Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Wednesday Spotlight with Mary Ricksen
Hello and welcome to Wednesday Spotlight! Today my special guest is friend and fellow Wild Rose author Mary Ricksen. Mary is here today to chat with us about her book
Tripping Through Time
But first, here is a blurb and excerpt:
In the waters of Lake Champlain there is magic, and a Celtic Ring with a mystic spell
proves that love is truly timeless.
For years Keealyn McCalley has been under her father's commanding thumb. After a
young child dies in her arms, Keealyn leaves nursing school despite his disapproval.
She ends up staying at a camp on Lake Champlain, in Vermont.
Depressed and overwhelmed she takes her first drink and before she knows it she is
stoned. Hungover and not thinking clearly she jumps into the lake. Her misguided
act leads her to find an ancient Celtic ring with a spell on it. Putting it on sends
her back to the year 1869. Found on the shore by Ryan Wolf, she is immediately attracted
to his misty green eyes, hard body, and compassionate nature.
She must learn to trust him not to abuse her, save her heart, and teach her the powerful
healing power of unconditional love.
Finally, her father left, furious and disgusted
with her. He gave her a non-refundable bus ticket
and his last words echoed in her mind.
“Take your choice, either come home with this
ticket, or go back to school immediately. I’m finished,
do whatever you want, I really don’t care. The only
reason I came is your mother made me. As far as I
am concerned you were our biggest mistake.”
“To you I am a mistake, but I am a mistake that
has a mind, feelings, and the right to choose how I
want to spend my life. You can’t make me into what
you want me to be.”
“That’s for sure, you can’t even come close. Try
living without any money, let’s see if you dare to
speak to me like that when you are begging for my
“Dad, I will never beg for your help, I’d rather be
dead. You will not hear from this mistake ever
“Good.” Her father shook his head, the look of
disgust on his face apparent. He turned and walked
out of her life forever.
After she left the police station, she ripped the
ticket into small pieces and watched wistfully as the
small pieces blew away in the wind. Finally
emancipated, it was over—bittersweet because now
she could never go home again.
Slowly her thinking became less coherent and
her lungs screamed for air.
The longer she held her breath underwater, the
slower her thoughts came, her mind now numb,
jumbled. She saw fish dart by above her and
followed them with hazy eyes. One seemed to stare
into her face, before swimming to the bottom. It
circled below her, as if trying to get her attention.
She saw something on the bottom. Bright gold,
it glowed, its radiance attracted her and she realized
it was a ring. At that point, she felt indifferent, so it
must have been reflex, or providence, that coerced
her to reach down, pick it up, put it on and then
open her mouth to end it all.
Before the water could fill her lungs she felt a
shock, her body tingled and her blood burned
through her veins. A bright flash of light surrounded
her for a moment and she passed out with a last
thought. I hope I don’t go to hell for this. That
Catholic rhetoric they’d drilled into her head still
made her question her actions.
Sharon: Let’s have a warm welcome for Mary Ricksen. But as Mary waves madly to her fans, her Celtic ring flies off her finger and into the icy waters of Lake Champlain. The audience gasps in horror and screams in unison, “Mary! Don’t jump!”
Oliver dashes out in his red hot speedos, executing a graceful swan dive into the water to rescue Mary. He scoops her up in his arms, biceps pumping, and places her on the cement. She gurgles once, then twice. Then the gold ring spouts forth from her lips before she passes out cold. Oliver revives her by delivering mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Mary bolts upright, a big smile on her face. Thunderous applause explodes once the crowd is assured Mary Ricksen is out of harm’s way and will live to write her next best seller.
Sharon rushes out with a plush towel and a big hug for her friend. Well Mary, that was some entrance, I’d say! Have a seat and Oliver will bring you your favorite drink. Oliver is at the ready, strawberry frutista in hand. He places it on a Duncan Donut napkin along with a huge plate of pistachio nuts. He stares at Mary, awe struck, hoping to be the romantic hero of all her dreams.
Sharon reaches for her coffee with trembling fingers. She salutes Oliver for his heroics. Relieved that Mary has stopped shivering, Sharon raises her coffee mug. Here’s to drama on the high sea! So let’s talk about this book. I love the sound of it. The Celtic Ring had me hooked and anything with magic and legend gets my full attention. Tell us how you came up with the plot for this spellbinding tale?
Mary: Thanks for saving me Oliver. I don’t swim well and I was getting tired. Phew.
The idea came to me while I was having a conversation with a friend. We were talking about when my DH lost his wedding ring in the Long Island Sound. His hand was greasy from working on the motor. And when he went in to look at the prop. Plop that was it, gone! Well we both freaked and I gave him the devil for it and eventually I forgot. It was a year later when my DH and his brother were snorkeling and he decided to look for the ring. Never in a million years did I think he would find it. He couldn’t see his hand in front of his face the water was that murky. But with his face right on the bottom he saw a glint on the bottom. He reached for it and bingo, the ring.
Sharon: Wow, and what are the chances? You know, there are so many legends associated with the Celtic folk, aren’t there? And I’m a real sucker for them all. You have Celtic blood running through your veins. Can you share a favorite legend with us?
