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?
I am 42, turning 43 in September
Fiona: Where are you from?
I was born in Eugene Oregon, and lived there until I joined the Navy at 19… Now I reside in Southern Oregon.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I started at the University of Oregon the September I turned 18. I’ve always had a passion and zest for life, and after completing my Freshman year living in the dorms, on campus, I wanted to live off campus… so, I went to work in Alaska. I worked all summer in the salmon canneries, and returned to Eugene with enough mullah to move into a quad off campus.
This was when the new chapter of my life really started. My Sophomore year I was less focused on my studies and didn’t make it to many of my classes—not to say that I wasn’t passing, I was. It just didn’t take much work for me to be able to get good grades. One morning in particular, I remember seeing a commercial for the US Navy.
I left for bootcamp about four months later in late February… to Great Lakes Michigan.
Following boot camp, I went to my technical school—aviation electronics in Tennessee for six months. Here I got my first set of orders to my first duty station, Puerto Rico. During the eight years I served, I travelled both through the service and personally, to more than thirty countries.
During my service, I suffered a brain injury while in the line of duty while overseas. I completed my tour and got out in 2000. I moved from Jacksonville, Florida, back to Oregon.
After the service, I finished my BS in Advertising at the Univeristy of Oregon, and then my MAT from Portland State University. During this time, I met my husband, also a Vet, in May 2002, and we’ve been together since.
We have two children fifteen months apart—they look and act a lot like twins. Having been a teacher, we’ve decided as a family, to now home school them this next fall for their 4th and 6th grade years.
I spend my time with family most weekends being adventurous. We love to hike, boat, camp, and love to spend time down by one of the many rivers by us, or at the coast. In my alone time, I love to read racy books and write. I LOVE TO WRITE.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
My first novel, Volition, went live June 5th, the paperback is still with the formatter, but will be released soon.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I have always loved writing—in fact, it is something that my Mom always thought I would do for a living; however, in 2014 I finished reading a series that left me feeling emotionally raw. Her style was so much like mine that it made me realize for the first time that maybe I could write.
So, I just started talking on the page. The characters took over, and Volition was born.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Maybe after the first 25k or 50k? I know at the first 100k, I was like… damn! I CAN write… Haha.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
Many authors I’ve read over the years inspired me, but definitely completing K. Bromberg’s Driven series.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
It is a book about Tessa’s choices, and the things she does willingly now that she is single again. She lives her life… on her own terms, acting of her own volition. It just seemed fitting. I also wanted a strong one-word title, and not one overused.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I’ve been told I have a definite style, that put my pages next to another author, and you can tell mine easily. It has to do with the voice I use, and my sentences are longer than many author’s. I’ve been told numerous times too, that I have a gift for writing passionate scenes.
Challenges? Well, I took a break after being super discouraged with the first time I edited my book… the longer the break lasted, I worried if I could write in the same voice. Finally, I just took the leap in 2017, finished editing it with my new and amazing editor Simone, and have written two novellas since and am working to finish book 2, Veneration. Luckily, my writing voice was still my voice, and much less of a challenge that I envisioned it would be. I literally cannot tell what I wrote years ago from what I wrote today.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
They always say write about what you know; however, we also know that nobody wants their life on display or between two covers. Tessa is a Navy Aircraft Electrician like I was, she is divorced young like I was, and deployed to Iceland like I was… but that is where the similarities stop.
My writing is from experience, stories, observation, fantasy, and imagination. I throw it all in, shake it, stew on it… and what comes out is a believable fictional story.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I have traveled a lot. I have been to and lived on several different military bases in different countries. It all helps with keeping the story believable, and what I don’t know, I google and research.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Kari March of Kari March Designs. She is an amazing designer and listens to what I want, then makes it ten times better than I imagine it turning out.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
No, not really. If anything, though, I want for the double standard to STOP regarding how women are perceived based on how they choose to live their lives and how many people they date and sleep with to find their prince charming. I’ve known so many strong women who liked to play the field and were slut-shamed. I think it is BS considering men do the same thing and women, especially young women are castigated for the same behaviors.
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?
Although not new to writing, I discovered I love Jude Ouvrard and Simone Beaudelaire’s works a couple of years ago. They both write from the heart and have characters that I’ve connected with. I absolutely adore Ray Bradbury, Stephen King, Laurelin Paige, Sylvia Day, Kristy Bromberg, and Pepper Winters… although obviously for different reasons as their writing is quite different.
