Monday Morning Author Interview – Michelle Griep

Michelle G

Where did you grow up?   In the ’hood of south Minneapolis.
What are some memories you have of that area?  Broken beer bottles. Graffiti. Waiting for a bus in sub-zero weather that made my nose hairs freeze.
Okay then. 🙂  What did you want to be when you grew up?   I kicked around the idea of becoming an astronaut. Two problems with that, though. First off, I hate science and math, both of which are slightly necessary to succeed in an aerospace career. Secondly, it was a total deal breaker when I found out that astronauts don’t actually wear cool Lt. Uhura uniforms.
I loved Lt. Uhura! She had beautiful skin. Anyway, what do you love about living in Minnesota? What are you not particularly fond of living here?   I have a love/hate relationship with the changing seasons. The variety is fantastic. The middle of the winter is not.
That’s how I feel about it too. Tell us about your writing journey.   I started writing when I discovered the magic of blank wall space and Crayolas. Translation: basically, I’ve always written. I started a novel, though, when my kids were young and I needed to get out of the house. One night a week I ran away to Panera and took out my pent-up frustrations on characters. That was twelve years ago. I’ve had 2 books published of the 5 manuscripts I’ve written.
Did you learn any lessons along the way?   A lesson I’ve learned is humility. Whoa. That sounds a bit prideful. I didn’t mean to imply I’ve mastered humility. Living through harsh critiques and painful reviews tends to keep one humble.
Boy, does it ever. Anything surprise you on the journey?   The most surprising thing about being a writer is what I call the Freak Magnet Effect. When people hear I’m a published author, suddenly I’m their BFF. I’m convinced that 99.9% of the population is wannabe-writers with not only novel ideas but entire epic tales.
I’d believe that. Most people don’t realize the hard work that goes into actually getting that idea onto paper and the long road to publishing. Tell us about your Undercurrent Covercurrent work.   My latest release is UNDERCURRENT, a time travel adventure back to the Viking age.
The idea came from an old family story my mom told me about her mom, Clara Brekke. Sometime back in the early 1900’s, Clara’s father took her two-year-old sister and walked out the front door. Just like that. No bags packed. Not a word about where they were going or when they’d return. Nothing. No one ever heard from them again. As a result, I’ve always been curious about missing people. Assuming they’ve not met with foul play, where exactly do they go?
Here’s a blurb:  People go missing every day. Most meet with foul play. Some leave the social grid by choice. Still, others are never accounted for…where do they go? UNDERCURRENT is the tale of one such person. Professor Cassie Larson leads a life her undergrad students hope to attain, until she tumbles into the North Sea and is sucked into a swirling vortex…and a different century. Alarik, son of a Viking chieftain, is blamed for a murder he didn’t commit—or did he? He can’t remember. On the run, saving a half-drowned foreign woman wasn’t in his plan. Ragnar is a converted pagan shunned by many but determined to prove his Cousin Alarik’s innocence. He didn’t count on falling in love with Cassie or the deadly presence of evil that threatens his village in Alarik’s absence.   UNDERCURRENT is a story of honor, sacrifice, and ultimately forgiveness.
It took me about a year and a half to finish this manuscript (but remember, I only wrote 1 night a week). My critique partners ripped it apart, which took me about 6 months to put back together. On the up side, though, the editor hired by my publisher said it was one of the cleanest manuscripts she’s seen in a long time, so not a whole lot of changes were needed at that point.
I’ve read it and loved the whole premise – being a modern woman stranded in the Viking era. It’s funny and poignant at the same time. What are your future plans and goals around writing?   Goal: New York Times Bestseller List.    Plan: Write like crazy.
I love a woman who knows how to set awesome goals! Share something you’d like to experience in Minnesota that you haven’t yet.   I’ve never been to Itasca to see the beginning of the Mississippi. I’d like to do that.
Misc_fruitWhat’s something most people don’t know about you?   I hate fruit.
Thanks, Michelle, for a really fun interview! Leave a comment or question for Michelle for a chance to win a free copy of Undercurrent.
To learn more about this funny and talented author, check out these links:…Blogging gone wild
NOVEL ROCKET… Writer’s Digest 101 Best Websites for Writers
See you Thursday for some more Minnesota Fun Facts!

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