Thursday, January 10, 2013

Author Spotlight: Terri Morgan

Hi everyone! I hope you've had a great week! Today I'd like to introduce you to author Terri Morgan. Terri is an accomplished writer and I'm thrilled to have had the opportunity to interview Terri for this week's Author Spotlight. I also had the pleasure of reading Terri's novel "Playing the Genetic Lottery" recently - my review is below as well.

Welcome Terri!

Please tell us about your current release. My novel, Playing the Genetic Lottery is a fictional memoir of a strong and resilient 32-year-old wife and mother who grew up with two schizophrenic parents.

What inspired you to write this book? I've always been fascinated with people, human behavior, what shapes them and what makes them behave the way they do. One day a friend, who like me is also fascinated with people, called to tell me about a woman she'd met who essentially raised her younger siblings because both her mother and father were mentally ill. I thought that would make a fascinating premise for a novel.

When did you first consider yourself a writer? When I was in college. I was taking a science writing course and had been struggling with my assignments. Suddenly, one day, everything clicked and I knew what I wanted to do when I grew up.

When and how do you find time to write in your daily life? I wrote Playing the Genetic Lottery when I was nursing my late husband during his final stages of cancer, so I just wrote whenever he was napping and didn't need my attention. Now that he's gone, I schedule time to write each week, and set goals regarding what I want to accomplish.

Any advice to aspiring writers? Just do it, and keep on doing it.

Who is one of your favorite characters that you have written? Please tell us about him/her and what book they are in. My favorite character is my protagonist in Playing the Genetic Lottery. She's strong, she's resilient, she's determined and has a lot of qualities I wish I had myself.

Are you writing under a pen-name, do you use your own, or is your work out in both ways? I write under my own name. I want full credit for my work.

Do people judge a book by its cover? Who makes yours? People do judge books by their covers. My brother's very talented girlfriend, Katja Coulter, created my cover for me.

What is your greatest challenge as an author? Marketing my book.

Tell us your most rewarding experience since being published. The first time I had someone come up to me after a book talk and say 'thank you for writing about mental illness.”

What is the best advice any one has ever given you? Go for it.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? A disc jockey on a rock n roll radio station, a private investigator, and the first woman to play center field for the San Francisco Giants.

Cats or Dogs? Dogs! I love dogs.

PC or Mac? PC

Coffee or Tea? Tea

Anything additional you want to share with the readers? Thanks for your interest in myself and my book. Writers would be lost without readers.

Where can people find you and your books online? My website: has links to amazon in the US and the UK, lots of information about my books, and an on-line order form.


Links to Playing the Genetic Lottery

About Playing the Genetic Lottery:

Caitlin Kane knows more about the impact of schizophrenia than most people could imagine. Both her parents were afflicted with the devastating mental illness, a disease that tends to run in families, and Caitlin and her brother grew up trying to navigate the chaos of living with two schizophrenics. Her tumultuous childhood left Caitlin determined to forge a peaceful and serene life for herself. Now 32, she is living her dream. Married to her best friend, she and her husband are raising two bright young children in the suburbs of Seattle. While her unusual upbringing has left Caitlin with emotional scars, she enjoys the love and support of her extended family and her challenging career as a pediatric nurse. But no matter how hard she tries, she can't shake the obsessive fear that the family illness will strike again, robbing her of her mind or stealing away the sanity of one or both of her children.

About Terri Morgan:

Terri Morgan is a book junkie and freelance writer from Soquel California. She reads at least 3 books a week, and gets nervous if she doesn't have new reading material available. When not reading, she is often found writing. Over the past three decades, her work has appeared in hundreds of different magazines, newspapers, newsletters and on websites. The author of 4 non-fiction books for young adults, and the co-author of four additional non-fiction volumes, Terri released her first novel, Playing the Genetic Lottery, as an e-book in late 2011. Now, Playing the Genetic Lottery is also available in paperback.

My Review of Playing the Genetic Lottery:

I love books that read like memoirs and was looking forward to reading Terri Morgan's debut novel. The opening of the book was extremely powerful. It set the tone early on about the long lasting affects of having so many schizophrenic people in your life. I also loved how the ending tied into the beginning bringing the reader full circle. The author did a great job of developing Ava, the main character, and her relationships with her parents, brother, and extended family. Admittedly, I would have liked more details regarding the progression of Caitlin's relationship with Jason, as I was just so glad she had him in her life. In the end, I learned so much about a disease I had misconceptions about. This is a book that truly stays with you. I found it to be a touching and educational read. I look forward to more works by this author.

Thanks so much Terri!

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