Interview with author, Susan Elia MacNeal (part 3)

interviews, author quotes(continued)     The conclusion of this fascinating  interview with Susan………..

Susan Elia MacNeal is the author of the Maggie Hope mystery series, including her debut novel, “Mr. Churchill’s Secretary” and newly released “Princess Elizabeth’s Spy”.  She lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband and child.

Q. Where/when did you first discover your character, Maggie Hope?  

SM. I knew I wanted to write about a young woman who becomes a secretary for Winston Churchill. The name Margaret, or Maggie, was a tribute to my writing mentor Judith Merkle Riley and the heroine of her first book, Margaret in A Vision of Light. Margaret was also a popular name for baby girls in the early 20th century, so it worked for someone in her early twenties in 1940. I discovered her last name, Hope, by looking through a list of famous Britons—and there was Bob Hope. It was perfect.the royal family, writers, authors, interviews

Maggie’s personality is very much inspired by the late Judith Merkle Riley. She was definitely a woman ahead of her time – brilliant and working in economics, a male-dominated field, in the 60s and 70s. She was also a painter, spoke Russian, played the piano and danced the tango. Honestly, I think she worked as a spy at one point, but she would never talk about it! But there’s a lot of Judith in Maggie, especially her humor.

Q. What inspired the mysteries and why Winston Churchill and WWII?  

SM. You know, it was somewhat random—I happened to be in London and a British friend of mine said, “You might want to visit the Cabinet War Rooms—World War II didn’t start with Pearl Harbor, you know.” So, I really just went as a tourist.   It’s an amazing museum, though, in the actual bomb proof bunker where Winston Churchill and his War Cabinet and staff planned the war. I was absolutely mesmerized and there was a moment—a brief moment, outside the typists’ room—where I swore I could hear the typewriters, smell the cigarette smoke, feel the tension. It lasted a mere moment, but it changed my life completely. I knew I had to write about the war rooms.

Q. You’re so young for an interest in WWII (I was a little girl) Is your interest based at all on family stories; perhaps an American grandfather in the war or English branch on the family tree?

SM. Both my paternal father and grandfather served in the war, but, really, it was that trip to the Cabinet War Rooms that was the catalyst. Jacqueline Winspear calls these experiences “moments of grace.” I’m just glad it wasn’t schizophrenia!

Q. Have you? Or do you want to write in another genre`?

SM. Right now I’m completely dedicated to telling the story of Maggie Hope and her friends, wherever it may lead. But recently, writers, authors, best sellers,interviewswhen I was in Scotland doing research, I had this sudden urge to leave New York and move to one of the sparsely inhabited western islands. I asked my husband, “So, if I’m able to sell a memoir about a crazy New York City family who leaves it all for rural Scotland, would you be willing to move for a year?” He seemed game. You never know…

I’ll close by saying, thank you so much for your interest in the Maggie Hope books!

http://www.susaneliamacneal.com/ 
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Start your month off right!! DON’T MISS UPCOMING BLOGS. INTERVIEWS with other best-selling AUTHORS!      

I have had a wonderful response from other authors and plan on featuring an interview once a month . I have invited such luminaries as: Ann Purser, Susan Elia MacNeal, Mark Childress, Rhys Bowen, Dean Koontz, Sheryl Woods, Jo-Ann Mapson, Jeffrey Deaver, Sue Grafton, Elizabeth Gilbert, Walter Mosley, Nora Roberts, and many others.

So come along with me; we shall sneak into these writers’ special places, be a fly on the wall and watch them create!  Mark Childress is my April author.  Robert McCammon is scheduled for May. Caroline Leavitt is June‘s author.
July features Rhys Bowen.  Sue Grafton is August’s author and September will feature Tasha Alexander.
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To receive my posts sign up for my blog, blogs, blogger, writer, author, playwright, books, plays,fiction  Go to the home page; On the right side you’ll see a box where you can enter your email address. Click on “join my blog”. You need to confirm in an email from ‘Writer at Play’ . Thanks!

Don’t miss the final segment with best selling author!

interviews, best selling authors, fiction, new fiction  This coming Tuesday will conclude our interview with Susan.  Her newest book, “His Majesty’s Hope” will be available for sale on May 21st.

