Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.
Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?
Hi, Fiona, and everyone out there!
My name is Kim Terry. I’m sixty-nine red-hot-and-smokin’ years old. 😀
Fiona: Where are you from?
Hometown: Fort Worth, Texas (or ‘Foat Wuth’, as we ‘Foat Wuth’ nativessay)
Fiona: A little about yourself (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
- I hold a Master’s degree from the University of North Texas and a Bachelor of General Studies from University of Texas at Arlington.
- I recently retired from twenty-seven years as an adjunct college English professor.
- I’m married to the love of my life, Jeff Schwarz, for a little over three years.
- I’m the mother of two grown sons who live with their families in San Diego, California and Stockholm, Sweden. Each son gave me two grandchildren, one of each “flavor” (two grandsons and two granddaughters)
- Together, my husband and I have four children and nine grandchildren (He has two children and three grandsons and two granddaughters).
- We alsohave a canine “fur-baby”: a female Finnish Spitz mix named “Russet” (named so because she was the color of a russet potato when I rescued her).
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
My debut novel, FROM HER MOTHER’S ARMS, is set to launch on Amazon and other booksellers sometime mid-August (around August 15).
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
My mother, a writer herself, inspired me to write. Although she wrote articles and short stories, as well, she fostered my writing of poetry. One summer night, when I was a young teenager (twelve or thirteen, as I remember), she and I agreed to turn off some re-run on television and write, instead. As it turned out, the poems that both of us wrote that night were accepted. Hers in Quicksilver; mine in Ingenuein 1962.
My mother sowed the “seed”, some of my English teachers encouraged me along.
Why do I write?
There are various reasons.
- When I have something specific to say (in my WordPress blog)http://KimTerrysBlog.com
- When I want to escape
- When I want to relax
- Because it’s fun, darn it! 😉
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
At the age of thirteen when I began writing and publishing my free-verse poetry in Ingenue Magazine and school literary publications.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I got the idea for BY HER MOTHER’SARMS on my way home from the Laughing Gull Writing Workshop in Port Aransas, Texas, after attending a workshop in writing the mystery novel. From 1995-2004, I was my mother’s caregiver until she passed away from Stage 4 colon cancer in March 2004. While we were blessed with competent doctors and a caring support system of friends and family, I toyed with the idea of how it could have become sinister. That “Oh, but what if…?” question fueled me to write the story as a murder mystery.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
FROM HER MOTHER’SARMSparallels my sequel, BY HER DAUGHTER’S HANDS (which really started out to be my first book before I found it necessary to create a story around two of my main characters.)
- FROM HER MOTHER’S ARMS is a work of suspense fiction about the mother and her firstborn child.
- BY HER DAUGHTER’S HANDS is actually a murder mystery including the mother and her daughters.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I tend to be a pantser, or at least a hybrid pantser. Writing mystery and suspense is still a challenge, as I struggle to keep the reader turning pages long after he or she turns out the light. Also, making all of the pieces of the puzzle come together is somewhat of a challenge.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
- I use real cities/towns (such as the Texas cities of Fort Worth and Lamesa) but I change the names of schools, hospitals, etc.
- The characters in my book are similar to real people, but I change their names and physical appearances. For example, the parents in my current book resemble my parents (physical traits and talents, mainly) but their experiences make them totally different.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
Unfortunately, not at the moment. I’ve drawn more upon the places I’ve already seen, such as the Texas gulf coast (specifically Port Aransas) and New York City as settings and have another idea that requires me to travel to different tourist sites in Texas.
Also, since my husband and I live “on the road” now, I would like for a future story or stories to be born of our travels.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
The designers at BeyondPublishing.net.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
As I was writing FROM HER MOTHER’S ARMS, the point that smacked me in the face was that sometimes people do better to listen to their gut instincts rather than follow society’s expectations.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest? Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?
- Brenda Novak (because of her down-to-earth characters and situations in her romances)
- Stacy Claflin (in her three-part series centered around a girl who meets someone online only to realize she is in a dangerous situation)
- VC Andrews (can’t remember the title, but the story involves identical twins, one of whom lures a man she meets online into meeting her (but sends her sister to meet him).
