I have the pleasure and honor of getting to know authors, writers and poets. I get to share a bit about these lovely people I meet with you, my blog readers. This interview is with author, Ginger Marcinkowski, author of Run, River Currents. Enjoy!
Interview with Ginger Marcinkowski, author of Run, River Currents
Please share a bit more about you (where you were born, family/siblings, where you live now, etc.)
I was born in Ft. Fairfield, Maine, a middle child of eight children. My oldest brother has a different father and was brought up by my grandparents in Plaster Rock, New Brunswick, Canada. My mother was Canadian. My father American of French ancestry. We spent most holidays, summers and weekends at my grandparents’ home until my parents divorced. We moved to Meriden, Connecticut, when I went into fifth grade, which was where I met my best friend Ann. (We are still best friends even today.) Two days after graduating high school, Ann and I headed to her homeland of Scotland, visited with her aunts and uncles for a few days, and then took off to hitchhike around Europe for the next few months. I met my husband on my eighteenth birthday in Munich, Germany, and he asked me to marry me two days later. We have a son and daughter-in-law who live in Alaska, (he is in the Coast Guard) and one grandson, who is the light of my life. I live in the South now.
When did you begin your writing journey?
I’d always loved writing, but I never did anything about it seriously until I began my MFA in 2008.
What inspired you to write this book? I have the best brothers and sisters. We have laughed at, with, and about our mother for years. Ma had some humorous quirks about her, so the thought was brought up that I should write a story called, “The Glenna Chronicles,” highlighting who she was. I set off to write that story, but my writing mentor kept telling me that she sensed a story deeper than what I was telling. She urged me to move past the humor and really dig for the story that needed to be told. So I wrote on. One day, I got a note from her that shouted, “That’s it! You’ve found your voice!” It was only then that I’d realized how much pain I’d been hiding under my humor.
Please share about your book, Run, River Currents. This book is a dark story based on some true events in my life. I did take liberty with some of the situations, and I want the reader to know that, but the foundation of the story and several events throughout the story are real. Plaster Rock is a real place in New Brunswick, Canada, and when my cousin finished reading the book, he emailed immediately to tell me it was like I’d taken him back to our youth. We ran the logs together, went to church together, loved the Tobique River, and were blessed by godly grandparents. That validated the fact that I wanted this place to be alive for the reader.
What makes this book relevant in today’s society? Since the book has been published, I’ve had several people, mostly women, tell me that I nailed the emotional rollercoaster and shame they have felt since being violated. I had hoped this might be a helpful book to others, and God has opened every avenue for me and made this story a story some abuse victims need to read. But even more than that, the spouses and friends of abuse victims are learning why those they love react the way they do in certain situations. In today’s world, we hear about the violation of children on a daily basis. People need to hear about the effect it has on children from their youth to their adult lives. They need to know that what abusers have done to the victim affects not only the child but also all of the people whose lives that child touches. It’s a painful journey, and it’s a journey that only the lucky ones finish.
How did you decide to publish this book and why? I wonder if a writer ever decides anything more than getting the word to the page. As any writer, I had been querying the manuscript for a long time. I wanted to have it accepted and published because I believed—and it’s only my personal view—that my story would be validated if a publisher wanted it. A dear friend of mine, Gale Martin, author of Don Juan in Hankey, PA and Grace Unexpected, told me to submit the manuscript to Booktrope, her publisher, and that she’d put in a good word for me. Gale had read the book time and again, assisting in edits and encouragement. I submitted the manuscript and waited yet again. Out of the blue one day, I received a note from Ken Shear of Booktrope and was told that he had an editor, Lori Higham, who wanted to pursue the publication of the book. They were wonderful to work with, and Lori has been my biggest fan. I was so pleased to find an editor and book manager in her and loved that she “got” the message of hope from such a dark story. It’s been a whirlwind ever since!
Most writers are readers. What books do you have on your nightstand and on your “to-read” list? First, every day I start my life with a Bible passage. That’s the best part of my day. My reading list is eclectic, as it is with most writers. We read to learn about sentence structure, dialogue, setting and sense of place, so the variety is huge! I am awaiting Sara Pritchard’s new book, Help Wanted: Female. On my to-do list is Jeff Talarigo’s The Ginseng Hunter, Cry, The Beloved Country by Alan Paton, The Raven’s Bride by Lenore Hart, Marcie’s Murder by Michael J McCann, and John MacArthur’s Right Thinking in a World Gone Wrong. A very wide assortment of reads!
What advice would you give to beginning writers? Oh, I love this. I’d advise you to first just write. Write every day. Write to pull the emotion from people, because those are the stories that stick with people. Write with abandon. Don’t be afraid to tell the truth in your stories. I still would give up any other work or any kind of fun just to write. Let it be your passion, but understand that sacrifices have to be made because other people—your family, your spouse, your friends—may not get what you do. You have to love the solitary life.
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/writer.ginger.marcinkowski
Question for fun’s sake—what was your first car? Did you like it? Boy that brings back a great memory. I never had a car until I got married. My husband taught me to drive a Volkswagon Camper bus. It was a stick-shift, and my first time driving it, I drove it into a ditch because I was looking down to see what gear I was in! The “real” first car I owned was a red Chevy Chevelle, stick shift, 350 with cowl induction—of which I burned the clutch out within 3 months! I loved that car!