This has been a fascinating and funny interview and I know you join me in wishing Susan great success with her new book.Susan_Elia_(c)_Lesley_Semmelhack

‘For fans of Jacqueline Winspear, Laurie R. King, and Anne Perry, whip-smart heroine Maggie Hope returns to embark on a clandestine mission behind enemy lines where no one can be trusted, and even the smallest indiscretion can be deadly.

World War II has finally come home to Britain, but it takes more than nightly air raids to rattle intrepid spy and expert code breaker Maggie Hope. After serving as a secret agent to protect Princess Elizabeth at Windsor Castle, Maggie is now an elite member of the Special Operations Executive—a black ops organization designed to aid the British effort abroad—and her first assignment sends her straight into Nazi-controlled Berlin, the very heart of the German war machine. Relying on her quick wit and keen instincts, Maggie infiltrates the highest level of Berlin society, gathering information to pass on to London headquarters. But the secrets she unveils will expose a darker, more dangerous side of the war—and of her own past.’

MacNeal’s publishers, Random House have asked me to review it so look for that in May.

Coming Soon! April 2nd will start off my interview with Mark Childress whose books were made into movies!
(Crazy in Alabama!)
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Start your month off right!! DON’T MISS UPCOMING BLOGS. INTERVIEWS with other best-selling AUTHORS!      A NEW SERIES, “The Writer’s Corner”

I have had a wonderful response from other authors and plan on featuring an interview once a month . I have invited such luminaries as: Ann Purser, Susan Elia MacNeal, Robert McCammon, Rhys Bowen, Mark Childress, Dean Koontz, Sheryl Woods, Jo-Ann Mapson, Jeffrey Deaver, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sue Grafton, Amber Winckler, Walter Mosley, Nora Roberts, and many others.

So come along with me; we shall sneak into these writers’ special places, be a fly on the wall and watch them create!  Mark Childress is our April author.  Robert MacCammon is scheduled for May. Caroline Leavitt is June‘s author.  July features Rhys Bowen.  Sue Grafton is August’s author and September will feature Tasha Alexander.
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To receive my posts sign up for my blog, blogs, blogger, writer, author, playwright, books, plays,fiction  Go to the home page; On the right side you’ll see a box where you can enter your email address. Click on “join my blog”. You need to confirm in an email from ‘Writer at Play’ . Thanks!

Interview with Susan Elia MacNeal (part 2)

               Part II **  An Interview with Susan Elia MacNealinterviews, authors, writers, Winston Churchill   (Part I * March 5th)

Q. Do you have any special rituals when you sit down to write? (sharpened #2 pencils, legal pad, cup of tea, glass of brandy, favorite pajamas, etc.)

A. I do love a good cup of coffee, I must admit—milk, no sugar. No rituals, but if I get anxious about starting, I’ll often just open the document and run spell check—that way, I usually get over any stress. Occasionally, I’ll put on NPR or some sort of talk radio in the background for company. And generally I have a cat or two nearby.

Q. What is your mode of writing? (long hand? Pencil? Computer? Etc.)

A. I like writing directly into the computer, and I particularly love my laptop. Sometimes I’ll do notes or outlining on a yellow legal pad with a pen or pencil (but mostly because we have yellow legal pads around at home, not because of any ritual!).

Q. Do you have a set time each day to write or do you write only when you are feeling creative?

A. I like to write first thing in the morning. I think that time in between dreaming and full waking is really good for fiction. So I usually write early in the morning and then do editing and reply to emails and whatnot in the afternoon. That is, until 3 p.m. — then I’m back in the mommy role.

Q. Do you ‘get lost’ in your writing and for how long?

A. Yes, and it’s the most amazing experience in the world when that happens! Usually I find it a hard state to achieve when first starting a novel, because I don’t know my characters and settings as well. But later on, usually when I’m more than a hundred pages in or so, it’s really fun to “get lost” with my characters. That’s the absolute best part of being a writer.

Q. When did you begin to write seriously?

A. I’ve always loved writing, but I first started taking myself a bit more seriously when I was an editor at Dance Magazine, and then became a staff writer as well. I did a lot of pieces for the magazine and also for the web site. It was at Dance Magazine that I started to think of myself as a professional, and I thank then-editor Richard Philp for taking a chance on me and then giving me so much freedom to pursue and write stories.

