So, Morgan… Tell us about yourself. Who is Morgan Gallagher?
Depends who you ask. Some people will say she’s that nice woman who can usually find someone to help you if you need some help. Others will say she’s an annoying and persistent fly in their ointment, they wish she’d go away. I’ll say I’m Scottish, hurtling through her 40s, wondering how she still feels 25ish, and has a lot of things to get done in a day. Oh, and that I’m someone who was born to be very very rich, and is annoyed the universe hasn’t caught up on that yet.
How long have you been writing, and what have you learned from it?
I’ve been writing for over 30 years, and I’ve learned that it’s a craft, and you do get better at it, the more you do it. You keep the tap turned on, and write every day, otherwise the tap can rust up. That, and that sometimes you need to be a bit older in order to get the depth into your work.
Do you ever find yourself lost in your writing world trying to figure out some plot or action scene?
That’s my normal experience with books – both reading and writing. I’ve had to learn to control myself into NOT doing this all the time. I fall into the page and disappear. Or, actually, the rest of the world disappears.
What is your latest book about?
A human female who is taken by an ancient vampire. He plays with her the way a cat plays with a mouse. Then decides he is going to Turn her. She thinks he’s just a mad human, and isn’t sure how to cope with his claims of being a vampire. As the battle between them progresses, we see more of him, and how the vampire world he describes, may not be as clear cut as he suggests. Does she succeed in escaping him, or will she too be vampire?
Do you have any new projects that you can talk about?
Changeling launches a trilogy, so the next project is Lucifer’s Stepdaughter, book two. I can’t say too much, as I can’t give away the ending of Changeling. But Changeling is an interior book, with two people battling it out on their heads, as much as anything else. Lucifer’s Stepdaughter opens it up to a much wider story, with a lot of other characters, all vampires. It’s the wider vampire society that Dreyfuss exists with, in an uneasy peace.
What’s one thing that you think your readers “expect” from your work?
Brutal honesty and strong intelligent females. I have a lot of readers from my non-fiction and political work, and they know the territory is dark, and that I don’t flinch from speaking unspoken truths. It’s been very useful, as we’ve all been on another long journey together, in another context. It’s been quite interesting, to see them trying to adapt to reading my fiction writing, especially with vampires in it. On the whole, they’ve been wonderful. I have told everyone I don’t expect them all to read my fiction work. But I do expect them to buy it! 😉
Do you use social media (Facebook, twitter, etc.)? If so, how often do you post, and what do you post about?
I’ve been on social media sites for years. I have a journal site, that’s locked and private, just my friends. I’ve used Facebook for years, to network my non-fiction work and share friends. I hated Twitter, and gave up on it. The past few weeks, I’ve been testing the waters on using social media for my fiction work, and it’s been an interesting ride. I’m quite comfortable with Twitter now, and have joined several new boards. It’s tricksy, trying not to do too much promoting, whilst keeping in touch with people on a real level. So I’m still working at it. I always post about my life, and my day and sprinkle it with references to writing. It’s just the way I want to do it. Internet contact is about meeting people, and that’s the core attraction for me. I post a lot, but always have.
I enjoy books from so many different genres — from Christian fiction, to fantasy, to the paranormal. But when I look back at my choices, I see that there’s always a dark theme to them. What is one theme that you enjoy reading?
I’d say darkness, but actually, that’s not quite true. I love Jane Austen, for instance. What I love most, is close examination and documentation of humans, how they act and how they think. So anything that is observational about humans, in any situation. Therefore I adore Austen’s detailing of the lives of women, at that time. Similarly, LM Montgomery, Laura Ingles Wilder and Louisa Alcott. And observational comedy that is about how humans live their lives. So I adore Victoria Wood, a British comic who does stand up on stage and sketches on television. I have some of her comedy scripts in book form, and take them down and read them now and then. Alan Bennett, for the same reason. You can gain so much, from small human lives observed well. I think the darkness, is that when you do look at people around you closely, there is a lot of darkness to be found.
Does this theme make it into your writing? Can you give us an example?
Yes, it forms descriptive structure in my writing. In Changeling, there are two sections where the main female protagonist is moving through large cities, and looking at everything around her in great detail. And how she presents herself in those situations, changes how people react to her, so there is a sense of the other people, observing her, and trying to work out who she is, and what she is after. Much of my ‘show’, not tell, is by describing how she interacts with strangers, and what she sees, and what they do. It’s all based on close observation, and understanding, of human interaction in large groups. Some readers might wonder what’s going on, if they are not used to simply looking at everyday people, and their lives.
Thank you for your time. Before I let you go, I have one last question: If you could have any meal, with any spread across the table, what would it be?
Steak. Perfect, sublime, melt in your mouth, steak. Blue. With the red juices running out. (Blue is the phrase in the UK, for the rarest of rare. Not sure if it’s used elsewhere.) I could eat it with a full meal, or just with fried eggs. But steak. Every time.
Thank you for interviewing with me today. I wish you the best with Changeling. I hope that my fans will give it a spin on April 10th, on it’s release date.