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, thank you for the invitation! My name is Jocie McKade and I am somewhere between legally old enough to drink, and not old enough to retire!
Fiona: Where are you from?
A small town in Ohio, USA. If you blink, you miss it! You’ve heard of those map dot towns? That’s is where I’m from.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I have a, well, a diverse background. I’ve lived in several states, and attended a local community college. I married a remarkable man who can fix anything. We have two daughters, and inherited two great son-in-laws and we now are the proud grandparents of, gulp, five grand-kids.
That was the official bio.
Now, for the truth. I live on Dust Bunny Farm, the name is self-explanatory. I often laugh out loud at the most inappropriate moments. I can find humor in nearly every situation, and I don’t take life all that seriously. I’ve been known to jump on stage and sing karaoke without ever having taken a sip of liquor, I am the person who pushes all the buttons on those holiday ornaments so they make annoying noise in unison and then I’ll turn around and blame it on one of my kids.
I am the person at the traffic light next to you singing to the top of my lungs and playing ‘air’ drums.
I prefer tea to coffee, and carbs to sweets.
I can write a story about anything. One of the first articles I ever sold was about the personality of an apron. I write stories that tend to be happy, because the world need less conflict and more happiness, and gee, we all need to laugh at ourselves a lot more often.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I am just now finishing up the fourth book in my Mayson-Dickson mystery series. My family were all from the Southern U.S. and I was born in the North, so the series evolved from that background. It is a cozy mystery series featuring twin sisters who until the death of their parents didn’t realize the other existed. One is from Boston, Mass., and the other is from small-town Alabama. They are absolute opposites, but work together to solve mysteries and find out the truth about their parents.
Here’s a blurb:
Imagine being told you have a twin sister and that your entire life has been a lie. Then an assassins bullet kills the only person who knows everyone’s secrets. Emme Mayson and Jackie Dickson started a private investigation firm to learn the truth.
What they didn’t count on was the dead bodies that keep appearing. Northern Logic and Southern Charm, Mayson-Dickson
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
Oh my, I believe I wrote my first story around the age of five. I could read well before attending school, and I always had a book in my hand. The library was my “Disneyland” as a kid. I sold my first piece of writing to a teen magazine when I was seventeen and have been writing in some form ever since.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When I received a check that could actually pay my mortgage — at least for one month! LOL Then, when I received a review that someone had laughed while reading my words…..that was truly amazing.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
My first book series is called The Three Baers, a romantic comedy series set in the state of Wyoming. Inspiration struck as we were traveling on vacation through the state and my mind wandered, and my muse decided to get involved and let me tell you, she is weird!
Muse: “Jocie, what do you think would happen if one of those hunky beef ranching cowboys out there fell in love with a vegetarian Goth punk-rock singer?”
Jocie: “What would a punk rocker being doing in the wilds of Wyoming? Wait, vegetarian?”
Muse: “There are kids in Wyoming that like music other than country music. Duh.”
Jocie: “Ya, but,
Muse: “What if she gets stranded in Wyoming? What if the cowboy doesn’t really like the way she looks, and then he gets to know the woman behind the Goth. You know, we Goth types are very misunderstood.”
Jocie: “Wait, you’re my muse. I don’t have a Goth bone in my body.”
Muse: “So, you think. (evil laugh)
And a book series was born. There are four books total and it was so much fun to write.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
I knew I wanted three brothers in the series, and the first heroine in the series was a blonde under all her Goth dye, so my muse again, weirdo, thought about Goldilocks and the Three Bears….and I thought I was quite clever playing off that title.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
Style is a relative term. I’m not sure my writing has a defined style. I love comedy and romantic comedy. Writing comedy is far different from comedy in the movies. On film, actors/writers can add an eye-roll, a strange look, a prat-fall for comic effect.
Writing doesn’t have that luxury. What I think is hilarious in my head, doesn’t always come across as funny to a reader. I’ve written across many genre’s and I think comedy is probably the most difficult thing to write. I have re-written many scenes trying to ensure they read as funny as I see them in my mind’s eye.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Funny you should ask…..nearly all of my books are based on my experiences at some level. Although my characters had me to write them out of some bad situations, lucky people. And I can think for weeks on how a perfect comeback link to a sarcastic character. In real life, I’m left standing there wishing I could think of something equally as sarcastic in reply!
