Name Sahara Foley
Age 56 but sometimes feel like 100
Where are you from Omaha, Ne
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc
Other than High School, I have no additional education. But I’ve spent over 35 years in the insurance industry. I’m actually a licensed health insurance agent. Talk about dry reading. Taking the exam to be a licensed agent was tough, thought I did it in one setting. Yeah me.
I have no children, and my husband has been gone for almost 3 years. I do have 2 sisters, 1 brother and a myriad of nieces and nephews. I currently have no fur babies, but I hope to remedy that next year.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
Well, I have a short story coming out next week in a Christmas anthology. My story is called Silent Night and the book is called Mistletoe Magic. I’m so honored that the other authors invited me to share a story with them.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I started writing two months after my husband died on Christmas 2012. He was the writer, and we tried to get his stories published back in the late 1980s. Alas, he was the type of writer that saw no wrong with his stories. They were good, but they needed work. So after years of dragging his outlines around with us, after he died, I decided to self-publish them. Most of the books I’ve published so far are a combination of him and me. But I’ve discovered that I’m also a writer. Surprise, surprise.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Even though I have several books published, I really didn’t consider my a writer until I did Silent Night. That is my own brain child.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
The first book I published was It Lives in the Basement. It’s actually three short stories I combined into one book. I started with this one first as I loved the story, I lived at the house in the story for many years, and since it was a novella, I felt I could handle that one better than a full-length novel which I was in the learning process.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
I call it ‘meat & potatoes.’ Not fancy, pretty straightforward, not overly descriptive, and the readers seem to enjoy it.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Sometimes the stories name themselves, others, you struggle with them. Silent Night was one that just popped into my head. It’s kinda the theme behind the story.
Fiona: Is there a message in your short story that you want readers to grasp?
The story is about grief, and how live doesn’t end when you lose someone close to you. You have to learn to keep living.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic ?
Well, none of it, other than the emotional side of the story.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Since I’ve gone through the loss of my other half, I’m sure this story stemmed from that experience.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
I’ve read so many books over my lifetime; I can’t really pick out one. I’ve never been one for the great literal writers as I could never stand that type of writing.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Since I started publishing my own stories, I only read indie books. Currently, I’m reading About Hana by K T Bowes. I also read and share book reviews on my blog, so I get a lot of demand to read books.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
I have been amazed at all the wonderful, talented writers in the indie world. I’ve found quite a few of them through my Publisher, Creativia. There’s JM Northurp, Carole Gill, Doug Lamoreux, to name a few. Then there are the ones I’ve met in different groups, like CJ Rutherford, Zeece Lugo, Heather Osborn. I love seeing how our writing is evolving with each new book.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
With my full-time work, I can only work on one book at a time. I’m currently working on the second book to The Secret of Excalibur. I’m not sure of the title yet, but right now, I’m going with The Revenge of Excalibur. There are four books in this series.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
Hands down, Creativia Publishing.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Well, that would be nice, but a reality? No, I seriously doubt it. Maybe if I had like 20 books on the market.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Every author should YES to this question. With each book we write, our writing should be evolving, getting better. So, yes, I can see changes in my writing now that would make We Journey No More a better story.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I really had no thought of being a writer until after my husband died.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Bear in mind this is a rough version of chapter one, The Revenge of Excalibur:
Army boots: stomping, smashing the daisy with the blue center.
Arthur Merlin jerked his head back. He’d been so entranced with the fathomless, turquoise eyes of the breathtaking female before him; he’d lost all track of time. He blinked his eyes several times, shaking his head, trying to clear his mind. As he became aware of his surroundings, he heard the dripping of water into the small, inner cavern lake, the shuffling of equipment being set-up, and the echoing of voices off the distant walls.
The image flashed through his mind again, more forcefully. Army boots: squashing, grinding the daisy with the blue center, into the cavern floor, until there wasn’t anything left but small, unidentifiable pieces.
Oh, shit. Major Breckenridge and Alpha Team. He’d forgotten all about them. Arthur had a lot of respect for the Major, especially after everything they’d gone through at Heathrow Airport and Lake George, but he couldn’t let Daisy fall into their hands. If she did, who knows what would happen to the evil entity trapped in the legendary Excalibur? Daisy was the only one who could control it. Just thinking about the Shalit escaping its prison, made Arthur break out in a cold sweat. He’d already had his confrontation with the alien being, and lost. If it hadn’t been for Daisy, he’d be dead. Arthur had to find a way to save Daisy, and keep the Shalit contained.
He glanced at the tunnel entrance, where Major Breckenridge and Dr. Tober were striding purposefully toward him. He peered back down at Daisy. She was looking up at him with such love and trust. His breath caught, as he found himself falling under her spell. He shook his head. No, he couldn’t let himself get mesmerized again. She was in danger, he had to save her.
