Welcome to Author Wednesday. Today, I’m happy to interview Marilyn Slagel. Marilyn writes women’s fiction. I’ve enjoyed getting to know her ever since she began following this blog. She writes thoughtful comments and is supportive of all the authors featured on Author Wednesday. Her book Dirty Laundry uncovers some unpleasant truths about the confusing life of an adolescent girl on the brink of adulthood.
Welcome, Marilyn. It’s my pleasure to host you today and learn a bit more about you as a writer. What is your vision of yourself as a writer?
My vision is to write in the most honest way I can, telling stories about the grit and not-always-so-nice events we encounter as life rolls along. People experience so much they are embarrassed or ashamed to talk about. If it’s real, I want to get it out there to help others.
I admire your bravery in tackling the tough issues. What messages or themes do you try to convey to your readers?
Hope is eternal – no matter how hard a situation is. There is always hope things can improve. Every messy situation we get ourselves into can be overcome.
That’s such an important message to get out to folks. What are you working on these days?
My baby is, of course, Dirty Laundry, the brutally honest account of my own life. It is funny, sad, poignant, and real. Marly and Johnny are far from perfect and make some very poor life choices on the way to lasting love. Would Marly make the same choices today? You decide after reading, and let me know.
My work in progress is the story of online dating and the pitfalls encountered by “ladies of a certain age.” As a new widow, I ran from grief into online dating. The stories in this book will curl your hair and make you wet your pants with laughter – dating after fifty is not for the weak. I hope to release Dirty Laundry 2: Hung Out to Dry later this year.
I can’t wait. I was divorced at age fifty after being married for half of my life. Dating was not very pretty, but there is hope.
What advice can you give to other writers about receiving a bad review?
Hmm, I have received two bad reviews to date. At least one of them was personal. My advice would be:
- Throw something off your desk at the nearest wall and hope it doesn’t dent the plaster.
- Cry, stomp your feet and call your mom to vent.
- Stew about it overnight, then get up and move on with your life.
It’s only ONE person’s opinion. With two out of eighteen reviews being 1-star, the sixteen good reviews more than make up for it.
That’s very good advice, but sometimes hard to remember. Good for you for putting it in perspective. Is Dirty Laundry traditionally or self-published? Why did you choose one over the other?
Dirty Laundry was self-published through Abbott-Press in Indiana. Fear of failure was the driving force. One of those “hidden things” we don’t like to admit to, but the truth. Book No. 2 will be self-published with the help of Ellie Searl, Publishista. She is a great designer, and I’m really looking forward to working with her.
Here’s one of my favorite questions. If you could invite two other authors over to your house for dinner, who would you choose and why?
- Danielle Steel. I have been reading Ms. Steel’s books forever. I would love to get to know her over the dinner table.
- Nicholas Sparks. Sweet, romantic stories flow from this man over and over again.
- Jodi Picoult. I loved The Other Sister and want to read more of her works. (Couldn’t stop at two, sorry!)
How does your immediate family feel about your writing life?
I’m widowed with two grown children. They are fine with it, as my time writing doesn’t interfere with them. My daughter is proud of me. My son suffers from severe schizophrenia and is not connected to my day-to-day life. I’ll be writing about mental illness in the future. A huge advocate for the mentally ill, I believe we need much more awareness about their plight.
Yes, we do need much more awareness about all mental illnesses. What book are you reading right now?
Umm, a few? To Heaven and Back by Mary C. Neal, The Fire in Fiction by Donald Maass, Normal by Janet Bettag and Stroke of Insight by Jill Bolte Taylor, Ph.D. With very eclectic tastes, I always have a few going at the same time.
Marilyn, thank you so much for dropping by today. You are a delight, and I wish you the best in your future worthy and noble writing adventures.
About Marilyn Slagel – Marilyn Slagel is a true Midwestern girl, living in a tiny town with Shadow, her loyal lab/shepherd mix. She writes for today’s women — honest, gut-wrenching, funny, poignant stories about the forbidden or taboo things in everyday life among families and other relationships.
When not writing, she works a “real” job as a medical editor/transcriptionist. With more than twenty years’ experience, there is still something new every day.
Marilyn enjoys her family and friends with plenty of gatherings for wine, food, and chatting. Reading is a lifelong passion and takes up some time every day. There’s always time for a few pages, isn’t there?
Abbott Press: http://bit.ly/1aIvsbr
Author Central Page at amazon.com/author/marilynslagel
Barnes and Noble http://bit.ly/12hgHZy
Purchase Dirty Laundry with PayPal using firstname.lastname@example.org and receive an autographed copy.