Why? Because she writes books. And from what I've seen of them, they're pretty hilarious.
When Dallas resident Callie Taylor died young, she expected to go to Heaven, or maybe Hell. Instead, she met her fate early thanks to a creep with a knife and a mommy complex. Now she's witnessed another murder, and she's not about to let this one go. She's determined to help solve it before an innocent man goes to prison. And to answer the biggest question of all: why the hell did she wake up in Alabama?
Now, let's see what she has to say...Hello Margo!
Who are you?
Margo Bond Collins, an author of paranormal mysteries and urban fantasy. In my other life, I’m a college professor; I teach English courses online.
Where are you?
In Texas, with my husband, my daughter, and several silly pets.
How are you?
I’m doing especially well today; my first novel, Waking Up Dead, was just released by Solstice Shadows Publishing!
Which book do you want to talk about? Tell us briefly what it is about.
My new release is Waking Up Dead. When Callie Taylor died, she expected to go to heaven—or maybe hell. Instead, when she was murdered in Dallas by some jerk with a knife and a bad-mommy complex, she went to Alabama. Now she’s seen another murder, and she can’t just let it go; she must find a way to make sure the police figure out who really killed Molly McClatchy before an innocent man goes to prison, all the while trying to determine how and why she woke up dead in Alabama.
Tell us about your main character. What does he/she look like, love, hate, dream of? What qualities/flaws/principles does he/she have?
Physically, Callie, the ghostly protagonist of Waking Up Dead, describes herself like this:
When I looked down at myself, I saw just me, wearing the clothes I’d worn the day I died. Black slacks, gray button-down shirt, black leather jacket, medium-heel black boots. Casual professional. When I’d managed to cast a reflection in the mirror, I’d still looked like me. Medium-toned skin, green eyes, dark wavy hair to my shoulders.
She’s basically a light-hearted person, despite being in a terribly strange situation and having experienced pretty much the worst things possible. She befriends Ashara, a young African-American woman who is one of the few people who can see and hear Callie. Ashara’s outspoken grandmother Maw-Maw encourages the two of them to work together to solve the mystery of a local woman’s death.
If you could make up your own genre for this book, what would it be?
It’s a paranormal mystery—there’s no other term for it!
Is there a message in your book? Do you want your readers to take something home?
I didn’t realize until after I had finished writing the book that it was so very much about the continuing effects of racism in our world. The Deep South setting made that issue easy to address, but it’s certainly not an issue that is limited to the South. I don’t know if there’s a take-away “message,” precisely, but I do hope the book reminds readers that we’re all just people.
What are you currently working on?
I’m currently working on sequels to Waking Up Dead and Legally Undead and I’m writing a paranormal romance novel. I’m also editing collections of academic essays on the television shows Farscape, Teen Wolf, The Vampire Diaries, and Supernatural.
Why are you a writer? Were you born to be one, did it just happen, was there some moment of epiphany...?
I’ve always wanted to write. For as long as I can remember, I have made up stories. When I’m driving (which I find immensely dull), I amuse myself by making up characters and figuring out ways to make their lives difficult. The first story I remember writing was basically fan-fiction of The Wizard of Oz. I wrote it in long-hand in a yellow legal pad. I’ve been writing ever since.
Do parts of you shine through? Are some characters like you, or friends, or family?
Absolutely! The feisty grandmother Maw-Maw in Waking Up Dead is actually largely based on a combination of my own grandmother and great-grandmother--the only real difference is that they were white and from Texas rather than black and from Alabama. Otherwise, she talks like them and acts like them. It's my great-grandmother's voice I hear in my head when I write her dialogue, my grandmother's movements I see when I picture her walking around. Physically, I imagine her looking a bit like Ruby Dee in the television movie version of The Stand. But her attitude? That's straight from my own family!
The rest of the characters are something like that, too—a combination of various people I’ve known or met or seen, all mashed together into something as close to a real person as I can get.
Who is your favorite author?
There are too many to list! I tend to have lists of favorite authors according to genre and to time period. But at the moment, here are a few: I love books by Neil Gaiman, Lois McMaster Bujold, Faith Hunter, Stephen Graham Jones, Ilona Andrews, Carrie Vaughn, Richelle Mead, Rachel Vincent, Holly Black, Janny Wurts, Jennifer Estep, Rachel Caine, Patricia Briggs, Janet Evanovich . . . and those are just the ones who come to mind immediately!
If you could have a superpower, which one would you choose?
I’d have the ability to slow time down, so maybe I could get everything done!
Now, if you want to find out more about Margo, you can visit her on Facebook, Goodreads, her own website, Twitter or Google +. Or simply go and buy her book on Amazon.