This week I’m introducing my best friend and Critique Partner, the one and only Krystle Kwiatkowski. Not only is she writing a paranormal TV show pilot that I can’t wait to binge watch, but she is also one of the authors for the anthology Winter Neverland.
Journey through a forever Christmas land and fight candy cane monsters. Open questionable gift boxes full of snow. Cozy up by the fireplace with a warm cup of Isabella’s Coffee. Walk with a teen through an unfamiliar world after he wishes he never met his best friend. Run through the forest with an English Princess and wonder what she is running from. Help a lost traveler find their way home in the snow … follow us to Winter Neverland!Krystle Kwiatkowski is a screenwriter from Georgia. She specializes in stories pertaining to the supernatural and aims to create her own TV show. While film is her priority, she plots to publish novels in the future. She sticks to her Hobbit Hole, which holds her throne in Hell.
1. Tell us a little about you and what you’re working on.
Hello! I’m Lucifer, Ruler of Hell, and I’m currently working on releasing my demons to wreak havoc on the world.
Just kidding! I’m Krystle Kwiatkowski (Fiet; kov; ski) and I’m a writer in Georgia, though I was born and raised in Michigan. I was fortunate enough to publish my first book, co-written with a bunch of friends, shortly after my eighteenth birthday. I love The Hobbit, Supernatural, and Psych; and I have an unhealthy obsession with make-up and the supernatural, making me both the girliest and scariest person you’ll ever meet.
I’m currently working on a few things. My main project is a TV Pilot script in the supernatural genre, which is in the final edits stage, though said edits are being procrastinated. I’m aiming to start pitching it sometime this year. I’m working on another project, as well, but it’s a secret.
You As A Reader
2. When did you first fall in love with books?
Um … I’m still waiting for that to happen. *nervous laughter*
While I enjoy books, and believe in the importance of reading books, it’s just not something I do a lot or do often. Mainly because I’m very picky and unless a book really sucks me in, I just can’t focus on reading. Doesn’t help my brain never shuts off. I would say I’ve grown a greater appreciation for books sometime during my last year of high school, which it hasn’t even been a full year since. It was the first time I could actually get myself to read, or listen, to the books assigned in English class.
3. What’s your favorite book from your childhood?
I devoured The Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney when I was younger. I vividly remember being home sick one day, and my Mom went somewhere and came back with the next book in the series I needed to read. I think it was Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules. I’m not certain, but I’m willing to bet that was the one. I read either most of it or the whole thing as I lied on the couch with the flu. I remember it even shocking my Mom because I never read books like that.
4. Of the books you’ve read, which one changed you the most?
Well … I haven’t read any books that have changed my life. However, the movie that changed my life is a book adaptation, so I’m using that. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is a movie that reignited my love for fantasy. As I got older, while I thought I was holding on to it, I was losing my love of fantasy, magic, etc. By 7th grade, it was pretty much behind me … ‘til I saw that movie.
I struggle to focus on movies, too. It really has to capture my attention for me to really watch it. My family forced me to sit down to watch it and… never before had I been so engrossed in a movie. I can’t put into words how much that film changed me. I really don’t think I’d be in the position I am now if I hadn’t seen it. I know I haven’t read it yet, but I am truly thankful for J.R.R. Tolkien writing The Hobbit for it couldn’t be a movie without him.
5. What’s the last book you read and your current favorite?
I haven’t picked it up in a while due to being busy, but I’m finishing Rose by Another Name by Melanie Thurlow, one of my good friends on Twitter (@MelanieAThurlow). It’s about this girl who’s supposed to marry this Duke, but she doesn’t want to because she thinks he’ll be a horrible man and the Duke doesn’t like her because he thinks she’ll be an insufferable woman. However, as they both pretend to be different people to experience some sort of freedom, they end up having feelings for each other, though they’re too stubborn to admit they’re wrong.
My current favorite? Um … other than just defaulting to The Hobbit, I don’t think I have one. I have a lot of books I just really like, but don’t necessarily give me heart eyes.
6. If you could meet any author, alive or dead, who would it be?
J.R.R. Tolkien. Sorry, should I have taken longer to answer?
I hate to sound like a broken record, but The Hobbit really changed my life. I’d want to meet the man who started it all. The person who’s the reason why I am going where I am headed. There’s so many things I’d want to talk to him about, too. I’d ask how he created those highly detailed fantasy languages. I’d ask him about his life. If he was willing, I’d be for listening to his WWII stories, too.
