BOOK FUN MAGAZINE - FREE READ

NORA INTERVIEWS MICHELLE GRIEP


1. You had a great knowledge of the Medieval times. Is this a time period that you enjoy and have studied before or one that just interested you and you wanted to get to know more about it?

I love everything about the medieval era, which is slightly ironic and/or psychotic being that I’m such a sissy girl. Let’s just say that when I go camping, it’s with rugs, candles, perfume, and requires lots of electricity and running water. Perhaps I enjoy this period because it’s so foreign to me. Nah. Scratch that. It’s definitely the big, beefy knights and all the gallant chivalry their image evokes. Actually, I have studied/read a great deal about the Dark Ages particularly for England and Norway.

2. I thought it was quite fascinating the dialogue that you had between Jessica and Colwyn. It was fascinating how she talked and what he interpreted from it. How did you develop this technique? It really worked in the story.





Yikes. Dare I admit this out loud? Why not. My mom’s certainly told plenty of people. When I was a kid, I spent my time not outside playing Kick the Can with the neighborhood ragamuffins. Nope. I’d sit for hours under the dining room table talking with Daniel Boone. At one point my mom was so concerned that she asked the pediatrician if I needed help. He assured her I simply had quite an imagination. All that to say, I hear voices in my head. Doesn’t every writer?

**OH, The Adventures you must have had!:D**

3. What are you working on now? Can you give us a sneak peek into your work?

I’d love to! Currently I've veered off the time-travel path to pursue a cozy mystery that I'm writing with a buddy. Here's a teaser: Murder in Paradise whips life into a froth. Zula and Fern Hopkins, sisters-in-law, grudging roommates, and sometimes friends reside in Sunset Paradise retirement community. Their escapades land them in hot water when they attempt to sniff out a murderer. The added ingredient of a handsome, young detective who'd make a fine main-dish for their niece spices up the action even more.

4. What made you pick the Christian Fiction genre to write about? I loved how you weaved the message into the story. Was that hard for you to do?

I’m guessing that no matter what genre I write, a Christian message will come through loud and clear. It’s who I am. The world of fiction is where I take what I know of God from His word and explore it in what ifs and maybes. I meditate with pen and ink on paper in the realm of fiction. No, not hard. Necessary.

5. Since being published, what has been the surprising thing about being an author so far?

Probably all the time it takes to do blogs, interviews, marketing, etc. I’m not really a people person, so those kinds of things are draining. I’d much rather be squirreled away writing some new adventure.

6. Some writers say that they plot out the story step-by-step and others say that they write by the seat of their pants. Which type of writer are you?

Uhh, a step-pants-stepper? I start by figuring out where I want the story to begin, then where I want it to end, and usually don’t plan the in-between part. Makes it oh so much more entertaining for me as a writer if I sit down and let the characters run the show. I do, however, know my characters inside and out.

7. When you want to relax what authors do you read? What authors really inspire you?

Disclaimer: This is in random order and by no means a comprehensive list.

- Ginger Garrett has a way with phrases and imagery that makes me sit back and go, “Wow. I wish I could write like that.”




- Lisa T. Bergren tells a spankin’ good tale.





- MaryLu Tyndall almost always has pirates or piratey-type riff-raff in her stories. What’s not to love about pirates?





- Jessica Dotta. Don’t look for her on bookshelves yet. She’s pre-published but weaves her words into quite a tapestry.





- Julie Klaasen ties in so much history in an entertaining fashion.





- Michael Crichton teaches me what a page-turner ought to be.









- Carl Sandburg and John Stienbeck for their gritty, tell-it-like-it-is realness.













- The old masters…,Brontë,Dickens,The Bard, Austen…Ahhh.

8. How much of you is in this story? Did this make it easier or harder to write?

I am Jess. Come on. If I’m going to write about a heroine, she’s going to me. How many other books do I get to star in? Whoa…that sounds a little prideful. Okay, a lot prideful, but it did make it easier to write.

9. Did you have much say so in the cover of your book? What was the working title to this story?

I’ve always had this great fear that when I did get published, what if the cover was stupid? I mean really stupid. I’m talking Fabio stupid. So, before I even signed the contract, I asked if my publisher would let me have some kind of say in the final cover. Black Lyon has been wonderful. They sent me about 5 different mock-up covers for me to choose from, and they were all different. I combined elements of each and even got feedback from some of my writer buddies to give as suggestions. I’m very pleased with the way it turned out.

