Monday, June 9, 2014

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR MARCHA FOX

Marcha Fox - Author

Today I'm interviewing Marcha Fox, author and professional astrologer. Pretty awesome, right?


1.   Tell me a little about yourself.
I’m a science fiction fan and author who has spent my life gathering the tools I need to qualify as a good writer.  I’ve wanted to write books for as long as I can remember and now that I’m retired after spending a 20+ year career working at NASA in Houston, Texas I can make that my primary focus. 

However, I am interested in so many different subjects that I typically have several projects either in-work or on my to-do list at any given time.  I’m one of those people who’d rather be busy than bored so typically have way too many things going on at any given time.  I live in a rural area of the Texas Hill Country, have two Bengal cats, six grown children and a bunch of grandchildren.

2.    What books have you written? What genre are they in?
I have written the first three books of the Star Trails Tetralogy and hope to finish the fourth and final volume this year.  Their titles are “Beyond the Hidden Sky,” “A Dark of Endless Days,” and “A Psilent Place Below.”  They are aimed at young adults but also complex enough to satisfy adult readers.  I have also written some nonfiction books, mostly related to my other career as a professional astrologer, a somewhat unusual pursuit, I admit, for someone with a degree in physics. 

3.    Why did you become an author? What led you down this career path? 
I have wanted to be a writer all my life.  It was never a conscious decision but something programmed inside of me.  I think from the first time my mother read me a book I wanted to write one.  As an only child, books were often my only company.  No matter what else has been going on in my life I’ve always been writing something, whether it was journaling, working as a newspaper correspondent, developing the material on my websites or writing my novels.

4.    Was it difficult to write your first book? Or did it come naturally to you? 
I have known people who write beautiful prose without any formal training but I was not that lucky.  While putting words on paper always came naturally, I had a lot to learn about constructing a good story and I knew it.  I read a lot of books about plot and character development, took college classes resulting in a minor in English, attended workshops, and of course wrote, edited, wrote and rewrote.  Now it comes naturally but it’s the result of lots of practice and experience.  It has also made me a very critical reader which makes it difficult to enjoy anything that isn’t properly edited.   I tend to edit just about anything I read which can distract me from the story.  If I really get absorbed into a book it is a good sign that it is written well if it doesn’t awaken my inner editor.  I make a great beta-reader.

I have written several different kinds of material which have all helped me develop my skills.  These include being a NASA technical writer, news reporter/feature writer, writing aerospace company grants and proposals, developing website content, presentation materials for conferences and so forth.  A former boss at NASA nicknamed me the “Mistress of Bullsh*t” since I had the ability to put anything they wanted on paper.  I even had a NASA customer complain one time that what I wrote was “too clear.”  Sounds like par for the course for a government employee, don’t you think?

5.    What are some of your dreams and goals?
I suppose right now I’m living my dreams and goals.  I have a lot of life and experience behind me which naturally contributes to my work.  I would of course love to see my books become best sellers and my ultimate dream would be to see them developed into movies or a television series.  My track record for achieving my goals is pretty good so time will tell on that one.

6.    What do you enjoy to do in your free time?
Free time?  What’s that?  Between my fiction writing and astrology clients, maintaining two websites, three Facebook pages, and two Twitter accounts, keeping up with whatever is happening on Linked-In, trying to keep my yard from getting too ratty, talking to family members and visiting with neighbors, if there’s any time left after that I’m probably reading, blogging or putting together a conference talk for my other career as an astrologer.  Actually, I probably need a vacation but they usually center around attending a conference.  Yes, I admit it, I’m a workaholic, but at this point of my life most of it is more like play, since I’m doing what I’ve always wanted to do.

7.    Who inspired you to become a writer?
I suppose that credit goes to my mother who read to me so much as a child that I was reading before I went to kindergarten, taught me to write letters to relatives as soon as I could hold a pencil, and taught me to type before I was out of elementary school.  After that, I would say all the wonderful authors whose books I’ve enjoyed over my lifetime.
8.   Who are some of your favorite authors?
I don’t really have specific favorite authors.  I read so much and across such a wide spectrum of genres that it’s hard to come up with a list.  I appreciate a well-crafted, creative story that is skillfully written, includes a rich and challenging vocabulary, employs complex, believable characters and an intriguing plot.  I favor those that incorporate a rich knowledge of the subject with lots of convincing detail as opposed to those that are superficial, inconsistent or inaccurate.  If I don’t learn something new from a book whether it’s a novel or nonfiction I’m likely to forget it quite quickly.  I love research myself and thus admire authors who clearly know their subject or do their homework before sitting down to write.  Recently I’ve enjoyed John Reinhard Dizon’s “Generations,” Eric Lindhardt’s “RedDevil4” and Ceri London’s “Rogue Genesis.”

9.    What is in store for your readers next?
The fourth and final volume of Star Trails, “Refractions of Frozen Time.”  I promise that anyone who has enjoyed the series so far will not be disappointed.

LINKS:
My Astrology Website:  http://www.valkyrieastrology.com
Astrology Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/whobeda
Amazon KINDLE Book Links
BOOK BUBBLES: 
Family History Fun Factor:  http://www.bublish.com/bubble/view/2553
Definitive Guide to Astrological Reports: http://www.bublish.com/bubble/view/2639
A Dark of Endless Days:  http://www.bublish.com/bubble/view/2735