Chris Fabry is an award-winning author and radio personality who hosts the daily program Chris Fabry Live on Moody Radio. He is also heard on Love Worth Finding, Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman, and other radio programs. A 1982 graduate of the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism at Marshall University and a native of West Virginia, Chris and his wife, Andrea, now live in Arizona and are the parents of nine children.
Chris’ novels, which include Dogwood, June Bug, Almost Heaven, Not in the Heart, Borders of the Heart, Every Waking Moment, The Promise of Jesse Woods, Looking into You, and his latest release, Under a Cloudless Sky, have won five Christy Awards, an ECPA Christian Book Award, and two Christianity Today Book Awards of Merit, but it’s his lyrical prose and tales of redemption that keep readers returning for more.
Chris has also published more than 70 other books, ranging from nonfiction and film novelizations, including the recent bestseller War Room, to novels for children and young adults. He coauthored the Left Behind: The Kids series with Jerry B. Jenkins and Tim LaHaye, as well as the Red Rock Mysteries and The Wormling series with Jerry B. Jenkins. RPM is his latest series for kids and explores the exciting world of NASCAR.
*You can read my review of Chris’ book The Book of the King here.
Which character was most challenging to create? Why?
I find it more difficult to create the antagonists because it’s easy to slip into making them simply evil. A good hero needs a villain. But even a villain must be crafted carefully to give a full-orbed view of their motivation. So, the Dragon and all of his followers were most difficult for me.
Are any of your characters based on real people you know?
All of my characters have bits and pieces of real people. I suppose I identify with Owen because I was a solitary kid and isolated and books were a way for me to venture into the world.
Do you remember first getting the idea for the series?
Yes, the story kind of came to me late one night and I got up and went to the garage—my office at the time was above the garage—and I wrote for probably an hour, put the content in an email, and sent it to Jerry. The next morning I woke up, wondered what in the world I was thinking getting up that early, opened my email and saw Jerry had responded to the chapter I sent. He told me to keep that email, that this would be a bestseller and would connect with many readers. As of right now, the books have not become wildly popular, but those who have read the stories have really connected with them.
What do you hope readers will take away from this story?
It’s all about identity. It’s all about realizing who you are and living from who you are rather than trying to become what someone else thinks you ought to be. And the actions of our lives must come from that identity—being is the most important thing, not doing. And the doing must come from the being, who we are. That’s a deep thought, but true.
What led you to start writing?
I always say that writing is the process of joining yourself in your own journey. So for me, writing was a way to explain my life to myself. And as I look back at the stories that bubbled up in my soul so much that I had to write them, I see the struggles of my life and what I’ve done to try and grow and mature. I also wanted to do for others what writers had done for me. Reading made me come alive. Writing does the same thing.
What life experiences have shaped your writing most?
Painful experiences shape you the most. These are the things you remember without having to try. Something goes on in the brain when there’s trauma. The pain comes back. I think this is why it’s hard to forgive others—because when we’re hurt, those memories surface again and again and we think because we can’t forget that we haven’t forgiven. But that you remember something isn’t proof you haven’t forgiven, it’s just that your brain is working and you have a new opportunity when that memory comes to forgive again. So I think the painful stuff provides some of the best story fodder because everyone has painful stuff and we’re all trying to deal with it in some way.
Thanks for reading, and make sure to go check out all of Chris Fabry’s awesome books! Have you read any of them?