About Mary Elizabeth Fricke:
This is my public bio, used in my books and most published works
Mary Elizabeth Fricke has lived her entire life within five miles of the Missouri River. She and her husband of thirty-nine years have lived thirty-six of those years on a farm that has been consistently owned and operated by his family for five generations. They have two grown sons married to wonderful women and two beautiful grandchildren.
A graduate of the Writer's Institute of America and a member of the Heartland Writers Guild, she has published a number of articles in various forums and magazines, as well as her autobiography, Dino, Godzilla and the Pigs, My Life on Our Missouri Hog Farm More recently, she has begun to concentrate on publishing romantic fiction with the Birds in Peril Series and the Sweet Pea Trilogy. She is also a prolific ghostwriter.
Her stories, based in rural mid-western areas, concern the unique but quickly vanishing way of life on the family farm as well as other mysterious intricacies that evolve life from generation to generation. Romance is her preferred genre.
What inspires you to write?
I want to breathe. For me, writing is as important as breathing. It is how I express my feelings, my plans. It is often how I dream. I'm a county girl who knows no other life but farm life. In the thirty-plus years that I have helped my husband as an active owner/operator of our family farm, I have seen unbelievable changes, and most of them not good. Farming as we knew it growing up no longer exists. Family farms are becoming fewer and fewer. The family farm in itself is a unique way of life that welcomes a wide range of incomes as well as people and lifestyles. I try to preserve as much of that life as I can with my writing. I am also a hopeless romantic who loves to read romances with happy endings. So I write with the intent of giving new meaning to 'romance in the country'.
Tell us about your writing process.
My writing habits are pretty random, at least until a full first draft is complete. I've been known to write endings before beginnings. Sometimes a certain scene pops in my head and I'll jot it down quickly to work it in later. Some thoughts linger and find themselves wound in the plot of a totally different story than the one I was working on at the moment that thought popped into my warped brain. I rarely follow any kind of outline other than a 'suggestion' process and even that is likely to change as the story develops. I do tend to write in small spurts beginning with one section at a time, or even one scene. When I do a 2nd draft my goal is one chapter a day. My writing time is usually limited to late afternoons and most often late at night. So I choose small 'chunks' knowing that is something I can successfully accomplish in a small block of time
How do you develop your characters?
I believe every author has a basic idea of who their primary characters are when they begin a story. It would be very difficult to select the antagonist and protagonist, otherwise. Or, attempt any idea of setting or basic plot. However, and I've heard many an author say this, that characters have a way of developing their personalities all by themselves. Good guys become bad or bad guys become good. Plots like to twist on themselves all because the initial personality of a character changes in mid-story. But that's the fun of writing. This is what, "I'll start here and see where my characters go," means.
Who are your favorite authors?
I'm an eclectic reader with many favorites but if I have to pick a favorite author it would be Kathleen E. Woodiwiss for historical romance and Erma Bombeck for non-fiction. Mrs. Woodiwiss wrote in her own special prose with a way of drawing a person into her stories as if the reader was a by-stander to every scene, living through every move of the character right along with them. Mrs. Bombeck was really good at poking fun at herself and other everyday flaws while also pointing out what is really important in life, the things that count and the things that are just better forgotten.
What genres do you write?: romantic suspense, romantic mystery, romance
What formats are your books in?: eBook, Print
Where to find out more about the author
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