Yay! The time is finally here. I get to interview Marsha A. Moore, my fellow writing critique partner and author of Heritage Avenged: Enchanted Bookstore Legend Two.
Tell us, who is Marsha A. Moore?
It’s great to be here today. Thanks lots for taking time to interview me.
I write of fantasy romance. I’m basically a creative sort who can entertain myself for weeks with projects—writing, painting, drawing. I’ve been a yoga enthusiast for over a decade and that spiritual quest helps me explore the mystical side of fantasy. I’ve lived most of my life in the Midwest, Ohio and Indiana, but three years ago my husband and I moved to Tampa. The change has been a wonderful adventure. I love being outdoors any day I choose, whether I’m kayaking, hiking, or cycling. I love the water and aspire to be a beach bum. I write chapters for my book on our dock or at the beach. Inspiration from nature fuels my writing.
Did you always want to be a writer?
As early as I can remember I’ve always been driven by creativity. I always loved to write, but didn’t expect to be a writer. In college, I wanted to pursue Literature and Fine Art, but my parents encouraged me to study Biology, so I might eventually find a reliable job. That was fine, since I liked that subject also. My compromise—a Biology major and an English minor. I wrote essays as a fun break from my full load of Science. Yes, weird that I thought writing essays was fun…still do!
The old saying for writers is, ‘write what you know.’ How does the genre of fantasy fit into that standard?
My fantasy novels are just real life dressed up with magic and adventure. Adding the fancy fantasy toppings lets me run with my vivid imagination, which seems to need regular exercise. I’d feel confined with just reality alone to write about.
What is your inspiration for the Enchanted Bookstore Series?
It’s basically a fantasy lover’s dream, being able to step into a favorite book as a character. I know my initial inspiration came after watching the recent Tim Burton Alice in Wonderland movie. From that, I wanted to work with parallel worlds and have a heroine who must save the fantasy world from danger. But, I wanted it to be more adult in order to deal with more complex feelings. Beyond that, I just see fantasy stories all around me. It comes naturally.
What is the process in writing a fantasy series? Do you have every story already mapped out? Do you have an outline? How does it work?
My process begins with a setting I find interesting, somewhere I’d like to spend some time. In writing fantasy, world-building is everything. Then, I create the main characters, appearance and personality. From there, how they will become involved goes hand-in-hand with developing the plot. I do outline a lot, since there are many interwoven subplots in this series. This series is epic in scope, and details would get lost if I didn’t plan. Outside of the key features on the outline, I do allow the in-between progress in each chapter to flow freely, which I enjoy a lot. Some of the most imaginative bits arise that way.
Is it difficult tying storylines together from one book in the series to another?
It’s more a matter of organization than difficulty. I have files and files of notes to help me keep the details consistent.
Is there anything specific you do to get your creative juices flowing?
If I need to plan scenes, I like to go kayaking. Luckily, I’m in Tampa and can kayak year round. My mind drifts and I always come back with what I need and no alligators! If I’m just struggling to get going with a scene that is already well-planned, I generally reread the previous chapter and that’s enough to motivate me. My muse is pretty cooperative. She only complains if I’m too busy to write.
Other than your own, name one favorite fantasy novel from your past, and one from the present.
I loved Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift. The symbolism is amazing; the more you read, the more layers you find. Inspired by that, I like to hide things in my stories.
From the present, picking one book is too hard. The Harry Potter series is one of my all-time favorites. Again, the layering of hidden plots, which spin to completion later in the series, really captures my imagination. The last few books that really pulled me in were Natasha Mostert’s Season of the Witch and Erin Morgenstern’s Night Circus. In both of those, magic caused mental effects for both the giver and receiver. I enjoy the complexity of that theme and employ it myself in a very different way. My heroine, Lyra, must learn to mentally control her vast inherited powers as the new Scribe. That is something she struggles to master through the series.
Lori, thanks lots for inviting me to be here today! You asked some fun questions.
Thank you Marsha, for taking the time to answer my questions, and for sharing your magical fantasy romance with us.
Check out Marsha’s novel, and her beautiful self-created cover art below. Click on art for link to the book.
Lyra McCauley receives an alarming letter from the coroner who evaluated her deceased aunt, originally thought to have died of cancer. The news causes Lyra to take leave from her job and travel from sunny Tampa to the frozen island community in northern Michigan. Questioning whether Dragonspeir magic was responsible for her aunt’s death, she resolves to learn the truth and accepts the Imperial Dragon’s appointment into the Alliance sorcery training.
Additionally, becoming proficient in magic craft is the only way she can bridge the gap between her mortal human world and her lover’s. Cullen, a 220-year-old wizard, is dependent upon his Dragonspeir magic for immortality. He is her only family now; she cannot lose him.
Evil forces block her and try to steal her inherited scribal aura. Riding a stealth dragon, a cloaked rider pursues Lyra. Both the Alliance and Dark Realm alchemists lay tricks and traps. Her aura equals that of the first and most powerful Scribe, but will Lyra’s novice training allow her to discover the truth? Will she be able to be with Cullen, or will the Dark Realm keep them apart?
The first book in the series is here: Seeking a Scribe: Enchanted Bookstore Legend Book One
Fantasy Faction staff page: http://fantasy-faction.com/staff-members?uid=38
Goodreads author page http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4412258.Marsha_A_Moore