Kern Carter

A Millennial Writer, Author

Each day that I am fortunate enough to open my eyes, I observe, challenge, push, react, all in hopes of becoming a better writer. I hesitate to label myself as an author because anyone that publishes a book can claim that title. I am a writer; someone who lives with words and is in constant analysis of the world around me. My gift is to communicate stories through the written word; to create worlds within those pages that readers can see, touch, sense and feel as they are guided through tales that reflect genuine life situations and perspectives.

I have taken the time to precisely craft my first public message. This is only the first step. There is still so much I have to say.

The Interview

SD: When did you start writing seriously/professionally?

KC: This is a tough question. I’ve been a freelance writer for the past three years, making a living off of writing. But I’ve been working on Thoughts of a Fractured Soul for six years so I’m not sure what would qualify as my start to professional writing. 

SD: Why do you write?

KC: I write first of all because I love it. I remember writing my first story in third grade. It was something like The Lion King, very similar actually. I also write because this is what I want my life to be. I want to be a writer, an “author” I guess you can say. I love using words to tell stories, to communicate life situations that I’ve observed throughout my own life.  

SD: What authors have influenced you to start writing and why?

KC: Toni Morrison is the first author that really captivated me. Reading Beloved was like the most incredible experience for me in high school. It opened my eyes to how words can really move people to emotion. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad was another amazing story. It’s relatively short, less than 38,000 words I believe, but the actual tale that it tells has allowed it to be considered one of the most classic books in literature. Graham Greene has a story called The Power and the Glory that shook me when I first read it. He is definitely someone whom I pattern my writing after. More recently, I would say Khaled Hosseini is someone who sparked my journey to writing this book. When I first read A Thousand Splendid Suns I was literally in awe. There was not one page of that book that did not keep my full attention. His style, the emotion of that story, the actual story itself; all of it was brilliant and I remember clearly thinking that ‘I want to write like this.’ I went back and read his first novel The Kite Runner and I’ve been a fan ever since. 

SD: Do you think your writing can have an impact on the world?

KC: Yes. That is my only goal. I want more than anything to be able to touch the world with my writing. I want my words to have an impact on culture, on my generation, and on the generations after me. Until that happens, I will never be satisfied. 

SD: You recently just released your first book, Thoughts of a Fractured Soul. How does it feel to be the author of a book?

KC: You know what, everyone has asked me that question. They’ve told me I should be celebrating this accomplishment of completing my first book. But to be completely honest, I don’t feel like I’ve accomplished anything yet. I want so much more for myself that completing this book feels like the beginning; like I can finally get my life mission started. I know that I should be able to step back and appreciate this milestone, but until my mission of touching the world is realized, then I’ll always feel incomplete. 

SD: How did you come up with the title for Thoughts of a Fractured Soul?

KC: Good question. Well I actually didn’t think of the title till well after completing the story, which I’m not sure is consistent with how other authors write. The first title I was originally going with was “For My Independence,” which is actually the title of my blog. But I needed something that spoke directly to the story and also had an emotion attached to it that people could feel just by reciting the words. After going through a few edits of the story, I felt “Thoughts of a Fractured Soul” was the most powerful and best reflected what my story is about.

SD: Thoughts of a Fractured Soul is about a young man named Corey Thomas, aka Ace, who had to make some decisions that impacted his life tremendously. Is it safe to say that Corey sounds a lot like today’s young generation?

KC: Yes, definitely. My story is made to speak to today’s generation, the Millennial generation. Specifically it details the transition from being a teenager to moving into adulthood and the decisions that are made during those periods that may seem inconsequential but in fact determine your future to a large degree.

SD: Do you see a bit of Corey in your younger self or in yourself now?

KC: Yes, I definitely do see myself in Corey. Just struggling to make the right decision and not knowing what the right decision is in most cases. At times thinking I had made the right decision when in reality I had no idea what I was doing. I think it’s something all Millennials struggle with.

SD: There are a couple of topics that are mentioned in the book such as young love and teenage parenting. How do these topics relate to the younger generation of today?

KC: I think we all remember the first time we were in love. What gets lost in that sometimes is just how deeply being in love can impact our lives. People, and I’ll guess even more so with young people, when they're in love nothing else matters; no one else matters. All they see is that person and the illusion of perfection that they’ve created around that person. But too much love can be just as detrimental as too much hate, and it’s difficult to really step back and analyze the situation as a young person when you’re so blinded by your emotions.

SD: Is this book written for a young audience? If so, was this intentional?

KC: I don’t think about the audience specifically when I’m writing. All of that comes after. I would say my book is written for the Millennial generation but includes characters and messages that speak to everyone.

SD: Is there a lesson to be learned in Thoughts of a Fractured Soul? If so, please explain.

KC: I don’t think there is one single lesson I can point to and say, “this is what I want people to take away from this story.” I can say that for me the biggest tragedy is not realizing your own potential and settling for mediocrity. I couldn’t imagine not writing this story because this is what I was meant to do. Pursuing my passion and creating the life formyself of my choosing means everything to me. Thoughts of a Fractured Soul touches on aspects of not feeling fulfilled, but that is just one side of the story.

SD: Will there be a sequel to this book?

KC: No, I don’t think so. I think I’ve told the precise story that I set out to tell and that’s all that I ask of myself. But I guess you never know, right?

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