Today I’m happy to have “Soulkeepers” author, G.P. Ching on Coffee and a Keyboard.
V.R.: Tell me a little about how you got started writing.
My favorite thing in the world has always been writing. Storytelling
came naturally to me. When I went to college I tested out of the
writing class requirements and although I was interested in studying
creative writing at the college level, I was easily persuaded to major
in Accounting. I did well and my first job was with a major insurance
company, but, somehow, despite passing the CPA, I never worked in
an accounting position. Very quickly I was moved into a planning and
strategy role where my talent for storytelling was used to sell new
projects to the organization. Then in 2006, after rising to a senior
management position, I left the organization to stay home with my
kids. I wrote the first version of The Soulkeepers my first summer off
in a spiral notebook while my children where in swimming lessons.
V.R. You are very active in the #fridayflash community, tell me about
The #fridayflash community is very important to me. So much so that
they are noted on my acknowledgment page. Writing flash fiction
gave me practice in finding the core of a story. By reading and writing
weekly, I strengthened my writing muscle and learned what worked
with readers and what didn’t. I grew a readership, made friends, and
learned how to use Twitter. But most importantly, I gained confidence
that I was a “real” writer and that people all over the world wanted to
read my work.
V.R. Your debut novel, “Soulkeepers” is out now. Tell me how that came
To truly understand how the Soulkeepers came to be, first you have
to know a little of my history. I’ve never been what you might call
a “religious” person. I was raised Catholic and my family practiced
in the traditional way. I was always the one who bucked the
system. Why couldn’t we eat meat on Friday? Why did I have to
go to confession? etc. As an adult, I became Lutheran after my first
marriage ended in divorce, but I sort of didn’t practice anything for
a long time and I read about all different world religions during this
Then, someone invited me to this Bible study that was historically
focused. It’s the type of thing you might have taken in college–a very
intellectual look at the Bible. We were reading about Adam & Eve, and
it dawned on me how weird it was that the snake was in the garden.
It was supposed to be the safest place in the universe, protected by
God, but evil was right there. And all at once, I had this realization
that the people of the world who had faith did not have it because
everything that they believed made perfect logical sense. They had
faith because they’d decided at some point that there was an ultimate
force for good in the universe and they wanted to be a part of it.
Some personal experience had brought them to a connection with a
higher power and this connection was uniquely individual.
My father-in-law was an atheist and we’d stay up late into the night
talking about why he believed what he did and why I believed what I
did. He’d pose questions to me about the imperfections of the world
and how I might explain them.
And just like that, Jacob was in my head, an atheist trying to process
why his world was imperfect. Jacob struggles with imperfections in
self, family, community, and ultimately his God. That was the seed
that bloomed into the Soulkeepers.
V.R. Anything else you want to mention?
I queried agents on and off about The Soulkeepers over the course
of a year. I’d taken the manuscript to workshops and had more beta
readers than I have fingers. I’d done my homework and knew the
manuscript was brilliant. While I had requests for partials and fulls,
ultimately it was rejected. But the book is doing well, is profitable,
and has earned eleven five star reviews on Goodreads so far. If you
are passionate about your novel and know that it is worthy of your
readers, never give up.
G.P.’s novel, “Soulkeepers” is available at Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble and Smashwords. For more information visit her website, So, Write.You can also read some of her amazing #fridayflash and learn more about her forthcoming novels for the “Soulkeepers” series.