Nefretitim: Tonight on Literary Links we have Cristina Smith author of The Tao of Sudoku Yoga for the Brain. Thank you for joining us tonight on Literary Links. What inspired the creation of this book?
Cristina Smith: I made the choice to do something I would never have imagined before- number puzzles. I approached learning to play as a way to train my mind and as part of my spiritual path. The results were remarkable. It’s amazing how sometimes the most unexpected things can trigger the deepest revelations.
Nefretitim: How did you come up with the title?
Cristina Smith: It emerged in a creative conversation with my brother Rick, who is The Tao of Sudoku’s puzzle master and book designer. The title captures the unexpected yet exquisite blending of seemingly unrelated topics in the tradition of The Tao of Pooh and Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.
Nefretitim: What genre does this book to fit into?
Cristina Smith: It is genre fluid. Both a profound philosophy and fun puzzle book, The Tao of Sudoku is yoga for the brain that stretches your mind, nourishes your soul and touches your heart.
Nefretitim: What influenced your interest in writing?
Cristina Smith: Growing up I spent countless hours at the library and reading. The abundance of authors who expressed their varied visions, stories, and perspectives somehow gave me permission to write. I wrote poetry, articles and had pen pals even as a young teen. I still have pen pals, but as of the early 2000s, they have been social media friends around the world.
One of those moments that sticks with you the rest your life happened when I was about 15. My aunt said that she saw me writing the great American novel sometime. As I said to my cousin a couple of weeks ago, “This book is truly a novel, but in a completely different context!”
Nefretitim: What is the writing process like for you?
Cristina Smith: Since first publishing at age 17, I have worked as a marketing copywriter, co-creative ghostwriter, and editor in addition to my personal projects. Some days when I write, I am working, learning and offering my gifts to others. Other days, I am dancing with my muse in the depths of my soul, following the ephemeral trails of inspiration where they lead.
That said, writing is a process of steering and flowing for me. The parameters of the task at hand like deadlines, topics and word counts steer the direction. The quiet time away from the task, like taking a walk or having a cup of tea is the flow. Sometimes the solution to a task just pops in to my head while taking a shower or on a walk. My creative process embraces both aspects which increases my joy and happiness factor exponentially.
Nefretitim: What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Cristina Smith: I spend my time at my homes in the forest or on the ocean and love to travel. My friends have graced me with the title ‘Prime Community Builder’ for which I am very grateful. I love being a part of an international alliance of beautiful souls committed to making the planet a better place through their work and their lives. I enjoy adventures in the inner worlds of meditation and silence. And I love to celebrate life with my friends and family.
Nefretitim: What tips or words of encouragement do you have for other writers?
Cristina Smith: Here are my top 10:
10. Nourish your curiosity.
9. Fuel your love of learning.
8 Acknowledge your own accomplishments.
7. Offer your gifts.
6. Write about what brings you joy.
5. Give yourself credit for your successes.
4. Remember you have a body.
3. Have fun! It will sustain you as much as work.
2. Know yourself better every day.
1. Express yourself and allow your true voice to emerge. It will evolve over time and the more you let it be heard, the better you will be able to listen to it.
Nefretitim: Great advice! Thank you for the interview. Get your copy of The Tao of Sudoku Yoga for the Brain today @ https://amzn.com/1536916358.