You As A Writer
7. When did you first know you were a writer?
I’ll be honest, I never really had that epiphany that writing was the path for me. I was just … on that path almost ever since I was born. My Mom recalls me creating stories when I was just three years old. Even as a kid and I explored all the things I could be, writing was always one of them. I seriously started pursuing writing as a career in the 7th grade, but it still wasn’t a mind-blowing moment. It seriously feels like one of those things I’m just destined for and I never really strayed from that.
8. Do you remember the first story you ever wrote? If so, what was it about?
Why? Why you do this to me? I am now cringing at the thought of my first story.
Not including the stuff I came up with verbally, and the stuff I had to write for school, the first thing I started writing was … a giant glossary of made-up alligators. I was a kid, okay! I didn’t get past page one, anyway.
9. What has been the most difficult part of your writing journey? The best part?
The most difficult part would have to be right around my high school graduation. I became very frustrated with how slow my writing career was moving. Which is ridiculous since I was not only getting ready to graduate, but I was getting ready to graduate a year early. I was already a step ahead of most people. However, not having my script done among other stresses really put me in a bad mindset. Fortunately, I got out of it, but that was not a fun time for me.
The best part, hands down, is when Sam Baker (@SamBakerWrites on Twitter) approached me to be part of an anthology. I was in a much healthier mindset, fortunately, and I was looking for some way to advance my career. Sam and I didn’t really interact much at that time, but I am so grateful that she took the chance on bringing me in on this project. It was a bit of a gamble offering me to be a part of it for I was an outsider. Sam and the other co-writers were already friends. I did know and talk to a couple of them, but not all of them. Because of her, I now have published work in an amazing book called Winter Neverland: An Anthology. For that, I will always be grateful.
10. Of all the writing advice you’ve received, what helped you the most?
“I do what I want.” – Daniel Mattia (@QuellTheWriter)
This isn’t so much advice given to me as it is my favorite quote from a friend, which epitomizes something I learned about writing over time. For, about, a year straight, I did more reading about writing than I did actual writing. However, I was getting so caught up in the rules and what people said you should and shouldn’t do. Eventually, I realized that it was inhibiting my creativity and making me a weak writer. I had to start ignoring everything and just write what the story wanted me to write. That’s the best thing you can do, honestly.
11. Tell us about your current project and any others you’re working on.
I’m currently making the final edits on my TV Pilot script as I wait for the rest of my beta readers to get back to me. I tend to be secretive about it publicly, but I’ll do my best to share some details about it. It’s a supernatural TV Pilot that was originally inspired by Sleepy Hollow, the TV series. It’s pretty much a mix of Constantine and Supernatural. Maybe even a touch of Friday the 13th down the road. The mythology of the series, though, is inspired by Christian angelology and demonology, both of which I find fascinating. Plus some other things that I have no idea how to categorize.
Fun Stuff About You
12. Besides writing and reading, what are some of your other interests?
Pretty much anything creative. I’m into dancing, drawing, painting, etc. However, a really strong passion for me is music. I listen to a variety of music because it’s a huge source of inspiration for me. Whether it’s for characters, plot, or scenes, music can really get me in the zone. I don’t really create music, but that’s not to say I haven’t thought about it.
13. If you could become an instant expert at any one thing, what would it be and why?
Theology. Hands down.
I find theology to be very intriguing. Though, I guess I’m more curious about the things that are part of religions, but not necessarily in the religious text. For example, I enjoy studying the meaning and symbolism behind the Seven Deadly Sins that’s part of Christianity, but it’s not necessarily part of the Holy Bible. At least, as far as I know. I could be completely wrong.
14. You’ve just won an all expenses paid trip to anywhere in the world. Where would you go?
I, actually, don’t like traveling all that much, to be honest. I’m very much a Hobbit in that sense.
However, there are two places I wouldn’t mind traveling to: Hobbiton and Poland. Hobbiton would be the Hobbit set in New Zealand. I would love to visit the place that sparked my creativity the most. As for Poland, I’d just like to trace back my family’s roots. See where my great grandparents are from. See where my family as I know it started, in a sense.
15. How can people connect with you?
So, first, you sacrifice a goat. And then you … oh, you meant the non-Satanic methods.
Well, you can follow me on Twitter, @KrystleIII, and on Instagram, krystleiii, and my blog, betweenworldswriting.wordpress.com. However, I’m much more active on Twitter. So, if you wanna send me Supernatural GIFs or something, you’ll have to do it there.
16. Anything else you’d like to tell us?
I’ll just leave you with my writing phrase: Imagine, Inscribe, Inspire.
Thanks for sharing a little more about you, though, of course I knew all of this already. And if your TV show doesn’t get made I will seriously cry.
If you’d like to check out Winter Neverland, you can find the links below.