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?
My name is Jacqueline Lucia, the author of “Making Ends Meet with a Popcorn Popper”. I’m old enough to have been married, have children and gotten divorced but young enough to still be able to chase them around and not yet become a grandmother!
Fiona: Where are you from?
I’m from a small, beautiful town in New England (in the States). I’m so grateful to my parents that I was raised in such an area – where you could walk the sidewalks safely, enjoy all four seasons, ride your bicycle, and play in the backyard with all of the neighbourhood children until dark.
Fiona: A little about yourself (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
Well, you can find me most nights at home with my children. I really am a homebody. . . I spend my days home-schooling my children and much of my free time exploring their passions. When I can, I dabble in my other interests outside of writing – like comedy, music and the visual arts. With that said, I love to have friends and family over for some food, wine, and laughs as often as I can! I have come to a place in my life where I treasure these times. I try to embrace a creative and cozy vibe.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I just published my very first book! “Making Ends Meet with a Popcorn Popper” has just been released this week and it is VERY exciting for me! Amazon is offering both a Kindle and paperback version of my book. I’m anxious and nervous and excited – all at the same time – to see how it will be received.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I’ve always enjoyed writing. I love the outlet, the creativity, and the power of the written word. I think I realized when I was very young that the written word had the power to persuade and convince, to present new ideas…to change the world.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I don’t know. Maybe when I started to re-examine my life when I needed to rebuild it; so perhaps a handful of years ago. There are often treasures hidden in trauma.
One of my treasures was discovering who I really am and who I wanted to become. And I like to write – always have. It was probably at that point that I gave the permission to consider myself a writer.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
There is so much that I want to write about. But I thought it would be best to start with something that could help others that might find themselves in a desperate financial situation and not know what to do first. I never thought I would have ended up where I did. I could have never imagined it. But it happened and it got figured out. I thought if there could just be a simple guide – with shortcuts to the lessons I learned – to take you from desperate to manageable, that could really be a game-changer for so many people.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Well, the guide is certainly about making ends meet in the fiscal sense, and I suppose that part is evident. But everyone always asks about the popcorn popper. And I tell everyone the same thing! You have to read the book! This book is not meant to be a boring, dry, manual to get you from point A to point B – it is also anecdotal with my sense of humor sprinkled throughout. Our popcorn popper played a very important role in my family’s recovery.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
My style is conversation and anecdotal. In stand-up comedy, they call it story-telling. When I have done stand-up, that is my default – I always want to tell the story – but the challenge is hoping and praying that the audience – and in this case, the reader, stays with you long enough to get the punchline/laugh/conclusion of whatever you’re telling or writing.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
This book is absolutely realistic and is based on my own experiences. I had been a typical – if there is such a thing – married wife with two children until one day I learned that everything in my life wasn’t what I thought it was at all. In fact, I was living in a house of cards and everything was toppling over! My children’s lives and my life were changed overnight. The children and I moved, and I sold everything that I could and learned how to survive and start over.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
No, I don’t. I can work from home.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
I used Amazon for the cover of the first edition.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
YES. Keep looking forward. Keeping looking UP. This won’t be bad forever – it’s transitional. And no matter how awful it is right now, find a way to enjoy your life as it is. POP THE POCORN.
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 look at the different ebooks out there a lot. I LOVE Neil Hilborn. His poem ‘OCD’ went viral some time ago and I have his published book of poetry from Amazon, ‘Our Numbered Days’. I love his authenticity and rawness. I find him honest, vulnerable and brave. I’m also particularly interested in Rania Alammar and her book about Princess Diana. I suppose that I don’t have a favorite writer. I do like to read some of the American short stories from the last 100 years and then read interpretations of them. I find the different interpretations fascinating.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
Friends and community. Although this book doesn’t go into the specific details that occurred in my life, the book does address how to begin the recovery process financially and hints at how to shift the mindset. I had the support of community, strangers and many friends who saw the difficulties my children and I endured and how we came out better and stronger. So many times, I have heard – you need to share this story! This is a book that needs to be written! While this isn’t ‘that story’, this is a guide and handbook for recovery – and I have a lot of support for that and I’m ever so grateful.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Boy, that would be great. I think you have to see it first for it to happen next.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I’m such a novice that I don’t yet know what I don’t know.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Yes. I learned to not put it off. To expect to be scared. And to keep going. Always keep going.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Mira Sorvino. She’s sassy, smart, and SO talented.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Just do it. Wait, Nike said that. Just write.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Please consider reviewing my book on Amazon – as scared as I am, I really need the feedback!
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
‘Our Numbered Days’ by Neil Hilborn
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
I think it might have been ‘Cat in the Hat Dictionary’.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Things that make me laugh: My children. Stand-up comedy. Saturday Night Live. Funny stories. When Eddie Murphy does his bit about the Ice Cream Truck. The movie Elf. Chris Farley doing the skit “In a Van Down by the River”. Adam Sandler’s “the Hanukkah Song”… I could go on but the Internet might get clogged or something.
Things that make me cry: The song “When October Goes”.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Jesus. He just sounds so awesome and that I probably couldn’t do anything that would make him unfriend me.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I like to sing, draw, enjoy and study comedy, and occasionally paint.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I love the sitcoms from the 80s and 90s – especially Cheers. But then there will be something that comes along like Mad Men. That show had me at ‘Hello’. I also love interesting documentaries and real-life who-dun-its.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
I love homemade macaroni and cheese, New England seafood, Italian food, and cheese and cracker spreads paired with wine. I love yellow, blue and pink and mostly all types of music – my tastes are eclectic overall.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
I would sing more.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
I don’t want a head stone. My legacy is the love I’ve shared.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?