Friday, August 28, 2020

Today in The Loft: Maggie Blackbird!

Joining me today in The Loft is Canadian author Maggie Blackbird! Maggie writes romance about Canada's Indigenous People for my publisher, eXtasy Books/Devine Destinies. An Ojibway from Northwestern Ontario, Maggie lives in the country with her husband and two beautiful Alaskan Malamutes. When she’s not writing, she can be found pulling weeds in the flower beds, mowing the huge lawn, walking the Mals deep in the bush, teeing up a ball at the golf course, fishing for walleye, or sitting on the deck at her sister’s house. 

The Avatar for Author Maggie Blackbird

S:  Good morning, Maggie! I am pleased you could join me today.

Why did you become a writer?

M:  (Laughs.) I wouldn’t say I became a writer. I’d say writing chose me, if that makes sense. I’ve been dreaming up stories ever since I could think. Seriously. I’d hang over my bunk bed and visit with my little sister in the bunk below. We’d make up stories about our favorite rock bands, etc. I never outgrew those play times and kept conjuring stories in my head from the movies I've watched or the songs that inspired me. I naturally began writing those stories down.

S:  (Nods.) I know how you feel, I can't remember a time when I wasn't creating stories. 

Did you have a mentor when you became a writer?

M:  When I made the decision in 2010 to become a full-time writer and pursue publication, I was extremely lucky to meet a wonderful instructor through my first writing workshop. I was refreshing myself on the bare bones of grammar and she was an excellent teacher.  During one workshop she wasn’t teaching, the facilitator was confusing the heck out of me, and in desperation, I emailed her, begging for help. She became my mentor then. I learned so much from her. She critiqued my work in a way that helped me keep growing and learning. I don’t know if I would have made the jump to publication without her help. I owe Kat Duncan a lot.

S:  What makes you unique--as a writer and/or a person?

M:  I wouldn’t say unique, but I do focus solely on Canada’s Indigenous People as my main characters for every novel or story I write. Being Ojibway, it made sense to steer my focus in that direction.

S:  (Smiles.) It's so much easier to write about what we know, isn't it? I write about lawyers because I spent 30 years in the law.

What attracted you to the romance genre?

M:  The development of the relationship between the two main characters and their arcs. I love how two people can facilitate change in one another, for the better. To help each other overcome past trauma or apprehension. The way they build trust and faith together.

S:  What's your favorite thing about writing romance?

M:  I am a character-driven writer, and I love character-driven stories. Romance focuses on the development of characters because they always have an inner-conflict to overcome.

S:  Tell me about your new book, "Two Princes."

M:  The main characters, Billy Redsky and René Oshawee, have been sitting on the back-burner since around 2013.  I put them away to concentrate on my Matawapit Family Series, so when the time came to dust off their manuscript, I was looking very forward to re-writing their story. Billy is one of my favorite characters because he comes from nothing and fights to make himself something. I love his spunk, his attitude, and his stubbornness. His stubbornness gives him the ability to keep fighting, even when he’s kicked to the ground.  I find this very special about him, and I hope readers do, too. And he pushes.  As René says: “Not another of your bazillion questions.” Billy doesn’t take no for an answer, and he has this way of pushing people to bring out the best in them, albeit unknowingly, but René’s aware of this skill Billy possesses.

Here's the blurb--

To win over the chief’s haughty son, a drug-dealing punk from a dysfunctional family must risk the only two things he has:  his reputation and freedom.

Billy Redsky, a rebellious punk who loves art and nature, is saddled with a welfare-leeching, alcoholic mother and criminal older brother who are the joke of their Ojibway community. Sick and tired of being perceived as a loser, Billy deals drugs for his older brother to earn quick money. He hopes if he buys a dirt bike, he’ll finally impress the chief’s popular and aloof son, René Oshawee.

When the two are forced to serve detention together, a friendship begins to bloom, but much to Billy’s frustration, René keeps putting him on ice. To make his biggest dream come true if he finally wants to call René his own, Billy must make a huge decision that could cost him everything.

Two Princes (When We Were Young Book 1) by [Maggie Blackbird]

S:  I love stories like this! They reflect a very real human struggle--proving you are worthy of love.

Where can readers buy your book?

M:  It's available at all major booksellers, including--

Devine Destinies:

S:  Maggie, thanks so much for joining me today! If you'd like to learn more about Maggie and her books, please visit--

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for having me here, Seelie. I very much enjoyed answering the questions. :)