How long have you been writing?
I began writing professionally in 2005 when I was hired to be the weekly columnist for the Albert Lea Tribune with my column Something About Nothing. Under all the nothings we greet each other with there is always something left unsaid. I accepted a contract with Cozy Cat Press in 2013. That began my career as an author. I always have been a dreamer and in my youth would document my dreams and fiction ideas on paper.
Tell us where you were born and where do you live now.
I was born in a small town in Minnesota and I still live there having left for a few years when my husbandâ€™s career made a move necessary.
How do you know the idea is good enough to write a book about it?
I donâ€™t ever know if an idea is good enough. I write what hits my fancy and my intuition tells me where to go. Everyone has different opinions on what is good. I have found the highest rated movies arenâ€™t the ones I love and that lends itself to the books I read too. I donâ€™t always like the one that has won awards, the best books I may have read are by not so famous authors, they just didnâ€™t get discovered like the others. Using that premise I write what my heart tells me to write and hope it is something someone likes to read.
Who has made the greatest difference for you as a writer?
My daughter and an adult friend by the name of Cherie, from my young adult years, made a difference in my life. They both always believed in me and encouraged me. When I met Cherie again years later, she asked why I hadnâ€™t pursued my writing and got me to move forward with it. Without both of them I am not sure I would have had the courage to send my book to a publisher.
What is the name of your book?
I have a series called the Fuchsia Minnesota Series. Right now there are four books in the series and I am working on another. They are in order: Granny Hooks A Crook, Granny Skewers A Scoundrel, Granny Snows A Sneak and Granny Forks A Fugitive. They are all Cozy Mysteries. I am currently working on a new series, the Brilliant Minnesota series, which will be out the second week in February.
Tell us more about it.
The Fuchsia Minnesota Series takes place in a fictional, unique town in rural Minnesota. People in Fuchsia do not have the same rules and restrictions we have in real life in our communities. My main character is an over the top Granny, Hermiony Vidalia Criony Fiddlestadt. She defies our idea of old age. Granny is an undercover amateur sleuth and Fuchsia has many unusual crimes. She has neighbors and children that either help or hinder her investigations and is always in danger of being sent to either the hoosegow or the Wrinkle Farm.
Here is a blurb from the back cover of Granny Snows A Sneak, the third book in the series. Granny may be retired as Fuchsia, Minnesotaâ€™s one-woman undercover sleuth for the Fuchsia Police Department, but that doesnâ€™t mean she still doesnâ€™t need a trusty weapon. Her weapon of choice? A pink snow shovel. When Granny runs over a dead body with her snowmobile, she unwittingly sets off a chain of events that involves mislabeled corpses, empty graves, and stolen moneyâ€”lots of it! Whoâ€™s at the bottom of this years-old crime? Granny has an idea, but she has little time to investigate, when in just days sheâ€™s scheduled to marry the love of her life, Franklin Gatsby, in a post-Christmas ceremony. So, Granny decides to enlist the help of her friends and neighbors. Add in Christmas Holiday excitement and the arrival of Grannyâ€™s family, who are all there for her wedding, and mayhem ensues. Of course, Granny can always count on her many furry friends to provide her with moral support, but itâ€™s quite possible that Grannyâ€”that is, Hermiony Vidalia Criony Fiddlestadtâ€”has a secret or two of her own, which may very well be revealed as Granny Snows A Sneak
Do you have a favorite character, why?
Of course Granny has to be my favorite character. Society has a dim view of aging and if when we get older we buy into it, we do not age well. My character is loosely modeled after my mother who lived to be 93. She could climb a roof and fix it at 90, could run a tablesaw and was feisty and ornery, just like my character and that is what kept her going. She didnâ€™t believe she was old and neither does Granny. Of course I never mention Grannyâ€™s age, I let my readers decide in their mind how old she is.
What kind of impact do you expect your works to have in the reader’s lives?
I want to make people laugh and take them away from the real world for a short time. In my series I also build on Grannyâ€™s substance. What you see is not always what is inside even for ourselves. Experiences in our lives shape who we are and Granny is no different. As the series progresses readers will see what made Granny who she is today and that also lends itself to learning more about her family and friends. We all have hidden secrets and they shape our lives.
Do you have any advice for authors trying to break into the industry?
Never give up your dream. One of my friends who is now a bestselling author got 150 rejection slips before being accepted by a publishing house and they are now making his book into a movie. Listen to your inner intuition and write from the heart andâ€¦find a good editor. It makes all the difference in the world.
What are your new years goals?
My goal this year is to get organized and find peace in the simple things of life. Peace and contentment make me a better writer and I hope to convey that in the new books I write this year.
Where can we find your book?
Tags: adult, adults, adventure, Albert Lea Tribune, Brilliant Minnesota series, Cozy Cat Press, cozy mysteries, fiction, friendship, Fuchsia Minnesota Series, fun book, Granny Forks A Fugitive, Granny Hooks A Crook, Granny Skewers A Scoundrel, Granny Snows A Sneak, Minnesota, mystery, pre-teens, Something About Nothing, teens, ya, Ya fantasy, young Adult, young adult book, young adults