Grey eyes over daisy with blue center, and then they disappeared.
*Yes, baby, I’m getting you out of here,* he mentally reassured her.
But to where? Daisy still needed medical attention. Who could he trust? Ruth. Ruth would help them. She knew about the Shalit, and the need to keep it contained. Thinking about Ruth, made Arthur’s heart tear apart, he knew he had hurt her. After Viet Nam, he couldn’t get close to anyone anymore. Too much senseless death had scarred his heart. Then he met Ruth, and all that changed. He’d felt love again.
Looking down at the woman in his arms, he wondered, if he hadn’t met Ruth, would his heart be as open as it was now to Daisy? He shook his head. There was no way to know, but he was starting to feel like a pawn in a game of kismet. With a sad sigh, he knew that didn’t matter right now. He had to get Daisy to safety. He’d deal with the emotional side of this later. He gathered Daisy into his arms, focusing on Ruth’s home in Waite Water, and the beautiful garden behind the house. Locating the bench, where Arthur had stolen his first kiss from Ruth, he BLIPPED!
Arthur stumbled back a few steps, falling on his butt, clutching Daisy tightly to his chest. A second later, there was a loud clattering, as a large, ornate, silver sword dropped from Daisy’s hand. What the hell? he thought in confusion, as he found himself sitting on a cold, metal floor, instead of the stone bench. How did Excalibur get here? He had no reason to bring the sword with them. He was terrified of the damn thing. Where the hell were they? How did they get here? He peered down at Daisy, with concern. She seemed to be unconscious and barely breathing. What happened to her? She was just fine a few moments ago.
Hearing loud gasps above him, he looked up, seeing three women, with matching silver uniforms and black piping, holding weapons that reminded him of ray guns from science fiction films he’d seen before. If he didn’t know better, he would’ve thought he was on a movie set.
“So, who are you with?” Arthur asked jokingly, “Hans Solo, or Darth Vader?”
The pale women didn’t seem amused, as the tallest one demanded in accented English, “Earthman, you hold our leader. Place her on the floor and back away, or we will fire, and end your human existence.” Her weapon was pointed unwaveringly at Arthur’s forehead.
Even though the ray guns looked like toys to him, he had no idea what they might do to his force-field. Just my luck, he thought, I jumped from the frying pan into the fire. He carefully laid Daisy on the floor, then stood, arms raised, and reluctantly backed up a few steps, glaring, with narrowed eyes, at the space woman. As he glanced over the round, metal room, he realized he must be in one of the ships that escaped from the cavern.
Loud alarms started blaring, and orange lights were flashing from the domed ceiling. A women sitting at a console, swiveled around in her chair, yelling, “Attack! Seven Calen ship are attacking us. They demand our surrender, and the release of Emera and the Earthmen to them, or they will open fire. What shall we do, Commander Tigget?”
The tall space woman’s pale lips tightened, as she peered down at her leader, lying helplessly on the floor.
Daisy’s eyelids fluttered as she slowly opened them to regard her best friend. She had used most of her energy to redirect Arthur’s teleportation to this Calen ship. She could not allow the humans to capture her, or the Excalibur-Shalit would’ve endangered the whole universe. She looked up at her Grey Eyes, the only man powerful enough to save them from the seven Calen ships. *Tig, you must trust this human,* she said, in a weak mental voice, reaching out to Tigget and Arthur with her mind. “He is the one foretold by our ancestors.*
Commander Tigget glanced back and forth from her leader, and friend, to the human male, but never lowered her weapon.
*Tig, if we wish to survive, you must turn the battle over to him,* said Daisy, telepathically. *Arthur, we cannot allow ourselves to be taken. We will die before we surrender. You two must join forces, to protect, and save us.*
With a slight nod to her leader, Tig holstered her gun, as Arthur lowered his arms, and knelt next to Daisy. Tig strode to a row of screens, nit a button, and all of them turned on, displaying seven ships. So, these are the aliens that have been watching Earth, Arthur thought, as he stared open mouthed at the classic style of UFO’s, seen for centuries all over his planet.
Tig looked at the other two space woman holding ray guns. “Holster your weapons. Upon our leader’s request, we must trust this human.” As they holstered their guns, she spoke to another woman at a different console, “Inform the Commander of the Calen ships that we will never surrender. If they wish to die in battle, we shall accommodate them.” While her message was being relayed to the Commander of the opposing fleet, Tig turned to Arthur, looking him up and down with a cold eye. *I know not what you can do, if anything, to save us, but you must act fast. If they fire upon us, we are dead.”
