Sr Crystal Mary Lindsey Interview Published on: 30, May 2017

Would you mind telling us a little bit about your childhood and family? What was it that urged you to go to Bible College?

I grew up the second youngest of five children in a small country town in New South Wales, Australia. It was after the second world war and times were very hard. My father served in the war for three years and came home a broken man. I attended a small school of about twenty children, everyone knew each other and the community all worshiped together as one on Sundays. I went to Bible College after retirement. I felt to complete a Masters in Mental Health but my Pastor came to visit and encouraged me to attend Bible College. I'm so glad I did.

Do you remember the first story you wrote and who did you read it to? What was your biggest inspiration or motivation growing up?

I can't remember the first story I wrote. It would have been in English lessons at High School and the teacher always read the best one out loud to the class. We wrote short stories called compositions. Another girl and I always strove to write the best ones, I usually won. My biggest inspiration growing up were my two elder sisters who were five and seven years my senior. I also had good examples from my Sunday school teachers.

How do you think your history with medicine has helped your writing?

Yes, learning about medicine has made an impact on my life. I have had six full time years of University with my keenest interest in mental health, sociology and psychology. This assisted with my evaluations of the different patients who entered the Emergency Medicine Departments where I have worked. With my writing it has given me relevance of different cultures as well as human nature in that same way.

How do you come up with titles for your books?

The book titles just pop into my head. I have to write them down straight away otherwise I forget them.

Who makes your book covers for you? Where do you get the ideas and pictures for your book covers?

The first two covers for my books were photographed and designed by my daughter Femia. She had been a professional model and is now a professional photographer. The cover photo for "Love's Time" was a photo I took in the Outback, and I also designed that cover. The rest I have purchased online from different Cover Artists.

Would you prefer to live on a houseboat on the river Nile? Or in a treehouse in the Amazon?

I love the water and I love trees. I don't think the Nile is overly clean so I'll say the tree house. It would be wonderful to be up close to the animals especially monkeys.

What motivated you to write your biography & memoirs book "Abuse Beaten"? What was the kind of response you received after the book was published?

The book Abuse beaten was motivated by my eldest daughter. She persuaded me to talk about my experience one Saturday. She said I needed to get it out as I had remained quiet for over twenty years. You can't keep trauma experiences hidden as it doesn't help you or others to so. Since writing the book, I have spoken to a group of ladies giving a seminar at the local library about the pain caused by abuse. This talk was featured in the local Newspaper. I know the statistics for Domestic Violence are high all over the world. So in my book I use my experience as a victim as well as a survivor and victor to inspire and encourage similar sufferers to fight for a better life.

Do you have any slightly unorthodox practices when it comes to writing and marketing your books?

Yes, I suppose I do. I don't follow the norm on how to write a story. In fact I don't plan or map it out. I might think to write about a doctor or nurse, and then begin writing.. I am never sure myself where the story will go or how it will end, it just flows. Of course since I love the Australia outback so it is always featured. Marketing.... I am not so good at that. Mostly its through the internet, I no longer spend a lot of money doing it because it makes no difference to sales. People have to get to know, like and trust you. I am trustworthy yet not many people know that as yet.

What is the hardest thing about being a writer? What is the best thing about being a writer?

The hardest thing for me as a writer is the get the peace and quiet to write. I have been unwell for a long time, so I sit in a recliner in the lounge room and type away on my laptop. My husband and grown children come and go. There are many interruptions. The best thing is that I get there in the end and I feel my stories give faith, hope and love to my readers. I like to make people feel happy and uplifted.

How many hours in a day do you devote to writing? How long does it usually take you to write one book?

Is there anything (object, gesture, traditions, scenery, etc) that's considered normal and insignificant in the How many hours a day? That depends on the interruptions, I have no discipline with this as my family come first. My first book took me about five months on and off to write as my husband and I were travelling the Outback. My last book took me three weeks from beginning until publication.

Australian outback that would be considered outrageous or extraordinary anywhere else?

The outback is full of wild animals wandering in herds or flocks that we take for granted yet visitors are stunned by. Kangaroos come in two different colours, either grey or a red/brown. They also come in different variations, from the ones people see in zoos across the world, to the smaller tree kangaroo, and rock wallaby. Australia has the large flightless bird called an emu and these wander outback roads. They are about the size of an ostrich. Wild camels, goats and horses roam free as do the dingo (wild dog). Australia is the land of parrots with fifty six different species that are seen flying by the hundreds even thousands in the outback. It would take a book to tell more... Our Aboriginals have their own culture which is wonderful and unique.

What is one of your favourite books? Favourite author?

I have many favourite books. I grew up without television so my family read. My first book was the classic "In His Steps" owned by my grandfather. Later I learned to love Enid Blyton, an English writer of children's books. As an adult, Catherine Marshall and Corrie Ten Boom who both wrote Christian non fiction were special to me. I read a lot and enjoy many authors today.

For your book "To Catch a Butterfly", you had to write about a Muslim girl and aspects of Muslim life. How did you do you research for this? What was the hardest part in trying to understand the manners and characteristics of such a private community?

Writing about a Muslim girl wasn't hard. I have nursed people from this culture and many of their ways are similar to what I experienced in a Southern Italian household during the 1960's and 1970's. The men mainly rule the roost and the women are beaten if she opposes. Much of how it is for Muslim women today is from some old time traditions. I saw how some hard Italian women dominate the home, so do some Muslim women. I believe this to be an evil Spirit, a Spirit of contention where they bully and abuse. It is very difficult and hurtful to suffer this. From my studies on the Muslim man, I learnt that some of the educated ones are kind. The majority however, are hard headed, arrogant and aggressive, believing in dominating through brute force. Many show no restraint or discipline. Like the older southern Italian man they feel it weak to show love to their wives and daughters.

If you had the chance to go back in time and relive one moment in your life, which would it be and why?

My two sisters took me into Sydney for the day when I was about nine. It was an amazing day as I had never been on a train before that. All the cars and traffic plus the tall buildings in the city were beyond my imagination. I ate my first crumpet with honey, seated in a Café. I will always remember that day.

Is there any question you wish people would ask you more often? What is it and do tell us the answer to that question.

A question??? Well I suppose I like the question, Who is God? My answer to this is "Love -, because love is life, and God gave us both." God loved us so much that He also gave his only son to suffer for us. There is no other religion in the world that worships a God of such unconditional love. So without the creator God, life would die out because there would be no love.

How much of a role do you think social social media plays in the promotion and sales of your books? What do you think of the AllAuthor experience so far? Would this be a platform you would recommend to your friends?

Social media plays the biggest part in promoting my book and getting sales. AllAuthor has been very good to me, and helpful in many ways. For example - giving idea's for Twitter Advertising key word sentences. Advertising my books themselves on social media, and my delightful webpage on their site. It's beneficial to see how many visitors look in on my pages and AllAuthor displays this for me. I have recommended the site to my friends and my FB group book page "Australian Christian Bookaholic" also features AllBooks in my PIN POST at the top.

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