Name Marie James
Where are you from Central Texas
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc
Wife of almost 12 years, mother of 2 boys (7 and 5). My day job: Juvenile Probation Officer (9 years). I have a Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Sam Houston State University, and plan to have my PhD before I die.
I spend most of my time either reading, writing, or on social media talking about reading and writing.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I have Psychosis (Matthew Hosea Novella, co-written with Gina Sevani) releasing on December 20th. Love Me Like That, a standalone releases January 13th.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
Although my writing journey didn’t begin until January of 2015, I’ve always wanted to be one. The catalyst for this endeavor was a miscarriage my husband and I suffered in October 2014. Writing gave me the ability to put my focus somewhere else rather than the grief.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
May 29, 2015 when my first book released. I had a couple dozen preorders and I was on cloud 9!! Coincidentally this release was also the due date for the baby we lost. By the one year anniversary of our loss my entire Hale Series was out.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
Love. After the miscarriage I need a happy ending and Ian and Lorali in Coming to Hale was exactly the perfect outcome from that pain.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
I write in first person present. I like the readers to feel like the story is more of a conversation with them rather than an actual book. It has worked out for me thus far!
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
My best friend and I were shooting off titles we could associate with the lead male character Ian Hale. She suggested Going to Hale… but since it was a HEA we somehow ended up with Coming to Hale.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Not specifically. Each one of the books in the Hale Series is an HEA, so I guess I want them to realize that even with trials and tribulations, people who love each other can overcome some pretty amazing tribulations.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic ?
All of it? I mean as much as a billionaire falling in love with a girl he ran into in a laundry mat. Completely believable right?
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
To a point. I’m married to the man of my dreams, so that aspect is true.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
Owned by M. Never has an incredibly special place in my heart. She has the quote “A certain kind of darkness is needed to see the stars” in the book and this served as motivation and inspiration for my writing which ultimately helped with the grief I suffered last year. When I began this journey I read Kimberly Bracco’s debut novel “Inhibitions.” I loved the book and I reached out to her and she was instrumental in helping me getting the hang of the Indie Author world.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Now that the entire series is done, I’m working through the “indebted Series” by Pepper Winters
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
Sylvia Day is an all-time fave. JR Ward and the BDB series is in the top 5. JA Huss, Brittney Cherry, and Kendall Ryan were in the top this year for me.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I’m working on getting “Love Me Like That” ready for release. I’m also working on “Kincaid” which is an MC spin-off from my Hale Series
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
The India Author community is incredibly supportive, without them I’d just some lady sitting in my recliner reading, rather than writing!
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
God willing! I could do this fulltime and love every second of it!
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
My latest book is “Psychosis” and it is ridiculous and crazy and was a lot of fun to do. I would change nothing!!
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I entered (by entered I mean was forced) to submit a short story for a Sci-Fi writing contest in 6th Grade. I won of course. That gave me confidence that there may be people out there who may actually enjoy what I write.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
I try to add a bit of comedy to each one of stories…here is a short excerpt from “Love Me Like That’ which releases January 13, 2016:
Dinner was going great. We talked about future plans and vacations my parents want to take now that Dad is semi-retired. That all changed when dessert was being served, and Kegan got that look in his eye.
“So, KayKay? You told mom about the woman you have living with you yet?” Kegan says like it’s just another piece of everyday news to discuss at the table.
From the corner of my eye, I see both of my parents’ heads snap up and look at me. Center of attention, a position Kegan has always been better at than me. This is his payback for not spilling it about London when he asked. My mind is already thinking of things to do to get back at him; that’s if I don’t strangle him first.
I narrow my eyes at him before speaking. “I do have a house guest,” I respond with as much nonchalance as I can muster.
“Houseguest,” Kegan huffs.
“She’s in the guest room,” I reply and look at my mother. My explanation does nothing to keep the happiness off of her face. Seems I’m as transparent to her as I am to Kegan, and she didn’t show up at the house like he did and see her braless in a tank top and yoga pants.
“And where do you sleep?” Kegan says just before popping an overly large bite of pie into his mouth.
My jaw clenches uncontrollably, and my left eye ticks periodically with my pulse. Fucker.
“How did you meet?” My Aunt Diana asks thinking she’s saving me from Kegan’s questions when she’s actually only making it worse.
Kegan drops his fork on his plate loudly and sits backs far in his chair. “Oh, I love this part of the story.”
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Time. I could write forever, but with work, kids, and life in general there doesn’t seem to be enough in the day to do it all.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Sylvia Day. I love her so much I actually hit play on my Audible App every night at bed time and her books read to me in my sleep. Every. Single. Night.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
I haven’t yet but I have a signing in May in Kentucky and one in Dallas, Texas in August next year! Looking forward to each of them!
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Kari Ayasha of Cover to Cover Designs
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Time once again. I haven’t had a “writer’s block” yet, so if I have time to write I seem to be able to just flow right through it!
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
My latest book deals with heartache and loss. I learned that although they’re fictional, sometimes your characters talk to you so strongly that their pain rubs off on you. I spent many nights sobbing while righting “Love Me Like That.”
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Keep at it. Find a reliable team of beta’s and make sure you have fun. If you get lost, take a step back and approach it a t a different angle.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
KEEP READING!!! I love being on this journey with them. I have tons of other books in my head and can’t wait for them to flow from my fingertips!
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Not my very first, but the one that hit the hardest was “Where the Red Fern Grows” I know I read it a hundred times.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
I laugh at just about anything. I don’t cry often, but it is usually super happy things. Things that pull your heartstrings, and incredibly considerate people.
Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?
So many! Maybe J Edgar Hoover… the whole creating the FBI thing is pretty awesome.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why ?
I wasn’t ready. (Because I always have something else to say, or someway to add to what I was doing…I’m never DONE!)
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
I used to sew, but writing has taken over my life.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Ha! What is TV? If I had more time I’d watch Scandal, Grey’s Anatomy, and all the shows on the ID channel!! My kids make sure I get a healthy dose of Octonauts, Curious George, and Paw Patrol.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
Italian/Purple/Country (although I have varied tastes in music)
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I want to eventually teach Criminal Justice for a college.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
Facebooks is it: www.facebook.com/authormariejames