- Lori Wilde (because of her sexy but approachable cowboy characters and compelling stories). These are only four of many I’ve discovered.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
* Ooh, that’s a tough one, as there are two that tie for first place:
My author-friends on WANA 1011 (on Facebook) who have encouraged me and shown me that I am not alone in my writing career.
NaNoWriMo (and Camp NaNoWriMo) (both on Facebook and the actual organization, www.nanowrimo.org
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Although it’s always good to have one or more additional sources of income, I definitely see writing as a career.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Yes, I might try writing it in first-person POV, instead of third, just to see which way is more effective.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Sure, I learn something new about one subject or another, each time I write.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
In my suspense fiction, FROM HER MOTHER’S ARMS (to be launched in mid-August), I follow my main character, Mona Lisa, throughout the first twenty years of her life. Some actresses I’ve thought of while I’ve written this book have been Meg Ryan (younger) and Julia Duffy (older). No one in mind for baby Mona Lisa (except for Shirley Temple, but she’s not around anymore).
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
- Keep calm and write J
- Whatever you do, don’t give up!
- Read everything you can, especially to grow in your genre.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
I hope you enjoy reading my books even more than I enjoy writing them.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Just started reading Brenda Novak’s book, Finding Our Forever.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Yikes! I’ve slept since then. Okay, here goes. It was either one of the following:
- Probably one of the stories from my stack of Little Golden Books.(The Little Engine That Could)
- The Wizard of Oz (byFrank Baum)Actually, I was an adult before I truly grasped the irony in this story (i.e. the Cowardly Lion, the Tin Man, and the Scarecrow already possessed the qualities they depended on the Great Oz to give them.)
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
- Our dog
- My grandkids
- Life, in general
- Funny t.v. shows or movies:
- The Golden Girls
- The King of Queens
- Losing friends or family (including fur-babies that have gone to the “Bridge”)
- Watching sad movies (Marley and Me; A Dog’s Purpose; Terms of Endearment; Steel Magnolias)
- Life, in general
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
- Jesus (to thank him and God for their blessings in my life — past, present, and future)
- The following mystery authors whose books have kept me awake reading past my bedtime:
- Karin Slaughter
- Lisa Gardner
- Mary Higgins Clark
- The following entertainers for the positive examples they set:
- George Strait
- Loretta Lynn
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Besides writing? I’m blessed to say that writing is both my favorite hobby and my career, now that I’m retired from teaching.
- Reading (fiction, mostly, but I love medical non-fiction)
- Exploring different sights with my husband (i.e. cafes, off-the-beaten-path towns (such as Comfort, Tx where we are staying in our fifth-wheel RV).
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
(TV) Law and Order: Special Victims Unit; Blue Bloods; Chicago Fire and Chicago Med; Investigation Discovery
(Films) Steel Magnolias, Terms of Endearment, The Notebook; Mama Mia; Les Miserables (the one with Hugh Jackman); Fiddler on the Roof(to name a few)
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
Favorite foods? Well, that’s a slam-dunk no-brainer – any food that looks like and rhymes with ‘dark chocolate’.
- Mexican food is my go-to food of choice for eating out.
- Seafood (Red Snapper, Mahi Mahi, Tilapia, fried oysters or shrimp top the list)
- Steak (Rib-eye, broiled medium rare or medium, with a baked potato, tossed spinach salad)
- Red (in jewel tones such as ruby)
- Classic country: anything by George Strait or Alan Jackson (from the 1960’s-1980’s);
- Classic hits (“Oldies” hits – anything by the Platters)
- Show tunes (soundtracks from Mama Mia, Les Miserables, or Fiddler on the Roof)
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
“Finally!” (Finally, I got at least one book published. Finally, I met the love of my life. Finally, I retired, etc.)
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
You can catch my WordPress blog at http://KimTerrysBlog.com.
I write about my life experiences (i.e. moving out of our house and downsizing into an RV, meeting and marrying my husband, and our travel adventures, to name a few)
My fan page is under construction and will be up soon.