Young Adult Contemporary (General and Christian markets)
Publisher: CrossLink Publishing
Date Published: June 1st, 2021
First choices out. Second choices in.
It’s been that way since dialysis left fourteen-year-old Krissy disabled. Her limitations went from none to a ton, and now they stand in the way of her dream—to compete in dog agility with her new sheltie pup, Aslan.
She’s seen videos of agility handlers sprinting, spinning, and twisting as they race with their dogs through the intricate obstacle courses. It’s a beautiful sport. Like dance. Like art.
And surely impossible for someone like her.
Her suspicions are confirmed when an agility instructor says Krissy’s inability to run will keep her and Aslan from successfully competing against other lightning-fast agility teams and suggests Krissy choose a less physically demanding, second-choice dog sport.
Second choices—once again.
And on top of all that, Krissy is pretty sure she doesn’t even like her own dog.
What is the hardest part of writing
I’d have to say revisions and edits. I prefer the creation part of writing where a blank page waits for a story, and I get to unfold my characters and world upon that empty space. And while revisions and edits are crucial to a good book, they can be hard—even painful—especially as the book progresses and I’m on my 12th edit pass and all I want to do is pull up a blank page and begin my next story.
There are fun
things to revisions and edits, especially in the first few passes where the
really ugly edges get smoothed out. That’s not bad. But, oh, those later passes
are a struggle.
What songs are most played on your
When I write,
I usually do so in silence. When I edit, I sometimes put on music without
lyrics (usually classical) to stay awake. But when I’m not writing, I listen mostly
to rock and roll. My tastes are wide, and you may find me listening to almost
anything, but my fav is rock and roll.
competitions, I have playlists that contain everything from Green Day to
Imagine Dragons to Usher to Bruce Springsteen to the Monkees. Whatever gets me
in the mood to lay down a great agility run with my dog is on my phone and Ipod.
And, BTW, sometimes at agility trials, I really do pull out my old Ipod Shuffle
instead of my phone, plug in the earbuds, and rock away.
Do you have critique partners or beta
Both. I like
critique partners for what I’d call the “Alpha Read,” which would be the ugly first
draft. And I do mean ugly. I want fellow authors (CPs) to read that stinking
first draft because I know they’ll most likely be able to see beyond the mess
to the yet-to-shine story underneath.
I use beta
readers for later drafts, and when I’m getting to the end of my edits/revisions,
I often look for another critique partner to help give the final draft a nice
polish. That person is usually someone great with grammar, line-by-line/copy
the book, I may have four to ten people read it before sending it to my agent.
What book are you reading now?
finished binging Laurien Berenson’s “Melanie Travis Mystery Series.” It’s a
cozy mystery series set against the backdrop of conformation dog shows. As ASLAN:
RUNNING JOY is a book set against the backdrop of competition dog agility
trials, I knew our books would intersect at several places, and they do. It was
fun reading her series because as an agility competitor, I’ve attended lots of
conformation shows. She skillfully brings that experience to life in her books.
I hope I was as successful doing that with agility as she was with
How did you start your writing career?
I started in
the late 1980s when I graduated from Oklahoma City University with a degree in
Mass Communications with a news editorial emphasis. From there, I went to work
as a hard news reporter at a small-town newspaper. I wrote non-fiction in
various forms until 2017 when I sat down and wrote ASLAN: RUNNING JOY. It was
my first full work of fiction as an adult, and somehow, I was able to find a
literary agent and land a book contract. The rest is history!
I am finishing
up the edits for my agent for a Young Adult fantasy about, you guessed it,
dogs. It doesn’t have a title yet. I’m terrible at titles, but I hope we can begin
submitting it to publishers this fall.
When it’s on
submission, I’ll begin working on ASLAN 2. I already have the bones of that
book in an outline, and I just need to flesh out a few more details before I
interested in my work can follow me at kristinkaldahl.com. I keep it updated
with my latest projects, news, and even giveaways!
About the Author
Kristin Kaldahl is an agility instructor, national-level agility competitor, and dog agility blogger with twenty years in the sport. Her dogs have earned eight agility championships and have qualified for the AKC Agility National Championship twelve times. In addition, Kaldahl is a semi-finalist in the 2018 Genesis Awards in the YA category, an award-winning former journalist, and a long-term kidney transplant survivor. #ownvoices
a Rafflecopter giveaway