I have in inspirational guest today. American crime writer Kristina Naydonova has published her first novel, The Black Sisterhood Files, at just twelve years old. When I was twelve, I thought I was active in the writing industry by helping out at my school library (shoutout to Townsend School, Hertfordshire, England, UK!).
So, to find out more about the story behind this incredible achievement, let's meet the author herself!
PB: Hi Kristina! Welcome to pjbermanbooks.com. Tell us a bit about your background.
KN: Hello! Thank you very much for having me. My name is Kristina Naydonova - I am a twelve-year-old published author and aside from writing, enjoy studying science and playing the piano. I was born in Washington D.C. and have been living in McLean, Virginia for most of my life. I occasionally tinker with creating poetry or short stories that are quite similar in style to Edgar Allan Poe’s (although definitely do not serve as a comparison). I am very excited to have the opportunity to be featured on pjbermanbooks.com. It is a fantastically created site.
PB: You're very welsome, Kristina, and thank you very much! What made you decide to become an author?
KN: I truly believe that when one’s emotions are too cumbersome to bear or vocalize, it is most suitable to revert to the practice of writing, for writing and reading are situated within entire dominions of reality. With simply just a couple well-written phrases, one can travel to another planet altogether while remaining seated on their couch. For example, I recently finished reading Around the World in Eighty Days, an absolutely marvelous novel that made me feel as if, I, indeed, was venturing around the globe with Phileas Fogg and company. I wished to become an author cardinally for that reason: to inspire and move thousands of readers.
PB: Writing and publishing a book at the age of twelve is an unusual and remarkable achievement. Tell us a bit about your writing journey, and what went into achieving that goal.
KN: Thank you for the kind words. My journey towards publication was an extremely difficult one, but it taught me that perseverance is an empowering trait and possesses the capability to defy almost all self-doubt. When I was eight years old, I began to experiment with writing and at the age of eleven, managed to finalize a rough draft of The Black Sisterhood Files. After getting it professionally edited, I began to seek literary representation, which stalled completely at first. It was then that I decided to proceed with self-publishing, for that would present me with much more independence than traditional.
PB: Tell us about The Black Sisterhood Files.
KN: The Black Sisterhood Files is a thriller novel with some elements of a murder mystery. Naturally, almost all books have an implication or motto, whether that is veiled or indiscreet. The predominant theme of my writing is that no matter how malicious one may seem, they always have at least the merest slivers of love within their heart. My novel is most befitting for anybody who endears crime fiction and enjoys being frightened by books.
PB: Where did the idea for the story come from?
KN: To be quite honest, it was entirely arbitrary. However, I based the characters off of people with whom I am acquainted with in real life. For example, Lexie Torres, the main persona, was created in accordance with my older sister’s personality: courageous, kind, supportive, yet slightly obstinate.
PB: What was the first story you can remember writing?
KN: Back in second grade, when I was seven years old, I wrote a short fictional story that won an award amongst my peers. It was a picture book that told the story of a young girl named Samantha whose story is similar to Goldilocks and the Three Bears, but slightly altered.
PB: When you begin writing a new story, do you always know the ending?
KN: Not at all. To be quite frank, the ending for The Black Sisterhood Files was entirely unprecedented - I had already planned out the fundamentals of it, but added significant details during the writing process. This does not just pertain to the formation of my novel, but a majority of short stories I write.
PB: If you could meet any of your characters, who would you meet, and what would you say to them?
KN: I do not wish to say the name of the character I would meet, for it would spoil the identity of the unknown killer who serves as the antagonist of my novel. Nonetheless, I would say to them: “I am glad that you realized your dire mistakes by the end of the story. Before I even manifested you, I always knew that despite your diabolicy, there was good within the delves of your soul.”
PB: Intriguing! Of all your achievements, which are you most proud of?
KN: I am beyond proud of the fact that I got directly in contact with Arianna Huffington, founder of HuffPost, who offered me the position to be a contributing writer for ThriveGlobal. If you would like to check out my recent article, it is here.
PB: What is your favourite book series to read, and why?
KN: I have adored the entire Harry Potter series since my early childhood, and am most fascinated by the magically jubilant community Rowling’s fans have created. It takes a great amount of creativity and resilience to write seven whole books, each as equally marvelous as the other.
PB: What are your long term ambitions with regards to writing?
KN: Ultimately, my objective is to inspire and engage with ambitious youngsters and aspiring authors all across the world. I desire to write a couple more books, as well as becoming a public speaker.
PB: I think we can safely say that providing inspiration for others is something you have certainly achieved! What’s the next target for you?
KN: As of right now, I am striving to garner as much exposure as possible, even with the proceeding pandemic. However, I am also working on my next novel, the second book in The Black Sisterhood Files series.
PB: And finally, tell us a random fact about yourself.
KN: My family and I hiked the entire Maryland Heights one time, with no water and simply flip-flops for shoes. It was quite a strenuous feat, but the ensuing view proved to be worthwhile.
Thank you very much for having me on pjbermanbooks.com. If you wish to connect with me, please follow my Instagram, linked here.
If you would like to check out a copy of my novel, it is available here.
Thank you so much to Kristina Naydonova for speaking to us today! I really do reccomend you all follow the links above to try out The Black Sisterhood Files for yourself.
Until next time, happy reading!