The working title of the story was Jessica’s Journey. Bland, yes, but workable. When I sent it out as a proposal, I changed it to Storm, which sounds a bit more exciting and much less alliterate. My editor, however, informed me that there’s a slew of other books out there with the title of Storm and that I’d get lost in the crowd. In the end, Gallimore became the title because if its uniqueness and that it plays such an important role in the story.

10. I read you are a homeschooling mother – when did you find the time to write? Do you feel that your homeschooling situation helped you in your writing or made it more difficult?

I have one night a week blocked off for writing. I leave the house at 4:30, usually to Panera, and come back 9’ish. That’s when I write rough draft copy. Then throughout the week I work on editing or other writing projects (devotionals, articles, etc.) as time allows. Currently, I’m sitting waiting for my daughter to finish her jazz ensemble practice as I write this.

I think homeschooling both helped and hindered the writing process. It helped in respect to research and flexibility. “Hey kids, guess what, we’re studying the Middle Ages again this year!” And with such a flexible schedule, I can run to the library or write in-between lessons.

It hindered my time because educating my children takes priority over my writing, and to educate well involves time for preparation, paperwork, teaching, scoring, yada, yada, yada.


QUESTIONS YOU WANTED TO ASK MICHELLE BUT WERE AFRAID TO SO I DID :D

1. What was the last movie you saw at the theatre? Did you get a snack while at the theatre? If so what is your favorite snack to eat while watching a movie?










I just saw “Inkheart” last weekend. Two thumbs up! What author doesn’t dream of meeting their own characters or entering their own setting? And as usual, I got a large tub of popcorn dripping with butter and a Coke. Warning: do NOT ever look up how many calories are in one of those babies. I like to get to the theater early and chow down until the movie starts, then I’m pretty much done.

2. If you had $200.00 in your pocket and had to spend it what would you spend it on?

I know, I know…I should probably house a homeless person or feed a starving kid in China, but doggone if I wouldn’t haul my little fanny over to the spa and get a dye job and a massage. Wow. Did I just blow my Christian witness or what?

3. If you had to be on a TV “Reality” show, which one would you pick? Why?

This is probably going to reveal just what a freak I am, but uh, excessive throat clearing, I don’t have a TV. I don’t know what the current reality shows are. I do, however, own a DVD player and watched a historical reality show that was pretty sweet. “Manor House” is about a well-to-do British family and their servants. I’d like to be one of the aristocrats in that show.

4. If you had 48 hours to interview and hang out with any TWO people alive or dead in the history of the world who would that be and what would you do? What would you ask them?



First off is a no-brainer. Jesus. Just to see Him face to face, look Him in the eye…well…I’m speechless simply thinking about that.





Second choice would be my dad and we’d definitely eat tamales. He loved ‘em (me too). He died when I was fifteen, after years in and out of the hospital. I don’t know where he stood on the grounds of faith, so I’d have a gazillion questions to ask him about that. Was he a believer? If so, why didn’t he incorporate that into our family?

5. If you had all the time in the world and just as much money what would you do and why?

Drat. My selfishness slip is definitely going to show again. I would go to England. I’m an Anglophile at heart and I have no idea why. I love the country. I love the people. I love the culture. And I especially love castles. Granted, there are other castles in the world that equal or perhaps even exceed the grandeur of an English fortress, but it is an English castle that captures my affections. Go figure.

6. You have just found a magic lamp and the genie has granted you three wishes. What would those three wishes be?


Wish #1: Salvation for my prodigal.





Wish #2: That my husband would chew gum with his mouth closed.



Wish #3: That my compassion for lost souls would be increased.





7. If you were in a life threatening situation and were looking for someone to save your life who would you pick? Why? (this could be a superhero cartoon or movies or anyone else you can think of)

Being that Jesus has already saved my sorry behind and my husband would be a given, I’ll go the literary route and pick King Arthur. Why? Romantic, strong, selfless, got the whole castle thing going on, and he’s a king. Whew. Is it hot in here?

8. Is there a favorite board game or games that you loved playing as a child and still do?


I love the game of Life. There’s just something special about toodling that little car around the board.

