Friday, November 09, 2012

Relocated by Margaret Fieland

What inspired you to become an author?

LOL, I started writing and got hooked.

I wrote poetry for years before I started taking myself seriously as a writer. Then I wrote a poem I needed to keep and wanted to see published, so I bugged one of my kids until he showed me Yahoo Briefcase. I subsequently switched to Google Documents  -- now Google Drive -- but the upshot was that I had all my work at my finger -- er, keyboard -- tips. I not only was thus encourage to write more and work on my writing, but also I could gain perspective because I could find what I'd written. Before that, my poetry was in notebooks stashed in various places in my room or stacked in the attic.

Do you write in different genres?

I started out writing poetry and only started writing fiction after I joined a writing forum that required both. My first story was one for kids, as I found that less intimidating than writing for adults, mostly because of the length requirements. .As a poet, I'm a fairly terse writer.  Little did I know how hard writing for children really was.

If yes which is your favorite genre to write?

I'm still first of all a poet. In fact, I wrote thirty-one poems to go with the book. Eight of them appear in the text of the novel. I published the entire collection through CreateSpace. It's entitled, "Sand in the Desert."

Tell us a bit about yourself

 Born and raised in Manhattan, I have lived in the Boston area since just after the blizzard of 1976, thus missing the opportunity to abandon my car in a snowbank and walk home. I am the daughter of a painter and the mother of three grown sons. An avid science fiction fan, I selected Robert A. Heinlein's "Farmer in the Sky" for my tenth birthday, now long past. I live outside of Boston with my partner and a large number of dogs.

In spite of earning my living as a computer software engineer, I turned to one of my sons to put up the first version of my website, a clear illustration of the computer generation gap. An accomplished flute and piccolo player, I can also write backwards and wiggle my ears. Thanks to my father's relentless hounding, I can still recite the rules for pronoun agreement in both English and French. My articles, poem, and stories have appeared in anthologies and journals such as Melusine, Front Range Review, and All Rights Reserved. My 2010 NaNo novel, "Relocated", was published by MuseItUp Publishing in July.  I published the book of poems that goes with the book through CreateSpace. My book, "The Angry Little Boy," will be published by 4RV publishing in early 2013. I am one of six authors of the poetry anthology, "Lifelines."

How did you get started writing fiction?

In 2005 I wrote a poem  I wanted to keep, which led me to complain to my youngest son about not ever having my stuff on the computer I was on. He pointed me to Yahoo Briefcase, and I put up all my poems. Fast forward to December of 2005, where, because they were online and handy, I submitted a poem to an online ezine's poetry contest. I was a finalist, and thus psyched, found a couple of online poetry groups and started to write more, study more poetry, etc.

Somewhere in there I hear about the Muse conference and I signed up. There I "met" Linda Barnett Johnson and I joined her writing forums. Linda is first of all a story writer, and we all had to write both poetry and fiction if we wanted to participate. I'd never written any fiction up to that point. What's more, I never had the *urge* to write fiction.

So what happened? I got hooked {smile}.5. 

Any favorite writing-related quotes?

Stephen Leacock was my father's favorite writer. I never read any of his work while my father was alive, but after he died, I did. He's a hoot, and eminently quotable.

Writing is no trouble: you just jot down ideas as they occur to you. The jotting is simplicity itself - it is the occurring which is difficult.

Here is the beginning of my father's favorite Stephen Leacock story:

It was a wild and stormy night on the West Coast of
Scotland. This, however, is immaterial to the present
story, as the scene is not laid in the West of Scotland.
For the matter of that the weather was just as bad on
the East coast of Ireland.
--Stephen Butler Leacock (1869—1944)
Canadian humorist.
Opening lines of "Gertrude the Governess; Or
Simple Seventeen" in _Nonsense Novels_ [1911].

What books/authors have influenced your life?

For fiction writers, Lewis Carroll, James M. Barry, Robert A. Heinlein, Isaac Asimov, Octavia Butler, Samuel Delaney, Andre Norton, Ursula Leguin and a host of others.  For poetry, Lewis Carrol again, Shakespeare, Francios Villon, Victor Hugo, Paul Verlaine, Amy Lowell, Stephen Dunn, Gwentolyn Brooks,Rita Dove, Langston Hughes, and lots more.