Q. How long after that were you published?

A. Well, when Dance Magazine moved to San Francisco, I, with the rest of the New York staff, lost my job. I’d just gotten married, so I had health insurance. So, that was when I decided to freelance. I did a lot of magazine pieces and editing, and wrote two non-fiction books – one about weddings and one about cocktails. But I was always working on fiction.

Q. What does the process of going from “no book” to “finished book” look like? 

mysteries, Winston churchill, history, best sellers, authors, interviews         A. Hmm, well, Mr. Churchill’s Secretary took more than ten years, and each subsequent book has taken about two years. (Random House held Mr. Churchill’s Secretary until Princess Elizabeth’s Spy was pretty far along, so they could publish them back-to-back.)  I guess it takes me a few months to immerse myself in research, then a few months to write a beginning, then additional time to realize I hate the beginning and delete it—then back to the drawing board to rewrite.

About nine months later, my editor, the amazing and patient Kate Miciak gets it, and she takes a pass through and gives me an editorial letter. I work on it some more, and it goes back to Kate, who either okays it or sends it back to me, which takes a few months. Then it goes through a six-month period where it goes through a number of passes of copy-editing, then an Advanced Readers Edition, and then, finally, the finished book.

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Part III of this fascinating interview will post on March 12th.  Don’t miss it!!                             http://www.susaneliamacneal.com/
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Start your month off right!! DON’T MISS UPCOMING BLOGS. INTERVIEWS with other best-selling AUTHORS!      A NEW SERIES, “The Writer’s Corner” 

I have had a wonderful response from other authors and plan on featuring an interview once a month . I have invited such luminaries as: Ann Purser, Susan Elia MacNeal, Robert McCammon, Rhys Bowen, Mark Childress, Dean Koontz, Sheryl Woods, Jo-Ann Mapson, Jeffrey Deaver, Sue Grafton, Elizabeth Gilbert, Amber Winckler, Walter Mosley, Nora Roberts, and many others.

So come along with me; we shall sneak into these writers’ special places, be a fly on the wall and watch them create!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

To receive my posts sign up for my blog, blogs, blogger, writer, author, playwright, books, plays,fiction  Go to the home page; On the right side you’ll see a box where you can enter your email address. Click on “join my blog”. You need to confirm in an email from ‘Writer at Play’ . Thanks!

Interview with Author, Susan Elia MacNeal

        interviews, author quotes   Do other writers find themselves  at 4 in the afternoon, still in their pajamas, lost in their writing ?   Hopefully it only happens at home and not at the corner coffee shop…

My readers are enjoying hearing about other authors writing processes.  I created a Question & Answer-type Interview and then began contacting some of my favorite authors to ask them to participate.  It turns out that not only do these other writers want to share their writing life with us, but they are equally interested in the stories from other authors.

                              In this three-part post, my interview is with Susan Elia MacNeal.   I am especially honored as Susan and her publicist have asked me to review her next book, “His Majesty’s Hope”, to be released in May of His_Majesty's[1]this year.  Please sit back and enjoy a chat with Susan……..

 

Q. Where do you write? Do you have a special room, shed, barn, special space for your writing?

A. I work in my beautiful library, with floor-to-ceiling bookshelves, overstuffed velvet sofas, a fireplace, two cats, and a handsome young manservant to fetch me tea and coffee.  Okay, that’s not true. But I do have two cats.  I live in New York, and space is definitely at a premium. Before our son was born, my husband and I used our guest bedroom as an office. After it became a kid’s room, I started working at the kitchen table, or sometimes cross-legged on the living room sofa.

I joined the New York Writers Room in the West Village for a while and had many happy days there with a view of the Empire State building, but I’m not currently working there. (My son has asthma, and I like being closer to his school in case of emergencies.)  I also love a little café near us—best coffee in the world, plus big tables full of other writers. I also like to work at our local public library, which is one of the old Carnegie libraries.

