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, my name is Lady Willow and I am 45 years young.
Fiona: Where are you from?
was born in Dayton, Ohio. I lived some of my childhood travelling between Tampa, Florida and Dayton. In my eyes I am from both places.
Fiona: A little about yourself (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I am a mother of 10 beautiful children (6 are biological). I have 7 grandchildren. I have been married for over 14 years (second husband). I dropped out of high school at the age of 16 due to being a teenage mother. I later finished my high school diploma at the age of 26. I attended college at 29 and received my A.A.S. in Hospitality Management and certificate in Restaurant Management a few years later. Two years after that, I received a B.S. in Humanities. I currently have 7 classes remaining to receive my Masters in Human Services.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
Currently, I am writing a book of poetry. I was battling depression and anxiety. After countless failed attempts at recovering from it, I decided to share my experience. I poured my heart out onto the pages. With each word I wrote, I released a bit of my trapped sorrow. The taboo feelings associated with mental illness seemed to hinder my healing. I felt trapped in an endless spiral of nothingness. One day I looked in the mirror and knew I needed change to occur immediately. That’s when I made a decision to do what I did best, express myself through writing.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I knew from a very young age that I had a vivid imagination. I remember writing a poem about money in the 6th grade that caused a roar of laughter in my teacher and classmates. That feeling caused nothing but joy within. From that time until I became an adult I could hear books inside of my mind. It was as though they were dying to come to life! I could look at an object and a life story would emerge. The older I became, the more elaborate the stories in my mind became.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I knew I was a writer for the first time when I brought my English professor to tears over a scene I wrote about. Each week we had to write a paper and share it with the entire class. At first, I was hesitant to share my writing, but after seeing my teachers and classmates reactions, I knew it was my destiny to be a writer. Not only my destiny, but I knew deep down that I was one!
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
When I was 16 years old my first born son passed away. It was so difficult to handle emotionally, physically and psychologically. I was admitted to the hospital for a week on suicide watch. Once released, I made my way home only to realize that I had become a zombie. The once happy little soul had turned into a walking shell of nothingness! I longed to join my baby boy on the other side! I had almost forgotten that I was a mother to another child. The only thing I knew for sure was that I was in total despair. One day my daughter asked when was the baby coming home and I lost myself in my world of tears. I could not answer her because I did not know myself! The only solution I had was to forget that he existed! I dusted myself off and moved on with my life, well if you could call it that! I was married to my first husband two years later. We had four more children after my baby left this world. After years of my children asking about their brother, I decided to call the hospital and ask some questions I could not before. The hospital told me that my baby was in Calvary Cemetery. I kept the information trapped inside for a year. I finally decided to call the cemetery and ask them to mark his grave for me. It was pure torture to pull up to the tiniest site there. Pinwheels played in the wind of the lifeless playground! I fell to my knees and had a supernatural experience! I knew I had to write about it.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
The title came about because I wanted to know if my son was safe. I wanted to know if he thought about me. I wanted to know if he knew I was his mother. I wanted to know if he felt my pain. Thus inspiring the title, I Need To Hear from You.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I write in different genres because I wanted to reach a larger audience. I also use the word Johnson in every book that I write past, present or future. The only challenges I think may be an issue is writing books that are too many pages. I know a lot of people hate reading. That is why I write short stories. I want those people to enjoy what I write. The complaints that I receive are usually that my books are too short and they wanted more. I guess that can be seen as a compliment.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
I would say 90% of the book is real. I wrote in the masculine, feminine and the voice that I thought my son would have. For me as a female to share my male side would seem a bit out of this world, but it was how I wanted to express my experience! This book is based on the death of my child and how I responded to it. It shows my long walk on the healing road.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
The only travelling I did was to the library to have a quiet place to write.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
I came up with the scenario of my book cover. I aided the help of a photographer that I have used on another book. I use the same model as well. In the book it mentions leaves and wind as a way to release and recover, so that inspired the book cover.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
That it is alright to grieve and heal on your own terms. Take your time! Slow and steady wins the race. It is alright to have various emotions rather people understand it or not.
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 would have to say myself because I know the work I am putting together. I have pushed myself out of my comfort zone. I know it’s going to impress myself and my fans once I am finished.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
My Professors. They have always encouraged me to be the best writer I could be. I am truly grateful for that.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Not at all. It is my passion and my art. I think if it became a career I would resent the process. It would become a chore, not my fun stress reliever.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No. I express my thoughts to promote my own healing. To change anything would have caused my path to be different from its current direction.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
That I am stronger than I give myself credit for.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
My youngest daughter Tyanne. She has been through the same pain. I know her emotions would come from losing her son. Each tear she dropped would be true and raw.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Be yourself. Write what is inside of your heart. If no one is interested in your work that is their loss. Have fun. Do not be too strict on your expression. Take breaks. Walk away when needed.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Try to have an open mind on how to heal. This book is just a small piece of the greater scale on healing.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Are You There God? It’s Me Margeret.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
What makes me laugh is telling myself corny jokes. What makes me cry is knowing that I want to save the world, but I cannot!
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
I would like to meet the innocent part of myself that never lived! I would like to know how she would have lived in peace. I would like to hug her. I would like to know how she would explain love to me. I would like to know where did she hide to stay safe. Lastly, I would like to know do she think that I can ever have a healing that she only knows!
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I love earthing (walking barefoot in nature), reading, writing, listening to music, bookstores and painting.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I love horror movies, who dunnits, documentaries, Love stories and romantic comedies.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
My favorite foods are pinto beans and rice. my favorite color is black! My favorite music is heavy metals, classical, R & B, light rock and chamber music.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
I want to raise rabbits. I am afraid of them, but I will give it a try. :’)
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
I would get a variety of foods and movies and spend it laughing, eating and playing with my husband, children and grandchildren.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
She loved harder than anyone ever could!
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
I am Ladywillow Ty’Shawn on Instagram. Willow Ty’Shawn Munchkin Cooper on Facebook and Tierra Cooper on You Tube.