Name: Valerie Davisson

Age: 62

Where are you from: I’m essentially a California girl, born in French Camp, CA, raised in Italy, Germany, and Japan until we came back to the United States. We lived on both coasts of the U.S., and Arizona. Family roots stretch in two directions: downtown Chicago, Illinois on my Irish Catholic father’s side, and a dusty, Texas horse ranch on my Mom’s.



Fiona: Tell us your latest news?

I rediscovered a 70’s citrus salad (grapefruit, blood oranges, and tangerines) and can’t wait to make it.


Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

I sketched and played outside as a child, always read a lot, but I don’t remember writing until my teen years. Those are the diary, journal, poetry years – full of adolescent angst.


Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

One of my teachers in high school told me she thought I had some talent, but I didn’t really think about it much until my mid-thirties, when I pulled together a poetry book and people liked it.


Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

I wanted to show my children after my divorce that you can overcome difficulties, and that you can do more than one thing well. I had gone back to school and was working towards my Cultural Anthropology degree. Poetry was about as different from my work as a computer software trainer and my academic studies as you could get.


Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?

I write what I think, or what I presume my characters would think and say if they were alive.


Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

My first book, SHATTERED, refers to the many levels in which the protagonist’s life is dissembled: her marriage, her company, her assumptions, her financial security, her faith, her illusions, her health – the predictability of her life. She has to start over. We meet Logan McKenna in the direct aftermath of all this, where she is struggling to find herself again.

FOREST PARK was taken from a real location in Portland, Oregon that comes up near the end of the book – a wild place within the city limits – a place we all have within ourselves, and one in which two of the major characters take refuge.


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

I don’t have a message per se – I hate preachy books – but I hope people feel emboldened to try new things, take risks, and build their resilience so they can take those risks confidently.



Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

They say all fiction is real, and in some ways, it must be. It comes from us, so has to be part of us.



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

My mother’s love of books permeate my life, and my father’s good nature and love of new places, people and food are a definite part of who I am.



Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest and who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

I enjoy a wide variety of genres. I love authors ranging from Kahlil Gibran to Michael Connelly. The first author I was ‘hooked’ on was James Michener.


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

Hmmmm….Peets Coffee? I can’t write without Major Dickason’s blend: hot and black.



Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

Yes. I currently have a day job, but as the writing takes more and more of my time and energy, it is a natural segue to writing full time. Wish I could clone myself! I think if you want to write as a career, you need to treat it as such, respect your own and others’ time, keep good business records, etc.


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

I have learned something with each book – the list is endless! But I also rejoice in what I do well – you have to be completely honest with yourself. You’re the only one who will be.



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

I just had a burning need to express myself. A pen just found its way into my hands.



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

I am loving this new book. Logan returns to her Southern California, coastal hometown of Jasper, CA. All I can say is that sea otters, salty dogs and seduction are involved…


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

Finding time to do it!


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

The action in SHATTERED was close to home. I did much of my research at the Sawdust Festival, interviewing and observing the glassblowers there, and I pulled on my own personal experiences living in the area and teaching in the public school system. FOREST PARK required several trips to Portland, Oregon, which, I have to admit, was not much of a sacrifice, as it’s one of my favorite cities.


Fiona: Who designed the covers?

The talented team at Hauser Publishing. They involved me every step of the way, which I deeply appreciate.



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

Again, finding the time. Teaching is an all-encompassing profession, which I also love. My husband and I have 6 children between us and it is a challenge to meet all of our needs and keep my sanity! LOL


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

So many things – doing is learning.



Fiona: If any of your books was made into a film who would you like to play the lead?

Sandra Bullock comes to mind – she’s tough, but definitely female. It would also be fun to find an unknown actress to play the part.


Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?

If you want to write, hone your skills, be true to yourself, and write. Don’t allow yourself to be detoured. Take yourself seriously and others will.


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

I hope you enjoy the stories!



Fiona: What book are you reading now?

The Universe and the Teacup: the Mathematics of Truth and Beauty, by K. C. Cole and I just finished J. A. Jance’s latest, Clawback.



Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

Hmmm….I must have had picture books, but the first I remember was a series of fairy tale books my mother got me that I began collecting: Norwegian Fairy Tales, French Fairy Tales, German Fairy Tales, Japanese Fairy Tales…



Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

My husband makes me laugh fifty times a day – life in general cracks me up. I don’t cry often, but when I do it’s a doozy.



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

Mark Twain or Catherine the Great.



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

“ I told you I was sick!”  LOL



Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies?

Cooking, watercolor, gardening, hosting Saturday Salons (potluck conversation nights), swimming, walking, stargazing, going to museums, roasting marshmallows…



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

Bosch, Jeopardy – any Ken Burns documentary



Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music

Posole, chicken adobo, ribeye steak – medium rare, roasted vegetables, artichokes, a sweet, fresh, just-picked peach!



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

Potter, Cultural Anthropologist – collecting life histories, watercolorist, architect…



Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it? and am on Facebook:




Forest Park: Logan Book 2

Shattered: Logan Book 1



Forest Park: Logan Book 2

Shattered: Logan Book 1



Forest Park: Logan Book 2

Shattered: Logan Book 1


 Barnes & Noble

Forest Park: Logan Book 2

Shattered: Logan Book 1


Hauser Publishing

Forest Park: Logan Book 2

Shattered: Logan Book 1