Kristy Cambron: What I Learned Since Becoming An Author

KCambron_ headshot 1

Everyone’s Story gives a big welcome to author Kristy Cambron. A fan of Kristy’s novels, I  was so excited when she accepted my invitation to appear on my blog. While Kristy’s message will resonate with writers, I believe it will also hit home with readers who don’t write since Kristy’s words carry hope in dreams and in believing in yourself. Also, here’s something to be jazzed about: check out Kristy’s BookGiveaway of her soon-to-be released The Ringmaster’s Wife–a novel I definitely want to read! Both Kristy and I look forward to hearing from you.

Plus, after reading what Kristy shares, please check out the information on the fabulous Christian Fiction Readers Retreat at the bottom of this post.


Ringmaster_FINAL cover_Nov 11


Kristy is offering 1 signed copy of The Ringmaster’s Wife, once it releases in June, to 1 randomly chosen commenter, so please do leave a comment. The winner will be announced here on Friday, May 27th between 5-6 PM EST.

** Please note regarding BookGiveaways: to further protect your privacy, and since email contact info is appearing for “my eyes only” when the comments go into my moderation box, emails within comments are no longer required. However, if yours does NOT appear I will leave a comment for you to forward it in order for you to chance winning.


5 Truths About Becoming an Author by Kristy Cambron

I may not be one of those super-hip YA authors out there (I’m a little more of the history-loving, museum type), but I do understand the awkwardness of those formative teenage years. Even as an adult, the first line of Taylor Swift’s Fifteen, always gets me:

“Take a deep breath and walk through the doors; it’s the morning of your very first day…”

I wasn’t fifteen– in fact, I was a 31 year-old corporate America-working wife and mother of two– but I stepped off a plane to attend my first writers’ conference in 2011, through invisible doors that led into the publishing world.

It was the morning of my very first day as an author. I was about as wide-eyed as they come. And in the years that have followed, I’ve released three books, have another in the editing stage, and am researching what I plan to write next. I’ve had book signings, speaking engagements in many cities I’d never visited before, radio interviews and promotional tours… Where I’ve been is worlds away from that conference, but not so far that I don’t remember what it felt like that very first day.


If I could go back and tell that aspiring author a few things to help make her wiser, a little braver and the journey a whole lot easier, I’d give her some truth to tuck in her back pocket for the road:

  • Embrace Failure – If you want to read about epic failure, spend some time in Acts Chapter 9. Paul’s example in mind, we have to understand that failure can be the harbinger of amazing things to come! I performed poorly in several writing contests early in my career. Though I would have loved to win those contests or avoid rejections, I wasn’t ready for publication. Even as a published author, failure is part of the job. Not every reader will love the stories you write. 1-star reviews and mediocre sales can happen to any writer. Look at failure as an opportunity to learn, grow, and lean on Christ as you keep walking.

  • Make Friends – Networking is a valuable tool in any business, but developing authentic relationships will be critical on your journey to publication. In that first conference, I met a group of aspiring writers who were dream-chasing just like me. I also met many experienced authors. We developed a bond to support through the ups and downs of not just publication, but in everyday things. Now we’re just doing life together. And one by one, we watch (and celebrate!) as another friend receives a contract. It’s been a special tribe to be a part of.

  •  Read – They say that behind every good writer is a stack of books they’ve just read. (More like ten stacks, right?) If you love storytelling, then reading is a pleasure instead of a chore. You’ll cultivate your understanding of plot design, character development, story structure and the mechanics of writing well. You’ll learn what publishers are looking for. You’ll also treat the industry like a business because you’ll be learning and feeding your soul with encouragement for the road ahead.

  •  Step Away – When I transitioned from my old corporate career to the author life, it was new for writing to become more than a hobby. A trusted friend once asked me: “What hobbies do you have?” I was dumbfounded to come up with an answer. I knew I needed to enjoy my profession, but also understand who I am as a child of God – even if I were to be without writing for a while. Slow down in the dream-chase. Relax. Pray. Read the Word. Spend time with family and love every minute of the journey– especially when you feel like it’s taking longer than it should.

  • Carry a Sharpie – It’s an invaluable piece of advice I received from a very wise (also award-winning and bestselling) author. She said that you have to think like you’re an author before you sign a contract. Own your dreams! You’re an author whether you have a book on the shelves or not. And once you are published, carry that marker with pride and get ready to write when you’re asked to sign a book. (It happens all the time!)

So get out there, dream-chasing friends! Step through the doors to your new life. Just like Taylor sang, “Count to 10… take it in… This is life before you know who you’re gonna be.”

I can’t wait to see you on the other side.