As I mentioned before, I connect with Kristy’s characters and the stories she weaves the deepest, so she is my favorite author. There is something about how she puts words and emotions on the page so that they are effortless to read. For my brain, reading her stories is as easy as talking on the phone. Her characters are all lovingly flawed and the passion she writes so real that I feel it hours, sometimes even days after I’ve finished her books. I cannot read her books when I am actively writing because I need to feel and hear my characters, not hers… so I haven’t read any of her spin offs from the Driven series or her newer books. I have A LOT of catching up to do. I am very excited about her book coming out on Passionflix this summer though.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
Jude and Simone have both been instrumental with getting me ready to be published, but it’s so much more than that… they’re both such amazing ladies and the advice they’ve given me has been invaluable. I trust them completely… and their honesty is what I appreciate most.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
My family and children are my full-time career; however, I’d love nothing more than to have people take me seriously as a writer. I’d love to create a fan base who love my characters as much as I do. So, yes. I’d love to make writing a career.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I actually laughed aloud when I read this… I’ve been editing and writing this book since 2014… and still find things every time I read it. I am genuinely happy with it though, so as far as big changes go, nope. I wouldn’t change a thing.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
The last book I wrote was a novella and it took me seven days to write close to 20k in the evenings. I’ve found that if I’m inspired and allowed the time to write, the story pours out of me unhindered.
With Volition, I learned several things. First, to stick to what I want the story to say; I don’t always have to take the editor’s advice. Simone and I had the tedious task of unediting my story from the first time it was edited, so that my true voice came through. Secondly, perseverance. Push through all obstacles, even if they keep showing up, if the end goal is something you really want. The last I’ll mention is that writing is the easy part. Heck, editing is harder, but still not the hardest part. Marketing your book, before it’s published and after it goes live is rough. Thousands of new books are published a day, and you’re a face in the crowd. Making the story you want to tell, and share with others stand out—now that’s the hardest part.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
I like Alia Jolie’s freckled, fresh and natural vibe. I saw her after I wrote Tessa and was like… it’s her!Cintia Dicker is a cutie too though…
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Write about what you know. Write about what you love. Write everyday.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Thanks for taking the chance on Volition, and an author you’ve never heard of. If you like what I wrote, please leave me a review… believe it or not, reviews are so very important to us indie authors.
Also, stay tuned! I have Vexed—a story from Noah’s POV coming out soon, and Veneration is nearly written as well… Book two of Noah and Tessa’s story.
Impasse is a novella in the Uniform & Lace Romance series that is being published in an anthology this summer as well.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I have five I am reading simultaneously. Watership Down, High Plains Promise, Martian Chronicles, Timeless Passion and Driven.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
No. I was an avid reader as a child though, reading over 100 books each summer. I loved the Nancy Drew series, Satin Slipper and Swept Away series, and of course TinTin and the Little House books. Sky O’Malley and Timeless Passion were two of the first handful of adult romances I read around fourteen years old.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
The easiest way to make me cry is to think of losing my kids, husband, mom… any family really. I also get overwhelmed with emotion when I go to the VA and see our young soldiers missing arms or legs, or waiting in the psych- lounge, to be seen. It truly breaks my heart, the pain I see in some of their eyes and darkness in others.
Shoot, I laugh off and on all day from the silly/stupid stuff my kids do. They both have a great sense of humor and being with them is a real joy. My husband and I are also best friends, and he knows how to make me crack up too. Those that laugh together stay together after all!
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
How about in the future? I’d love to meet my kids’ kids’ kids. I’d love to see what happens to my family long after I’d be gone.
From the past, I’d like to have a conversation with both of my grandparents on my mom and dad’s sides. Now that I’m older, I think it would be an amazing thing to just sit down and have a cup of coffee, or glass of wine with them and learn about who they were.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I love to cook… but eating eclectic, interesting food is one of the reasons I like to travel so much. Who knew ox tail, pickled jellyfish, Puerto Rican pinchos, and Icelandic lamb dogs were so damn good? I also love to read and write, and lately have had fun painting with my daughter.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching
?I am enjoying binge-watching Criminal Minds right now on Netflix.
In your eyes, Indochine, Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, The Long Hot Summer, Dangerous Beauty, Sabrina, La Femme Nikita, Somewhere in Time, The American President, Overboard, Captain Ron, The Long Long Trailer, and Passengers… are my all-time favorite movies.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
I really like listening to Tom Walker right now, but Seven Mary Three and Dave Matthews are always at the top of my list… but you will always catch me turning up Fetty Wap and Post Malone when they’re on the radio.
I LOVE a good coconut milk curry, enchiladas, fried asparagus and crab cakes from the Laughing Clam here in town. My mom makes THE BEST French toast and cheese & sausage balls too!
I like wearing black and royal blue, but my house is in browns with splashes of bright reds and oranges.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
I’d probably focus more on learning the ukulele and guitar, and put more time into playing the piano… something that I’ve recently picked back up since my injury nearly two decades ago.
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
Saying goodbye to my mom/dads/brother/sisters, making love to my husband, and dancing and acting silly with my kids—lavishing them with love and attention.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
❤ Loving Mother, Devoted Wife & Best-friend ❤
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
@tinamaurineauth on Twitter and Instagram