for reading friends and enjoy the show!
Hi there Kristina, a sincere pleasure to have you here today to discuss all of your novels, along with your own passions, influences and writing experiences.
Let’s start first with your books themselves. Tell us a little bit about the plot and themes of all of your books, along with giving us some background information on what is at stake for your protagonists and antagonists too.
All of my books are New Adult Thrillers across several sub-genres that center on darkness and embracing the unknown.
AMONG US (Sci-Fi) my most recent release, was featured on Audible’s ACX University, as well as an Audible Editors Select Pick. It follows a Jersey Shore blogger who gets mixed up in a deadly government conspiracy far more dangerous than she ever imagined.
CHOOSING EVIL and BREAKING EVIL (Paranormal) are part of the Ensouled Series. In these stories, an HR Manager discovers her identity is a lie. Teetering between the human and paranormal worlds, she must risk her life, becoming the evil she despises, to save humanity.
LURING SHADOWS (Domestic Fiction) was part of a multi-author novella project called The Happy Endings Resort Series. In Luring Shadows, a stranger is luring the sister of a cold-case victim into the dark shadows of Happy Endings Resort, and her mind. She must race to the stop the killer before it’s too late and she becomes one of the luring shadows.
WINTER ROAD (Domestic Fiction) is a chilling nightmare where one man’s obsession is so evil, it’s deadly. On the heels of a bad breakup, a city girl heads home for the holidays. There, she fights for her life, and the lives of those she loves most, in the only place she’s ever called home, Winter Road.
TWISTED is a collected of mixed genre short stories: Train Girl; Again; Preserve, Protect and Defend, all with many twists and surprise endings!
30 SHADES OF DEAD is a Sisters in Crime Central Jersey (I’m the former president) anthology celebrating our 20th anniversary. My contribution, GONE ON THE FOURTH OF JULY, is a domestic thriller. The theme of each story revolves around the number 30…my story follows the 30 year disappearance of a twin sister and its convergence with a present day would-be romance to solve the mystery.
If you could invite any one of your characters to dinner, which one would it be and what would you cook for them?
I would definitely invite my main character Serafina from my Ensouled Series (Choosing Evil & Breaking Evil). She’s a tortured soul, in more ways than one, and needs a good, home cooked, Italian meal! With her family issues at the core of the story, sitting down to a nice dinner where she could relax and just be herself would be cathartic for us both!
If any of your novels were to be made into films (or even a TV series), who would you cast in the lead roles?
I always think of Among Us as a movie, even when I was writing it. I’d love the main character, Marci (conservative professor by day, taboo alien blogger by night) to be Jennifer Lawrence. She’s an amazing actress who toggles between the girl next door and girl with a dark side superbly. For the mentor, Lou (Retired Army General, gruff with a giant heart), I’d pick Robert DeNiro. His ability to be scary and soft would be suited well for Lou. Finally, the antagonist, Pierce (secret agent after Marci) would be the perfect role for Ian Somerhalder. Pierce is the intricate combination of elitist meets southern boy with an affinity for drive and determination.
What would you choose as your own personal mascot or spirit animal when it comes to you and your style of writing?
Butterfly, for sure. I’m all about transformation. Not only in my stories and my characters, but also in myself as a writer. I’m constantly focused on learning and growing, and never looking back.
What do you think most characterizes or defines your writing? Do you have any writing quirks or themes that constantly crop up in your stories?
Fast-paced, twisty, thrillers with character substance. I like to deep dive into my characters’ psychology and have it show in the story. I also like to get hearts racing and fingers turning pages! A theme, which is a tagline of mine, is “Embrace the Unknown.” I put my characters up to challenges where they have to dive into the unknown and push themselves beyond their normal limits to become who they were always meant to be, or to learn the truth about their lives.
What do you find the most difficult thing about writing? And what do you find the easiest?
The hardest part about writing for me is finding the time and sticking with it. It takes a lot of time and energy to write a novel and it’s easy to let life get in the way. Getting your mind-set in the right place is so important. The easiest part about writing is coming up with the story premise. There’s always something exciting and fun to explore in fiction!
Who are some of the authors, musicians, poets and/or historical figures that inspire you?
