A 24-year-old award-winning writer from southern California visited Holy Nativity school Monday.
She read some of her books, answered questions, and gave advice to young writers at the school.

Geanna Culbertson said it started with a mission; to create a different type of character that she could relate to and inspire others with. 

“I’m very passionate about creating a girl main character whose focus is herself,” Culbertson said.

The inspiration for her young adult series “Crisanta Knight” came from what she learned while reading books as a girl. She said female leads always had a love interest with the same level of importance as the journey itself. She said in books with male leads, it wasn’t that way. 

“Usually it’s his journey first, and his love interest is an extra factor. It’s not the point of the story,” she said.

One student said the book is unlike other books she reads in school.

“A lot of them are male characters which I don’t have an issue with. It’s nice to see some female characters,” Ella Daube, a sixth grade student, said.

“If there are relationships and romance, those don’t take center stage. They’re not the point of her life,” Culbertson said.

A student asked the author how to become a better writer. She said it’s simple.

“For one, keep writing. And two, don’t give in to writers block,” the writer said.

Culbertson said writing the story out of order helps answer questions you didn’t even know to ask. After years of writing, her mission is the same.

“If I can get a girl of any age, even one in that room, to really be fueled by that,” she said, “to want to embrace the girl she would like to be down the line and work toward that, then I think I’ll have done more than I could ask for.”

Culbertson has already published three books. In 2016, she won an Independent Publisher Award.