By Nicholette Carlson
MILFORD — The Milford town marshal recently knocked one big item off his bucket list — publishing his first book. “A Fairy’s Tale,” published under D. A. Kreider, is the first book in a trilogy Derek Kreider has planned.
The book chronicles the friendship of a school resource officer named Derek and his 5-inch fairy friend Isabel, whom he fondly nicknames Izzy. As the first of three, this book focuses on how they meet, their developing trust and friendship and the struggles of keeping Izzy a secret. Chapters include both humor and serious moments, from Izzy trying her first bite of ice cream, which ends in painful brain freeze, to her confiding in Derek the painful truths of where she came from.
Kreider got the idea when he was working as a school resource officer and eating lunch with some third graders. The students were arguing “the existence of fairies and wanted to know if they fly around in jets,” he laughed. This conversation inspired him to write a short story for the students, but, as he wrote, five pages turned into 10, which turned into 15.
As he realized this was going to be a larger project than originally expected, he began a master class in writing. When he tried writing his first book four years ago, he quickly became overwhelmed and took classes to build his writing skills. He also started to research ancient fairy lore. When it came to lore, he admitted he wanted to “not match, but create my own mythology.”
He started writing the story on a vacation to Arizona and got stuck in a freak blizzard. While bad for his vacation, it was great for his writing. He started with the end and wrote the last chapter of the third book.
The writing of book one took almost all of 2019 to complete. He admitted that, upon becoming town marshal, he hardly wrote for four months. After realizing he felt too tired to write after work, Kreider began to wake up at 4 a.m., when the ideas were fresh in his mind, and write before going into work. Eventually he chose to seclude himself in a hotel room for a few days to prevent any distractions and finish the first book.
After completing his draft, he gave a format draft to his editor Catherine Rumfelt. He explored his publishing options and decided to apply to a publishing company in Warsaw, Tall Pine, and sent in his manuscript. Once he got the proof copy, Kreider and Rumfelt spent an additional two weeks on revisions. He received his author’s copy, took it to his editor and, after deciding it looked good, “I told them to pull the trigger,” he said. Within the next week his book was available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. It is now in its fifth week.
Now the question most often asked of Kreider is when the next book is coming out. For book two, he has the prologue, first and last chapters completed. He is planning a trip to Michigan to focus on typing out a large chunk of the book. However, he has already outlined all three books and has a few chapters already written for book three, including the very last chapter where he started. His goal is to release book two between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year.
Writing the book included a lot of research. From talking to a seamstress about Izzy making her own clothes to fairy lore to ancient Samarian, the language of the fairies in his book, he wanted to get it right. Kreider emphasized he wanted to make Izzy more like a real person, not with magic powers and not like Tinkerbell.
After the trilogy is completed, he has a compilation of short police stories he’d like to work on as well as a few other ideas. When suggested he could continue this series, Kreider adamantly states it was designed and will remain only three books.
“It’s been exciting, been very challenging to try to get it done,” he stated.