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?
Hello, I am Rebecca Tran age 37
Fiona: Where are you from?
I am from St. Louis, Missouri and still live near there.
Fiona: A little about your self.
After marrying my high school sweetheart I earned my B.S.B.A from Mizzou and worked for a couple of years before going back to school and getting my PharmD from Mercer University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. We have two little girls now ages 4 and 6. Between my husband, the girls and work I am always on the go. I squeeze in writing and marketing of my books when everyone is occupied or sleeping. By some miracle i managed to publish four books last year.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I just finished the rough draft of my paranormal romance series last night. I hope to have them up for sale soon with a release date of mid to late January. I am also finishing my third book in my Chronicles of the Coranydas series and hope to release that in February.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
My father died when I was 16 and I didn’t handle it too well. I was too scared to tell my mom and I didn’t want to talk to anyone. When a friend showed me a story she was writing I thought I would try the same. It was the best release I ever had. It was my self prescribed therapy and it worked.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
It wasn’t until sometime after my second book was published and I won my first award. Family and friends told me my writing was good but they had to right? But when I won an award it meant someone else thought the same thing.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
My father’s death was the motivating factor for my first book. I needed to be in charge of something in my world that was spinning out of control around me.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
The Rashade’ is the term used to describe Mara’s role in the world around her. I wanted something short and unique, this fit the bill perfectly and it also described the essence of the first book.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
My style changed a lot from the time I started writing at 16 to now. When I started I was overly descriptive and wordy. Now it’s the exact opposite. I like clean writing and minimal descriptions unless they are necessary to the plot. Some readers don’t like it. They want everything described in detail.
I also like to write in the first person. I have two novels out now in that style and the second was a challenge with beta readers and an editor. Some readers simply don’t like or don’t understand first person POV. It is supposed to have a voice and even grammar can slide depending on the narrator. It is also harder to show a story in this form and I have had criticism there. I have had to adjust and meet reader halfway there.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
All of my books are fantasy, however some of my characters are inspired by friends or co-workers. My first book was inspired by real life events. Although, it is nowhere near reality. I like to draw off my own emotions to create the drama in my books.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
Unfortunately I don’t get to go anywhere. My characters are all better travelled than I am. I do a lot of research for all of my books set in the real world. After writing For Their Sins I swore I wouldn’t write another book based on earth again. Then I started its sequel and a romance series all set in today’s timeline or slightly later but not far enough out to stretch the truth very far. It was back to research. Luckily for the romance novels I’ve been to a couple of the locations and my uncle has been to the other.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Three of my covers were designed by two different graphic artists through an online service and For Their Sins was designed by my publisher.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
No I’m not that clever. Although all of them have action adventure and romance.
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?
I have too many favourites. I could read Terry Goodkind over and over. He manages to create a diverse world that is well thought out and extremely detailed. I also love Anne Bishop. She too creates worlds that are intricate and detailed. Both authors create places that you can lose yourself in for hours. When I read I want to lose myself in the book.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
The independent author community is amazing. The more I reach out to them the more help I receive. Everyone supports one another.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
No, if it becomes a job I will lose my creativity and I won’t love it anymore.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No, I love the way Neutral Space turned out. Even if readers don’t agree I have to be happy with it in the end.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
I have to be willing to compromise and listen to what others are saying. Sometimes readers have valid points. With a some changes a novel can be improved. However the wrong editor can ruin a project.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
In my newest book Neutral Space I would love to see Kellan Lutz play Lt. Jackson Peterson and to play Khedya’s role Gal Gadot. It’s far fetched but no one said cost was an issue. A girl can dream right?
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Make sure you research marketing techniques before launching your first book. Be sure you have interest in your book before releasing it. Its easier to get a book going before rather than after it comes to market. Be sure it is well written and free of typos. Its a disservice to yourself and readers to put your book out there with poor grammar and easy fix mistakes. Even if you have the best idea in the world if no one can get past the poor writing its a horrible book. Plus it reflects poorly on the indie community as a whole.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
I’m always trying to write something new. I want it to be something that I love to read and that fans will enjoy. In that aspect I want to know what my readers think. I want them to reach out to me through social media and leave reviews, whether they like it or not.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Auquamarine by Terry Bolryder and Strangers of Earth by Keisha Fladrick
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
It was called The Popcorn Book. It was a Halloween themed book about kids dressed in costumes who popped so much popcorn it filled their house.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
I love sappy romances and find excuses to watch them. I’m a sucker for them a good example would be P.S. I love you. I read the Notebook too and I can’t read Nicholas Sparks anymore I ball my eyes out. As far as comedy I tend to like cynical humour and in case you couldn’t tell from my writing innuendos are always welcome.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Queen Elizabeth I it seems like an odd choice but she was a trail blazer. She did what no one else had ever done and held her country together against all odds. I’ve always admired strong women and she’s at the top of the list.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I have two hobbies that I haven’t had much time for because I have been consumed with writing this past year. I have a growing teapot collection. I pick up the odd ball and quirky pots when I visit antique shops or resale shops. I also quilt. I know it seems like something a grandma should do but I find its a wonderful creative outlet.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Right now I’m watching Dr Who and I absolutely love it. David Tennant is my favourite Dr but they all have their merits. I’m also anxiously awaiting Star Wars and I’m a Treky too. Then there are a number of other popular shows but I like tv dramas, japanime, and crime shows.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
In general I like Vietnamese food. My husband taught me to appreciate it and after my in-laws moved I learned to cook some of it so we eat it quite often. I also like just about any type of seafood but crab is my favourite. I always wear red and even my girls know that’s mom’s color. My taste in music is a little more eclectic though. I listen to alternative, pop, country, classical and Christian music.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
If I weren’t writing I might actually finish all the quilting and sewing projects I started but I wouldn’t be as happy.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
Loving Wife, Mother, and Grandmother I think those are the things most important to me aside from my faith so if I accomplish those I’ve lived a good life. Although I don’t have grandkids yet I hope to have them before I die.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
I have a free short story Unlike the Rest at: https://www.instafreebie.com/free/1HZES
My Blog and Website are below:
Amazon Author page:
The Rashade’: Chronicles of the Coranydas Vol 1
A Guardian Falls: Chronicles of the Coranydas Vol 2
For Their Sins