Today I have the pleasure of interviewing Marietta Taylor, author of “Surviving Unemployment Devotions To Go.”
Tell us a little about yourself
I’ve been married for 17 years to Rick. We have two teenaged daughters, ages 15 and 13. I work full-time as an interface analyst for a healthcare software company. My family and I been in Raleigh for the last 8 years, having relocated from Chicago. I’m active in my church as a Sunday school leader for 3rd grade and as small group leader for 7th grade girls. I’m also involved in our girls ministry, otherwise known as Resonate.
As far as writing goes I’ve completed two books. The first, Surviving Unemployment Devotions To Go, was released in March by Extreme Diva Media (EDM). The second book, Girlfriends On…Surviving Unemployment will be released later this year by the same publisher. I’m in the process of writing a third book with EDM and another book whose still looking for a home 🙂 I love to read across several genres and that fills up some of my “spare” time.
What were your biggest influences as a writer?
I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was seven. Books were my choice for filling up free time. I believe the variety of books I’ve read have really given me a strong sense of what works and what doesn’t. When I find an author I like, I read everything they’ve written. I study them and figure out what draws me to their style. Then I try to find a way to use that information to improve my own writing. When I don’t like a writer’s style, I try to pinpoint why. That’s not always easy to do, but it is a helpful exercise. Now most of this occurs with fiction. Even though I write non-fiction and devotionals, there is a lot I learn from a fiction writer that I can apply to my non-fiction writing.
Another influence was Louisa May Alcott. I think I’ve read Little Women over 20 times. My favorite character was Jo. The fire and perseverance she showed toward writing and pursuing that dream made me realize I should never give up my own dream.
What are your strengths as a writer?Is your family supportive of your writing?
They can use some work! My family doesn’t understand the concept of quiet. Sometimes that makes it hard to write. For instance, one evening I was writing in my bedroom. My husband came in and turned on the TV to a horror flick. I was in the middle of writing my devotional book. Devotional plus horror flick does not equal quality writing time. I shot him my “Are you kidding me look?” His response? “Is it too loud? Do I need to turn it down?” I had to laugh.
Honestly though, if I tell them I really need them to quiet down, they do, for a while. It’s been a big adjustment for everyone, including myself. I’ve had to learn to be specific about what I need or don’t need from them to be able to accomplish my writing goals for that day. They’re learning as well. They are my biggest cheerleaders! My husband has even begun asking me if I’ve written anything if he sees me playing a computer game. Slave-driver! Really though, I told him to help me be accountable and focused, so I can’t complain.
When do you write, and where?
I write late night or wee hours of the morning most of the time. I also utilize my lunch during the work week whenever I can. I often find myself recording or scribbling down an idea when I’m waiting for things. I don’t really adhere to a schedule. I just take the time when I can. Don’t laugh when I tell you that sometimes you can find me in my downstairs half bath with laptop and reference material in tow. Of course I have the fan going to block out other noise. Other than that, I’ll write in whatever bedroom is empty.
Do you belong to any critique groups?
I belong to my church’s critique group, Wordsmiths. I love that group. I am also looking for another critique group to join since we take turns presenting and we only meet once a month.
How do you spend your spare time?
With what little spare time I have I read, pay a few computer games and hang out with my daughters. I’ve only got three more years before my oldest is off to college and four with the youngest. I’m trying to make the most of the time I’ve got left with them before they’re “all grown up”.
Where can readers find your?
My personal blog is a hodge podge of book reviews, inspirationsl posts, family and personal news nad whatever else I might think of on a given day
My website explains more about my life philospohy of “frugal elegance”. You can also find book release information and links to follow me on Facebook and Twitter
They can purchase my book from the Extreme Diva Media bookstore