Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Author Meggie Tolkland Dishes on Passion and Pizza

It is my absolute pleasure to introduce you all to my friend, author Meggie Tolkland.  Her newest book, The Mayhem: Roan’s Story, was released in June, and if you love a steamy, supernatural romance then Meggie has just the ticket for you!  

     Meggie is truly an Indiana writer!  She grew up in Evansville, which she coins "the home of crazy-good barbecue."  She is signed with Asteria Books, based out of Indianapolis.  Her books reflect her love of Indiana – and Chicagoland – where she now lives.  Meggie and her family share their home with an American Eclectic Feline (alley cat) who looks like the Cheshire Cat but is eerily friendly. 

Don't you love her avatar? 

Jen: Meggie, you write some steamy stuff, girl!  How did urban fantasy find you as a writer?

Meggie: I grew up reading all the great sci-fi authors, mainly for the "Dude, you just blew my mind!" effect. Urban fantasy enables me to explore big theological and cultural questions--but in a totally fun way. Because let's face it, classic sci-fi isn't always happy-happy. I'm a mom, and my characters, even my readers--I'm responsible for all of you. I'm big on escapism and happy endings (yes, all kinds of happy endings!). Life is hard enough. Art should make it easier.

Click here to check out Meggie's book on Amazon

Jen: Do you know that due to my responsibility to think for my husband, children and dogs, I have no memory power left in my brain for myself?  That’s why I love reads that allow me to escape too! 

You keep the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation close to your heart.  Tell us why that cause is important to you.

Meggie: When I was growing up, as a Hoosier, I deeply respected Ryan White's living with the disease. He represented the best of who we are, as a state. We've always thrived; we've always survived. Although AIDS eventually took Ryan's life, he died a survivor. I think young people these days have forgotten what AIDS really is, nationally and internationally, and it's crucial we continue fighting. All my children are beautiful, healthy, intelligent, and sweet--and daily, I'm grateful for what I have and pray for the parents who have children with disabilities or diseases. Those parents are the true heroes of our society.

Jen: I remember those early days of the AIDS epidemic crossing newswires and jarring fear in people across the globe.  As a family, we sat down together last year and made the choice to financially support a little girl overseas who has lost family members to the disease.  Instilling compassion for others in my children, and awareness they can make a difference in another’s life, is important to me.      

I love the fact that we both fell in love with reading as young gals.  The two books that left imprints on me were, Are you my Mother? and Where the Wild Things Are.  Tell us about the book that shaped you from your childhood and why it made an impact.

Meggie: I know exactly the moment I decided to be a writer. I was 4, sitting on my mother's lap, while I read The Little Engine That Could. I just loved that the book was a conduit into another world. It's taken me 39 years to realize this, but that book was symbolic because it's about determination, the only real talent I have.

Jen: Gosh, I love that book too!  I think I can, I think I can, I think I can…

You and I are locked inside Bazbeaux’s Pizza in Broad Ripple, Indiana overnight.  I am going to make you my favorite pizza, followed by eating their delicious Greek salad.  Why would I lead our meal with salad, and waste stomach space for less pizza, right?  I am going to make you the PIZZA ALLA QUATTRO FORMAGGIO (Romano, cheddar, ricotta, mozzarella, provolone, bacon and mushroom).  What kind of pizza would you create for me to try?!

Meggie: Oh, my goodness! I haven't been inside Bazbeaux's since I was a college intern! Your pizza sounds perfect, really. I could only improve on it by having my book's cover model serve it. Then, I wouldn't care what kind of pizza it was!

Oh my holy yumminess! 

Jen: I kind of think you just cheated and didn’t make me dinner!  What’s up with that girl?  Ha! 

I noticed that in the credits for, The Mayhem: Roan’s Story; you thank Kate Collins for teaching you to write.  Tell us about Kate and your feelings about how she has helped you.

Meggie: I searched my inbox for her e-mails, and I have four screens of them. The first time we met, I thanked her for her help, and she firmly said--I'll never forget this!--"Writers always help each other." She meant it, and I've encoded the sentence into my brain's operating system. Basically, she believed in me when nobody else did.

Jen: That is definitely a truth I have discovered as well.  I have found the majority of authors I connect with to be supportive cheerleaders who want nothing but the best of success for other authors.   

I am all about digressions in life, so here goes a fabulous one.  Think of it more like playing the game, Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.  Your “groomzilla” in the novel is named Roan Wynne.  Roan Wynne instantly brings gaming and resort tycoon, Steve Wynn to my mind.  My husband, Mike, and I have stayed at The Wynn in Las Vegas a few times, and they tempt you with THE BEST chocolate covered cherries in the minibar.  Vegas is our kind of town when we want to get away; just the two of us.  Where is your ideal weekend away with no Happy Meals available on the menu?

Meggie: That's easy, and it's as close as White Oak Avenue in Dyer, Ind., where Roan's family hideaway is. There, one of his hot cousins could show me the secrets and wonders of the universe!

Thanks again to Meggie for stopping by!  You can connect with her on Twitter and Facebook.  You can also stop by her website and visit her here.




  1. You girls crack me up! What is it with crazy-good bbq's, what does that mean? Please educate this here hapless European. Plus those pizzas... my, can I come and get locked in too? Great interview, Jen, and fabulous to meet you, Meggie. I like your attitude towards life, writing, looking after your readers and tackling serious issues. Hope to hear from you again soon and must add The Mayhem to my TBR. X

    1. Hi Nicky! Thanks for stopping by and you are ALWAYS welcome to stop in for pizza with the girls. Isn't Meggie wonderful? XOXO

  2. Thanks for your kind comment, Nicky! Jen and I crack each other up! To explain, barbecue in the South of the U.S. is strictly tied to geography. Although Evansville lies technically in the North, it's the northernmost limit for real Southern barbecue. Hope to meet you again between the pages!

    1. I am so glad you came to hang out at Princess With a Pen Meggie! You come back now, ya hear? XOXO

  3. 'Kay, I looked up Bazbeaux's menus, and I'd make the Colossus combination because of all that meat. (That's the problem with what I write. Everything sounds naughty.) Hugs to all!

    1. HA! It's a problem, isn't it? Sounds delish though AND you cooked for me! YAY!!!