Kristy’s Ah-hahs To Tweet:

Kristy Cambron @KCambronAuthor: 5 Truths About Becoming An Author. (Tweet This)

Everyone’s Story: What Kristy Cambron @KCambronAuthor would tell her former aspiring writer self. (Tweet This)

Win #BookGiveaway of Kristy Cambron @KCambronAuthor’s new release The Ringmaster’s Wife. (Tweet This)

Author’s Bio:

Kristy Cambron has a background in art and design, but she fancies life as a vintage-inspired storyteller. Her debut novel, THE BUTTERFLY AND THE VIOLIN, was named to Library Journal Reviews’ Best Books of 2014 and RT Reviewers’ Choice Awards Best of 2014 lists, and received a 2015 INSPY Awards nomination for best debut novel. Her second novel, A SPARROW IN TEREZIN, was named to Library Journal Reviews Best of 2015 list, and received a nomination for RT Reviewers’ Choice Awards Best Inspirational Book of 2015. Kristy’s third historical novel, THE RINGMASTER’S WIFE, was named to Publishers Weekly Spring 2016 Religion & Spirituality TOP 10 and will release from HarperCollins in June, 2016.

Kristy is a Speaker and Design Manager at, and holds a degree in Art History from Indiana University. She lives in Indiana with her husband and three sons, where she can probably be bribed with a coconut mocha latte and a good read.

Places to connect with Kristy:







I’ve been blessed by some lovely reviews–check them out:

Amazon   Barnes&Noble



I’ll be at this amazing event that unites readers and authors. Will you be there? Let me know!

Come join us at the Christian Fiction Readers Retreat One Day Event (CFRR) in Nashville, TN this summer! Our event theme is “Honoring God through Christian Fiction.”  Enjoy speaker sessions, author panels, breakout sessions, prayer & worship and author signings with your favorite Christian fiction authors! With 30+ authors, food, swag (including free books), games and TONS of giveaways, you don’t want to miss this event!

When is it, you ask?

August 24, 2016
9:00 AM – 5:00 PM

For more information, including schedule, authors list, registration info and other logistical questions, check out our website HERE, or click on the image above.  Registration is now open! Late registration begins on June 16th. Once capacity is reached, registration will close. So hurry up and register!

Standard Registration Fee: $98
Late Registration Fee: $120

To go ahead and register, just go right HERE.

AND for the first giveaway at the event, all those registered can enter for the chance to win a BOX of Christian Fiction from the stewards of the event.  Just click on the image below to enter. (Link also available on our website).

We hope to see you there!



Kristy and I look forward to your comments. The comment area is below. 

Click “Comments.”

46 comments to Kristy Cambron: What I Learned Since Becoming An Author

  • Deanne Patterson

    Hi, Elaine. It’s a true pleasure to visit your blog today and also to learn more about Kristy .I am so excited to see her featured here today.What a coincidence this is. I just finished reading her novel A Butterfly and the Violin. Just finished it yesterday. I was absolutely blown away. WOW! This work of art will live on within me and not be forgotten. I really look forward to reading more of her books including The Ringmaster’s Wife. Thank you for providing such thought provoking words for us to ponder, Kristy.

    • elaineadmin

      Deanne, it’s so nice to see you again 😊 I also enjoyed The Butterfly and the Violin, especially being a lover of classical music. I also enjoy novels set in that time era.

      Glad you enjoyed Kristy’s feature.

    • I’m so pleased you enjoyed Adele’s story, Deanne! Thanks for stopping by. And we all have something in common: I also enjoy the WWII era setting for novels. 😉 Blessings!

  • I loved A Butterfly and the Violin! And what an inspiring post. Her five tips are spot on! I pinned her meme and plan to post it to Facebook as well. It’s so true. I can remember when I started enjoying the journey and quit striving to get published–it was when I finally realized it wasn’t in my hands, but God’s.

    • elaineadmin

      Thanks for visiting, Pat. I personally gobble up as much advice I can get from other authors, especially when the advice is applicable to daily life, like Kristy’s words!

  • Ann Ellison

    As a reader, I always enjoy reading author’s comments about their process. I love Kristy’s books and would love to win a copy of this one.

  • Sarah

    Great post. Can’t wait to seriously in Nashville!

  • Really good post. So much that resonates, even the things I’ve already learned and needed repeating to me, I guess.

  • Hi Kristy:

    I had the pleasure of seeing the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Three Ring Circus at Madison Square Garden around 1950. It surely was my most vivid memory from that year. Ever since then, when I hear it said that ‘something is a circus’ I well knew what is meant. I found it impossible to watch all three rings at once. It was sad in a way: no matter where you looked and no matter how good the act was, you always knew you were missing something else as wonderful.

    Did you get to go to the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus during your research?