I am a book addict, and I'd go cold-turkey on trips to the library when I studied for exams in college. Then I'd suffer book-withdrawal, and I'd reread "Alice in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass." I also taught myself to write backwards and wiggle my ears. This was a source of endless amusement to my kids when they were little.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Learn your craft. I wrote my first novel, a children's chapter book that is due out next year, in a weekend. Then I spent the next two years learning enough about writing fiction to revise it and make it into a novel. I ended up taking the Institute of Children's Literature basic course, attended writing conferences, took classes online and in person, joined critique groups -- the whole nine yards.

Also, don't neglect grammar. Grammar and punctuation are the building blocks of writing. I notice far too many mistakes in published works these days. My local paper is particularly guilty in this regard.

What is next for you? Do you have any scheduled upcoming releases or works in progress?

I have a chapter book coming out next year with another publisher and two more books set in the universe of "Relocated." I'm editing both of them. One is another tween/young adult novel that takes place immediately after the action of "Relocated," and the other is an adult novel that takes place four years later. I started the adult novel first, and I'm nearing completion of the editing on that one. I'm still exchanging chapters of the other one with my writing partner, so completion is a couple of months off on it.

If this book is part of a series…what is the next book? Any details you can share?

It's not part of a series, but I do have a couple of follow-ons I'm working on. Both feature main characters who appear in "Relocated." The adult novel came out of a question I asked myself about backstory in "Relocated."  I ended up with a sentence in the novel. Then the situation kept nagging at me, and I wrote another novel to resolve the whole thing.

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Bewitching Book Tours Magazine

Margaret Fieland

Genre: Tween/YA sci fi
Publisher: MuseItUp Publishing


Number of pages:155
Word Count: 51272

Publisher's website  Amazon  Smashwords  Bookstrand

Book Description:

When fourteen-year-old Keth's dad is transferred to planet Aleyne, he doesn't know what to expect. Certainly not to discover Dad grew up here, and studied with Ardaval, a noted Aleyni scholar. On Aleyne, Keth’s psi ability develops. However, psi is illegal in the Terran Federation. After a dangerous encounter with two Terran teenagers  conflict erupts between Keth and his father. Keth seeks sanctuary with Ardaval.  Studying with the Aleyne scholar Keth learns the truth about his own heritage. After Keth's friend's father, Mazos, is kidnapped, Keth ignores the risks and attempts to free him. Little does he realize who will pay the cost as he becomes involved with terrorists.

About the Author:

Born and raised in New York City, Margaret Fieland has been around art and music all her life. Daughter of a painter, she is the mother of three grown sons and an accomplished flute and piccolo player. She is an avid science fiction fan, and selected Robert A. Heinlein's “Farmer in the Sky” for her tenth birthday, now long past. She lives in the suburbs west of Boston, MA with her partner and a large number of dogs. Her poems, articles and stories have appeared in journals and anthologies such as Melusine, Front Range Review, Umbrella Journal and All Rights Reserved. In spite of making her living as a computer software engineer, she turned to one of her sons to format the initial version of her website, a clear illustration of the computer generation gap.  Her book, "Relocated," was released by MuseItUp Publishing in July, 2012. The Angry Little Boy," will be published by 4RV publishing in early 2013. 

You may visit her website,


Margaret Fieland said...

R%oxanne, thanks for hosting me.

Susan Hornbach said...

Thanks for sharing your interesting life and your many works Margaret.

Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

So smart of you to have Margaret on your blog. She is always full of ideas and resources. I mean, double check that list of folks she has found instrumental in her career. And contact them! (-:


Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Excited about how much the new edition of the Frugal Book Promoter (expanded! updated!) can help writers with the tried and true and the new media, too. Now a USA Book News award-winner in its own right ( it the original edition was also a Reader Views winner and an Irwin Award winner.

Margaret Fieland said...

Thanks for stopping by, everyone. And Carolyn, it's finally time for me to get the *new* edition of the Frugal Book Promoter.