Mary: My Irish red headed mom always told us about the banshee, she heard it before someone would die. She is a bit fey.
Sharon: Is there a reason why you chose the waters of Lake champlain as the place where the Celtic ring is found?
Mary: I grew up spending my summers there, it’s a wonderful place.
Sharon: How long did it take you to write this book?
Mary: It took me four years to get it right. And now when I look back, I see things I should and would have done a lot differently. I’m much quicker and I’ve learned so much since then. I think I have improved!
Sharon: Isn’t it the truth, girlfriend! Let’s talk about reviews. While it’s an awesome feeling to get a fabulous one, especially a five star rating, there is a certain phobia associated with seeing your name out there before you know what a reviewer wrote about the book you poured your heart into. Tell us what went through your mind when you read your very first review.
Mary: Ahhhhhhhh! Help me I almost passed out! I had to grab something so I wouldn’t fall on the floor. My first reviewer trashed me! It was awful, and she actually apologized, she was having a horrible day. The blurb was incorrect so she was expecting a totally different book. And it really annoyed her. I think she thought I was trying to trick people, when I had nothing to do with her getting the wrong blurb. I’ll never forget it as long as I live. Be careful when you do a review, there is someone that can be very hurt by careless words. My second review was a whole lot better, which made me, feel better. Those are the only two I have had. I wonder why, although I know some people never get any reviews.
Sharon: Oh and here comes Oliver with dessert. Oliver strolls out with a cut glass plate of cannolies. Then he picks up a bronze statue and presents it to Mary with a sweeping bow and a wink.
Sharon: Thank you, Oliver. Mary tears up when she reads it. She holds it up to her adoring fans. Inscribed in beautiful handwriting, it says, To Mary Ricksen, The Wild Rose Press Resident Blogger.
Sharon: As I once told Mary in an email, she has to be our designated resident blogger. Every time I’ve been to a blog, Mary is one of the first if not the first to leave a comment. She told me that it makes her feel good to promote fellow authors. Let’s hear it for Mary Ricksen!
Thunderous applause as Mary gets a standing ovation from her fans.
Mary: Wait I can’t talk with the cannoli stuffed in my mouth. My goodness these are great. Thanks everyone. Let me put it this way. Don’t you feel great when people comment on your blog? I do. That’s why I do it. How else will a blogger know you liked it?
Sharon: All right. Perhaps your statue can have a place of honor in your garden. Tell us about your garden of statues. What is your most unique and why?
Mary: The most unique one is called the Weeper. The Weeper does your crying for you so you don’t have to cry. I have a set of statues on the Alice in Wonderland theme. The Queen of hearts is so sassy. Amongst my stepping-stones, but not too near the Weeper is where I’ll place it. I am so glad it’s weatherproof!
Sharon: I love it! The Weeper. I’ll have to run out and get one of those. So what’s next for Mary Ricksen? What is your current wip and why?
Mary: I just finished my second in the series called, Time Can Heal Your Heart. It’s called Burned Into Time. Yep, my heroine is in a horrific car fire in the beginning. My friend, Linda Nightingale, said she was afraid to get in her car for a week after reading it. I hope it will be contracted. The waiting is horrible isn’t it?
Sharon: You know it, girl. I’m doing the waiting game right now as a matter of fact, so I can relate. Unfortunately, I’m afraid that brings us to the end of our interview. But before we go, just a few more questions. How would you like to be remembered when you leave this earth? What footprint would you like to leave as your mark?
Mary: I’d like to be remembered as a good, kind, person, who was an author. I’d like people to say, “That Mary Ricksen was so nice. Did you read her books? I’m going to miss her.”
Sharon: And if you could live any where in the world where would it be and why? If you could be the starring lady in any literary fiction, which would it be and why? And last but not least, who would you like playing your romantic hero?
Mary: Am I rich or poor.
I have never left this continent so I have nothing to use except my imagination. But I think Ireland or Scotland would feel like home. Here it’s North Carolina in the smokies, the winters on Lake Champlain are hard to take. We own a piece of property between Bryson City and Cherokee which we would like to build on.
I’d like to be Clare in Diana Gabaldon’s Voyager series. Jamie is perfect as the main man.
As for my hero, Helen Hardt has a picture on him on her blog. Gerard looks exactly like Jamie should look.
Oliver stands in the corner blubbering.
Sharon: Ah, pipe down, Oliver. You can’t be everyone’s romantic hero! Sharon rolls her eyes. And there you have it folks, a close up and personal with Mary Ricksen. Mary, it’s been a blast and I hope you come back again. Where can readers buy your books and get in touch with you?
Mary: My books can be purchased at all the usual places; Amazon, Fictionwise, B&N, Kindle etc. But it is a print on demand and will have to be ordered if one wants the book in hand. E print can be downloaded right away. I can be reached on my email address email@example.com
Thank you Sharon for the privilege of inviting me to be interviewed for your blog. I so enjoyed it and I hope that people enjoy my books. Reading is such a gift to us, for me it’s the greatest gift of all!