9. What is your favorite Family Time that you have had with your kids? What made it so special?


I am fortunate enough to have a friend who owns a Time Share and willingly shares it with us. That made for some cheap family vacations. We’d pick the out of the way places no one wants to go to and find the cheesiest tourist traps or strange sights to visit. Factory tours are always a biggie. In fact, if you’re ever in the Ozarks, check out the shiitake mushroom tour.

10. What are your two favorite places to shop? Why?


Shopping’s my favorite. Period. But if I’m forced to pick two…does Mall of America count? I’m guessing not. Okay, I’ll play nice.





Number one would be Bath and Body Works. A plethora of smells and dang cheap if you’ve got a coupon or three.



Second is Gordman’s. We don’t have one in Minnesota, which is probably a very good thing for my credit line. I like their clothes and they’ve got a spankin’ housewares department as well.













**Michelle,I know your holding out on us about your FAVORIATE place to shop. I think you'll have to come clean after this interview,they might want to even question you about your last visit, I know I do. You were caught on film by Walmart security having way too much fun there. I'm sure you'll be creative and explain to them that you were doing research for your next book..... These pictures show you are having a blast discovering the many things you love about Walmart. I think I might want to tag along next time you visit the Big "W"**












THANKS MICHELLE for being a GREAT sport,making us laugh and have a good time with you today. I can't wait to read your next adventure story,I hear it's about time travel and Vikings. I'm there. You'll have to come back so we can learn some other places you were caught on security film. Ha! Ha!

Blessings on your writing friend.
Until Next Time!
Nora :D

15 comments:

  1. What a fun interview! I'm glad to see others that love scent stores and salons. I prefer the pedicure--a massage and bath and makeover rolled into one and cheaper than some services!
    Thanks, Mihcelle, for a fun interview! Nora, I love your visuals!

    Patti

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  2. Nora, you're the star of this interview. All the creative photos and thought you put into this is stunning. Excellent job ol' girl! Now if I could just pay you what you're worth...

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  3. Loved this interview. Great questions, Nora, and all the photos are a nice touch. Reading this makes me proud to call Michelle my best friend (even though we've only met a couple of times). Loved the, "Hey, kids, guess what, we're studying the Middle Ages again!" They should all be experts on the subject. Any of them budding authors? Just think of the multi-volume series you could do.

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  4. Michelle, for not being a people person, you sure are a lot of fun! Loved the interview!

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  5. Great interview Nora and Michelle! I especially liked the part where Michelle mentions how wonderful my writing is! LOL But really, Michelle is such an awesome person. I met her last year at ACFW and that made the whole trip worth it. Besides, we have much in common I see from this interview. Popcorn dripping with butter, castles, not people-persons, and a strong love for Jesus.
    Thanks for the interview!

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  6. Awesome interview, dear critter!! (and Nora, that was great!) Daniel Boone, huh? That just explains soooo much ... ;-)

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  7. This was such a delightful interview. Not into knights in shining armor, but I know many readers are so may it sell a blessing full.

    I love the sounds of the mystery she has coming our way about the SIL's and their detective work...LOLOL...love it.

    Gayla Collins
    gayla.c@bresnan.net

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  8. You know Michelle's head is going to swell if we keep this up. Just ask Krazy Klepfer. :D

    And I know what she was doing in that Walmart and I'll tell for the right amount.

    Muwahahaha.

    Fun interview, btw. ;)

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  9. Great interview! I enjoyed that. Loved the wishes. Those were nice.

    And hey, next time you're at the store some of us prefer not to enter, pick up some yarn for me, will ya? I'm almost finished with my current knitting projects and need some decent yarn.

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  10. Ha and Ha, Ladies. Nice job on the picture gathering and question asking, Nora. Ane, and the others who may worry about Michelle's head going all bubbly and out of control,I'll be seeing Michelle soon and I know how to take care of attitude. The girl may have a small fixation with weapons, but I've seen her laughing til she cried and she's pretty helpless. Watch out, Michelle.

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  11. Great interview Nora. I love the new button for your page. It is beautiful.

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  12. Loved this interview and what a hoot Michelle seems to be. Loved her answers to your questions Nora.

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  13. Love the hammed up Walmart pics. Gallimore was a great book, too!

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  14. Wow, everyone! I'm definitely feeling the love. Thanks for your great comments...warms the cockles of my heart. Now if I could just figure out what cockles are exactly. Sounds like something that would stick to the bottom of a boat. No, that's barnacles. Hmmm, something more poutryish? But I digress - THANKS!

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