How is a poor Earth kid from St. Mary’s Orphanage supposed to destroy a Calen ship, let alone seven? Arthur wondered. Even with all his powers, he knows he’s not strong enough. Hell, nobody would be. He rubbed his forehead, feeling overwhelmed. Everything’s happening too fast for him to keep up. He’s supposed to be in Ruth’s garden, not in the middle of a stupid space battle. Arthur knelt there, unmoving, not knowing what to do.
Daisy weakly raised her arm, pointing toward the silver sword. “Arthur, all you need do is touch the tip of Excalibur, and you shall destroy the ships. You must hurry.”
Arthur recoiled back in fear. Touch Excalibur? Is she crazy? He still hadn’t fully recovered from the mental contact he’d had with the Shalit in the cavern. Heaven knows what would happen if he actually touched the damn thing. No way. In his mind came an image of a white daisy, with a blue center, and over the center of the flower a pair of grey eyes floated down. He was infused with such warmth and joy; it brought tears of happiness to his eyes. A white beam flashed out, touching the daisy, leaving it burnt and wilted. Okay. Okay. He got the picture. If he didn’t try, Daisy would die. They all would.
Peering down at Daisy, he said, “I have no idea what’s going on, or how we got here, but I trust you, baby. I’ll destroy those ships for you.” He took a deep breath, preparing himself for the worst kind of pain imaginable. Focusing hard on the seven Calen ships, with creases around his mouth, and on his forehead, he reached out and grabbed the tip of the sword. His eyes widened in surprise, as all he felt was cold, silver steel.
“Cigsbah,” Tigget yelled, pointing at the screens. “They have fired upon us, my leader.”
The room became deathly silent as all eyes followed the white beam heading toward their ship. Abruptly, all screens lit up as the seven ships exploded into bright, white balls of fire. Arthur threw up his arm to shield his eyes from the sudden glare. Cheering and yelling broke out in the small, round room, as the crew celebrated their victory. Arthur wasn’t cheering, as he watched that thin, white line advance toward them. He had no idea what it was, but he knew it meant trouble. How had he destroyed those ships? He wasn’t powerful enough. At least, he didn’t think he was.
Arthur watched the screen, as the menacing white line crept closer and closer, until it couldn’t be seen on the screens anymore, as it was too close to their ship. Bracing for he knew not what, he watched the beam breach the hull and enter the room. Arthur stared, speechless, as the beam traveled soundlessly across the room, hitting his hand where it was still gripping the tip of Excalibur, causing a flash of light to shoot out from the sword. As Arthur looked in astonishment at the deep gouge on the back of his hand, the light passed through the opposite wall, breaching that hull. What the hell was that? Arthur wondered, terrified. It had penetrated his force-field. His stomach clenched in fear, and his hand throbbed in pain, as he realized he was no longer invincible, at least not out here in space.
Daisy’s voice screamed into his mind, *Remove all of us from here, Arthur, before we implode.*
Arthur didn’t need to be told twice. Once again, he focused on Ruth’s garden, wanting to get back home where he knew he was safe. Concentrating on everyone in the room, he BLIPPED
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Dialogue, which I think most writers suffer with, by some of the poorly written books I’ve read. And making sure the plot is consistent.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I have several as I like different genres. Stephen King, Dean Knootz, Terry Pratchett, Anne McCaffrey. They have the ability to draw you into the story and make you feel everything the characters are feeling.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
No. I don’t drive, so I’m limited to only online marketing.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
My self-published books, myself, as you can tell. LOL. My books through Creativia come from whomever they hire.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
The emotional side of it. Probably because it hits to close to home.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Yes, I think it helped me seeing my grief through the character’s eyes. I was hiding myself too.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Learn your craft. Read books on writing, and just keep writing.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Yes, thank you for reading my books, and I hope you come back for more.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Other than the Dr Seuss books, my mom bought me a set of the Happy Hollister’s when I was a child. They were a younger version of the Nancy Drew mysteries. I loved them and I still have the books.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Well, almost anything makes me cry anymore. I hate it. What makes me laugh are my sisters and their husbands. They can be a riot sometimes. I also love sick jokes.
Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?
Not that I can think of right now.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why ?
She may have been blind, but she saw more than most.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
If I had a yard, instead of living in an apartment, I love gardening and yard work. I also enjoy camping, fishing, and reading.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Right now I’m into Game of Thrones. I love anything paranormal.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
Tacos, pizza, blue, and the music from the 70s/80s.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I never had much direction growing up, so I ended up working where my mom did, and I’m still there. But once I set my mind to something, I learn it all the way, so that’s why I became an insurance agent.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Sahara-Foley/e/B00J9ST32U/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1