Welcome to the first Writers' Wednesday interview of 2009! Very exciting...and our first featured author of the year is time travel romance writer Mary Ricksen. Take a peek into her world:
Mary, welcome to my blog! Can you tell us a little about your background?
I was born in Vermont, and though I have lived in several places in the U.S. and once in Canada, I still find it home. I feel like crying every time I get to go, when the plane flies over the airport surrounded by the beautiful Green Mountains, just before landing. I have lived in Florida for several years now, but I would eventually like to end up in a small town in North Carolina, where we own a small piece of land. In the Great Smoky Mountains, I feel very at home there too. I have no children, unless you want to count animals. Right now I have a black German Shepherd named Junior. He's in my book. I also have a canary. He sings so sweetly that he cheers my soul. The winters here in Florida are wondeful and I spend them in my own secret garden, overflowing with all kinds of subtropical plants. My husband and I have been together since we met at the age of 20, and married for thirty two years this last February. He's my anchor.
Right about now, in snowy New York, Florida sounds like a lovely place to be! What advice would you give to new authors just starting out?
Every one has inside of them an ability to shine at something. Some people never find that shine. I wish I'd found it years ago, but it wasn't for lack of trying all kinds of things. When you sit in front of that computer and a little thrill goes through you, that's the beginning. For me I just let it come. That of course leads to a lot of editing. But it also lets my muse loose. And that is one of the things I find that gave me the knack to write my book. To me that is the easy part. The hard parts are editing and promoting. So be persistant in your promoting, take chances, be bold, let yourself jump into it and network. Of course that itself is a learning experienc. And lastly learn the basics well, that makes for less editing.
What kind of books do you like to read? Who is your favorite author?
For me reading is a cyclic thing. For years I read Sci Fi, then mysteries, biographys etc., I think I've tried all genres. Romance has become my favorite. Once it was Westerns, then Contemporay, I was stuck on vampires for quite awhile. And then I read Linda Lael Miller's 'Here and Then' and 'There and Now' That's all it took. I think I have read most every time travel paperback in print. And now that I started writing I have found the ebook. Cheaper to buy and faster to get. Not to mention more new Time Travel books to read! My favorite author is Diana Gabaldon.
Do you suffer from writers block? If so, what do you do about it?
I think life throws curves at us that sometimes overwhelm us. My parents are elderly and sick, and it's a lot to deal with. So my muse has gone into hibernation. I know that the short vacation we are taking will give me a lift. As I sit outside looking at the mountains, from purple in the distance to emerald in the forefront, the colors alone still my angst. The smell of the air, the Mountain Laurel, the little critters all infuse me. So when I get there I will write. Just like I always do. The country setting is inspiring in itself, it's so peaceful.
Describe your writing place for us.
Here at home I have a laptop. So wherever I feel most comfortable at the time is where I write. Lots of the time I sit at the kitchen table. We have a small house so I can't have a special place for myself. But as I sit here I can look out at the pool, with banana trees, avacado trees, palms of all kinds, pentas for color and little fanciful creatures I purchased. My canary is belting out love songs, my dog lies on my feet and my husband is in the background swearing at his computer. Life, ain't it grand?
Mary, thanks so much for visiting here today! Readers, if you'd like to find out more about Mary and her work, visit her website.