    What do you think about the coincidence that just as your book is coming out they announce that the elephants are being retired?

    A circus with no elephants. Sea World with no whales. Next may be a world with no people. It’s sad.

    The tone of your post and this quote:

    “…love every minute of the journey– especially when you feel like it’s taking longer than it should.”

    Made me think, once again, of Viktor Frankl’s “Man’s Search for Meaning”. Has your thought been influenced by this work?

    BTW: The Kindle page on Amazon lists “The Ringmaster’s Wife” as having 529 pages but the print page says it has 368 pages. Would you please tell us which it is?

    I’m a student of the years your book covers. Like the hero in “Midnight in Paris”, I’d be right at home in the Paris of the 1920’s. I also feel that those years were a golden age and that ‘golden ages’ are not relative.

    Looking forward to reading your book.


    • elaineadmin

      Thanks for visiting, Vince. My personal opinion: I’m glad Ringling has stopped using elephants. There’s a clear record that, in general, circus elephants have suffered horrific abuse. While I am unsure if Ringling is also responsible, I can respect them for their new position.

    • Hi Vince ~

      Thanks for stopping by to share such a great comment! Did you ever see ‘The Greatest Show on Earth’ (1952) film? I bet it would remind you of your circus visit in 1950. Remarkable era!

      For your print book/Kindle question: Different book versions have varying page numbers. e-Book versions will always have more due to the screen resolution/size. (I’ve read e-Books on my phone that had 1,500+ “pages”! Wow!) I am sometimes asked how many pages I have in my books and the question really is: How many words are in your books? Authors go by word counts. So to answer your question, in a typical print book (English version, not large print edition) will have an average of 350 pages. When all is said and done with editing, by books will be between 90k – 100k words. 😉

      Thanks for stopping by!

  • Kudos to you, Kristy! I haven’t read your books yet, but The Ringmaster’s Wife has an intriguing title. What a blessing
    you have been able to jump right into the publishing world. My dream took much longer to come true, as my first
    novel came out last month and I had written the first draft more than a dozen years ago. It is important to not give
    up on your dreams and to enjoy the process. Once a writer, you learn to love and study the written word. You are
    changed by it. We are all on a different journey and just need to cling to the Lord through the process, while we
    have our faith muscles strengthened in different ways.

    Thanks for bringing another fascinating author onto my radar, Elaine!

    • elaineadmin

      Kathy, you always make me smile when you visit. Every week–actually, every day–seems to present to me a theme. This week it’s: don’t compare my journey (to anywhere) with another’s because He WANTS it to be different for a reason. Human-wise, it’s not easy, but perhaps that’s why I am always needing to re-learn this one 😊

  • Hi Elaine:

    I am conflicted about elephants in the circus. I trained K9 attack dogs in the Air Force. These dogs loved their job. They could not wait to go out on post. One night in six they got to ‘catch’ an intruder and attack a man in the padded suit. They never lost a fight. No weapon fired near them ever hurt them. They never needed a treat to be taught anything. They worked for praise only.

    I just wonder how these dogs would like it to be retired to a field to roam with no purpose in life. They say elephants are very intelligent. I just wonder if given the choice how many elephants would join the circus.

    I don’t feel the same way about the whales. Funny, I’m happy to see the whales go. Maybe it was the “Free Willy” movies.

    However, the saddest thing I ever saw regarding animals was this handsome gorilla at the San Deigo zoo who was right up against the glass of his ‘cage’ looking me in the eye with full intelligence. We were only two inches apart. It was as if he was asking me: “What did I do to be confided like this?”

    I most object to keeping higher primates in ‘viewing’ prisons — aka zoos.

    I’d love to know what Kristy thinks about this. Also in Hugo, Oklahoma, we have a cemetery for all Circus performers that is quite impressive. I think if you love the circus, you eventually get to Hugo and see all the graves:

    Again, you have another extra-ordinary guest. It is always fun to see Friday come around again.


    • elaineadmin

      I appreciate your thoughts, Vince.

      • Thanks for the conversation.

        There are other books that focus on the animals in the circus — Water for Elephants being a great example. We went a different direction with this story, as The Ringmaster’s Wife is a work of semi-biographical fiction on the life of Mable Ringling. There are animals in the story, yes. Of course. But Mable’s interaction with the animals and the circus as a whole was largely limited. We opted to lean on the side of historical fact and minimally touch upon this in the book. Though in research, I was relieved to find that among the circus shows of the early 20th century, the Ringling Bros.’ was one that largely focused upon the family atmosphere of the circus (rather than sideshow) and had a record of ethical treatment of animals. I of course support only the best treatment of all God’s creatures.

        Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

        • ** I should clarify and say that Mable’s interaction with the *performance* animals was more limited, as she preferred not to infringe upon her husband’s business world. However, she LOVED animals! The Ringlings had dogs, birds, apes and many other animals onsite in their homes. If you hop over to my YouTube Channel, I’ll be posting a Research Files video soon that includes a cool clip of the gorgeous iron gates (essentially, a doggie door!) that Mable had installed inside their Ca’d ‘Zan mansion in Sarasota, FL. They loved and always had animals in their homes, which were treated as family.

          Thanks again!

  • KayM

    Hi Elaine, I enjoyed the very interesting post from Kristy. I hate to admit that I haven’t read her books yet. I’ve read all the accolades, so I know I need to rectify this deficiency–LOL! Right now, I’m listening to Joel C. Rosenberg’s Auschwitz and reading Lulu’s Cafe by T.I. Lowe on my Kindle. I seriously considered going to the readers’ conference, but I decided not to attend. I’m sure it will be a great experience!

    • elaineadmin

      Hi, Kay!! I was so riveted by Rosenberg’s novel Escape From Auschwitz (also via audio) that for once I had wished my commute to work was longer. LOL. I’ll have to check out the other one you suggested–a new one for me. I’m sure you’ll enjoy Kristy’s novels 😊 😊

      Oh, man. We were so close to meeting and now no cigars. Well… one day, soon, my friend.

    • I have The Auschwitz Escape in my TBR pile too! ( I have soooo many books I need and want to read.) Ha ha!;)

  • Jan Hall

    I am so thankful for authors like yourself. I can barely write a message in a card. But I do love to read. I wish I could go to the Christian Fiction Readers Retreat. Maybe next year. Have a blessed day!

  • Great post and great advice, Kristy! I remember back when we were in the same agency! You have done such amazing things and it has been great to see such a kind person get her books out there! All the best with your upcoming release! And always enjoy your interesting author visitors, Elaine!

    • elaineadmin

      Heather, so nice to see you again!! What a funny, small world this writing community is–you and Kristy together. And speaking of “interesting author visitors,” Heather, you’re certainly invited to come back for an appearance as well. I’d love to host you again 💗

    • You too, Heather! I’ve watched and cheered you on from the sidelines, friend. 😉 Hugging you now!

  • Marilyn R

    Great post and 5 tips for each and everyone to implement. Each of our lives is in God’s hands and His timing is usually not the same as we want. I’ve discovered more patience waiting on God’s perfect timing for changes in my life. The Ringmaster’s Wife sounds like an excellent read. I enjoy books with history woven into the tale, too. It would be fun to be a mouse amongst all the authors at Nashville. God bless each and every one.

    • elaineadmin

      So happy to see you here, Marilyn. Oh, how I wish you could be in Nashville at the Reader’s event!!

    • I think it’s all about God’s timing, Marilyn. Great point. It’s His will, not mine. His plan. His opening of doors and provision along the way. I’m learning this more and more — to leave everything in His hands. It’s a tough lesson to learn, letting go. I think I’m not very goot at it sometimes. 😉 Good thing we have His grace!

  • Marilyn R

    Elaine, I definitely wish I could be in Nashville for the Reader’s event, too. God Bless.

  • Connie Saunders

    Thank you for sharing Kristy’s comments. As I read her advice to writers, I realized that so many of these tips apply to other vocations and life in general. It is through rejection and failure that we improve ourselves and grow stronger. Friends are invaluable and the more we have, the better. And as a retired librarian, I absolutely believe that reading is the key to success!

  • Wonderful advice, Kristy! And you’re so right about conferences. I met both you and Elaine at one!!

    • elaineadmin

      Thanks for stopping by–so nice to see you here. Yes, I remember you “back in the day” when you were first pitching your mss., then watching not one but several of your novels sell. Here’s to many more!

  • elaineadmin

    What a fun week it’s been for me personally hosting the fabulous Kristy Cambron, and I imagine, for many of you as well! Heartfelt thanks and appreciation, Kristy, for being a great guest. I hope you’ll be back!

    Thanks too for your special BookGiveaway of the soon-to-be released The Ringmaster’s Wife. And the winner of Kristy’s novel…

    … is Kathleen R. Yay, Kathleen!! Happy reading, indeed. Both Kristy and I will be in direct contact via email.

    May all be blessed.

  • Melissa M.

    I saw the Ca’d ‘Zan several years ago when we lived in FL, and it is beautiful! I’m very interested to read this story! I liked “Butterfly and the Violin.” Thanks for the chance to win.

    • elaineadmin

      Melissa, thanks for visiting, but I’m afraid Kristy’s BookGiveaway contest has ended. I hope you’ll visit again.

  • What a lovely interview and post. So glad I got to read it!

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