Halo my lovelies! Welcome to Interview FoxSeat featuring author June Ahern - full interview at Mercedes Fox Author Page. (https://mercedesfoxbooks.com/meet-author-june-ahern/#comment-397_
June Ahern has authored two novels, The Skye in June and City of Redemption, two screenplays, and two non-fictions––a consumer’s guide, The Timeless Counselor: The Best Guide to a Psychic Reading (“Number one seller by an unknown author” at the 1991 New York Whole Life Expo where she was a featured speaker), and How to Talk with Spirits: Séances, Mediums and Ghost Hunts. After forty years she retired as a psychic medium. June continues with her Life Coaching practice, writing books and enjoying her psychic talents as part of “The Haunted Bay, San Francisco and Beyond Paranormal Investigations “as seen on youtube.com. Born in Glasgow, Scotland, she came of age in San Francisco during the ‘60’s.
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Book blurb: Flower Power ignites into Fire Power when a lonely young woman becomes embroiled in a plot to bring down the Black Panthers in City of Redemption.
The once cheeky Liz leaves Scotland in a fog of grief after the death of her son to lose herself in the crazed days of The Summer of Love. In San Francisco, thoughts of a “jolly good time”, free love and groovy people soon evaporate when she is drawn to the dark underbelly of violence and devastation.
What genre are your books? City of Redemption is a drama thriller. The Skye in June can be considered an upmarket fiction with an air mystery. My non-fictions are found in the spiritual, paranormal, and parapsychology section.
What draws you to this genre? I like a good noir thriller thus wrote City of Redemption. My protagonist can be charming and cheeky at times but has a dark side. Liz MacKay is exactly what a noir fiction calls for; a suspect as well as a victim with self-destructive qualities. is set in a time and place that won’t be forgotten; Summer of Love. As innocent as the time might sound, it had a dark underbelly of violence and destruction. There was so much social and political upheaval, which created violence and unhappy endings. My story tells of a young woman’s fall from grace, the pain of living with guilt, and finally the hope of redemption. It incorporate my heritage and interest in Glasgow, Scotland and San Francisco––two great locations for drama and mysteries.
What made you decide to sit down and actually start something? I’ve enjoyed writing since childhood and in the eighth grade won a writing contest on “Being an Immigrant”. In the 1970’s I wrote a short story that compelled me to write it. Ten years later I took a screenplay class and wrote my first play. All of my books, were written because I was asked to write them by interested others. Around the time I was writing, The Timeless Counselor, I submitted an article to The Berkeley Psychic newspaper on 1-800 psychic hotlines. It was accepted and then became a chapter in Timeless. That book as well as How toTalk With Spirits were written to satisfy the curiosity of people who asked me the same questions during my many years as a psychic medium. Skye in June,a tribute to my five zany sisters, began as a screenplay. Later, an author friend suggested I write it as a book to improve the potential sale of the screenplay. My second novel, City of Redemption, also started out as a screenplay. It was created because a young Scottish actress requested I write a lead role in a film with her.
Any advice for aspiring authors? It’s wonderful to create a book, hard work when the editor gets involved, and a challenge to get it printed, but honestly the most difficult part is to market it. Best advice as to marketing and this is true for traditional publishing houses as well as independent writers––make a budget. Marketing is costly. Don’t get caught up in the hype of marketing companies where you pay a lot to sell your books. Yes, sometimes it’s worth it and it certainly can get your name and book into the public eye. Still, it’s YOU who has to follow-up daily with one or more of these things: Tweet, Facebook, blog, and contacts who might put on an event for you.
Give us an insight into your main character. What does he do that is so special? City’s Liz Mackay has strong survival instincts. Once a cheeky, beautiful woman who’d charm and lie to get her way, she finds herself cornered when she can’t make others believe she had nothing to do with her son’s kidnapping and murder. Overwhelmed with grief and guilt, she cannot forgive herself and start over. When Toni appears in her life the gutsy Liz is reborn. Recognized as worthwhile by someone, Liz comes back into her own.
Who is your favorite character in your book and why? Mason the gay hairdresser is my favorite. He’s witty and sincere, playing others to get what he needs (like Liz). There’s a depth to him. When the time calls for it he transforms from a scared, cautious young man to a man who bravely defends himself against the stigma of being gay, but more so has a hand in saving his other commune members. I also like Toni, the Black Panther who is strong in her convictions.
Who is your least favorite character and why? Easy –– Ricky, the cad. He’s a womanizer, a drug dealer, and an all around narcissist who preys on the weak and cowers from the strong.
If your book were made into a movie, whom would you cast? The main character, Liz, is from Scotland, therefore I would love to see Mhairi Calvey, a young Scottish actress in that role. She has the perfect look to play Liz. I actually was in contact with her agent, but without producers, no sale. Although we agreed when I found producers we’d be in touch again.
What is your next project? I’m working on the sequel to The Skye in June before the readers who are waiting for it lock me up in a room to complete it.
If there was one thing you could do to change the world, what would it be? Prejudices. All this judging, hating, spitting out venomous names about color, religion and sexual orientation differences leaves me perplexed and saddened. Judging a book by the cover before opening if wrong. My novels (especially Skye) address this kind of thinking, as do my non-fictions books. My books have garnered some nasty comments. But I let them pass because I believe in what I do––like my main characters. We all have opinions, our own religious viewpoints but why push them on others to the point of hatred and wars? Really blows my mind. Why can’t we, assumedly intelligent beings, learn to talk it out? To listen? That’s what I hope will come around one day.
Do you have a pet(s) you’d like to brag about? My horse, Luna, adopted ten years ago as a rescue Thoroughbred. She’s an older mare and when I first took her on she was in really bad shape physically and psychologically. I thought, yeah, I can fix that. It was a time consuming effort to get her body healthier, although she’ll never completely recover from the neglect. It was the psychological damage that took the longest to heal. Now, we’re like too old senior gals walking the hills in harmony.
What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer? How wonderful the writing community supports each other. I don’t think outside my family or close friends, I’ve ever felt my ideas and what I have to offer so welcomed and supported.
What is one thing you hate about being a writer? “Blowing my own horn” is difficult. It’s not easy for me because it goes against all I learned as a child; be humble, be modest; don’t talk about yourself. Authors have to become a showman. I was advised when presenting my book, stand up straight, and speak clearly to engage your audience. Luckily, many readers who’ve enjoyed my books talk them up and I can just smile graciously when near by.
Do you ever feel self-conscious when writing love/sex scenes? No. In fact, I have to be careful not to write too erotically, and therefore change my genre. MF: I do believe you are the first author I’ve interviewed to say this. I have the same issue, but with sex and gore.
What do your fans mean to you? I’m blown away I have fans. I am truly humbled people share my books, email me with words of gratitude, encourage me to write more, and follow my blogs and social network pages. Like wow?! Thank you to those who show me such kindness!
Tell us something unique about you. I see dead people – no really! Many find that unique whereas I find it entertaining and at times, bothersome. Oh, the occasional spooky ones do frighten me. I tell people all the time, you can do this too. They look at me like, “Yeah? No thanks.” Plus, I can “see” in my mind’s eye, people’s DNA. Fortunately I have successfully helped some people avoid ill health. I insist my clients follow-up with their doctors. My information has been verified after our session.