The stories my father has told me about his childhood are ones that have stayed with me. There are stories about the ice cream shop he worked in, the pranks he played on his bus driver, and the trouble he used to get into with his partner-in-crime Bobby MacGyver, but the one that always stuck with me was one he’d tell about his mother. My grandfather was a police officer in New Rochelle and my dad would tell me my grandmother would ask him to bring home a pint of ice cream and she’d eat it while waiting for him to walk through the door after his shift had ended. I can vividly picture her waiting in a chair by the door eating coffee ice cream while anxiously waiting for my grandpa to come home. I share this because today’s guest, Karen White, was also impacted by some of the stories her father would tell her as well and elements of those stories are featured in her bestselling novels.
MEET KAREN WHITE
Karen White is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of 31 books, including the Tradd Street series, The Last Night in London, Dreams of Falling, The Night the Lights Went Out, Flight Patterns, The Sound of Glass, and A Long Time Gone. She is the coauthor of All the Ways We Said Goodbye, The Glass Ocean and The Forgotten Room with New York Times bestselling authors Beatriz Williams and Lauren Willig. Her latest novel, The Shop on Royal Street, came out on March 29th.
KEY TOPICS IN THIS EPISODE
- How reading was a form of escape for Karen
- How her dad’s real ghost stories impacted her imagination and writing
- The role of encouragement played in Karen’s writing journey
- Why she went from being a reader to a writer after becoming a mother
- The idea behind her new series first book
- Why validation is important for authors
KEY TAKEAWAYS FROM MY TALK WITH KAREN
- Writing as an escape. Karen enjoys escaping into a good book. For her, it’s more than just entertainment; reading actually provides an opportunity for self-reflection and world excavation that she can’t get any other way!
- When she was young, Karen’s dad used to tell stories about growing up poor in the South during the Great Depression. These stories stayed with her and elements of them wind up in her own writing.
- The importance of encouragement. Karen’s 6th grade teacher saw potential in her and encouraged to explore her talent, which put her on the path of becoming an author.
- Just do it. Karen takes a page out of the Nike playbook while dishing out advice to aspiring authors—to just do it!
WHERE TO BUY THE SHOP ON ROYAL STREET
MEMORABLE QUOTES FROM KAREN
“Just do it. My sixth-grade teacher used to say where there’s a will there’s a way. I know a mother of four who just who started writing she’s now a New York Times bestselling author. She would get up at four o’clock in the morning to write before she had to get up with the kids and then go do her full-time job. So, where there’s a will there’s a way. Don’t’ picture anybody looking behind you; write the story that you want to write, and then the rest will fall into place.
HOW TO GET IN TOUCH WITH KAREN
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