#Pimpmybio #Pitchwars

This is my first year trying out #pitchwars. My goal? Give extra attention to revisions on my manuscript, spend my July focusing on my writing, and make friends with all the glorious writers out there. Seriously, you guys are the best.

Who am I?

Who am I?

Ugh, it’s taken me 35 years to figure that out. I think I may have an idea. Here’s the CliffsNotes version.

I am a writer, a lover, a mother of 3. I’m a recuperating teacher and a recovering vice-principal. I’m a laugher, a smiler, an eternal optimist. I’ve got a husband who tolerates my whims, daughters who still think I’m cool, and a hilariously-close family with more members than I can count. I’m a sometimes-hero, sometimes-villain, lots-of-times-cheerleader. I’m a liberal and a Catholic. I’m a prayer and a fighter. I believe in rights for all and equality for all and hope for all. I’m a listener and an empathizer. I’m a crier and a yeller and a lazy-housekeeper and my faults and my strengths and my joys and my sadnesses make me who I am. I am Kristina Rinard.

What is my book?

Sitting in my room, surrounded by the peaceful post-bedtime silence of my home, I began to brainstorm unexpected places from which I might pull inspiration for my middle grade novel. Glancing toward the blackened TV, I remembered my husband’s and my latest Netflix binge. Dexter. As in the serial killer that kills serial killers. What a better place to draw an idea for a book meant for 10-14 year-olds?

Challenge accepted.

Thus my newest novel, STAND, was born. In it, 12-year-old Mace Lockton goes from nerdy and quiet good-guy to a complete and total bully. His reason? To teach Lakewood Middle’s horrific tormentor, Levi Hutchinson, a lesson. It’s a tale of David and Goliath, an underdog story. It’s a cringe-worthy read where Mace turns from good-guy to bad and Levi from bad-guy to worse. When Mace goes too far and makes mistakes he can’t undo, he starts to learn there is a right, and a very wrong, way to take a stand.

What do I read?

EVERYTHING. But don’t we all? Ok, I’ll narrow it down to some faves.

The really old stuff:

  • LITTLE WOMEN, without a doubt.
  • LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE (I’m literally headed to SD to her home as I write this…eek!!)
  • PRIDE AND PREJUDICE (and anything Jane Austin)
  • NIGHT by Elie Wiesel (talk about feels)
  • FROG AND TOAD ARE FRIENDS (it’s, like, so hilarious to read as an adult)

The kinda of old stuff:

  • PILLARS OF THE EARTH by Ken Follet (he’s fantastic <3)
  • ROOTS by Alex Haley (more feels, amiright?)
  • TIGER EYES by Judy Blume
  • HOLES by Louis Sachar
  • GO THE F### TO SLEEP by Adam Mansbach (Ok, time out…does anyone else wish they would have thought of this book? Because I am pretty sure I’ve said every sentence in my head at some point during bedtime for the past 8 years. And he just stole those words from my head and created a masterpiece. Plus, if you listen to Samuel Jackson narrate it on Youtube you aren’t human if you don’t laugh).
  • NUMBER THE STARS by Lois Lowry (and all of her other books, forever)
  • TALE OF DESPEREAUX by Kate DiCamillo, who is a freaking genius and writes golden words.
  • SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS (Loving that I’m sharing these with my oldest right now. Love it even more that she adores them and gets the humor).
  • WALK TOO MOONS by Sharon Creech (she’s another goddess)
  • BECAUSE OF WINN DIXIE (my hero, Kate, again)

The newish stuff:

  • HOMELESS BIRD, by Gloria Whelan
  • ME BEFORE YOU by Jojo Moyes
  • SPEAK by Laurie Halse Anderson
  • OUT OF THE EASY by Ruta Sepetys
  • FISH IN A TREE by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
  • COUNTING 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan

There are bound to be a million more. I can’t even begin to remember all my favorites. I love historical fiction, stories that make me laugh, and tales about people or kids that struggle but persevere.

What are some random facts?

  • I am the surprise youngest child of 6. Above, you’ll see me wearing socks with sandals that my sisters with big hair made me wear for this photograph.
  • I have 15 nieces and nephews by blood and 2 by marriage. My kids have a lot of cousins, which is fun.
  •  I’ve got three daughters, stair-stepped in age and size. 8, 6, 4.
  • My biggest regret, besides not becoming a country singer (on account of my horrible voice), is not going to school for writing.
  • Even though that’s my biggest regret, I ADORE the students, parents, and teachers I got to know and love in my 13 years in education.
  • I live in the midwest and I love it. If I were to choose to move it would be to the Tennessee mountains, the Michigan lakes, or the New England coast. Give me water, rocks, and trees and I am happy.
  • I love technology.
  • I don’t like movies much.
  • I sort of enjoy television but I forget to watch it. My hulu is constantly reminding me of that.