1) Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?
My first thought of being a writer came in third grade in a paradoxically backwards way. My thought was: I could never be a writer because everything I write sounds like me and not like real writing. I didn’t realize at the time that a distinct voice was an advantage. But I see now that I was thinking then about writing.
Next milestone was eighth grade: my version of a homework assignment to write three paragraphs of description turned out to rhyme. More important, I found it hugely intriguingly fun to do. My course was pretty much set then.
I worked briefly for a newspaper, then began freelancing, which has led to four books and stories from more than 25 countries.
2) What inspired you to write your book?
My LIfe On Earth And Elsewhere is the first novel I began writing. I had just been sitting in a committee meeting as a news reporter and was frustrated that the committee wasn’t taking action. I felt powerless and that led me to start doing a little world-building on paper. I started this novel that afternoon, immediately after leaving the meeting.
Why this story and not a different one? I wanted to write about out-of-body experience.
The book didn’t find a publisher then, though an editor at a major house wanted to publish it if, shockingly, I took the fantasy out. No way was I going to do that. I put it aside, wrote several other books, and then came back to it about forty years later.
3) What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?
Almost anything is possible.
4) What drew you into this particular genre?
Writing about an out-of-body experience led me into another realm.
5) If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?
I would ask Risto to tell me more about life before birth and after death.
6) What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?
I’m only now beginning to have a significant presence on social media (other than socializing on Facebook). When my previous book came out, social media was not as large a force. And I was running behind in developing it.
7) What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?
Don’t let anything deter you. Just keep writing and seeking publication.
8) What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?
I’m on the verge of finishing two other books, one based on my blog Emails To My Therapist and one a combination biography/memoir Miss Chant of Cottage Lane: The Making of a Mystic.
A video of author Peggy Payne’s reaction to Author Anthony Avina’s review
About the Author
Peggy Payne likes to write about difficult people and how they got that way.
Her novels usually venture into the realm of the supernatural, ranging from mainstream religions to the occult.
Her writing inevitably touches upon the intersection of sex and spirituality — to her surprise and no doubt that of everyone who was in high school with her. This pattern didn’t become startlingly clear until she’d published her third novel, Cobalt Blue, and reached the supposedly staid age of 65.
By the time she’d started her first novel, Revelation, she’d spent years as a travel writer, TV and newspaper reporter, magazine nonfiction writer, from Ms. Magazine and More to Travel & Leisure and Cosmopolitan. After writing from more than 25 countries, she had expected to keep rambling about the world for the rest of her days.
But then came the overwhelming need to write fiction, an event much like a spiritual awakening.
Peggy dates her first glimmers of interest in writing fiction to the third grade, when she thought: “I could never be a writer, because everything I write sounds like me (not like real writing.)”
Links to my other books:
The Healing Power of Doing Good, with Allan Luks