Name:  Maureen O. Betita


Age: 50s


Where are you from:

Central Coast of California


A little about your self `ie your education Family life, etc:

I have an AA in Language and Literature, and am short one class from an AS in Desktop Publishing (which tells you how long ago that was!) I’m married to my high school sweetheart; we’ve had numerous dogs and cats in our 30+ years together. We live half a mile from the Monterey Bay.


Fiona: Tell us your latest news?

I’m on course for publishing all the 30 of my Forever A Pirate books and will reach the 2/3 point in May, when I will have a terrific sale, btw. Meanwhile, I’m publishing assorted short stories to go with that series and my second series, The Kraken’s Caribbean. And in my spare time…I put out 3 scifi romance books and am preparing to release an erotic fantasy in April.


Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

I began writing in 2005, while sitting in my local Starbucks, doing morning pages, ala Julie Cameron’s book on creativity and suddenly, a story stepped right off the pages. I haven’t stopped since.


Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

When I realized I wanted the story I was creating to be read. Around 2008, when I joined a now defunct blog called the Romance Writers Revenge.


Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

My first book? Pirates of the Caribbean, The Curse of the Black Pearl. What inspired me to publish a book? My blogmates, who were convinced that a book staring a 53 year old widow and a silver haired pirate couldn’t be sexy. So, I wrote The Kraken’s Mirror, to prove them wrong. That became my first published work.


Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?

Friends consider me a ‘kitchen sink’ writer. Include everything. I’m a pantser with a rocket strapped to my ass. I’m very frank and I think I’m occasionally funny.


Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

Titles… I don’t really know where they come from… Usually some aspect of the story will stand out in my mind and I’ll use that for inspiration. The Kraken’s Mirror? Well, it was the Kraken’s mirror who brought my hero, Emily, to Tortuga where she found adventure and a pirate who captured her heart. A Caribbean Spell came from the setting and the character.


Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Believe in 2nd chances, and thirds and fourths and however many the world throws in your face until you grab one. And expect to be kicked in the ass.


Fiona: How much of the book is realistic?

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! None of the history. All of the human reaction.


Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

I like to think there is a bit of me in every one of my feminine characters. And every now and then, I slay a villain of my own life in a book. Or five.


Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?

The adventures series of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Michael Moorcock and Fritz Leiber. No particular mentor. Many, many, many good friends who have encouraged me and kept my spirits up.

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

Let me check my Kindle… Ah, no. Wait, I have a paperback. I’m reading a cozy mystery, Pleating for Mercy, by Melissa Bourbon. My secret passion – cozy mysteries.

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?

I’ve recently read a book by Siobhan Muir. I know Siobhan, but hadn’t actually read her stuff. I’d downloaded them some time ago, but then basically lost them in the mess of my kindle library. It was a real pleasure to crack open The Beltane Witch and read it. I intend to line all her books up and read them now.

Fiona: What are your current projects?

I’m working on several short stores centered on characters from The Kraken’s Caribbean novels. And constantly editing for release. I also have an idea to turn what was going to be a paranormal adventure into a scifi one… I think it will work better that way. Should be available sometime in late 2016 and another book I’d categorize as Romantic Suspense…again, late 2016. Oh, and a magical erotic series set in Ireland… And… Yeah, I’m prolific.


Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.

The blog, Romance Writers Revenge. I’m still in contact with those wonderful writers. Also a dear friend I met through the Romantic Times Booklovers Convention…and a new lady I met through my now-defunct RWA chapter. More than one, I know, but one is just impossible.


Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

Yes. One I sorta wish I’d started earlier in my life, but then again…I wasn’t really brave enough to put myself out into the public eye back then. Now? I go for it.


Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

Nope. I refuse to second guess myself once a book is done and out there.


Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

I was reading beyond my grade for as long as I can remember. Avid reader, telling the stories my way from the very beginning. Especially when one ended and I wasn’t ready for it to end.


Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?

Sure! This is from A Troubling Courtship, one of the short stories that take place in the world of The Kraken’s Caribbean series.


“You can’t invite a werewolf to the vampire ball.” Keitran stared at Rebecca, who calmly met his eyes. No open defiance, just a studied stubbornness reflected in her red orbs.

“I tendered the invite and he has already accepted, with his parents. It’s the second full moon of the month, there are no candidates. The perfect opportunities.”

Keitran drew a deep breath and shook his head. “In what universe do you dictate to your king?”

“The Kraken’s Caribbean is all about meeting challenges in new and untried ways. We aren’t at war with the pack, though Mrs. Silvestri has told me of fables where our two clans do battle. There is no real animosity. It is just tradition.”

“The ball is all about recruiting for the tribe. We do not turn werewolves. Or use them as a food source.”

“I have. And suffered no difficulties.”

The vampire king studied the woman. She was a valuable member of the clan, and well worth the struggle to turn. After her last adventure with the Immortal, she’d returned bonded with the seventh son of the werewolf pack.

