Saturday, January 9, 2016



You’ve probably asked that question a lot. After reading a great book, one can’t help but wonder what made that particular author see the world that way, tell a story like that, and reach so deeply into your heart. It’s the real reason we write you know; to reach deep into your heart and find a place to connect.

For this writer, I can tell you it isn’t all fantasizing, typing, and smiling at book signings. It’s not all research, focus, and locking everything away while writing. Trust me; it’s not what you think. This writer’s life is a lot like yours. It’s full, and twisted, delicious and pretty messy. Allow me to explain.

I’ve been a radio and television copywriter, a wife (twice, long story), and a mother. I’ve worked in advertising, events planning, and in various offices doing various things; some far more fun than others. At the age of 40 I became a professional chef, a chef instructor, a culinary competitor, and eventually a professional culinary shopper. You’re looking at a grandmother, an author success coach, a speaker, a teacher, and finally a writer.

I’ve survived breast cancer and two divorces, living in Los Angeles and moving three thousand miles…twice. I tend to do things twice. I’m a volunteer, a community activist, and a good neighbor, except to the groundhog who mistakenly believes that I plant lettuce every year just for him and his family.

In other words, this author comes from everywhere and everything. She’s a pretty average person who loves history, spirituality, high energy, entertaining, fantasy, family, travel, and the supernatural. In fact, I think it probably takes all of that to make a writer.

Reading the above list makes me wonder when I got so old. Somewhere between wife and writer I learned something important about why writers write and how to find a place in the reader’s heart. It’s simple. Tell your truth. If a writer’s truth is on the page the reader will feel it, even if that truth is about an angel falling for an outlaw or a vampire seeking the key through the Pearly Gates. If a writer tells a story that taps into all the elements of their life, a reader gets a chance to ride the ride and enjoy the experience. It’s like Disneyland between the front and back cover!

What book took you on that adventure? Which author has found their special place in your heart? I’m Deborah Riley Magnus and I’d love a chance to tell you my stories!