Marie Whittaker

Marie Whittaker enjoys teaching about publishing, writing craft, and project management for writers. She works as Associate Publisher at WordFire Press and is Director of Superstars Writing Seminars, a world-class writing conference concentrating on the business of writing. She also puts in time as the personal assistant to New York Times bestselling author, Kevin J. Anderson. Marie is a proud member of the Horror Writers Association and keeps steady attendance at local writer’s groups.

When not at work in publishing, Marie is an award-winning essayist and author of horror, urban fantasy, children’s books and supernatural thrillers. Marie is a founder of Eldros Legacy where she creates realms on the continent of Pyranon. She has authored several dark fiction novels. She is the creator of The Adventures of Lola Hopscotch, which is a children’s book series concentrating on getting sensitive childhood issues out in the open between children and adults. Many of her short stories appear in numerous anthologies and publications, including Weird Tales. She is currently working on a new paranormal mystery, titled (working) Little Boy Lost.
A Colorado native, Marie resides in Manitou Springs, where she writes and enjoys renovating her historic Victorian home. She spends time hiking, gardening, and indulging in her guilty pleasure of shopping for shoes and handbags. She is fond of owls, coffee, and all things Celtic. A lover of animals, Marie is an advocate against animal abuse and assists with lost pets in her community. Get free short fiction and find out more about her at www.mariewhittaker.com.

Rob Howell’s Interview Questions

Why are you here?
• What are your influences? All things Victorian gothic.
• Who are some favorite other creators? Jonathan Maberry and Anne Rice.
• What made you a creator in the first place? My mom and aunt was/are creators.
• Why did you choose to create what you create? Reading was a getaway when I was a kid. It’s that way for me still, as an adult. I want to create worlds and stories that are an escape for others.
• Feel free to add things you would someday like to create.

Describe your great Lab of Creation?
• Where do you work? I work at home in my studio.
• Do you listen to music? Stevie Nicks, Kansas, Aerosmith, Death Cab, Muse…
• What other things exist in your productive environment? Loads of plants, candles, two bunnies and a fish tank full of goldfish that think they’re piranhas.
• What things have you tried that haven’t worked? Dictating stories, but I’m going to try that again.

What are your superpowers?
• What kinds of things do you like in your creations? Adding just enough darkness or The Unexpected to keep readers wondering about their limits.
• What are specific techniques you do well? Creating characters that readers fall in love with.
• What are some favorite successes you’ve achieved, especially things you had to struggle to overcome? The first time a publisher bought one of my books was a really great day for me. It was like some kind of validation that the work I produce is good enough that someone besides me believes it’s marketable. I overcame some self-doubt.

What will Lex Luthor use to defeat you?
• What are some of the challenges you have faced that frustrated you? I have a vision issue that can make work a struggle. Other times it doesn’t.
• Do you have any creative failures which taught you something? What were those lessons? Yes! My first book was a soggy brick of literary poo, full of purple prose and overblown sex scenes. Pun intended. I still have it here. I hope to fix it someday…
• How do you overcome normal slow points like writer’s block? If I hit a block when I’m writing a novel, which is rare, I write a short story. The switch in focus puts me back to work on the novel.
• Which mistake would you try to keep other creators from making? Don’t listen to others who hint that you’re wasting your time when you follow your dream. They’re just jealous because they don’t have the balls to follow their own.
• If you could go back and tell yourself anything about writing, what would it be? Keep going.

Lightning Round
• Favorite Muppet? Beeker
• Favorite Musical Performer We’ve Never Heard Of? If I’ve heard of them, you have, too.
• Favorite Superhero? Spiderman
• Favorite 1970s TV show? Land of the Lost
• Favorite Weird Color? seafoam
• Favorite Sports Team? Tennessee Titans. They’re scrappy.
• Best Game Ever? Scrabble
• Winter, Spring, Summer, or Fall? Fall
• Best Present You’ve Ever Received? A toy typewriter when I was a kid.
• What Cartoon Character Are You? Velma Dinkley
• Your Wrestler Name? Cheatah Pumpkineatah
• Your Signature Wrestling Move? Name-calling
• What Do You Secretly Plot? To hijack a Carnival cruise ship.
• How Will You Conquer the World? By becoming a pirate.
• Best Thing from the 80s? The Breakfast Club
• Favorite Historical Period? 11th – 14th century middle ages
• Most Interesting Person in History? Amelia Earhart
• Steak Temperature? Medium rare
• Favorite Chip Dip? guac
• Favorite Cereal? Honey Nut Cheerios
• What Do You Eat For Your Last Meal? Mediterranean salad
• Beverage(s) of Choice? Earl Grey, coffee, good brandy, pinot grigio, or Pepsi
• Do You Have Pets? Yes! Two dogs, two cats, two bunnies, and 11 gold piranhas.
• What Actor or Actress Should Portray You in Your Biopic? Kristen Bell

Tell me again where we can find your stuff?
• All the web presence you’d like me to link to. www.mariewhittaker.com
• Weird Tales #364
• Eldros Legacy

And where can we find you?
DragonCon, 20Books, Superstars Writing Seminars