Discussing 'Murder at Mothers' with Maighread MacKay...
A few years back I had the pleasure of working quite closely with Margaret Hefferman – aka
Maighread MacKay - during the release of her first novel, Stone Cottage, which incidentally I loved. I’m thrilled to welcome her back again on the first day of her blog tour, on the release of her latest novel, Murder at Mothers.
What is it that you personally like to read, and do you find yourself writing in this field - only?
I have an eclectic taste in reading. Mysteries, some chic lit, historical fiction, - the Harry Potter series, C.S. Lewis, Patricia Rice, Dan Brown, Jayne Anne Krentz etc. I love a good book where you can visualize what's happening. You become part of the story. With my trusty library card, I love to scour the shelves for new authors. As per my reading, I like to write different styles so that every book I write isn't the same as the previous one.
What is it that you’ve learned from your writing?
How to take rejection, I suppose. Tee hee. It's daunting to be an Author and have the work you may have spent years in writing, launched into the world only to be criticized and rejected by others. It hurts. Kudos to anyone who attempts it.
How has writing affected your life?
Writing has led me to a new circle of friends. I belong to the Writer's Community of Durham Region (WCDR) which is an organization of writers, editors, publishers and an all-around group of wonderful people dedicated to the art of writing. We have monthly breakfasts and lots of activities for writers. There are open mic nights where you can read your work; classes on writing; retreats which are held not only here in Canada, but around the world; critique groups and many other activities all connected with the writing art. I have made many new friends who are very dear to me.
Reading is so important as a writer, but do you find being a scribe limits and ruins your enjoyment of reading? If so, how have you gotten around it?
Being a writer can limit my enjoyment of reading for pleasure, but if I find a new (to me) novelist whose work is excellent, it's like finding a treasure. I overlook some spelling mistakes because no matter how many eyes have seen your manuscript, sometimes errors still manage to creep through. For example: the word should be ‘it’ and you have typed ‘if’... Those kinds of errors are very hard to spot, but there are too many good books out there to waste time on one that’s badly written. If the work is sloppy, hard to follow, no plot or just plain bad writing, I’ll put it down and move on to the next book in my ‘To Be Read’ pile.
Have you ever had writer’s block and, if so, how have you overcome it?
Yes, I have had writer's block. I like to think of it as ‘mulling’ time. When I come to a part in the story where I can't go any further, I might put the story on the back burner and let it simmer while I move on to other writings, or perhaps I'll spend time marketing what I've already written. Then again maybe I'll skip the part I'm stuck on and write other scenes farther down in the book to just keep going. On occasion, I’ll take a break completely and go out for a walk, just to clear my mind. If all else fails, I discard what I've done and start a new piece. If the writing is crap, it's okay to let it go. After all, not every piece of writing should see the light of day!
These questions have led me on a journey of investigating Christian Mysticism, Yogic Spirituality, Native Theology, Wicca, Celtic Shamanism, Quantum Physics, the Realm of the Fae and many other related topics.
Using my studies to draw on, I weave tales of Visionary Fiction for both children and adults. Whether nine or ninety, I hope readers will join me in exploring alternate paradigms about life and the after-life experience.
A killer lurks at the Bancroft estate and the Matriarch, Martha Bancroft is murdered. Royally pissed, she hangs around to see what happened. When she doesn’t go immediately to the light, a member of her soul group, shows up from the other side. Gladys is adamant Martha needs to come with her, but Martha has no intention of going anywhere until she helps Detective Ian “Mac” MacKellar and Coroner Dr. Cecilia “Cissy” Walsh find the murderer. Gladys joins Martha and the two set out on their quest.
Blurb - CHAPTER 1:
“Odd. It’s the third peculiar incident that’s happened lately. Nothing you could put your finger on, but unnerving.”
“The small fire in the tack room. Then the fence coming down. Now this. Could be coincidences, I suppose.”
“Oh, those incidents. What are you thinking?”
“It’s all stuff which could have an innocent cause, but I'm uneasy. Happened after those land developers came nosing around. They wouldn’t do anything to try and force me to sell, would they? Think I’m being paranoid?”
“Gran, you are the least paranoid person I know. I’ll poke around. See what I can find. May be nothing, but if things don’t feel right to you, it’s worth investigating.”
“Do you think we should tell the police?”
“Not yet. We don’t have anything to tell them. Only some vague suspicions.”
“Ok, but be careful. Got an itch between my shoulder blades and I don’t like it.”
This is a wonderful light weave of mystery, family drama, metaphysical and psychic threads ...with a dark strand of greed added to the tapestry. I loved it.