Black Crow White Lie
by Candi Sary
GENRE: Adult-YA Crossover
Young Carson Calley has a rare and magical gift of healing, a gift which both defines him and threatens to betray him. He lives in Hollywood motels with his alcoholic, fortune-telling mother, Juliette. She nurtures his gift, but her ways are deceptive. She feeds the boy fantastical stories to convince him of his greatness. At fourteen, Carson finally wises up to her lies and his identity is completely shattered. Juliette is too deep in her addiction to help him separate the facts from the fictions, so he looks for answers on the streets of Hollywood. There he finds Faris, a tattoo shop owner, and Casper, a cashier at a head shop. These two unlikely mentors help this troubled yet extraordinary boy find his way to the truth.
“Putting my hands over her head I felt the tiny stars that always came. It felt like thousands of them came pouring out of my hands. I couldn’t see them with my eyes; I could only see them with my eyes closed. But I could feel them. They filled my hands with heat, and when I shared them with my mom, they made her feel better.
I don’t remember the first time I used the stars, just like I don’t remember the first time I used my voice. When I asked my mom how I got them, she said I just knew I had them in me—the same way I knew I had words in me.”
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Candi Sary graduated from the University of California, Irvine. Her awards for Black Crow White Lie include 1st Place in the Dante Rossetti Awards, winner of the Reader Views Literary Award for the West-Pacific, and first runner-up in the Eric Hoffer Award for fiction. Her novel was also adapted into a short film by Chase Michael Wilson. She lives in Southern California with her husband and two children. She can often be found surfing out in the waters of Newport Beach.
Short film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zoD7KICbNYY
Blog post: What made you decide to become a writer?
When I was little, books brought out the same excited feeling inspired by toy stores, birthday parties, or even Disneyland. Before I was five, I begged adults to read to me so that I could experience the stories I wasn’t yet able to read on my own. Then in kindergarten, my teacher taught me how to decipher the combination of letters and make out the words for myself. It was like magic! I’d been given a key to unlock the mysteries of the written word. It felt like I’d come into some kind of special powers. I still remember the feeling, and even at that young age, it was quite profound. Along with learning to read the words, we learned to write them. That was when I realized I too could be a storyteller—a bookmaker. And so my mom bought me a typewriter and I spent hours alone in my room making small books that I trimmed and stapled and presented to my mom as if I were already an author.
I kept journals throughout my school years, and that remained my connection to writing. The dream of putting stories into books again didn’t come back until I was around 25, a young mother at home with two babies. Having just graduated from college, the experience being at home mothering was quite a contrast to my days of learning at the university. My mind craved more intellectual stimulation. My solution was to go back to my old love of writing. It was something I could do while at home, and since it had always been my dream to write books, it felt like the perfect opportunity to start. I knew it could take years to write a novel, and I also knew it could take many novels to get any good at the craft. And so at 25 I set out on my writing journey. Almost 20 years and 6 practice novels later, my novel Black Crow White Lie was published.
The journey has been rewarding yet frustrating, inspiring yet heartbreaking, magical yet grounding. The highs and lows were at times extreme, but it gave my life meaning. When I struggled with understanding why people do what they do, I explored it in a novel and clarity came. When I felt overwhelmed by worry in my own life, I took myself into my characters’ minds and it had a way of calming me. Writing novels has not only been my way of expressing myself to the outside world, it has also been my way of making sense of life inside my own mind.
There is a quote in Black Crow White Lie where Carson says, “Most people live a whole lifetime without knowing their purpose. Some take years of searching and barely figure it out in their adulthoods. I was the exception, the fortunate child who was clearly handed his life’s purpose at the age of ten. I was born to be a healer.”
And I believe I was the fortunate child handed my purpose at the age of five. I was born to be a writer.
Candi Sary will be awarding a $15 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.