Name Marta Moran Bishop
“A little older than my teeth”: (From Miracle of 34th Street)
Where are you from
This is a hard one for me as I am still learning and growing up. I was born in Illinois, spent ten years on the Iron Range in Northern Minnesota, another two in middle Minnesota, lived in Seattle Washington, Chicago, New Mexico, Ohio, West Germany, California, Massachusetts to name a few.
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc
I am both a middle child and the oldest child in a family of nine children, for my parents divorced and as my oldest siblings had moved out, I then became the oldest child at home, when I was eleven. It was difficult in many ways switching from the role of a middle child to that of the oldest.
In my early twenty’s my brother and I had a dance act, dancing in television commercials and shows. I also spent some time as a model and magician’s assistant. In my late twenty’s I became the caretaker for my mother, who became disabled with MS. She was also a writer, though never quite finished her stories. I am in the process of finishing them now. I majored in History and English in college, having gone back to school late after my mother passed away.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I just finished Darkness Descends: The Prequel to a book I wrote four years ago called The Between Times and am working on the 2nd part of the Prequel and the Sequel to it. It’s based upon a bit of history from 1933 when a group of millionaires attempted to overthrow the US Government and put a Fascist regime in its place, much as Hitler and Mussolini had done in Germany and Italy. I took those facts along with many of today’s events and created the world as they would have had it. Except of course for the bit of magic and belief in the power of the people that is in the books.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
Coming from a large family all of whom were readers and a grandmother and mother who wrote, it was natural to learn to read and write early. My first voyeur into writing was a play. Albeit a very bad play, but that didn’t stop me, I continued to write and improved.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I first considered myself a writer in 2005. I had a professor that advised me I could be a great writer with practice and work.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
My grandmothers half-finished book of poetry that she began in 1927. I finished many of her verses and added some of my own. It is called Wee Three: A Mother’s Love in Verse and illustrated by Hazel Mitchell.
My first novel was actually the second one I began. I had put aside Dinky: The Nurse Mare’s Foal to gain more perspective into the mind of our little Foal and wrote The Between Times, which was inspired by current events and the thought of What If: Those millionaires from 1933 had children or grandchildren who had continued working on the dream of taking over the government. It came to me in the wee hours of the morning as I was sitting outside in the predawn.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
I usually write first person, as I am living the lives of my characters in my mind as I write.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Either the title is already there before I begin writing or it comes to me full blown when I am writing.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
All of my stories and books have a basic message, which is no matter how bad things are or if you don’t feel like you belong, they can and will get better. Everyone has a place in this world.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
All of them in one way or another are based on a combination of real experiences and events that I have worked into a story. Except of course those books and stories that I have finished of my mother’s.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
Believe it or not one of them is Atlas Shrugged, though the meaning I take from it is completely different from the one that most others believe it means. Others are Stranger in a Strange Land and Pride and Prejudice.
As far as a mentor, probably my college professors and other authors that I have met through the social media and become quite close to. In particular, my editor and fellow author Franki deMerle.
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?
Since I opened my account on Facebook and began making friends with other authors and I love to read, I have and will read nearly anything written by Robert W. Walker, Robert B. Whitehill, Miriam Davidson, Dellani Oakes, Margaret Koch and the list goes on. As far as a favorite I have to say it depends on what type of book I am interested in reading
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
My editor and friend Franki deMerle.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Absolutely, I cannot see myself not writing.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I don’t see how the book could be different as it was written with the knowledge that Rebecca died a horrible death and a bit of what she had done. She had a daughter named Jewell and a husband named Ben. You see it was written as the prequel after I had written The Between Times, which I had expected to be a standalone book. That idea changed when readers began asking me for a sequel.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I don’t remember a time when I didn’t want to write, it came as naturally to me as reading did.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
I’m working on a few books right now. The sequel to The Between Times, the story of Dinky’s mother, which will be purely fictional and finishing a few more of my mother’s short stories.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
The rewrites before it goes to my editor and coming up with a title. If the title isn’t already in my mind, it takes a lot of work to figure out what it should be.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
I travel for book shows and of course the EQUUS Film Festival, where Dinky’s book is one of the top featured books.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Hazel Mitchell designed the cover for Wee Three, but mostly I design my own.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Having the time to write. I get lost in writing and forget time, so I have to be able to have the ability to stay at it if needed. Generally, the hardest thing for me is to put down my writing.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
In Dinky: The Nurse Mare Foal, I learned so much about Nurse Mares and Nurse Mare Foals. The Between Times and Darkness Descends I learned more of this country’s history, architecture and geography.
Fiona: If any of your books was made into a film who would you like to play the lead
I’d love to see Shemar Moore play Ben in the Jewell in the Dark series.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Don’t use words without being comfortable with the word. As Stephan King and others says Read everything and anything. Take the time to immerse yourself in the characters and scenes to learn. Remember less is more, which means that don’t feel your story must be a certain amount of words. The description of the surroundings and some of the conversation can be added in rewrites.
When I go back to work on a piece I read through the document I have written and add, subtract and make necessary changes before continuing on with the book.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Many of my readers are uncomfortable with leaving a review and instead will message me on my author page. I’d like them to know that to me it means as much to hear from them privately. I appreciate they read my work and take the time to tell me however they chose to do it.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Geronimo by Robert Whitehill and rereading the Harry Potter Series.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Yes, Pippi Longstocking and yes that dates me.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Cruelty in any form especially to animals makes me cry. I laugh at British humor more so than today’s American Humor. I will laugh when my husband or pets do funny things.
Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?
As far as present I’d like to meet so many of those I interact with on the social media sites that I couldn’t begin to name them. A person from the Past, I’d probably like to meet Cleopatra or President Lincoln, to pick their minds on the social structure of the day and what they both feared most in the actions they took.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why?
She climbed every mountain. Because I have conquered so many of my fears in life and even if something made me uncomfortable I pushed forward in order to grow and understand as a person and friend.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies?
I produce book trailers, ads and music videos. Ride and train horse. Draw, paint and read.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I enjoy thrillers, murder mysteries, science fiction, animal stories, cowboy and romance movies. I guess most things. I am not a big fan of reality TV or many of today’s sitcoms preferring instead to watch things like Criminal Minds, Law and Order, Castle, Leverage and Discovery.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
I don’t really have an all-out favorite of any of these as they all depend upon what mood I’m in. I like most foods, colors, and music. It would be easier for me to answer what I don’t like in this category. I don’t like lima beans.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I’d probably work with animals and children.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?