Recently, I had an opportunity to read a book that is now one of my favorite books of the year called The Rest Will Come by Christina Bergling. You may read the review here. I highly recommend this book and I am eagerly awaiting other works from this author. I was also given the opportunity to get to know Christina Bergling with a Q & A session. So read on to find out more about The Rest Will Come and Christina Bergling!
Colorado‐bred writer, Christina Bergling knew she wanted to be an author in fourth grade.
In college, she pursued a professional writing degree and started publishing small scale. It all began with How to Kill Yourself Slowly.
With the realities of paying bills, she started working as a technical writer and document manager, traveling to Iraq as a contractor and eventually becoming a trainer and software developer.
She avidly hosted multiple blogs on Iraq, bipolar, pregnancy, running. She continues to write on Fiery Pen: The Horror Writing of Christina Bergling and Z0mbie Turtle.
In 2015, she published two novellas. She is also featured in the horror collections Collected Christmas Horror Shorts, Collected Easter Horror Shorts, Collected Halloween Horror Shorts, and Demonic Wildlife.
Her latest novel, The Rest Will Come, was released by Limitless Publishing in August 2017.
Bergling is a mother of two young children and lives with her family in Colorado Springs. She spends her non‐writing time running, doing yoga and barre, belly dancing, taking pictures, traveling, and sucking all the marrow out of life.
Q & A
PopHorror: Welcome, Christina! Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. First, The Rest Will Come was a dark and fun read. Where did you get the idea?
Christina Bergling: The premise and main character is actually entirely based on a friend of mine. She was having a horrendous time online dating. She would tell me the stories, and I would ask her, “How have you not snapped and killed one of these guys?” Then I thought, what if she did? And the story was born.
PopHorror: Makes me glad I’m not in the dating pool right now! How did you develop the character Emma? Any of yourself in this character?
Christina Bergling: There is absolutely none of me in Emma. Ronnie, however, is a different story. Ronnie is nearly all me. Emma was easy enough to develop, since she is based off a close friend, who I know very well. I changed some of her idiosyncrasies and details, but she is largely fictionalization of the real thing. My friend was such a good sport in allowing me to exploit her, flaws and all.
PopHorror: She sounds like a true friend. How long did it take you to write this book?
Christina Bergling: It took me about nine months to write the book and another three months to polish it for submission, so one year in total.
PopHorror: Are you a “panster” or “plotter”?
Christina Bergling: I am a bit of both. I almost always start with a premise and an ending. Occasionally, I will plot out the points between the two but will often just start writing and see where I go. I plot more on a novella or novel and go more panster for shorter stories.
PopHorror: That makes perfect sense to me. I tend to panster as well, especially with short stories. This book is a perfect blend of dark comedy, horror and has many twists, including the ending. Did you face any challenges in your writing to accomplish these elements of the book?
Christina Bergling: I wrestled the most with the balance between backstory and murder action. I wanted to make sure to capture the way Emma snaps after the accumulation of so many little things, yet I did not want to bore the audience either. I also worried that the parts I found so humorous because I experienced them in real life would be lost on people who did not know the characters directly. I tackled these challenges by using a pool of beta readers, several of which did not know the subjects at all.
PopHorror: Worry not, your story was a perfect blend. What authors influenced your writing?
Christina Bergling: Stephen King, Augusten Burroughs, and Elliot Perlman
PopHorror: Great influences. What are your top 5 books?
Christina Bergling: Seven Types of Ambiguity by Elliot Perlman, Gerald’s Game by Stephen King, Different Seasons by Stephen King, Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs and Savages by Don Winslow
PopHorror: I now have a few more books to add to my never-ending TBR list! I see that you have done a lot of technical writing. Are you still a technical writer? Or just fiction?
Christina Bergling: I am no longer a technical writer; however, I do still have a day job in IT. Somehow, one of my bosses along the way conned me into switching into stylesheet and software development. So I have moved to being more of a developer and trainer on products for technical writers. The dream is to one day just write fiction though.
PopHorror: How did you get your start in the fiction writing world?
Christina Bergling: I started writing fiction in fourth grade after we did a book publication unit at my elementary school. I never really stopped. I published a few short pieces in college and in online zines. Then, in 2013, a friend of mine showed me a horror contest that included publication as the prize. I placed second, and that is when my first book, Savages, was published. Again, I just have not stopped since then.
PopHorror: Any advice to aspiring writers? In particular, female writers writing the horror genre?
Christina Bergling: My advice to any writer would be to keep writing. Even when you get rejected, even if you are producing utter crap, just keep writing. The only way to get to something quality is keep exercising the muscles. For female horror writers specifically, I would say to pull no punches. Do not shy away from the disturbing and taboo topics. Horror has been in a male voice for a long time; giving it a different, additional perspective is a good thing. Show people horrors they haven’t even imagined yet.
PopHorror: That is the some of the most real and best advice I’ve heard. What are you working on next?
Christina Bergling: I have just started a collaboration with Kevin Kennedy, the man behind Collected Christmas Horror Shorts, Collected Easter Horror Shorts and Collected Halloween Horror Shorts. We are trying at a multiple perspective post-apocalyptic monster novel. I am very excited to get into it.
PopHorror: That does sound exciting! I see from your site, you dressed up as Freddy Krueger. I have to ask. Is he your favorite villain? What are some other horror movies you enjoy?
Christina Bergling: I do love Freddy. He is such a dynamic horror movie killer, infusing comedy into his sadism. I love horror movies. Scream was my first, when I was 12. Some of my favorites include Se7en, Trick r Treat, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Halloween, The Cabin in the Woods and Suspiria. I really could go on.
PopHorror: I still have yet to see Suspiria. I am pretty sure I am one of the few horror fans who hasn’t seen it. All awesome choices! Thank you so much for taking the time Christina Bergling to chat with us. You have given both keen answers and sound advice to writers. We look forward to many more books and stories from you!