Interview with MG Villesca

Published 2018-06-27.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes, I certainly do. It was a short story I wrote when my grandfather passed away. It was titled Abuelita's Love. I had so many emotions floating around that I didn't know how to handle them. I decided to write them down, and it turned into a short story that I ended up sending to my family. The reactions were heartbreaking but also humbling. i never had it published nor have I sent it anywhere. It's my story. I'm not ready to share it yet.
What is your writing process?
This is an interesting question. One I've written about several times on my blogs.
I tend to write and write until I finish. I hardly go back and edit because then I'd never finish a book. The one thing I do is work on the stories that are right for my mood. I have several books in process and each one is different. When I feel like being magical, I write in my book of kingdoms, fairies, and powers. When I feel a little down, I delve into the life of Julie. If I want a little love in my life, I write the second book to Getting ME Back. Maybe that's not the best way to do it but it's the way I constantly keep myself writing. I also write at night. I'm a night owl and hardly sleep so I write at night when the house is quiet and there are little to no distractions from my children.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I remember the first story that really caught my attention. It was in high school and up until that moment reading wasn't something I did all the time. Sure I read books. My father was a big reader and I grew up with books constantly lying around everywhere. But when I read The Long Walk by Stephen King, I was hooked. He has a way of writing things that totally made sense but in a weird and crazy, fanatical way that I really dig. He rewrote a children's story at the beginning of one of his novels that made me laugh out loud in a high school class.

I then moved on to Dean Koontz. My world opened up and I read everything I could get my hands on.
How do you approach cover design?
Hmmm. Cover design is the most important parts of selling your book. It's the first thing readers see and it has to catch the attention in seconds. This has to be a priority. I watch what students gravitate to and watch what they find interesting. My job as a teacher helps me figure out what YA readers are looking for. It has to be done professionally or people won't read it.
Describe your desk
I don't have a desk. I have a bed and a laptop and some really comfy pillows. I've read help books that say that creating an inviting place to work is important so initially I put a desk in the house and decorated it with plants and such but I never sit in it bed it is.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a small Texas town called Fort Stockton. I love that place, the area, and the people. My setting for the first three books take place there. I made up a lot of the stores, houses and people but the little town had a lot of impact on my stories. I think I got that from Stephen King. He wrote a lot about a small town so I thought I'd do the same. I think initially people write what they know. I know that little town - well to be fair - I knew this little town. I rarely visit since most of my family is no longer there but I still think the small town is where my heart is. I still talk to most of my classmates and the friendships I've found there are amazing and can't compare. My hometown and the people there have always astonished me in their love for others.
When did you first start writing?
I first started writing in college. It took me less than six months to write the first book and I think it shows. I wish I could write my first book all over again. There are so many things I would change. Writing a book is easy. Editing and revising is harder. Putting yourself out there for people to judge - that's the hardest thing to do as a writer.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Getting ME Back came from something I saw in school where I teach. I watched as a popular jock pushed his girlfriend into the lockers. Of course when I got there to stop it, she defended his actions and would not admit to anything even when I sent her to the counselor. Teachers don't see a lot because students will wait until we aren't around to misbehave but he didn't care who was around. I think that touched me enough to see that it happens enough in our high schools to know there's a problem. Students have issues we can't possibly understand until we take the time to listen. Even then it's hard. I write about tough subjects like bullying, abusive relationships, and child molestation. I think it opens the way to discussions that would otherwise not happen.
What are you working on next?
I am working on Taking Estrella which is a book about a school intruder. We have many drills as of late regarding an intruder and school shootings. Being a teacher gives me a different view on the situation. I think it's going to be interesting to write. I only hope I can do it right.
What do you read for pleasure?
I like to read different types of books. This month I'm reading a serial killer series by Todd Travis. He writes well and there is never a time when I know who the killer is which is hard to do I think. Last month I read a historical romance because I was in the mood. The month before I read The King's Cage by Victoria Aveyard which is a YA book about powers. I like a little of everything except non-fiction.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
One of my greatest joys of writing has to be when I receive praise from other authors. They know what it takes and they understand how difficult the whole process is.
I can't leave out my fans. I've had so many people contact me not only from the U.S. but from other countries. I am continuously humbled to know someone out there thinks I can write.
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Books by This Author

The Bully in ME
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 67,720. Language: English. Published: July 30, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Drama
Do the events in our lives have any influence on the type of person we become? For Daniel Vesta, a self-described bully who terrorizes his classmates, they do. Daniel delights in torturing and exploiting people that he sees as being weaker than himself—even those people that he considers to be his buddies.
Getting ME Back
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 103,200. Language: English. Published: July 30, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Romance » General
Linda Balle, a self-conscious teenage cheerleader, must find the courage to get her life back after a tumultuous relationship with Victor Balentez results in her date rape and the death of her best friend, Lucas Castaneda. Following a lengthy, heart-breaking trial full of lies and shame, Linda runs from her friends, her family and her life to finish high school in a town far away from her pain.