I’ve also written at a lot of friends’ homes, while they’ve been on vacation – some of them famous. So, parts of my books have been written at actor/writer John Hodgman’s apartment (I also looked after their cat), composer Kristin Andersen Lopez and Robert Lopez’s apartment (yes, of course I picked up his Tony award for Avenue Q and pretended to make an acceptance speech), and Ron Lieber and Jodi Kantor’s apartment. (They’re both journalists for the New York Times, and Jodi’s the author of The Obamas.)

I’ve also written with Josh Axelrad, the author of Repeat Until Rich, which was fun, because we’d break for bourbon at six p.m. But he was always saying, “I’m afraid you’re listening to me not typing and thinking I’m lazy!” I tried to tell him I have too many of my own issues to even thinking about listening to his typing or not typing!

Susan_Elia_(c)_Lesley_Semmelhack              The most amazing place I’ve ever written was just recently at Arisaig House, which is a former manor house, now a bed and breakfast, on the west coast of Scotland. It was also used as an SOE spy training camp during World War II. I was talking to a lot of people alive and living in the area during that period of time, and doing research, but I also wrote in a beautiful room with oriental rugs, a crackling fire, a view of the grounds and shoreline, and three big napping golden labs. Heaven!

But I’ve also written on trains planes and waiting rooms. Basically, I’ve learned to write anywhere and everywhere.

http://www.susaneliamacneal.com/

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Join us to read part two of this wonderful interview (March 7th.) with best-seller author Susan Elia MacNeal .
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Start your month off right!! DON’T MISS UPCOMING BLOGS. A NEW SERIES, “The Writer’s Corner” INTERVIEWS with other  best-selling AUTHORS!

I have had a wonderful response from other authors and plan on featuring an interview once a month .  I have invited such luminaries as: Anne Purser, Dean Koontz, Sheryl Woods, Jo-Ann Mapson, Robert McCammon, Susan Elia MacNeal, Mark Childress, Sue Grafton, Jeffrey Deaver, Rhys Bowen, Elizabeth Gilbert, Amber Winckler, Walter Mosley, Nora Roberts, and many others.

So come along with me; we shall sneak into these writers’ special places, be a fly on the wall and watch them create!
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To receive my posts sign up for my blog, blogs, blogger, writer, author, playwright, books, plays,fiction Go to the home page; On the right side you’ll see a box where you can enter your email address. Click on “join my blog”.  You need to confirm in an email from ‘Writer at Play’ .  Thanks!

The Writer’s Corner..Interview with author Jo-Ann Mapson (part 3)

writers, authors, blogs, interviews, best selling authors    Part III ** Interview with Jo-Ann Mapson** This has been a terrific interview with Jo-Ann.  She has generously shared her writing world with us and she always inspires me to be a better writer.

Q. Have you? Or do you want to write in another genre`?

A. I write some nonfiction, essays, and have been tinkering with a kind of memoir for decades. Occasionally I am moved to write a poem, such as one for my agent, when her beloved dog died, but I’m not very good at it because I don’t practice the habit.

Something that I find compelling these days is the issue of writing and aging. I’m not sure if anyone has written about this yet. John Updike died, Philip Roth retired, Rosamund Pilcher died, Evan Connell died, and it becomes a kind of reckoning; your name will be on that list sooner rather than later. Somehow it makes the act of writing seem authors, writing, writers, interviewsmore important, to get things right, to write something of substance rather than fluff, or “phoning it in,” as they say nowadays. At the same time, I sense myself detaching from it a tiny bit, but it isn’t frightening, it feels natural. Like a part of aging. You cannot beat Father Time.

Here’s another thing: Every writer I know started out as a reader, and still reads. That’s what drew us to the habit in the first place. So when a new writer shows up on the scene and is so uncommonly great, why should there be jealousy or disgruntlement? It’s all being deposited in the great body of literature. This year I reread several books that I recall making me want to write, just to see if they held up. I was so thrilled to discover that they did! Mary Stewart, Rumer Godden, Henry James, even Danielle Steel’s first romance. I was delighted to discover that sense of timelessness that came with the reading.

I also read some new writers I really like: Tana French, who wrote Faithful Place and Broken Harbor, just plain WOW, that woman is brilliant, and I hope I live a long time so I can read all her books because she is just getting started. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce, those are a few writers I am keeping my eye on.

