Hello Dear Reader,
Today we have a special treat. One of my very good writer buddies, Margie Miklas, has dropped by to share some words with us about her travel writing journey that is now evolving into a fiction writer’s journey. I am so excited to hear more from this dynamic woman who does not seem to require sleep, food or anything the rest of us mortal need to stay invigorated! 🙂
I have known Margie for over a year and she’s a perfectionist, a workaholic and an incredible networker who finds friends and relationships online via social media. I admire her grace, her patience and her resilience. Without further ado, I’d like you to say a warm welcome to my friend and a great traveler — Margie Miklas!
Margie, tell us about yourself.
Thank you for this opportunity, Rochelle. It is an honor. I am a recently retired critical-care nurse who loves to travel. I have a passion for Italy and can never seem to get enough of it. I enjoy writing about my favorite travel destination and sharing my experiences. My two published books are non-fiction memoirs detailing my experiences in Italy. Readers feel that they are traveling with me since they are written in a journal format.
I am so excited about your travel memoirs I want everyone to know where they can find you right up front! Where can readers find you and your books?
I am on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google +. The links are:
Amazon Links: http://www.amazon.com/Margie-Miklas/e/B0094YY3LA
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/margie-miklas
How long have you been writing?
I have been writing for the past 4 years. Originally I started writing for an online Italian-American newspaper and for some sites online. Then, I started my blog when I went to Italy for 3 months, and after that I wrote my first book.
Have you developed a specific writing style?
I write in conversational style, as if I am talking to someone sitting next to me, at least in my first two books, which are in first person, present tense. I am currently working on my first novel, and I am writing in third person with multiple points of view, so this is quite a different experience for me as a writer.
Tell us about your latest work. Can you share a little of it with us (blurb)?
My WIP is a novel, a psychological thriller set in a hospital. After only a year, critical-care nurse Allison Jamison becomes disillusioned by hospital politics and corrupt practices. Does she expose the wrongdoers and risk losing her job? An element of evil lurks just beneath the surface and around corners in a place typically known to save lives.
What do you love about independent publishing?
I like the control I have and the ability to make changes when needed.
What genre of books do you read, or do you stick with the genre you write in?
I enjoy intrigue, courtroom drama, biography, and humor. Recently I have read Christian fiction and paranormal sci-fi, and surprisingly enjoyed both. Opening one’s mind to reading other genres is a good thing I have found.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I am writing a novel set in a hospital because I wanted to write about things that would surprise and even shock most non-medical readers. By writing fiction, I can make the story fun as opposed to writing a documentary-style book.
What are your goals as a writer?
My goals are to write interesting and compelling stories that make the readers feel as if they are immersed in the story, and waiting for more.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
I hope as an author with a number of published books. I hope I am still traveling and writing travel books as well as fiction.
Do you have any advice for other writers?
I have learned that writing is only part of the process and that revising, rewriting, and editing take longer than writing the first draft. It is important to have a writing schedule with a goal in mind, but rushing just to finish is never a good idea.
What do you do to unwind and relax?
That’s an easy one. I always feel the most relaxed at the beach, listening to the soothing sounds of the ocean waves.
Was there one particular travel moment that changed you, or affected your writing?
I think it may have been when I found the house of my Sicilian grandfather. The feeling of being there was overwhelming and I was aware of that feeling in a way that I wanted to remember forever. As a result, I try to write about my feelings when I am writing memoir.
What are your ‘must-have’ items that you carry with you on every trip you take?
I have to travel with a smartphone, my iPad, camera, chargers and an extra battery. I have come to rely on these electronic necessities to communicate while traveling.
Are there any travel tips that you would like to share?
I think the main thing to remember is that traveling to another place is not only fun but a chance to learn something. Don’t expect things to be like they are at home. Embrace the differences of another culture, another place, another people. Only then will you truly enjoy the experience.
Thank you again Rochelle, for this honor. I have enjoyed it immensely.
Margie — thank you for stopping by! I appreciate it and I’m sure my readers do as well!