Sunday, 5 January 2014



BLURB supplied by Florence Witkop
Jane escorts Buck Portman, wolf researcher, to an island to check out the legend of dire wolves seen there. When a huge wolf charges through their camp and connects psychically with Jane, she follows it as Buck follows her down a dry river bed and through a cave into another universe where her psychic connection to the alpha female of the wolf pack is all that keeps them alive until they get to know the pack. When they return to their world, they bring back an injured pup to be healed. The pup, Snowball, is a huge, dangerous predator in a world where it doesn't belong and Jane's psychic connection is all that keeps the pup safe from the world and the world safe from the pup. But what about when it's grown? Can they return a wolf that has been trained not to kill to it's home world where it won't survive? Can they keep a huge dire wolf in our world where it doesn't belong and where it's true identity cannot be kept secret forever? And if they try to return it, will the portal between worlds still be open?


What is your name, where were you born and where do you live now?
Florence Witkop. I was born in Chicago, IL and I now live in the north woods of northern Minnesota. And yes, it gets cold here.

Did you always want to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
 I always figured I'd write sometime in my life but I wasn't in any particular hurry. Then one day I was racing a blizzard for 30 miles from the school where I taught to my home in the forest and I decided there must be a better way to earn a living. So I quit teaching school and became a writer.

When did you first consider yourself as a "writer"?
When I sold my first short story, during that first year after quitting teaching.

What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarise it in less than 20 words what would you say?
 My last published book was the first of the Legends Trilogy and it's about the search for a legendary spirit residing in a lake in the middle of the forest.

BLURB from Goodreads
Charlie, forester for Macallister Outdoors' corporate wilderness retreat, takes Ian Macallister, the owner and her boss, to inspect a newly purchased tract of forest with a tiny lake that fascinates Ian because of the legends of a spirit that lives in it. While there, they see lights and hear music but, before they can investigate further, a severe storm strands them in the forest and severely damages the beaver dam that created the lake, forcing them to remain without proper equipment to repair the dam and save the lake in order to save the spirit in it... if the spirit exists. And Charlie must fight her growing attraction to her boss or become involved in a tawdry workplace affair.

Who is your publisher? or do you self publish?
 I self-publish.

How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it? 
It's all over the place. I write when I can and I don't write when life gets in the way.
Which of your books were easier/harder to write than the others? The first book was the hardest because I was used to writing short stories. And it's the shortest.  

What can we expect from you in the future?  ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
 I cross genres in all of my work. But when the Legends trilogy is done (got one more to finish, Earth Legend about a descendant of the legendary Ceres), then I'll switch to dystopian novels. At least that's the plan for now.

Do you have plans for a new book? Is this book part of a series?
Yep, Spirit Legend is number one of the Legends trilogy. Number two is Wolf Legend about psychic direwolves that will be published January 6, 2014 and number three is Earth Legend that'll be published sometime in 2014.

What genre would you place your books into?
My books cross genres, but the Legends trilogy fits most comfortably into the Fantasy genre and within that genre it's considered magical realism, which is kind of new and a lot of people don't know what it means. So I'll explain. Magical realism could be considered mainstream fiction with the addition of one totally magical/fantasy/paranormal element. In my books that element is legends that turn out to be true.

What made you decide to write that genre of book?
I love magic, fantasy and paranormal stories but I'm not into an abundance of werewolves, shape-shifters, genies, or any other uber-human characters. I like some but not too much.
Do you have a favourite character from your books? and why are they your favourite? I'd have to say that my favorite characters are: the spirit in Spirit Legend, the wolf pup in Wolf Legend and Ceres' descendant in Earth Legend.

If you had to choose to be one of your characters in your book/books which would you be? and why?
Ceres descendant because she can communicate with plants and make things grow.

Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
My routine consists of listening to that little voice in my head that prods me when I've been lax and that pushes me into a chair in front of my laptop. I get the laundry started and the bread machine going, then I write. No music, nothing except the view of the wilderness beyond my window.

Do you gift books to readers to do reviews?
Yes I do. I'm glad to gift them to reviewers!!!

Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?
Yep and it's easy because there aren't a lot of them.

What was the toughest/best review you ever had?
I've had a few who were awed by my books. They think I'm a very, very good writer. Yes I'm decent but their words were awesome.

Would you ever ask a reviewer to change their review if it was not all positive about your book/books?
No. Never. Not everyone likes everything.

How do you come up with the Title and Cover Designs for your book/books?Who designed the Cover of your books?
Laura Shinn, the artist who does the Legends covers, came up with the Legends idea and I've run with it. Otherwise, I just slog along and try out different titles and designs myself.

Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?
Write the book and usually there's a line somewhere in the book that seems to be right so when I come across it I go with it.

How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
 I never use the name of someone I know personally or that character will morph into the person I know. My places are mostly read and mostly in the forest so names aren't always needed.

Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
Absolutely! Got to know the character before I can write about him/her.

Do you basic plot/plan for your book, before you actually begin writing it out? Or do you let the writing flow and see where it takes the story?
Yep. I follow a template I ran across when I first started writing because it works for me.  I've tried writing without plotting first and found that I can scribble lovely and totally boring stuff for hours. Then I have to toss it all away and start over. So I plot first.

What do you think makes a book a really good/bestseller ?
Some genres sell better than others. And books with a lot of publicity behind them sell well too. But beyond that, I think the telling of a good story is what makes books sell over time.

What do you do to unwind and relax?Do you have a hobby?
 I've done a lot of things. My latest is making handmade greeting cards. I love making baskets but there are only so many people I can give them to.

Have you ever based characters on people you know or based events on things that have happened to you?
I started my writing career writing confession stories so yes, I've based a lot of stories on people I know. But I quickly learned that reality is often too fantastic for readers to believe the truth so I learned to tone things down a bit.

Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of "The moral of this story is..")
Nope. None. Just good stories.
Which format of book do you prefer, ebook,hardback, or paperback? I love my Kindle.

Do you think ebooks will ever totally replace printed books?
Yep. A book is a repository of a story and it's the story that's important, not the form it's found in.

Do you think children at schools these days are encouraged enough to read? and/or do Imaginative writing?
Probably not. As a former teacher I know how much teachers are asked to do. They can't do the impossible.

Do you have a favourite genre of book?
Nope. I love good stories from any and all genres.

Is there a book you know you will never read? Or one you tried to read but just couldn't finish?
Lots of them. I don't like stories about children (or anyone for that matter) being abused. 

Is there anything in your book/books you would change now if you could and what would it be?
As a writer, I'm never finished, even after the book is published. So yes there are things I'd change but those things are mostly the way the words are put on paper, not the actual content. I like words and I like my meaning to be clear so I'm always trying for more and still more clarity.

What piece of advice would you give to a new writer?
Don't listen to anyone who tries to tell you what to write or precisely how to write it. Follow your instincts.

Where can readers follow you?

Your Blog Details?
Your Facebook Page?

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