He’d watched, but not understood. Not at first.

His protégé had jumped to the pier, a ragged looking wolf at her side. Her fingers tangled in the mane and the canine pressed against her leg, eyes partially closed. Keitran witnessed their return and his heart warned of trouble ahead.

He’d glared at Emily and cocked an eyebrow at Silvestri, who’d smiled with chagrin. Emily snickered. “Puppy love?”

Captain Silvestri pulled her close as Keitran snarled, then the canny man caught his wife under his arm, daring Keitran to challenge anything with a narrow eye. Thankful the ship had returned with no one missing, he chose not to challenge the odd pairing. Rebecca looked healthy…it would pass.

If it hadn’t been for the new man stumbling down the gangplank, Benjamin Silvestri and the bosun from the Cursed Quill helping him remain upright, Keitran might have kept his focus better and nipped the entire relationship in the bud. But the scent of the newcomer startled him and he lost his chance.

Now he knew that Lee Silver, formerly Beverly Ridgeback, was nothing more than another anomaly of the Kraken’s Caribbean. He’d slipped into Tortuga and few had questioned who he once was. Or who she once was…

The result of allowing himself to be distracted now stood before him. Not so much challenging his authority, but certainly poking at it.

“The pack has never been considered off limits, but since the inherent goal is to build the strength of our tribe, and werewolf cannot be turned, they are…” he spread his hands, “…frivolous indulgences.”

“Davis is not an indulgence.” She turned her gaze from him and he noted her naturally pale skin carried a subtle shades of blood flush. A slow pulse beat at her neck. He blinked, the sudden delicious ache of his fangs rising shocked him.

He took a step back. “Rebecca… There are three days before the full moon rises. I will decide before then. Do not challenge me. I wish to consult with Mama Lu regarding the protocol of your invitations and the repercussions it could have on the truce we won from Tortuga. Be patient and…answer me this. Are you feeding on anyone other than Davis?”

“I’ve felt no need.” She replied, tilting her head as she returned her gaze to him. One elegant eyebrow lifted until she focused on his mouth and her eyes widened.

Damn, he must be showing.

“There is a need. See to it.” He didn’t wait for her to react, but spun on his heel and hurried from the castle.

Why the hell didn’t he handle this whole thing two years ago? She’d been feeding from Davis, but not only back then. Evidently, she’d left behind other prey some months ago. He should have seen it when she didn’t take advantage of luring Saanjht Silvestri a few days ago.

Now, she challenged him to accept even more.



Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

Writing myself into a black hole and then writing around it way too long before I figure out I need to back up and recognize where I went off course. I hate killing forward momentum.

Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

Don’t ask easy questions, do you? She’s not writing much anymore, but Elizabeth Arthur totally swept me away with the fun and honesty with which she wrote. Most of my favorite authors aren’t around to write anymore…dang it. I’d love to read another Fritz Leiber book…


Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?

If I ever have the moolah, I will. I set a lot of my contemporary stuff in California because I know it. Since both of my Caribbean worlds are totally made up, I don’t worry about having only been there once. But I’d love to go back!


Fiona: Who designed the covers?

I do. With a little help from a few friends.

Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?

Restraining myself from installing modern bathrooms on the pirate ships. (I did mention I’m a kitchen sink writer, right?”


Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?

I didn’t recognize my own overriding theme until a friend pointed it out to me. That of 2nd chances. When she pointed it out and I quit hitting her for seeing what I didn’t see…I realized I was writing what I believed in. I had to believe in it. I nearly died in 2007 and I got a 2nd chance.


Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?

Quit fiddling with what you’re writing. Quit thinking you can’t be done unless it’s perfect. Just finish it. Perfection isn’t possible.


Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

Welcome to my magical mystery tour. (To borrow from the Beatles.) It’s coming to take you away…


Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

Go Dog, Go. Adult like book? The Hobit. Or maybe it was The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes…Or Robin Hood…?


Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

Laugh? Watching funny animal videos on FB or YouTube. And showing them to my mother and making her laugh. Making her laugh, or smile, can make me cry.


Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?

Walt Whitman. I want a hug from him.


Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why?

Writer Dreamer Pirate  Because that’s what I am. Sure, wife, too. But even that was part of the dream.


Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies?

I like to pretend I’m going to learn how to sew.


Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

You asked for it. The Blacklist, Detective/mystery series, I enjoyed Blackbeard and hope to get into Black Sails. Movies? Anything that is escapist. Big budget special effect movies, action adventure movies… I just want to be taken outside myself.


Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music

Mexican food. Shades of blue. I listen to alternate rock & movie soundtracks. I LOVE movie soundtracks


Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?

Costume designer. (I love to dress up.)


Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?

You can find me at www.maureenobetita and I’m pretty much always on Facebook, my author page or my personal page. I jump from one to the other.


The best place to see my all my books is on my Amazon Author Page. I’m currently working on placing all my books on Apple, but I’m not there yet.


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