I was born and raised in Alabama - Crimson Tide country (Roll Tide, Roll!). I graduated high school there (Go "Wildcats!"). I love the South. I guess it's true you can take the girl out of the South but you can't take the South out of the girl!
I started developing my writing career at an early age. Before I even learned to print my ABCs, I made squiggles on paper only I could understand but to me, those squiggles were a story. Later, my older brother received a manual typewriter for Christmas and I spent many after school hours in front of "his" typewriter using the hunt and peck system.
I sold my first piece of writing at the ripe old age of twenty-one to a parents' magazine (still can't figure out what they thought I knew about parenting!). Wow, what a euphoric feeling to see your name in print! To me, there's nothing like it. I sold my first book to a traditional publisher a short time later.
After graduating from high school, I joined the U.S. Air Force to see the world. I served my entire time in Texas as a nurse (so much for seeing the world). While there, I married, had my son and got divorced - all in Texas.
After leaving the Air Force, my son and I moved to Tennessee where I worked in the music industry for awhile before moving to Iowa which is now our home.
I have a micro-mini teacup chihuahua I adore. Her name is "Mouse" and she sleeps on my lap or underneath my desk in her pink furry house complete with heating pad, as I write. Her favorite treat is green bell peppers. She also loves green beans, sweet carrots and french fries. I should have named her "Killer" to match her big dog attitude! She has also become known as the "Diva of Doggies" as she does not like to get her little doggie feet in the grass outside.
I love writing. It's actually hard work. You have to connect your "tushy" to a chair in front of a computer (typewriter, or whatever it is you use) for hours. My writing friends e-mail the word "BICHOK" to me during the day which means "butt in chair, hands on keyboard". Writing is a solitary job. You can go for days without seeing anybody. You get lost in the world you're creating, talking with the people you create. I guess it's like pretend play, except I'm pretending to be a type of God, creating my own universe and throwing whatever disasters at my characters I can think up. Believe me, I can think up some pretty great disasters, too.
I strive to continue learning the art of romance writing by attending workshops around the United States as well as bringing well-known romance writers into the local area to present workshops of varying descriptions. I've attended workshops by Jenny Crusie and Bob Mayer (Don't Look Down); Janet Evanovich - (the Stephanie Plum series); J.A. Jance (Long Time Gone); Laura Baker and Robin L. Perini (Discovering Story Magic); Lori Wilde (My Secret Life, There Goes the Bride); Lois Greiman (Bewitching the Highlander, Unscrewed); Michael J. Manno (Murder Most Holy); Kali Van Baale (The Space Between); Tamara Siler Jones - (Ghosts in the Snow, Threads of Malice, and Valley of the Soul); and, of course, the Romance Writers of America's National Convention, to name just a few.
In addition to writing, I am also an award-winning photographer and specialize in nature and wildlife photography. My love of photography developed in my early years as well. I started out by making my pets (8 beagle hounds, one German shepherd, one squirrel monkey and a half dozen cats who called our place their home, all at the same time) sit still long enough for me to take black and white photos of them. After high school, I furthered my photographic studies while serving in the U.S. Air Force. Since then, I have attended the Rocky Mountain School of Photography's Nature Photography Workshop Series at Wildeyes in Kalispell, Montana, and graduated from the "Beginning Nature Photography Course" and the "Advanced Nature Photography Course" taught by Joe and Mary Ann McDonald at Hoot Hollow in McClure, Pennsylvania. I have continued my photographic studies by completing college level courses in photography and by attending photographic workshops and seminars held by such well-known nature photographers as John Shaw, John and Barbara Gerlach, Harry June, Rick Hobbs and Ty Smedes. I am a field contributor to Nature Photographer magazine and a member of the North American Nature Photography Association (NANPA). I have won numerous awards and was selected to participate in the "Faces of Iowa" project which was exhibited at the Des Moines Art Center before traveling around the State of Iowa.
There you have it - The Life and Times of Magnolia "Maggie" Rivers! LOL! Pretty darn boring if you ask me.
This is my micro-mini teacup chihuahua "Mouse". She sleeps on my lap or underneath my desk in her pink furry house complete with heating pad, while I write. I should have named her "Killer" to match her big dog attitude!
Her favorite treat is green bell peppers. She also loves green beans, sweet carrots and french fries.
She has also become known as the "Diva of Doggies" as she does not like to get her little doggie feet in the grass outside.
Tater is Mouse's niece and she is two years old. Tater is a Schitzu/Pom mix and has more energy than all of us put together. She lives with her mom and dad, who are Joe and Sheila. Tater is such a cutie pie!
Joe is the web and marking guru. He handles Maggie's website and puts together her marketing/promotion plans. He's also known as the "bird whisperer!"
Sheila is Maggie's Executive Assistant. She takes care of Maggie's calendar, social media, book discussion groups, and other items as necessary.
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