Interview with Morgen Rich

Describe your desk
Right now, my desk is a Bag of Holding. During our home renovation project, what's serving as a desk is a 3 x 5 foot slab of butcher block. Sitting on it to avoid inadvertent static is my desktop computer, named Johnny Depp because he runs way too fast and hot for his own good. Additional equipment atop the desk is a monitor, a keyboard, a stylus pad, a mouse, a cell phone, and a Kindle. Glass items on the desk include my dogs' treat jar (a half-gallon jar wrapped in a piece of leather stamped with a dragon and a Celtic knot), a covered jar holding a fresh cotton-scented candle, an antique porcelain lamp, and a ceramic pot for office supplies. Author swag for an upcoming contest (WAY cool stuff), a wooden box with a leather top that has the Incorrigible symbol, a pile of sticky notes with reminders about things to address in the current series and ideas that my muse has dropped on me, plus 2 pens, and my hardback "Black and Red" notebook round out the writing-related items on the desk. Believe it or not, the Bag of Holding stil lhas lots of empty space, which is sometimes where my earrings land. Oh, and there's always a bottle of Tylenol Extra Strength Rapid Release Gel Caps and a cup of coffee sitting within reach. :)
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the southwestern United States in a small community full of ranchers and farmers. The terrain is so flat that one can see from horizon to horizon in all directions. That, of course, makes the visible sky vast. That sky was what prompted me to wonder what might lie beyond it and what it might contain.

There weren't a lot of things for kids to do in my hometown, so reading was a big part of my childhood (aside from the fact that I loved it!). Reading took me to places more exciting than my own, and that eventually led to me thinking about creating places others could visit along with me.

To say that my humble beginnings pushed me to cheer for the underdog in my writing would be an understatement.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy of writing is connecting with a reader. When a reader tells me that s/he laughed or cried, loved a character or hated a villain, I get all wobbly inside.
What are you working on next?
After I finish Book 3 in The Staves of Warrant series, I'm not sure what I'll write next. I have a muse who nags me constantly with new ideas. Right now, I'm leaning toward a novel that merges several historical figures into one tale and rewrites their stories in a fantasy setting. My muse may have other plans. We'll see.
Who are your favorite authors?
Gosh. My favorite authors list is too long to include here. My taste is very eclectic. I adore Octavia E. Butler's entire oevre, and she always pops into my mind when I'm asked this question. I envy John Milton's characterization of Satan in Paradise Lost.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Right now, most of my non-writing time (I'll include marketing and attending Cons as part of writing) is spent with my husband remodeling a 100 year-old house. When I'm not doing that, I'm chatting with family or friends, reading, interacting with our 2 Great Pyrenees (Bianca and Tahoe), building in virtual worlds or playing online roleplay games, and gardening. I also go to gigs that my husband's band plays. I'm a busy gal!
What is your writing process?
I am an outliner who uses Scrivener. I like to think about a story for a while after I've conceded to my muse's story idea. I make an initial outline of a story that includes major plot points, settings, and character arcs. Using those as my foundation, I crank out a draft (at the rate of about 125,000 words in 30 days), adding in whatever comes of its own accord to the outline. Then, I put the piece away. When I feel like I can stand to look at it again, I print it and start revising, tightening my focus in each round. After that, I hand off the manuscript to beta readers and pace like a father-in-waiting until the comments come back. Then, I revise and revise and revise again. After that, the editor gets it, and after I've reviewed and made changes, the proofreader gets it. Then, I proofread the proofreader's changes...twice. Then, I put it away again and let it rest until I'm sure there's nothing more I want to change. Finally, I take my husband's advice and stop fretting over letting my baby go out into the world to live its own life.
What do you read for pleasure?
I'll read anything that's well-written. I read a lot of fantasy, science fiction, literary fiction, and mystery novels. I also like to read short stories and have been known to blow through an anthology (or 5) the size of two bricks (with super small print) just for fun. I also like to read blogs and news feeds!
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I use a Kindle most often, but I also read on an Android tablet, my computer, and my laptop.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I have a wonderful life, a healthy and happy and talented family, truly special friends, and a career that I feel fortunate to be able to pursue. Who would stay in bed and miss all that??
Published 2013-12-03.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Incorrigible: Secrets Past & Present - Part Four / Becoming (Staves of Warrant)
Series: Staves of Warrant, Book 1 / Part 4. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 22,680. Language: English. Published: December 2, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Science fiction » General
Survival means knowing who … and what you are. Gráinne’s made it home. This time, however, home isn’t the haven she thought it would be. She’s on a hunt for answers, but she doesn’t realize she’s the hunted until it’s too late. She’s about to face the enemy in a world that isn’t what it appears to be. To stay alive and protect her realm, she’ll need to prove that neither is she.
Incorrigible: Secrets Past & Present - Part Three / Gathering (Staves of Warrant)
Series: Staves of Warrant, Book 1 / Part 3. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 30,190. Language: English. Published: October 23, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
Failing once hurts. Failing the same test again is deadly. Gráinne’s learned a lot, but she hasn't considered that survival may be out of her hands. She'll have to ace a test she's failed repeatedly, and the odds don't favor her success. Neither do the forces her party's about to encounter. She'll have to dig deep into a past she can't remember or lose everything ... again.
Incorrigible: Secrets Past & Present - Part Two / Seeking (Staves of Warrant)
Series: Staves of Warrant, Book 1 / Part 2. Price: Free! Words: 31,430. Language: English. Published: July 13, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
Gráinne’s search begins in earnest, but she doesn’t make it to the first stop before her freedom is jeopardized. In a land filled with corruption, subterfuge and danger, but none of the survivors she’d hoped to find, she isn’t prepared for what she does find. Her journey will take her underground in more ways than one, and she'll have to choose between her own security and someone else's freedom.
Incorrigible: Secrets Past & Present - Part One / Entrapments (Staves of Warrant)
Series: Staves of Warrant, Book 1 / Part 1. Price: Free! Words: 44,520. Language: English. Published: June 12, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
Entrapments is Part 1 of 4 in Incorrigible, Book One of an epic science fantasy set in the Shifting Worlds Universe. Being a partner in genocide is unimaginable for a peaceful, inept shape shifter like Grainne. She's about to learn about the unimaginable when she discovers the stars aren't what she thought they were...and neither is she. Even pacifists have their limits.