Wednesday, May 30, 2012

World of Writing, interview

*Note:  Brummet's Muse Newsletter goes out today! 

-- World of Writing --

Today we have children's author Mariosa joining us to speak about her passions for the environment and specifically the Monarch Butterfly, spent many years as a Nature Guide in southern Wisconsin and also raised a son with no TV. They grew vegetables for farmer's markets and while gathering pumpkins discovered an injured Monarch butterfly. Through research and personal experience they learned how to care for her and just how special these butterflies are. Mariosa wrote and illustrated a book about this true life adventure with the Monarch they came to name 'Madame'. Madame became part of their community and effected many who came to know and love her. Mariosa is currently living in central Mexico very near the Monarch Butterfly Reserve and working to distribute her book for free to Mexican children who live around the reserve but do not go to school.These are the future caretakers of those precious wintering grounds of billions of Monarchs.

Q: How would a good friend describe you?

A: I think a good friend might say that I am easy going and extremely adventurous, with a willingness to try new things all the time. I have heard my friends also describe me as inspirational many times. 

Q: What are your long-range and short-range goals and objectives? 
A: In regards to the work I am doing now, my short range goals are to market my book and that my personal story can build awareness of this incredible creature and the treasure Monarch butterflies are . I am working towards finding some funding to actually be able to give my book away to the children in Mexico who live near the Monarch Butterfly Reserve . This is an extremely special environment and only one of a few places Monarchs go to survive the winter. It is also endangered because it is being deforested at a rapid rate due to the value of the wood in the trees that the Monarchs winter in.
My long term goals would be to actually be able to facilitate tours for anyone who would like to come to the Monarch Butterfly Reserve to see first hand the miracle of this phenomenon. This is a incredible experience. You can hear the sounds of billions of delicate wings as they fly all around you. Definitely one of those bucket list adventures. 

Q: How do you plan to accomplish your goals?
A: The short term goal of finding funding for the purchase of my book, has been through doing interviews and writing to foundations and agencies both in the US and Mexico. So far, it has not produced any results but I will continue to try to build awareness in the way we are doing here. I am also hoping to do a large book fair this fall in Mexico.

In the long term goal, I know many tour companies that run tours from San Miguel de Allende during the Monarch season.Putting a tour together is quite easy so it would just be a matter of marketing on my part.

Q: How do you determine or evaluate success in life?
A: Wow, that is a very deep question. Personally, I define success in my life as integrity. If I can live each day being in my highest integrity I consider that a successful day. And I really look at success in the  shortest terms. Each day gives me the opportunity to start again.

Q: What inspires you about butterflies / the environment?
A: For many years , I have had work that has been outdoors and year round . I am truly inspired at the way nature reflects an absolute principal of thriving and co-operation of species. It is totally interconnected. Humans seem to have lost sight of their special role in this interconnectedness. 
The butterfly, especially the Monarch, inspires us to look at this idea of transformation. A caterpillar's journey into a completely new species is astounding. As a caterpillar there are actually cells called imaginal cells that cause the caterpillar to stop supporting the life of the caterpillar and begin to form the new life called butterfly. Wow, perhaps there is a lot for us to learn from this idea of imaginal cells.

Q: What is your opinion of the world today?
A: I think that the world is in an evolutionary pattern that does not make sense to many humans because it is at such an immense scale. but like all nature, is on a journey that is part of a natural evolutionary plan.I am excited to be in these times because they offer us, as a species, the opportunity to completely shift our perceptions. In fact, that seems to me to be the only way we will benefit the planet and our species is if we can find that shift. I am grateful for that opportunity personally to be a part of something so epic.

Q: What is your contribution to society as a writer?

A: When my son was small we used to read books every night together. I literally read thousands of children's books and the ones I could see he loved the most were the ones he asked to be read to him many times. These were the stories that opened my heart as well. They were told in simple language and with creative illustrations. Many times they brought tears to my eyes and lead us to long sweet heart centered discussions. This is what I hoped the telling of our true story with Madame would be. I hope as a writer I bring the gift of this special time to talk with your child and discover that connection place that lives in both your hearts. 

Q: What is the important role that writers play in today’s world?
A: There is a quote from  Barry Lopez's book Crow and Weasel that says,"sometimes people need stories more than they need food". I believe that our stories are our way to connect from the heart and that that is what makes them food for our souls. Writers who tell their stories with heart and integrity have inspired my life in many ways and now I am so proud I have the chance to share my story in the same way. 

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