DONNA DAYE KITCHTON

AL­WAYS TIME TO START FRESH, HER STORY MIXES HIS­TORY, MYS­TERY AND PETS

Bonita & Estero Magazine - - PROFILE -

Au­thor Donna Daye Kitchton of Bonita Springs made her mark in pub­lish­ing in 2015 with

The Foun­tain Re­vived, a sus­pense novel about a woman, her dog and a move to St. Au­gus­tine. The story is in­spired by a visit to the his­toric city as a child.

Kitchton has a mas­ter’s de­gree in men­tal health coun­sel­ing. She used her train­ing con­duct­ing sem­i­nars: “I’m Do­ing Well But I Could Do Bet­ter” and “I Want Clar­ity Not Ther­apy.” She has trav­eled ex­ten­sively to his­tor­i­cal cities in the United States and learned the love of coun­try through these jour­neys. She was first in­tro­duced to a dog at the age of 2, when her fa­ther brought home a puppy in his pocket. She moved to Florida in 1995 and is cur­rently writ­ing her sec­ond his­tory-mys­tery novel. Her book is avail­able at lo­cal book­stores, Ama­zon and Barnes & Noble.

I WAS BROUGHT UP in Broad­al­bin, New York, in the foothills of the Adiron­dack Moun­tains; my back yard was a reser­voir 32 miles long and 7 miles wide. My fa­ther owned a gro­cery store, one of three in a lit­tle town of 2,000 peo­ple. It was a very ru­ral com­mu­nity and still is to­day.

NEED­LESS TO SAY, our area was rich with Amer­i­can his­tory, and my fa­ther was such an ad­vo­cate of Amer­i­can his­tory that every time he would see a his­tor­i­cal marker on the side of the road, we would stop and read it. Plus, we took many trips to his­tor­i­cal ar­eas, one be­ing St. Au­gus­tine.

WHEN I WRITE about an area, I like go­ing to the ac­tual place the mys­tery takes place and dig­ging up some un­usual things peo­ple don’t know or hear about from the In­ter­net or li­brary.

MY WRIT­ING CA­REER didn’t start un­til last year. How­ever, I had dif­fer­ent ca­reer choices, grad­u­at­ing with a de­gree in phys­i­cal ed­u­ca­tion and re­cre­ation from the Univer­sity of Mi­ami.

I FELT LONELY not writ­ing some­thing be­cause I wrote so much in col­lege that I didn’t want to stop. But I wanted to write some­thing I was in­ter­ested in, and that was his­tory and an­i­mals merged to­gether into a good mys­tery; how­ever, I didn’t start by want­ing to write a novel. The fact is, this book started as a one-page mys­tery for Woman’s Day mag­a­zine. By the time I got up to page 67, I knew I was in trou­ble. I put the man­u­script away for a few years and wrote work­shops for women, which was more in the field in which I grad­u­ated. Writ­ing work­shops was a te­dious job; ac­tu­ally, it was like writ­ing a book, but at that time I didn’t re­al­ize it.

MY WRIT­ING SCHED­ULE was spo­radic. As I look back at it I believe it was a way to go into my dream world with my dog and my love for United States his­tory. At first it was just a hobby that I would pull out now and then. It was fun to tell peo­ple I was writ­ing a book. I don’t think I ever in­tended to fin­ish my novel un­til my hus­band got ahold of the al­most done man­u­script and read it. I was a lit­tle di­sheveled be­cause he said he re­ally liked it, but I thought he was be­ing kind to me. How­ever, a few days later he was talk­ing to our min­is­ter’s wife about the book and she asked him if I needed any book il­lus­tra­tions be­cause she would love to do them. Well, that did it. I fin­ished the book and handed her the man­u­script, re­luc­tantly, think­ing she wouldn’t like it. Be­sides, she and her hus­band were go­ing on va­ca­tion and

DONNA DAYE KITCHTON

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