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Friday, 21 December 2007
Getting to Know Marilyn Celeste Morris
Topic: Author Interview
Marilyn Celeste Morris the person

1. What three words do you think describe you as a human being?

  • 1. God-fearing woman (meaning respect)
  • 2. Nurturer
  • 3. Creative

2. How do you think others would describe you?

A bit "ditzy" but with a sense of humor; loyal; forgiving.

3. Please tell us what you are most passionate about outside of writing.

My family, my friendships, my heritage (military brat)

4. Do you have any pets? If so, introduce us to them.

I have a cranky black house cat, Cleopatra, who lets me live with her. 

5. What is your most precious memory?

Funny, I was just saying the other day, I remembered how when my two older children (I inherited a stepdaughter when she was four) were toddlers, and they were fresh from their baths and in their jimmies and snuggled up to me as I read them a bedtime story; they smelled so fresh and sweet.  I want to keep that memory forever.

6. What is your most embarrassing memory?

I remember being a toddler sitting in a galvanized washtub for a bath in the front yard of my grandparents West Texas home and somebody took a picture of me.  That was my first - and I think only - embarrassing memory.

7. If you weren't a writer, what would you be doing with your life?

I would be a teacher.  Preferably in a college, teaching history or English. 

 8.  In two paragraphs or less write your obituary.

Marilyn left a legacy of love and laughter.  In all things, she attempted to be fair and forgiving.

Marilyn Celeste Morris the writer:

9. Can you describe the time you realized you were indeed a "real" writer?

When I held my first published novel in my hands.  I was in heaven.  I had achieved a goal others only dream about.

10. What is going on with your writing these days?

I have several works in progress and I jump from one to the other as the muse moves me.  Holidays are slowing me down, though. 

11. What are your future goals for your writing?

To finish those works in progress and have them published.  To become, if not famous, at least well known.

12. Can you describe a typical writing day for you?

I attempt to be at the computer every morning by 9:00 AM.  Sometimes I don't succeed, but I try to do a little bit each day, at least four hours.  My body can't stand much more than that.

13. Why do you write?

Because it's what I am.  A writer writes. 

14. What writer most inspires you? Why?

I love Pat Conroy's writing.  It's sheer poetry.  And, of course, he's a military brat, too. (His dad was The Great Santini.  My dad was a major in the US Army from 1938-1958)

15. How do you define your writing?

I'm a novelist at heart, although I do have two works that are not novels. 

16. In one sentence-what do you want people to say about your writing in fifty years?

"She captured life as she knew it."

Marilyn Celeste Morris the details:

17. Can you tell us where to find more information on you? Website? Blog?

I have several blogs:

www.// (rants)

www.// (to counter the rants)

www.// (for my Once a Brat book)

www.//Sabbath' (for my first novel of the same name)

www.// (for my lupus book)

www.// (which deals with my editing business and provides tips for writers)

And my pitiful website is www.// And I really need to give it an overhaul now that I can almost understand what I'm doing.

18. Is there a place where readers can reach you?

I can be reached at

If for some reason that addy doesn't work, (Yahoo sometimes does the strangest things) then I can be reached at

19. Can you list all your book titles so people can look for them?

First book, first novel:  Sabbath's Room, a supernatural murder mystery set in the Texas Hill Country.

Second book, a memoir about my life as an army brat from my birth in 1938 to my father's retirement in 1958: Once a Brat

Third book: Diagnosis: Lupus: The Intimate Journal of a Lupus Patient

Currently in limbo is my most recent novel, The Women of Camp Sobingo, which was an ebook publication by a publisher who is now bankrupt.  I'm seeking a new publisher who won't be afraid of the word "bankruptcy collateral." The first three can be purchased through

20. For new readers-what can they expect when they read your book(s)?

For my novels, you can expect a well-conceived plot with believable characters and an attention to detail.  For the memoir, a reader can gain some insight into the life of a military brat in the Cold War era.  For the lupus book, I hope the reader will learn something of this disease, how to live with it and gain some insight into oneself through crisis.

In conclusion:

21.  Take as much space as necessary to speak to our readers-what would you like them to know about you and your writing?

I began writing in kindergarten, when I saw my teacher put marks on the blackboard.  I knew the marks were letters of the alphabet, that letters made words and words made sentences.  Sentences made stories.  I was off and running.  My formative years being spent in relative isolation in various military compounds overseas provided me with an opportunity to dream and write.  Like many other writers, I put aside my goals in favor of marriage and raising children.  A divorce provided me with the opportunity to turn once again to a world where I was in charge of my characters and what they said and did.  It was therapeutic for me to finish my first novel, Sabbath's Room, send it off and have it published.  When I retired from Corporate America, I was at last able to declare myself an author and write to my heart's content. 

I do want aspiring authors to know that writing is the easy part.  Re-writing and editing is hard work.  So is marketing your finished product.  Like many writers who would rather be working on the next novel, I don't enjoy the promoting of my works.  Much of my promoting is done on the Internet, rather than trying to get my books into brick and mortar stores. 

The world of publishing is not at all what is portrayed in old movies, where the writer is given a zillion dollar contract, sent on a whirlwind book tour and is rich and famous overnight.  With print-on-demand technology, ebooks and other avenues to publishing your works, the door is wide open, but you should investigate thoroughly all your options before deciding on your course of publishing your work. 

Good luck and keep writing.  You're doing something others only dream of. 

Posted by joyceanthony at 12:01 AM EST
Updated: Friday, 21 December 2007 2:18 AM EST
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