In The Three Baers book one Baer Truth, the heroine Abby is a city-girl who knows nothing of ranch life. While I’d been on farms here and there, I was a lot like Abby. I married Mr. Farmer and a few of the mishaps that Abby has were taken directly from my life. So, when you read the book, you will wonder how I’m still alive, particularly after the tractor goes into the pond……
Mayson-Dickson touches on my Southern and Northern heritage and the regional differences in the U.S. The characters are a bit exaggerated, but it is fun to see the differences.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I don’t have to travel, but I sure like too! Most of the time, I’ve worked a full-time job while writing, so traveling just for the story has not been an option. I Google – a lot! I certainly hope no ‘agency’ ever confiscates my computer….I would be so doomed.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I never really thought of my books as being bearers of any kind of message, but if they do, it is that humans no matter where we are from aren’t all that different. We all want to be happy, to be loved, to feel safe, to have a career that makes us happy, to raise our children to be healthy, happy adults. Quite frequently humans tend to see the differences in each other instead of the commonalities.
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?
So many!! There is no way to pick ONE favorite. The latest one I’ve enjoyed is Kim Foster. She writes a fun mystery series about an agency of cat burglars.
A few of my favorites would be Craig Johnson who writes the Longmire series. His capacity to make you feel what the characters are feeling is remarkable. Greg Isles is a master of place and suspense. Janet Evanovich for laugh out loud reads, Tess Gerritsen for character word play, and the list goes on.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I’m certainly trying! Now, if the publishing world would just jump on board with that!! While I work a job, I’ve written as a second income for many years. I write for magazines, blogs, books, as well, as advertising, marketing, and a few tech manuals.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I do hire editors, but typos and grammar mistakes still make it through, and I truly wish I could make all those go away. This however, is true of all books.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Yes, it’s in my latest series I very much wish I’d kept better notes on my characters. I’ve had to reference previous books to find out what the heck I did with them in the last book! Or where I left them. Thank goodness for beta readers. In Southern Charm, the third book in the Mayson-Dickson series, the ending came into my brain in such a rush, I completely forgot I’d left a main character dangling off a roof near an assassin.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
I’d like to host the auditions myself and pick out the lead! Cowboys….just sayin’.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Write, write, write. Write for you, write the story you want to read.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Thank you. Seriously, thank you. It truly humbles me that anyone would take their hard-earned money and use it to purchase my book. I can’t tell you how truly grateful I am for readers.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I also write for many magazines and right now, I’m doing research for an article on WWI flying aces, so I’m reading a dozen reference books about WWI.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Yes, in fact, I still have it. My school went on a field trip to a farm with loads of baby animals. They also had a small store. While the other kids were buying candy, I bought a book about the farm. I still have that book.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Like books, there are so many people that I’d love to have dinner and conversations with; Thomas Jefferson, Amelia Earhart, King Arthur, Joan of Arc……ya, I’d have to have this dinner catered. LOL
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I love gardening, travel, and I am the family genealogist. Nope, no one famous, but some very interesting people.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I am a sucker for a thriller movie.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
Anything containing carbs! I’ve never met a color I didn’t like at some level, and for music I’ll give most anything a listen, but do like rock, country, and jazz.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
That would be dismal. My other love is travel, so if I couldn’t write, I would travel and make documentaries in the vein of National Geographic.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
I don’t want a headstone. My idea is to be vaporized by one of those lasers from Star Trek. Then the land that was being used for a cemetery could become a park, playground or community garden. Oh, they could name a new tomato after me!
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
You can visit my website at www.jociemckade.com
I’m also on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/JocieMcKadeBooks/
And I post book details on my Pinterest page along with all those things I’m going to make someday! https://www.pinterest.com/jociemckade9/
I also send out a monthly newsletter that contains updates, sales, and often chances to win books from myself or other authors. https://www.jociemckade.com/contact
Amazon Authors page USA https://www.amazon.com/Jocie-McKade/e/B00FQY8WE6/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1