Welcome to author Michelle Busby, a multi-talented author writing under several names.
Were you a part-time writer before you became a full-time one? For how long?
I am Mickey Middleton Busby, and I am an author. I graduated from Florida State University, where I studied music education, elementary education, and ethnomusicology. While I was living in California after college, I began writing musicals and stage plays. Upon returning to Florida, I became a teacher and had a much younger audience, so my writing was geared to theater pieces and stories for youth. Now retired, I draw upon my diverse background and education whenever I write to insert multiculturalism and the arts into my stories for all ages.
How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have? And do you write under a pseudonym?
Because I write in different genres across diverse age groups, I have adopted several pseudonyms which are variants of my legal name.
I use the pen name Michelle Busby for my Holmes & Watson Culinary Whodunits cozy mysteries. These are, by far, my favorites as I get to insert my love of the arts, puzzle-solving, theatrics, herbalism, and food into each book. I have published The Tainted Teacup and Egg Hide Homicide featuring my unlikely sleuths—a retired teacher turned herbalist and her neighbor, a retired Irish food inspector turned chef. I’m currently at work on Heart Burn Holiday in a planned 22-book series filled with murder, mischief, mayhem, and multiple recipes!
A former schoolteacher, I use the name Mickey Middleton for my Small Tails of True Love rhyming picture books for children, which feature animals and other creatures in nature who overcome obstacles while displaying positive morals and values. I have plans for three more children’s picture books in addition to The Beautiful One, Where Paradise Lies, and The Ma’am. These include The Greatest of These, Phil D. Mouse’s Garden, and Rabbit, Rabbit.
Under the name Mickey MorningGlory, I write The Trackers Series books—young adult/new adult paranormal mystery suspense novels that explore the customs and traditions of Native American Indians. Each of these books features a recurring main character from a different tribe with a supernatural power, along with authentic history, culture, food, and language elements. I have published five novels under this pen name, including Backtrack: The Scout’s Story; Mist: The Bloodhound’s Story; Kachina: The Snapshot’s Story; Ouroboros: The Echo’s Story; and Liahona: The Compass’s Story, as well as The Trackers Team Trilogy 1, which is a combined issue of the first three stories. I plan to release five more books in the series—Quetzalcoatl: The Keeper’s Story; Shifter: The Outlaw’s Story; and Dream Tracks: The MorningGlory’s Story, and the compilation editions of The Trackers Team Trilogy 2 and The Trackers Team Finale. A former appointee to the Long-Range Planning and Economic Development Council of the Florida Tribe of Eastern Creek Indians, I am affiliated with the Muskogee Nation of Florida through my children and my interest in Native customs. My association with indigenous Native tribes has made me “a friend of many fires.”
Finally, my adult intrigue and thriller novels are written under the name M.M. Busby. I have released The Sabbatical Directive, with plans for three future adult thrillers—Light of the Silvery Moon, Panop’s Cats, and Training the Tribe. Each book reflects aspects of my experiences and the life lessons I learned as a public education professional and from the school of hard knocks … but with a more sinister twist.
What can you tell us about your characters, names, plots, and the research you do?
All my books are both plot- and character-driven. I begin with an idea or a “what-if” question, then the main characters begin to assert themselves. Yes, that’s right. They come to me fully formed, with their own names, personal attributes, opinions, ethnicities, physical characteristics, and voices. Their basic stories emerge first, and then I’m led to do extensive research to give authenticity to their actions.
I spend several weeks on the background information, all the while keeping the storyline uppermost in my mind. I search the internet, magazines, YouTube, and books to find information on settings, ethnic origins, dialects, and languages. My browser history contains so many searches on guns, knives, poisons, allergies, symptoms, medical examiner reports, pharmaceutical contraindications, antidotes, crimes, and police procedures, I’m sure I’m on an FBI terrorist watch list!
If possible, I like to conduct personal interviews to get another angle on my subject matter. I study up on the ingredients and methods used for herbal potions and regional recipes and give each potion and recipe the “kitchen test” to be sure it works.
After all the background research is done, I print out my notes and keep them close by. I often find I’ve printed out an entire ream of paper. Not all of it finds its way into the book, but it’s the constant referring to the research that helps keep the book on track.
Thereafter, I simply let the characters interact before my eyes as I key in their stories on my computer. I suppose one would call this schizophrenia, but it’s what I call writing. It’s almost like taking dictation or watching a play unfold on a stage. Once the characters have shown me what they want me to see, and I’ve written it down, then I go back and fill in “the rest of the story” (and hope the authorities don’t show up at my door with a warrant).
Why do you write?
My characters won’t let me rest until I’ve told their stories.
I am a Florida transplant who lived for a time in California where I was an actress, singer, and writer and a member of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA). A life-long thespian and former teacher, I have performed on stage since my teens and have written plays, musicals, picture books, and novels for all ages under the pen names of Mickey MorningGlory, Mickey Middleton, and M.M. Busby.
An avid puzzle solver, mystery buff, and self-proclaimed foodie, I like to combine my talents into one large pot where I stew up my Holmes and Watson Culinary Whodunits. A member of Sisters in Crime (SinC), Women’s Fiction Writers Association (WFWA), National Association of Independent Writers and Editors (NAIWE), American Copy Editors Society (ACES), and Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), I live and write in Florida with my family.
Where to Find Michelle Busby & Her Books:
Amazon: Michelle Busby
Amazon: M.M. Busby
Amazon: Mickey MorningGlory
Facebook: Holmes & Watson Culinary Whodunits
Facebook: Mickey MorningGlory