I recently hired Carolyn Turgeon to teach in the MFA Program in Writing at the University of Alaska Anchorage where I am core fiction faculty. She is an unassuming genius who takes fairy tales and wrenches them into strange and wonderful parables of women’s issues. She reinvents the core stories, which is what writing is, taking the old and telling it new. I’m all for new writers succeeding, pushing the boundaries of the form, and pushing me eventually out of a job. I absolutely love to work with budding writers. It is so satisfying to watch them succeed. I am standing there teary on the sidelines saying, “You go, Girl!” What a joy to be even a sliver of a part of that.

interviews, authors, writers, bloggersI am so blessed. I have a wonderful writing life, but there was much gritty scrambling to arrive where I am, and I know there’s more ahead. And I think that is the way it ought to be, earned rather than given, never taken for granted, so that when success happens, you realize the importance of it and relish your hard work coming to fruition.new fiction, authors, writers, interviews

 

http://www.joannmapson.com/

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Start your month off right!! DON’T MISS UPCOMING BLOGS. the NEW SERIES, “The Writer’s Corner” INTERVIEWS with other  best-selling AUTHORS!

I have had a wonderful response from other authors and plan on featuring an interview once a month .  I have invited such luminaries as:  Ann Purser, Susan Elia MacNeal, Robert McCammon, Rhys Bowen, Dean Koontz, Sheryl Woods, Jo-Ann Mapson, Jeffrey Deaver, Elizabeth Gilbert, Maya Angelou, Walter Mosley, Nora Roberts, and many others.

So come along with me; we shall sneak into these writers’ special places, be a fly on the wall and watch them create!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

To receive my posts sign up for my blog, blogs, blogger, writer, author, playwright, books, plays,fiction Go to the home page; On the right side you’ll see a box where you can enter your email address. Click on join my blog“.  You need to confirm in an email from ‘Writer at Play’ .  Thanks!

The Writer’s Corner… an Interview with author Jo-Ann Mapson (part 1)

authors, writers, writing, best sellers, Interview              Do other writers sometimes find themselves  at 4 in the afternoon still in their pajamas, writing furiously?  Do all of their #2 pencils have to be sharpened before they can begin?

I thought my readers might enjoy hearing about other authors writing processes.  So I created a Question & Answer-type Interview.  The response has been wonderful and I can’t wait to share it with you.

  In this three-part post, my second interview is with best-selling author, Jo-Ann Mapson.  She is one of my favorites and I always wait with bated breath until her next book comes out.  Her characters, (men, women, dogs, horses), are vivid and believable and they often return in a new book.  Jo-Ann takes them down the same roads we have all traveled….love, loss, grief, death, friendship; stumbling along through life, gathering what wisdom we can.
I hope that you enjoy her insights, humor and thoughts…….writing, authors, interview, best seller,writers

Q. Where do you write? Do you have a special room, shed, barn, closet, a special space for your writing?

A. I have an office in the smallest bedroom of our house. My desk is small. Objects that inspire me surround me. A felted greyhound statue, my cowboy boots, a photo of my great aunt, this wonderful print “The Land of Make Believe” that is a kind of map of childhood stories hangs above my desk. A writer needs to be able to write anywhere, though. Those kinds of constraints such as special places, complete silences, bingo tchochkees, can cripple, so I find it best to force myself to write anywhere.

Q. Do you have a set time each day to write or do you write only when you are feeling creative?

A. Oh, my gosh, waiting for creativity to visit would never get a page, let alone a book written. I work everyday, mid-morning to dinnertime. This timetable is subject to change, but not the number of hours. I’m not sure why. Some books, like The Wilder Sisters, get written in special circumstances; that particular California summer was so hot that I wrote lying down in bed with my laptop, shades drawn, fan running.

Q. Do you have any special rituals when you sit down to write?

A. No rituals other than a cool drink and fan blowing. I usually warm up to writing by answering a few emails. Pre-Internet, I liked to start my writing day by writing a letter to a friend. I miss that. I worry what will happen to history if letter writing goes away forever. It’s such a revealing art.

Q. What is your mode of writing?

A. I write on an iMac. Arthritis (and probably lack of use!) limits how much writing by hand I can do. I have strange handwriting, half-cursive, half-print, very hard even for me to read. Writing on the computer makes things so much easier for me. What works for you is the way to go.

