“There is an edge to Margaret’s writing that is terrific. Rarely do I see such confidence on the page.” —Glyn Parry
Welcome to 4writersandreaders, Margaret. It’s a pleasure to have you with us today. To begin, tell us a little about yourself and your lifestyle.
I was born in England but moved to Australia in 1970. I now live on the island of Tasmania—it is called the island of inspiration and home to many creative people. I live alone in a beautiful location overlooking the Tamar Valley and find that the peace and quiet suits my lifestyle.
How long have you been writing and what type of writing do you do?
I have been writing in one form or another for fifteen years but the type, genre and target readership have varied considerably over the years.
In the late 1990s, I was made redundant and decided it was time to do the things I had always wanted to, namely, sail on a tall ship, farm goats and write a book. Though they were very different pursuits they all contributed to my writing career.
Goat farming was first and with it the role as editor of a goat newsletter. I also wrote articles for various magazines. Because I enjoyed writing, I wanted to improve and undertook a course in freelance journalism. From there I studied Writing for Children, however, I soon discovered that competition for publication of children’s books via a traditional publisher was huge and I had no success. About this time I sailed on my first tall ship.
But, I still wanted to succeed as a writer and enrolled at University. I completed the course in 2004 and my first historical novel was published in 2005. At the time, I thought I was very fortunate to be accepted by a London publishing house and wrote four historical novels under their umbrella, but I slowly realized that writing for a small publisher is very constricting—I had no control over my work—and the royalties returned very little financial reward.
As a result, in 2009, I self-published my first nautical fiction novel. The series has been well accepted and, a few weeks ago, I released Book 4 – The Unfortunate Isles. Visit M. C. Muir at Amazon.com to take a look inside the novel.
Yet, despite a growing readership, my wish to publish children’s stories had never left me. Having mastered the art of self-publishing adult books, I recently discovered it was possible to add illustrations to e-books and I decided I could apply them to children’s stories. After resurrecting the stories that had been gathering dust for a decade or more, I revised them and added pictures. Because I lack artistic talent and could not afford to commission an artist to illustrate my work, I used photo images purchased from Bigstock Photos. In early February, I released my first children’s book—The Bear that had No Fur—containing three short stories.
Children’s books from Margaret Muir
FREE March 5th & 6th!
What is the title of your latest book and what prompted you to write it?
Grandma’s Windmills and Wild Worms is the latest book. It reflects the times I took my grandson to the Royal Easter Show. Like Bette’s “Amazing Matilda” the story carries an informative message for young children. It introduces them to various forms of wind power. Wild Worms is about recycling household waste, but when things get out of hand a fantasy solution comes into play.
What do you do besides write, Margaret?
Apart from books, I write a blog on various topics and once a year I take a long holiday—usually a cruise. I love the sea and enjoy visiting exotic locations. Often the inspiration for future stories comes from my travels.
How can readers get a copy of your books?
My books are all published as e-books and available on Amazon. I write my children’s books and English historical fiction under my full name but write my nautical fiction (for a male readership) under the by-line M.C. Muir.
What’s next for author Margaret Muir?
I have a few more children’s stories to share, then I would like to publish a collection of goat articles. After that I will write Book 5 in my nautical fiction series and that will take care of 2015.
In conclusion, I would like to extend a big thank you to Bette, not only for inviting me to appear on her blog, but for encouraging me to participate in the wonderful world of writing for children.
It’s been a pleasure having you stop by for a visit, Margaret. I’ve taken a ‘Look Inside’ your novels on Amazon and have added them to my “Want to Read” list. Your children’s stories are not only fun to read with little ones, they’re perfect for teaching character building lessons and for structuring a child’s awareness about the importance of taking care of the environment as well.
Margaret and I would love to hear from you and invite you to leave a comment below. You’re also invited to find out more about Margaret (M.C. Muir) and her books:
Children’s Books by Margaret Muir
(FREE on Amazon March 5th & 6th only):
Comments on: "MEET THE AUTHOR: MARGARET MUIR" (8)
I feel privileged being invited to be interviewed on your blog.
Like a child’s first tentative steps, my early attempts at self-publishing children’s books were tentative but I am proud of the result and know that I can improve with practice.
For any writers considering venturing down this path, I say ‘go for it’.
As with any journey, it begins with the first step.
Thank you Bette.
Hi, Margaret. Thanks for sharing your writing journey as you delve into self-publishing and children’s books. It is quite an adventure! I’m still toddling along the path, and continue to learn so much along the way. It’s a privilege and a pleasure to have you on my blog, my new writer friend. Let’s ‘go for it’ together! 🙂 Bette
Writing, in itself, is a never ending story – but so nice to be able to share the things that bring us joy in life.
Great interview Margaret and Betty – the children’s book market’s quite a scary one to get a foothold in but I think it’s one that indie authors/publishers may do well in if they have original and unusual storylines 🙂
I know Kindle Direct’s opened a Children’s branch now and indies are starting to use it successfully – best wishes for you both with your titles.
Hi, Jan. Thanks so much for adding your encouraging words to our day! 🙂
Very interesting post. Margaret Muir has led a varied and fascinating life. I will definitely check out her website and books.
Hi, Michelle. So glad you stopped by for a chat. I know Margaret will be pleased as well. Have a great day, my friend! 🙂
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Thanks Bette, you too.