She’s a retired trainer and speaker in the field of commercial credit. Her first book, “The Art of Business Credit Investigation” was featured in Inc. Magazine. She’s been interviewed by the Associated Press and appeared on news shows in her efforts to protect our water resources.
A Little About
Missing: Lessons from Fiori-Book 2
If you like magical realism, you will love this action-packed fantasy for middle-grade readers. Elle Burton's goal is to rescue her brother. What she discovers is pure evil. The author provides a female role model who strives to overcome her flaws and inspire kids everywhere.
"Missing" blends the magic of a fairytale with the contemporary realities of the world today's youth inhabit. You will discover a new world order through the journey of a young girl who exhibits both compassion and jaw-dropping courage in her quest to fulfill an ancient prophecy. Find yourself caught in the ultimate struggle between good and evil. "Missing" is the second book in the "Lessons from Fiori" series.
Author's Rating: PG for issues dealing with bullying and death.
Ten Things You Should Know
About Peggy M. McAloon
Elle Burton and her family members are named after my grandfather Burton. He was the kindest human being I’ve ever met and years after his death, he managed to send me a message that restored my life after the accident. When the doctors told me I’d never be able to work again, I believed them and gave up for three long years. My seven-year-old made sandwiches for his brother and I for lunch because I could barely move. That’s when I discovered Grandpa’s gift of the “I Can,” which is a gift he gave me when I was a little girl. http://peggyshope4u.com/grandfathers-hope-can/
Since I honored Grandpa, I decided to name one of the Fiorins (winged-creatures from another dimension who protect the children of Earth) after Grandma. Her name was Eunie Mae, so the Fiorin assigned to Elle’s baby brother was given that name. When L. C. Kane produced the first book into an audio, she used an Irish accent for the character of Eunie Mae. I wept when I listened to it for the first time because I’d heard the story of how her grandfather came to this country with his parents during the potato famine, but his parents both died on the boat on the way over. They were from the Kennedy clan. (Yes, those Kennedy’s)
2. Do you write using a keyboard, pen and paper, or both?
That’s an interesting question. I use the keyboard to write the books, always. That said, I had a traumatic brain injury in 1979 which created some rather critical memory issues. I find I must keep copious notes on characters and setting so I don’t reinvent the story with the next book or the next.
From a standpoint of pen and paper: I always make my notes and record research with pen and paper. The entire process of using different storage locations keeps me honest and helps me keep track of things. I’d have to say my writing process probably takes much longer than most authors because I constantly have to check my facts and try to avoid using the same words over and over.
If I’m really tired, the words come out of my mouth backwards after the accident, and I find I am also capable of typing words backwards, so the challenges are perhaps serious to some, but I allow myself to chuckle, fix the errors, and move on.
3. What project are you working on now?
I’m currently working on the third book in Elle Burton’s Lessons from Fiori series, Scrolls of Destiny. (At least that’s the current working title.) It’s the story of the scrolls and how Elle Burton might be the young girl referred to in the ancient prophecy. This book will focus on the warrior, Amadeus, and his challenges in trying to unravel the secrets of the scrolls and ancient tapestries. I’ve had to do some research on location because most of the action will take place in a cave, and I needed to know what things become critical to survival in a cave over a fairly sizeable period of time.
4. What fictional character would you like to have as a best friend (could be your own)?
I’d have to say it would be Elle Burton. I never had a daughter, so I’ve fashioned Elle around my concept of what a daughter of mine would be like. She’s not perfect, but she has the remarkable heart of my grandfather, and that means everything.
5. Do any of your characters sound/look like famous actors in your head?
When I write about Elle’s grandmother Statler, I see and hear Dame Judi Dench in my mind. I also find it fascinating that her mother was from Ireland like my grandmother, and her father was from England. That’s where Grandpa Burton’s family immigrated from in the 1700’s, under an original land grant from the King of England. I adored her in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.
6. What book are you currently reading?
I recently finished “Through My Eyes” which is the journal of Susannah, the sister of Jesus of Nazareth. The book was written by B. R. Houseman, who is a Jewish mother living in the reflection of the Dead Sea. I told her when I finished the book that my reaction when I closed the final page closely resembled the words of one of my favorite songs: “I walked today where Jesus walked.” She brought so much more to the story and surroundings than I’d ever really thought about living here in the states. I’m still thinking about the fact that the family went back to Egypt, a land they had escaped from when Moses led his people away. They were forced back after the Massacre of the Innocents when King Herod ordered all male children aged two and under in Bethlehem to be killed. Until I read this book, I’d never thought about what life must have been like for Joseph and Mary in Egypt.
7. Do you have any furry writing buddies? (Or scaled or feathered?)
We adopted a little blind Shih Tzu named Cosmo several years ago. He constantly amazes me with his heightened senses and ability to traverse the house without bumping into things. He’s even counted his steps across the porch to the steps out to the yard. Two years ago, we rescued another Shih Tzu named Hailey to be his “seeing-eye dog.” She herds him out in the yard to keep him away from the street. They are constantly at my feet or beside me in the chair when I write.
8. Do you keep anything special on your desk when you write?
I wrote the Elle Burton series to inspire kids to kindness and to empower them to stand up to the social injustices they encounter in this world. I have a classic book sitting on my desk, with the pages folded so the interior of the book now spells the word “Hope.” It’s what I pray every child and adult who’s experienced abuse feels after reading this series.
9. Do you have any other creative outlets besides writing?
I love painting with watercolors. It’s my calming pastime now that I’m retired. I belong to a group in Menomonie, WI that meets every Friday afternoon. In the winter months, we go to the Mississippi Gulf Coast to spend time with my brother who is a professor at the University of Southern Miss, and I belong to a watercolor group there that meets every Tuesday morning. One of my favorites is the picture of one of the carriage drivers and his horse at the Grote Market in Antwerp.
10. Who are your 3 favorite characters in your book(s)?
I’ve already mentioned how I adore Elle Burton. She’s the kid I always wanted to be growing up. I had a kind heart, but with the abuse and bullying, I didn’t have her courage.
I also love Jimmy Backus, the class bully. He is fashioned after a true story about a young boy who terrorized my son and Elle works out a way to change his behavior by including him in her class project. (The same class project I convinced the teacher to assign to my son and his nemesis.)
Amadeus is the winged warrior from the dimension of Fiori. He is my adaptation of the heroes of the Bible and their attempts to protect the people. Some people say he’s a fairy. Others refer to the Fiorins as Guardian Angels. I guess we won’t know for sure until the final book of the series is written. Please don’t ask how many books that will be, because at my age I may need to speed up the writing a bit or cut back on the stories in my head.
These characters are in “Elle Burton and the Reflective Portals” and “Missing."