Waking Up Dead by Margo Bond Collins

Margo Bond Collins lives in Texas with her husband, their daughter, several spoiled cats, and a ridiculous turtle. She teaches college-level English courses online, though writing fiction is her first love. She enjoys reading urban fantasy and paranormal fiction of any genre and spends most of her free time daydreaming about vampires, ghosts, zombies, werewolves, and other monsters. Waking Up Dead is her first published novel. Her second novel, Legally Undead, is an urban fantasy forthcoming in 2014 from World Weaver Press.

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When Dallas resident Callie Taylor died young, she expected to go to Heaven, or maybe Hell. Instead, when she met her fate early thanks to a creep with a knife and a mommy complex, she went to Alabama. Now she's witnessed another murder, and she's not about to let this one go. She's determined to help solve it before an innocent man goes to prison. And to answer the biggest question of all: why the hell did she wake up dead in Alabama?

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Q) What inspired you to write this story?
Waking Up Dead was inspired by a single moment when I lived in Alabama for a few years. I remember driving to work one morning and seeing just a wisp of fog move across the statue in the middle of the town square. The statue was of some Civil War figure, and I remember thinking that it looked oddly ghostly. In between teaching classes that day (I’m a college professor in my other life), I started writing Callie’s story.

Q) How long did it take you to write?
It took me less than six weeks to finish the first draft—Callie’s voice was just incredibly strong.

Q) What is your favorite thing about writing?
I love getting lost in the worlds in my imagination, in those moments that feel like the words pour out on their own and it’s all I can do to keep up with them.

Q) What is your least favorite thing about writing?
I loathe editing and revising. I know it must be done, but I hate it with a fiery passion. So that usually prompts me to go back to writing!

Q) If you could be any famous person for one day, who would you be and why?
I’ve written three different answers to this and I’m not fully satisfied with any of them: Felicia Day, Neil Gaiman, George Takei.

I think, though, that I might ultimately choose Aphra Behn, the first woman to make a living writing in English. In the seventeenth century, she was a novelist, playwright, actress, and spy. She’s not necessarily famous in the usual sense of the word, but Virginia Woolf said that every woman writer should place a rose on Behn’s grave—she paved the way for all women who write.

Q) What is the oldest thing in your fridge and how old is it?
Oh, dear. This question made me go take a look. On the bottom shelf in the very back was a plastic bag. Inside the bag was a take-out container of lemongrass soup from a Thai restaurant I went to more than three weeks ago.
It’s no longer in my fridge. In fact, it’s no longer in my house.

So now the oldest thing in my fridge is a jar of pickles. And those last for ages, right? I hope so, because I don’t remember when I bought them!

Q) What can readers expect from you in the future?
I have a YA paranormal romance coming out soon from Solstice Shadows Publishing, as well as Legally Undead, an urban fantasy that is set to be released by World Weaver Press in 2014. I’m currently working on sequels to Waking Up Dead and Legally Undead and I’m writing a paranormal romance novel. I’m also editing collections of academic essays on Farscape, Teen Wolf, and The Vampire Diaries. 

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