About MJ Krause-Chivers:
I'm a Canadian Christian author previously published in non-fiction and switching to historical fiction. In NF, I write as Miranda J. Chivers.
I've been writing my whole life, but didn't publish until 2018. Self-publishing has opened the door to novice writers and unpublished authors and allows us to be in control of our own destiny. Like so many, I've also attached my stars to the Amazon self-publishing wagon.
Faith is the backbone of my writing and my life. As I became more focused in my writing, I found my voice in Christian based writing. My blogs, newsletters and books are all faith based. I've contributed to several online magazines, too.
My latest work was inspired by my grandparents' refugee flight from Russia during the early Russian Revolution in the 1920's. I grew up listening to the accounts of terror and intrigue as the men told of bullets flying over their heads and the women spoke of sharing one potato between the entire family. Famine, disease, and starvation and the expectation of the end of the world were common themes in those tales. But the greatest part of their stories was that they survived and gave their descendants a new life in Canada.
And so, my books tell of the angst, the suffering, and the hope that inspires many to find new life in a new world. If this is the type of writing that youu enjoy, please follow me on Amazon and sign up for my newsletters.
What inspires you to write?
My life is full of emotional chaos. And I've journeyed through many dark valleys, but also enjoyed intense mountaintop experiences. Every time I came out of the blackness, I discovered the sweet growth of spiritual awareness that inspired a desire to share my truth with others. Sadly, I'm at the stage where I know I haven't shared enough, and time is running out. And so, I'm now desperate to spill my life lessons on anyone who will listen. This zeal gets me to my computer every day.
What authors do you read when you aren’t writing?
The Bible is my first love and I absolutely love the book of Job as well as the Psalms and Proverbs. These books have such emotional poetry and give depth to the human experience.
My fictional inspiration also comes from Brock and Bodie Thoene. The WW2 series fueled my desire to write historical fiction. But I also like Margaret Atwood for women's fiction. I'm eclectic in my reading and I'll read almost anything once.
Tell us about your writing process.
I get up first thing in the morning and turn on my computer, grab my coffee and plan my writing for the day. I'll write for an hour or two before interruptions begin. I need total silence to begin writing. But once I start, I select the mood of the piece I'm working on and then manufacture my environment accordingly. Some days, music plays. Other days, I open the window and listen to the birds sing.
I use a combination of outlining and pants writing. I'm working with Scrivener and love it's inclusivity of the writing process. All my research and notes are all kept in one place. It's perfect for someone who lives in the world of clutter and can't find a pen. As for character sketches, I plot the general personalities and physical traits, but these are firmed up during the writing process.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Of course, I talk to my characters. They're my best friends or worst enemies. I grew up as an only girl in a family of boys. Imaginary friends were my escape and salvation from the testosterone. Without them, I'd lose my sanity.
What advice would you give other writers?
Read. A lot. When you read, pay attention to how other authors write their characters, their storyline and the plots. Read both traditional and self-published authors to get a feel for the differences. Experiment with multiple styles of writing, points of view, and genres. You won't find your voice until you do this.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I joined Chandler Bolts self-publishing school when I decided that I wanted to try to write a book from start to finish. Honestly, it was the best money I've spent in my journey. They don't teach you how to write, but they do teach you how to publish and get better at it.
I decided I'm too old to solicit manuscripts to traditional publishers. I want to get it done now, because I don't know how much time I have left.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
This is a growing and extremely competitive industry. Only the tough will survive. But someone will come along and develop a better way to make it work. I suspect eventually, all publishing will be a hybrid blend.
What genres do you write?: historical fiction; Christian NF; Christian historical fiction; women's literature
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
All information in this post is presented “as is” supplied by the author. We don’t edit to allow you the reader to hear the author in their own voice.