Too many to name! My top author inspirations are Jodi Picoult and Stephen King. Jodi tackles tough issues with grace and respect, and meeting her in person was one of my all-time favorite author moments! Stephen King, well, he’s the KING! He goes there, anywhere, to get the story told. And he’s brilliant. MUCH respect for the KING!
Do you listen to music when you are writing and if so, then what type of music do you listen to?
I typically prefer silence, but I find any little noise can distract me easily. When I need a backdrop, I always listen to Yacht Rock Radio, or Hallmark Channel Radio during the holidays. Both calm me, so I can concentrate without distractions.
What sort of research do you do to write your books?
I’m not a huge researcher, but I do my share. I ask questions of experts in fields where I’m trying to learn more, trawl the Internet for information, and read as much as I can on topics, especially writing craft.
Why do you write? What inspired you to become a writer?
It’s a challenge and it’s creation, two things I find exhilarating. I always wrote, but I really wanted to push myself to write professionally. It was mainly for my personal growth, development, and enjoyment.
What keeps you motivated during creative slumps? How do you deal with Writers Block?
I talk to writer friends, take a writing class, or read a writing-related book. When writers block hits, I shift my focus from writing and to reading. That always gets ideas flowing and the drive back to write my own story.
You have access to a time machine. What advice would you give to your younger self?
You’re on the right path! Everything is going to turn out better than you could have ever imagined. Now that you know this, relax! Slow down to appreciate the moments while you’re IN the moment, and cherish the people you love so much.
How do you spend your free time when you are not writing?
As a new mom, all of my free time outside of work and adult responsibilities goes to my daughter. We play, sing, cuddle, and learn – whatever brings a smile and whatever she needs. In my occasional free moments, I enjoy a nice glass of wine and a Hallmark movie.
What are you views on audiobooks and would you consider having your novels made into audiobooks? If so, then who would you get to narrate them?
I LOVE AUDIOBOOKS! Two of my stories are available on Audible: Among Us and Winter Road. My goal is to turn all of my books into audiobooks, eventually. Among Us was selected by Audible as an ACX University featured audiobook, a platform to educate authors on the audiobook process. Among Us was also an Editors Select Pick. Outside of my experience as an author, I’ve always listened to books on Audible as my main source of story. Between formerly commuting to currently home and barely any spare time, audiobooks are the easiest way for me to devour my favorite fiction and non-fiction books.
Tell us more about your upcoming projects. Are you working on anything specific or have plans in the pipeline?
I have two books in the works, one fiction and one non-fiction. My New Adult Paranormal is called Unleash the Wicked. It follows a former NYC socialite who’s forced to move back to her mysterious, seaside hometown where faces her demons and unleashes an unstoppable evil.
My non-fiction is called, Be Happy Now!, which divulges my 5 secrets to increase your happiness on demand. I’m a perpetual learner (as well as a work in progress!), and after becoming a Certified Professional Coach, I decided one of my goals in life was to inspire. This book focuses on what I’ve learned about happiness in my psychology and coaching studies and simplifies it for easy, on demand use.
Finally, are there any nuggets of wisdom that you can impart to other aspiring writers?
Work on your craft and always be willing to learn. Nothing worth it is easy, so do the work and believe in yourself above all! And, never give up on your dreams!
And that’s a wrap! Thank you for joining us, we look forward to delighting both our eyes and our ears with all your books 😊
Kristina Rienzi is a Jersey Shore-based new adult thriller author, certified professional coach, and the former president of Sisters in Crime-Central Jersey. An INFJ who dreams beyond big, Kristina encourages others (and herself) to embrace the unknown through her stories. When she’s not writing or drinking wine, Kristina is spoiling her baby girl (and two fur-babies), dissecting true crime stories, singing (and dancing) to Yacht Rock Radio or rooting for the WVU Mountaineers. She believes in all things paranormal, a closet full of designer bags, weekly manicures, the Law of Attraction, aliens, angels, and the value of a graduate degree in psychology. Her debut audiobook, AMONG US was featured on Audible’s ACX University and an Audible Editors Select Pick.
You can connect with Kristina via the following Social Media links:-
Goodreads:- Kristina Rienzi (Goodreads Author)
Website:- The website of Author Kristina Rienzi
You can buy her books here:-
If you too would like to be interviewed on my blog at TooFullToWrite and you have a book or a series of books that you would like us to chat about then fill out the Contact Me form here with your details and we can arrange a future interview slot.