This month’s spotlight is on Carole Ramsay, author of fiction, non-fiction, and screenplays.
Five Key Words that Define You as a Writer
Where are you from and What is your educational/professional background?
I am from the Boston area originally, have lived outside of Denver for 34 years and have a home in SJC. This year, 2021, we are pleased to have made our Florida home our primary residence.
Education & professional background:
I have three Master’s degrees. What I did professionally is harder to explain. I had a lucrative and successful career in sales before my children were born. We live in the U.S. though and not in a more evolved society, so when I took a year to be with each of my children, I found that I had no career to go back to. While Americans tend to see this as making sense, Europeans generally find it, as I did, barbaric. Nonetheless, always the entrepreneur and massively hard-worker, I went back to school. I earned the first two Master’s degrees at the same time from two different universities while I was raising my two children (now I have four) largely by myself. Those courses of studies culminated in a thesis that addressed the questions of: What causes some economies to develop while others don’t, and What causes some conflicts to become violent while others don’t. It turns out, those are inter-related answers and my second career from which I am now retired, focused on implementing that work. I founded the non-profit, The Peace Institute of the Rockies, and the for-profit, Ramsay International, and through these I worked with the UN, governments, and international corporations to increase the long-term success of money meant to expand economic development. In this way, my work helped to decrease poverty while simultaneously decreasing the likelihood that conflict would become violent. I worked primarily in developing nations, but Nevada, Alaska and W. Virginia also consulted with me. It too was a rewarding, successful career, which offered even greater personal reward to boot.
Throughout it all, I also wrote – novels, short stories, screenplays, non-fiction, you name it!
Who and What inspires you as a writer?
My lived experiences are not uncommon within my narrow grouping however they are more than somewhat unusual within the larger population. These have led me to a strong feeling and visual of the better world for which humans were meant. It is this world, in one form or another, that enters into nearly every story I write. Describing it as fully as possible tends to be my inspiration.
What is your goal as a writer for this year? How do you intend to accomplish it?
I would like to get an agent again and possibly a traditional publisher for my novels. For my screenplays, getting a literary manager and/or agent is this year’s goal. To achieve these goals I am doing three things: attending more conferences and pitch fests, working as always on the writing itself, and trying to self-produce a short of one of my screenplays.
An alternative goal includes exploring the possibility of a writer’s co-op press within Pine Island Writers. We have a truly shocking amount of talent in this circle of lovely folks. Working together instead of alone is always a joy in my life.
When do you feel you are you most creative?
It has always been morning for me, but I am having some success shifting that to the afternoon and evening now since my life is demanding that of me at this time.
Why did you start writing? How long have you been writing?
I started writing for the same reason all writers write – because they can’t not. Like ballet dancers, if we could conceive of a life doing anything else, we would do that. After all, these aren’t super fun or healthy careers and these passions are such that they have us instead of the other way ‘round.
I wrote my first story, about a bear, at three years old. I still have the first book I wrote and illustrated when I was seven. That one was about a martian, Mary Martian. I am 54 so that is 50+ years of honing this craft that loves me. This art form, so consuming, has also caused me to work as an editor and publisher as well as a writer.
Links to your website/social media?