Our monthly feature, The RMFW Spotlight, is intended to provide members of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers with more information about our board members as well as featured volunteers. This month we're pleased to present our new vice-president, Janet Fogg. First comes the Q&A, but you'll find Janet's bio below with links to her social media sites.
1. Tell us what you do for RMFW and why you are involved.
I'm currently Vice-President and in 2010 I was the Published Author Liaison. I'm on both the WOTY and I-WOTY nominating committees and am chairing a committee that's researching a possible Mentoring Program for RMFW. Over the years I've volunteered at the conference registration desk, with agent-editor appointments, taught a few panels, and moderated workshops.
Why am I involved? It's simple.
Back in the dark ages I attended a Life Long Learning class on how to get published, taught by Carol Caverly. In addition to teaching the ins and outs of the publishing world, Carol strongly suggested joining a critique group and also mentioned RMFW's writing contest.
I entered the contest, won 3rd place, and (nervously) attended my first conference. Everyone was so kind and welcoming that I joined, continued to learn (and learn, and learn!), made new friends, and landed my first agent at a much later conference.
RMFW is an all-volunteer organization, which I like, and we're fortunate that there are members who donate an extraordinary amount of time and talent to keep it strong and growing. Smart, committed writers. Who better to spend my time with?
2. What is your current WIP or most recent publication, and where can we buy a book, if available?
I have two current WIPs rarin' to go: a YA novella with an April release date, and a BIG non-fiction that I hope will be published next year.
In Misfortune Annie and the Locomotive Reaper, co-written with Dave Jackson, you'll meet 16 year-old Annabelle Fortune, the fastest gunslinger in the wild west. She's called Misfortune Annie because of her knack for winding up in unlucky predicaments, and when she inadvertently stops a stranger from attacking a train—and he wears a suit that enables him to fly!—the government catches wind of it and believes she’s the only one to have witnessed the Locomotive Reaper and lived to tell the tale.
A Manifest Spirit, co-written with Charlotte Baldridge and Richard Fogg, is a 400+photo, 165,000 word military history about the 359th Fighter Group during World War II. Go on, ask me about P-51s.
3. We've all heard of bucket lists -- you know, those life-wish lists of experiences, dreams or goals we want to accomplish-- what's one of yours?
Of course I want to write more books, but to be specific, I'm excited to finish a SF manuscript that I started a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. It always seems to end up on the back burner, though lately I have been day-dreaming about the sagging, middle-of-the-book plot line, so perhaps this fall...
And then there's dreaming of flying a helicopter.
4. Most writers have an Achilles heel with their writing. Confess, what's yours?
I always work on multiple projects at the same time, so I'm slower than The Blob.
5. What do you love most about the writing life?
My alone time, when I can simply stare at the lake and think. The friends I've made, brainstorming plots, reading and (gasp!) editing. Yes, editing!
6. Now that you have a little writing experience, what advice would you go back and give yourself as a beginning writer?
Don't put so much pressure on yourself to get published. Enjoy writing your manuscript. Enjoy editing. Enjoy the research. Enjoy learning.
7. What does your desk look like? What item must be on your desk? Do you have any personal, fun items you keep on it?
My worktable often has piles of paper or folders on it, though I prefer it to be completely empty, save for my computer, a small dragon, and the giant crystal she's guarding. Periodically, she'll turn her head and all the folders go up in flames, so the surface is clear for a few days.
8. What book are you currently reading (or what was the last one you read)?
I just finished Beacon 23 by Hugh Howey, and thoroughly enjoyed it. That man is a master of throwing rocks at his characters.
I'm currently reading sample chapters for RMFW's WOTY and I-WOTY nominees, and have been blown away by their stories and talent. So much fun! Many of these will go on my wish list.
Ye olde bio by Janet Fogg:
My focus on writing began when I was CFO and Managing Principal of OZ Architecture, one of Colorado’s largest architectural firms. I now serve as an adviser to KGA Studio Architects, P.C., and on the Board of Directors of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers.
Perhaps closer to my heart, fifteen writing awards after attending my first writing conference I resigned from OZ to follow the yellow brick road, and ten months after that signed a contract for Soliloquy, a HOLT Medallion Award of Merit winner.
My next book, Fogg in the Cockpit, a military history co-written with husband Richard, earned a coveted nomination by the Air Force Historical Society for best WWII book reviewed in Air Power History. Last year I was honored to be invited by Fighting High Publications to submit three of ten stories needed for a new Failed to Return anthology about USAAF fighter pilots during WWII, to be published in 2017 or 2018.
On a more rambunctious note, I once participated in a successful rattlesnake hunt, climbed two dozen of Colorado’s Fourteeners, was alternate on a winning trap-shooting team, and several years ago received my motorcycle license. Which reminds me, I've always wanted to learn to fly helicopters. Hmmm.
359th Fighter Group on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/359th-Fighter-Group-1943-1945-120987634620533/
Sisters of the Quill blog: http://sistersofthequill.blogspot.com/
Fogg in the Cockpit blog: http://fogginthecockpit.blogspot.com/
YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCr_VsnUy2kCSZJwUeYli5Sw