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All About: Midlife is the Cat’s Meow by TB Markinson & Miranda MacLeod

Midlife is the Cat's Meow All About the Books Graphic
Midlife is the Cat’s Meow

by TB Markinson & Miranda MacLeod

Released: April 4, 2023

Genre: Paranormal Women’s Fiction

Why this book and why now?

Miranda and I have written many books together and even more on our own. We love to write. Sometimes, though, life stress can negatively impact our creative juices.

This happened after we spent countless hours prepping the launch of the new website for I Heart SapphFic and some grueling editing deadlines.

We both support ourselves by our writing, so taking a long break isn’t workable. Having a roof over our heads, food, health insurance, etc. are pressing needs that only seem to get more expensive.

When Miranda proposed writing Midlife is the Cat’s Meow, I jumped at the chance. It was something different. It was light-hearted and fun. It was exactly the story I needed to pen to fall in love with writing again.

Also, paranormal women’s fiction stars characters who 40+ in age, but still totally kick ass. I needed to channel that belief to tackle all the shit in my life. When Miranda had the love interest show up all in leather on a motorcycle—I fell madly in love with the character of Nora, and with the magic of writing.

What is a significant way your book has changed since either the first draft or the way you thought it would turn out when you first had the inspiration?

When we first started this project, we were reworking a cozy mystery Miranda wrote under a different pen name. That series wasn’t sapphic, and the main character was a woman in her 20s. At first, we had the idea of making tweaks here and there to turn it into a sapphic story with a slightly older main character.

Miranda and I don’t do simple, apparently. We ended up taking the murder mystery from the second book and making it the plot of the first book, added several characters, and basically changed the entire story.

One thing I love about a new project is all the possibilities, so when we started looking over the original story, we kept asking ourselves, “What if we changed this?”

Do your character names have special significance or meaning?

Miranda came up with Tallulah Shipton’s name. Shipton is after Mother Shipton, a famous English witch/prophetess from the 1400s. The name Tallulah means “leaping water.” Her twin’s name, Maya, is also from the Hebrew name “Mayim” which also means water. It ties into their connection with the sea and storms.

I came up with Nora and even though I’m the historian, I didn’t reach back into history for the name. I love classic movies and one of my favorite series is The Thin Man, starring Myrna Loy as Nora. Even from a young age when I didn’t know what crushes were, I majorly crushed on Nora and watched that series a lot. I still do.

Miranda was delighted because the name Nora means “shining light,” which has significance to the island setting and the lighthouse Tallie can see across the cove from her window.

What TV shows influenced the creation of Midlife is the Cat’s Meow?

Oh gosh, where do I start? We both love Bewitched, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Murder She Wrote, and I Love Lucy. The last one has had the biggest impact on all our stories, because we love getting our characters into the types of situations Lucy got herself into.

Miranda has said more than once that I’m like Lucy and she’s Ethel, always bailing me out. Not literally, but who knows. I do get myself into tricky situations, so she might have to bail me out of jail at some point. Which I’m sure will be due to a misunderstanding, my specialty.

I also love British crime shows, including, but not limited to: Vera, Happy Valley, The Fall, Shetland, Luther, Sherlock, Unforgotten, Hinterland, The Bletchley Circle, and Endeavour.

What song does your character put on to start your book launch party?

“I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor. Tallie’s life is turned upside down by her husband, who embezzled money from his company. He skips town, leaving Tallie to pick up the pieces and to raise their daughters on her own. Tallie, though, is a survivor. Also, it’s just a great song that always makes me feel like I can accomplish anything.

Connect with Authors!

Stay in touch with TB by signing up to her author newsletter. She shares about her misadventures in life and about her grumpy cat. You’ll receive A Woman Lost and bonus chapters and a “Tropical Heat,” a short story that lives up to its name.

Stay in touch with Miranda by signing up for her newsletter. See photos of the Sisters of Chaos (her adorable kitties) and hear about the trials and tribulations she has dealing with her garden and managing TB. You’ll receive Telling Lies Online as a gift for subscribing.

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