Q. Do you ‘get lost’ in your writing and for how long?

A. The “zone,” that wonderful, addictive, “I am but a vessel” kind of feeling only comes when it wishes, doggone it, but I always write in pursuit of it. It’s writer cocaine.

Q. When did you begin to write seriously?

A. From the moment I could hold a pencil, I was reporting on things, writing to understand things that happened, and in my head, whole stories were forming. All writing is serious.

Q. How long after that were you published?writers, authors, interviews, best sellers

A. Thirty plus years, with the occasional poem, short story published here and there in a journal, or newspaper. Really, for most writers, you’ve got to live a little life in order to have anything worthwhile to write about. You can’t fake the kinds of issues it takes to write a book that compels a reader. Take for instance grief. Or the highest moment of happiness you can imagine. Or something as small as a minor injustice that doesn’t sit right with you gathers weight, momentum. If you want to say anything of worth about those topics, you either have to have experienced them, pursued them, or watched them happen to someone else.

Q. …..and the all important: What does the process of going from “no book” to “finished book” look like?

A. I suppose it looks like a messy, disorganized pile of research books, empty coffee cups, talismans, doodles, distractions at the start. Strangely, because writing is so ephemeral these days, it’s kind of invisible. It lives in “The Cloud,” or Carbonite, rarely in concrete pages until it’s fashioned into a book. I print out to edit by hand because I need to have that concrete format………

 Biography  Jo-Ann Mapson lives and writes in Santa Fe, New Mexico, with her husband and three Italian greyhounds. Her 11 novels can best be described as slightly Southwestern in setting, character-oriented in execution, and edgy with humor that sometimes goes awry. Among her favorite things are dogs, Old Gringo cowboy boots, reading, making jam, green chile, and laughter with friends and family. Her second novel, Blue Rodeo, was made into a CBS television movie starring Kris Kristofferson. Several of her books have been bestsellers. Many of her books have been Indie bound and Booksense picks. She won the American Library Association’s RUSA award for Solomon’s Oak, and has been honored with awards for research and creativity at the University of Alaska Anchorage, where she is core fiction faculty in the low residency MFA Program that she created with her colleagues. Forthcoming from Bloomsbury is Owen’s Daughter, which features some of her characters from Blue Rodeo as well as the family in Finding Casey (2012). She is currently at work on a new novel.

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Part II will be featured in the February  7th blog and Part III February 12th . Don’t miss this fascinating look into a best-selling author’s writing life.

http://www.joannmapson.com/

To go to other interviews: click here

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To receive my posts sign up for my blog, blogs, blogger, writer, author, playwright, books, plays,fictionGo to the home page; On the right side you’ll see a box where you can enter your email address. Click on “join my blog“. You need to confirm in an email from ‘Writer at Play’ . Thanks!

Don’t miss an Interview with Jo-Ann Mapson Tuesday

writing, authors, interview, best seller,writers                              Next Tuesday the second in my series of Interviews will be with Jo-Ann Mapson.     I thought my readers might enjoy hearing about other authors’ writing processes.  So I created a Question & Answer-type Interview and then began contacting some of my favorite authors to ask them to take part.

  In this three-part blog, we will chat with best-selling author, Jo-Ann Mapson.  She is one of my favorites and I always wait with bated breath until her next book comes out.  Her characters, (men, women, dogs, horses), are vivid and believable and they often return in one of her new books.

I hope that you enjoy her insights, humor and really great stories….  writers, interviews, best selling authors, blogs

In the coming months:  Authors, Susan Elia MacNeal,  Rhys Bowen, Walter Mosley, Tasha Alexander, and many more will share their writing life with us!

What was that old song from the ’50’s?

Judy Garland, mutual admiration, writing, blogging, web site consultant             Remember that song from the ’50’s?  It was in the Broadway musical, Happy Hunting.  “We Belong to a Mut-u-al Ad-mir-a-tion Society”. Best known rendition by Judy Garland.  That’s how I feel about Adato Systems and more specifically, Leon Adato.

Last year I took a long hard look at my web site and realized that it was static, lifeless and way behind the times.  Absolutely NO one visited it!  And I had loved it for so long! So began my journey looking for a web consultant that could bring me into real time with shopping cart, shipping, animation, and far better communication with my readers!

