Monday, April 9, 2012

Interview with historical fiction author M.C.V. Egan

Today's guest is M.C.V. Egan, aka Catalina, as she winds down her virtual book tour for The Bridge of Deaths.

M.C.V. is giving away 2 signed print copies of her novel to 2 lucky winners at the end of her tour. Leave a comment here, and at any of her other tour stops - the more you comment, the more chances you have to win!

M.C.V. Egan is the pen name chosen by Maria Catalina Egan, the author of The Bridge of Deaths. Catalina was born in Mexico City, Mexico in 1959, one of eight children. From a very young age she became obsessed with the story of her maternal grandfather, Cesar Agustin Castillo, mostly the story of how he died. She only spent her childhood in Mexico. Her father became an employee of The World Bank in Washington, D.C.

From the early 1970s, at the age of 12, she moved with her entire family to the United States. She was already fluent in Southern English as she had spent one school year in the town of Pineville, Louisiana with her grandparents. There she won the English award; ironically being the only one who had English as a second language in her class.

In the D.C. suburbs, she attended various private Catholic schools and graduated from Winston Churchill HS in Potomac, Maryland in 1977. She attended Montgomery Community College, where she changed majors every semester. She also studied in Lyons, France at the Catholic University for two years. In 1981, due to an impulsive young marriage to a Viking (The Swedish kind, not the football player kind) Catalina moved to Sweden where she resided for five years and taught at a language school for Swedish, Danish, and Finnish businesspeople. She returned to the USA where she has been living ever since. She is fluent in Spanish, English, French, and Swedish.

Mrs. Egan has worked for various companies and holds an insurance license for the State of Florida. Not her favorite field, but involves very nice folks and makes money!

Maria Catalina Egan is married and has one son, who together with their five pound Chihuahua makes her feel like a full-time mother. Although she would not call herself an astrologer, she has taken many classes and taught a few beginner classes in astrology. This is one of her many past times when she is not writing or researching.

She celebrated her 52nd birthday on July 2nd 2011 and gave herself self-publishing The Bridge of Deaths as a gift; she never submitted it to anyone prior to this decision and has enjoyed the very positive feedback.

Welcome to Reviews and Interviews, M.C.V. Please tell us about your current release.
The Bridge of Deaths is a cross-genre novel with a strong historical angle that is well documented with 200+ footnotes. This gives the curious readers access to any information they would care to explore in a deeper more detailed manner.

The fictional story guides the reader through true events in pre WWII Europe, making the reader, according to one reviewer, feel as if they are part of a small group of interested individuals. Another reviewer called it cozy. I will go out on a limb and claim that any curious reader will enjoy a journey that ties yesterday’s history with today’s world in several ways.

The journey is also somewhat esoteric as the aid of psychics and past-life regressions give the story an unusual aspect, combining history with what an anonymous individual actually experienced while under hypnosis, through five long sessions.

What inspired you to write this book?
A family tie was what inspired me to research and write The Bridge of Deaths. The true events surrounding the passenger crash on August 15th 1939 make up the story of my grandfather’s death. I was inspired by curiosity and the conviction that there is no such thing as “a mystery that will never be solved”.

What exciting story are you working on next?
I am working on a short novel with a co-author Jolie DeMarco. It is called 4covert2overt and it is far more paranormal that historical. The fictional characters are embroiled in more conflict and drama and the book is a fun, quick easy read with two very distinct voices.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
At a very young age, it was one of those things you just ‘know’.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I am a mother and a housewife, so I wish I wrote fulltime! But stories often have to take the backseat to my family and it can be frustrating. This year my son is at home with a virtual school program and it is very time consuming and limiting, I do look forward to the fall when he will have a regular school schedule and I will get back on track with many hours of writing per day.

With TBOD, I had an attitude that history would not change and my child would never be a certain age again, but with the story I am working on now it often feels like an interruption. I sometimes write late at night when the house is calm and quiet.

I do have a very nice life in South Florida, and I do know that eventually my son will find his wings and life of his own and that I will have ample time for writing.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I have bulletin boards cover with information for the story I work on, sometimes with images I create myself, sometimes with lists in large letters, I like to surround myself with the story.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I honestly wanted to be everything and then write about it. I remember drawing maps and calling myself a cartographer. I was a nurse and doctor to my dolls. I wanted to travel the world and discover new things. I changed my mind often and wondered if it was possible to be more than one thing. As a writer I can always create what I cannot be, so I guess I did grow-up to be what I wanted to be.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I have had several past life regressions myself, and I included one as Maggie’s surprise regression when she goes under as she is witnessing Bill’s regression. I have personal had physical changes due to past life regressions and I can only imagine that someday I will have more.

I chose to create three very different characters: Bill, the absolute skeptic, and Maggie, the absolute believer. In Catalina, I created the doubter that teeters between wanting to believe in re-incarnation and wanting to believe in the traditional values she was raised with. I did that to give every reader the freedom to believe and identify with what they desire.

My personal experiences have taken me on a journey of faith and belief in unusual and untraditional things, but I also respect tremendously the roots of how I was raised and how for many their religious up-bringing grants them the serenity and the answers to what is profound in their lives.

Thanks, M.C.V.

Reminder: M.C.V. is giving away 2 signed print copies of her novel to 2 lucky winners at the end of her tour. Leave a comment here, and at any of her other tour stops - the more you comment, the more chances you have to win!

1 comment:

Patricia said...

Thank you for this post, Lisa.
Between the bio you wrote, the interview questions, and the interview answers; my interest in this book has escalated to a higher position on my TBR list!
I had committed to M.C.V.Egan to a book review, but have not got there yet. It will happen soon!
Please enter my name into this Giveaway.
madley (AT) cogeco (DOT) ca
Thank you, Lisa.