Maria Haskins is a very talented writer and poet. She's also a translator. I met her online ages ago but didn't know she was a writer. Like me, she's mad about music and has a music blog Real Rock and Roll. I first came across her because of the music promotion she was doing. Then last year she published her collection of short stories Odin's Eye. It's a brilliant collection of science fiction short stories. I went on to read her poetry book, Cuts & Collected Poems 1989 - 2015, and now I'm a big fan of her work. Whether it's short stories or poetry, Maria is one of those writers who keeps the reader hooked from the first page. She's joined us for book five in the Mind's Eye series (to be published soon), and I currently blog with Maria and Darcia Helle on the Real Rock and Roll blog, and also the new sister-site, Soundwaves Review. Maria has become a good friend.


INTERVIEW WITH MARIA HASKINS



Hello, Maria! Thanks for visiting me here. Please introduce yourself.

I’m a writer and translator, born in Sweden but living in Canada since the early 1990s. My debut as a writer is lost in the prehistoric mists of time, but did happen in Sweden. Eventually I switched to writing in English, and these days I write mainly science fiction, fantasy and poetry.




Where does your inspiration come from?

Everywhere and nowhere. Sometimes a story starts with an opening line that just pops into my head, or with an idea like a “what if…”, or sometimes it starts with a character. It’s always different. Some of my best story ideas come to me when I’m walking the dog. Something about walking just seems to bring them out.


What 3 pieces of advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Read a lot. Both the classics, and new works by new writers. I know that gets said a lot, but it’s very true: writers need to be readers. Also: write a bit every day, or at least write with regularity. Inspiration often won’t come until you sit down, even if it feels like you’re just slogging through things at times. Finally: be open to learning and changing and improving: try new things, read new things, write things you maybe didn’t think you could write. If nothing else, you might have some fun and learn what doesn’t work for you.

Great advice.

Tell us about your latest book.

I’ve got short stories coming out in two new anthologies this year. Two of them are in the next Mind’s Eye series, which I am very excited about, and I also have a new short story in the anthology ‘Tales From Alternate Earths’ from Inklings Press. That last one is a new thing for me: alternate history with a definite science fiction flavor. It’s the first time I’ve done an alternate history story so that’s really exciting.



Last year I self-published two books. One is a collection of science fiction short stories called "Odin’s Eye". The other is a sort of poetry-anthology called "Cuts & Collected Poems 1989-2015" which was a very interesting project for me. It includes one new collection of poetry (the first one I’ve written in English rather than Swedish), and also translations of my three previously published Swedish collections of poetry.

Do you have a preferred writing space?

My desk. It’s a messy desk and sort of in the middle of the house, but it’s the place where I can concentrate the best. Recently I’ve also done some writing “on the move”, bringing a laptop with me when the kids have activities, and that’s been a lot of fun too. I can actually get writing done away from my desk, which is a new discovery for me.

LOL I used to be like that. When I first started writing, I only ever wrote while in bed, late at night, and for ages thought that was the only place I'd be able to write. But I've found that I can write pretty much anywhere nowadays.

What’s your favourite genre to read?

Fantasy and science fiction for sure, or more broadly what’s called “speculative fiction”. Those have been my favoured genres ever since I was a child.

What genre do you write in?

I write mainly science fiction and fantasy, often with a darker tone, and poetry.

Apart from writing, what are your favourite pastimes?

Reading is one favourite for sure. I also love hiking and walking in the woods, and I love cooking and eating! Travel is something I also love, though I don’t do as much of it now as when I was younger.

What’s your favourite book, and why is it your favourite?

That would have to be The Lord of the Rings, because that’s the book I’ve re-read the most times of any book, ever. I just love the depth of it: that sense of entering another world and wanting to stay there.

Which social media sites can you most often be found on?

I’m very active on Twitter and Facebook . I also have an Instagram account (@mariahaskins), though I’m not as active there. I also blog on my website: https://mariahaskins.wordpress.com/


If you could invite 3 writers (past or present) to dinner, who would you invite and what would you cook?

Oh my… choices, choices... I’d invite Ursula K. Le Guin because I love her writing SO much. Umberto Eco, because he was such an amazing writer and had so many interesting thoughts on literature and the world. And then I’d invite Kai Ashante Wilson: he is a newer writer and I love his work (‘The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps’, for example), but he is not active on social media so I’d love to just talk science fiction and fantasy with him. As for food, I’d make it a potluck barbecue with lots of good beer, wine, steaks, corn on the cob, prawns, salad, and fresh strawberries for dessert. And… now I’m hungry!

Ha, ha! Now I'm hungry too!

Thanks for answering my questions, Maria!


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Author links:

Website/blog: https://mariahaskins.wordpress.com/
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Maria-Haskins/e...
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MariaHaskins
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mariahaskins...
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mariahaskins
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Published on June 02, 2016 02:13 • 1,524 views • Tags: author-interview, interview, maria-haskins, odin-s-eye, poetry, science-fiction, short-stories
Comments Showing 1-7 of 7 (7 new)    post a comment »
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message 1: by Kim (new)

Kim Great interview ladies! It's nice getting to know other authors. I will be reading Maria's work soon.


message 2: by Maria (new)

Maria Kim wrote: "Great interview ladies! It's nice getting to know other authors. I will be reading Maria's work soon."

Thank you, Kim! You'll love Maria's books. She also has some free short stories on her website, which are great!


message 3: by Kim (new)

Kim Maria wrote: "Kim wrote: "Great interview ladies! It's nice getting to know other authors. I will be reading Maria's work soon."

Thank you, Kim! You'll love Maria's books. She also has some free short stories o..."

I'll check those out, Thank you


message 4: by Lisette (new)

Lisette Brodey Wonderful interview with two talented Marias!


message 5: by Maria (new)

Maria Lisette wrote: "Wonderful interview with two talented Marias!"

Hahaha :) Thanks Lisette! xx


message 6: by Julie (new)

Julie Powell I've read some of Maria's work and enjoyed it.

I can only admire someone who has the brains to know more than one language - English is enough of a contrary language for me. I've always struggled with other languages, except when I'm making it up for a story.

Apart from when I'm thinking about stories - or dreaming about them - I can only write at my PC in peace and quiet.

Interesting interview, it's great to learn more about other authors.


message 7: by Maria (new)

Maria Julie wrote: "I've read some of Maria's work and enjoyed it.

I can only admire someone who has the brains to know more than one language - English is enough of a contrary language for me. I've always struggled..."


Thanks for reading, Julie! Yes, I love finding out about other authors... having fun with these interviews :)


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