My Writer's Journey

When I was in primary school my teachers used to tell me that I wrote great stories and that, one day, I'd be the next Enid Blyton (the JK Rowling of her day). I'd like to say that I believed them - my parents did! - but I never thought a girl like me could be an author. True, I was never happier than when writing yet another story or creating homemade comics to give to my family and friends - but become a writer? Er, no, that could never happen to me. Could it? It took me until I was scarily ancient before I began to think that it could.


What follows is my journey towards making my childhood dream a reality:



Here is a laptop. 'OK', I hear you say, 'What's so special about that? It isn't even a particularly fancy laptop. I mean, come on, isn't it a bit old-fashioned? You ought to get yourself one of those iMacs, then you'd have something to brag about.' You're right, it is pretty antiquated but let me tell you it was the state of the art when I received it as a birthday present in 2005. And it is a very special laptop because this man bought it for me:


Handsome isn't he? Well, I would say that because I'm his daughter. Anyway, the man smiling at you is my lovely dad, Roy. It it hadn't had been for him, I might have given up on that long-lost dream to be a writer. Remember those primary school teachers, the ones who said I could write? Well, I may have pushed their opinion to the dark corners of my memory bank but my parents hadn't, especially Dad. But, boy, did he need to have a long memory - and plenty of staying power: it took me decades before I picked up my pen again and started to scribble down a new story. Which brings me back to the laptop: 


But no, wait a minute, I'm getting ahead of myself here. Let's rewind a couple of years, to before the laptop and I became acquainted. In a previous life (I told you I was ancient!) I used to work in education. At that time I was head of a nursery and primary school but was off on sick leave. After the hectic pace of school life, the days dragged. So guess what? I fetched a pen, sorted out a notebook and began to write. I couldn't scribble the words quickly enough so I swopped the pad for a computer, keeping the notebook to make plans and jot down ideas. By the time my sick leave was over, I had written a whole novel. It was rubbish but it got me hooked on writing again. 


However, as any writer with a demanding full-time job will tell you, finding time to write isn't easy. So, when I returned to work, my writing suffered: the torrent of words that had poured out of me during my sick leave dwindled to a steady - if determined - trickle. The upshot of this was that although I had spent years working in a profession I loved, it began to lose its appeal. Rapidly. Because I had re-discovered my passion - I had to write. (Yes, I realise that sounds cliched, but it's the simple truth.) So I did that thing that everyone advises you not to do - I gave up the day job. Resigned. It might sound foolhardy to you, and maybe it was but I've never been happier.


To be continued...

Welcome to my website!

Hi! I'm Christina Banach, author of Minty. Thanks for dropping by my website. Please take a look around. Here you'll find news and information about me and my books. If you have any questions do get in touch through my contact page. Thank you for visiting and happy reading! 



I was the 2017-2018 Scottish Book Trust Author in Residence at Knightsridge Primary School, Livingston. Many thanks to the SBT for for affording me the opportunity to share my love of writing and reading with such an inspiring school.



"This is a thought provoking debut novel about love, loss and the importance of family…A compelling and ultimately heart-warming story."


Please click on the link below to read the whole critique:


"Through Minty's eyes we see how family and friends are affected by bereavement. It deals with loss, love, friendship and over all, hope, resilience and strength of character. It's a haunting, eerie and beautiful read that will resonate with you for days after you read it. "


I'm very grateful to the Scottish Book Trust for featuring Minty as their Teen's Book of the Month. 



Below are extracts of some other reviews (to read more please check out my News and Reviews page):


"What an amazing story! I could not put this book down!"


"This is one of those gems that works for young adults and also the not so young...I read it in a single sitting - something I do not ordinarily do - except for a brief pause to compose myself before the final chapter, such was the intensity of emotion the book engenders. You must read this book..."


"Christina's stunning style of writing succeeded in bringing tears of joy and sadness to my eyes. For a first book being this good, it makes me wonder what is yet to come."



I was thrilled to be part of the Edinburgh International Book Festival 2015 SCBWI panel event - How To Survive Being Published. It was a real privilege to have been invited. Thank you! 


Plot & Structure Event

Thank you to everyone who came to my plot and structure workshop in Edinburgh. I hope you had as much fun as I did. Thanks to Sheila Averbuch for this great write up of the day. 



I've created a mood board for MINTY over on Pinterest. Click here to take a look:




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