I began by asking an old friend in the computer software industry for a referral….and found Leon.  What a treasure! He’s clever, funny and patient!  As an added bonus he has a degree in theatre from NYU, so he really gets me.  Now that my site is completely finished,  I am able to come on-line and ‘play in my cyber sand box‘!  And BLOG!  Which I have grown  passionate about.

The new software is friendly and easy to learn. Did I mention what a good teacher Leon is?   I think it really shows off my books and scripts with beautiful illustrations (a nod to my wonderful team of illustrators) and is easy to navigate.  I hope my readers and theatre family enjoy it as much as I do!

And now I am a success story on Leon’s site. “………she showcases the work of others. Leveraging her own experience and insight, Trisha is creating reviews of and interviews with other authors, which creates a wonderful sense of community……..”
Click here to read it.mutual admiration, web site consultant, blogging, writing
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Start your month off right!! DON’T MISS UPCOMING BLOGS.  A NEW SERIES,The Writer’s CornerINTERVIEWS with other  best-selling AUTHORS!

I have had a wonderful response from other authors and plan on featuring an interview once a month .  I have invited such luminaries as:  Anne Purser, Dean Koontz, Sheryl Woods, Jo-Ann Mapson, Tasha Alexander, Jeffrey Deaver, Elizabeth Gilbert, Walter Mosley, Nora Roberts, Lisa Scottoline and many others.

So come along with me; we shall sneak into these writers’ special places, be a fly on the wall and watch them create!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

To receive my posts sign up for my blog, blogs, blogger, writer, author, playwright, books, plays,fiction  Go to the home page; On the right side you’ll see a box where you can enter your email address. Click on join my blog“.  You need to confirm in an email from ‘Writer at Play’ .  Thanks!

 

 

Bullies! Déjà-vu in the most horrific way!

cyber-bullying, bullying, girls who bully, short plays for teens, high school, middle school   A few weeks ago I published four short plays addressing cyber-bullying and verbal bullying in our schools.  My hope was that if teens and their teachers read these plays (and performed them in their classroom) it would maybe open a dialogue about this deadly practice.

In “You’re Fat, You’re Ugly…”  Aanya is a beautiful, talented student, much like Amanda Todd, who is driven to attempted suicide by her peers’ relentless bullying.  In “Cyber-Hate” Cathy is the victim of bullying that leads to violence. “The Bullies” is about boys who bully.

I wrote these plays depicting different variations of bullying…..Fiction based on dry statistics.

And now in today’s headlines we read about Amanda Todd, (age 15) a beautiful young girl who just couldn’t take anymore.  She felt her only option to escape this form of terrorism (bullying) was to take her own life.  It saddened me and my love and prayers go out to her family and friends.  This pointless loss of a young woman’s life also outraged me. Amanda’s cry for help (I assume) was a previous attempt at suicide by drinking bleach.  Her stalker-bully wrote a message to her, “Try harder.”  What kind of monster does this??

‘Amanda Todd, a Vancouver-area teenager who posted a story to YouTube last month about being cyber-bullied, was found dead Wednesday night in Coquitlam, Canada. Authorities believe she committed suicide.  Amanda’s video tells a heart-wrenching story of the bullying she was subjected to — both online and off. “In 7th grade,” she begins, sharing her message on cue cards, “I would go with friends on webcam [to] meet and talk to new people.” At one point, a stranger flattered her into flashing the camera…..

One year later, a man contacted her on Facebook, threatening to send around the picture of her topless “if [she] don’t put on a show.” Terrifyingly, the stranger knew everything about her: her address, school, friends, relatives, and the names of her family members. Soon, her naked photo had been forwarded “to everyone.”Amanda developed anxiety, depression, and anxiety disorders, she says in the video, followed by a path into drugs and alcohol.’ ~~ Huffington Post

We, as the adults, MUST take control of this deadly game that teens are playing.  Maybe the bullies need to see their parents go to jail for their actions.   After all, these bullies are just children,  and the parents are ultimately responsible for their child’s behavior.  The buck stops at the parents’ door step.

STOP THE BULLYING!

                                                                                            SAVE LIVES!

More resources re: Bullying, Cyber-bullying
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