Bonnie Olsen is a retired research technician who lives in Chapel Hill with her very patient husband, John. She began writing in 2012 and shortly thereafter began attending the monthly meetings of Writers’ Morning Out. Without the encouragement and friendship she found there, she’d probably still be searching for that story she wants to read that hasn’t been written yet.
WMO: Why do you write?
Bonnie: I started writing to create the book I wanted to read. Simple as that.
WMO: What have you already written/published?
Bonnie: I’ve written way more than I’ve published, but I do have one short story in an anthology called Carolina Crimes: 21 Tales of Need, Greed, and Dirty Deeds; and a shorter piece in another anthology called A Flash of Words: Games. I did win third prize in a short story contest sponsored by the Women’s National Book Association, but you’ll probably never get to read that one, because–if I read the rules correctly–only first prize winners get published. Bummer.
WMO: What are you working on now?
Bonnie: Historical fiction. It’s a series of novels of that follows a character named Lily through much of the twentieth century. When I get back to my desk, Lily is going to pass her entrance interview and quickly become the American Women’s Volunteer Service’s most reliable Homefront ambulance driver. And because Lily knows how to change flats, air filters, and spark plugs, she’ll be assigned an almost new 1941 Chrysler Town and Country Station Wagon. Congratulations, Lily!
WMO: Congratulations, indeed!
And, as a bonus, Bonnie gives us this short excerpt from “Obsessions” published in 21 Tales of Need, Greed, and Dirty Deeds:
…One day I was preparing samples for freeze-down when somebody behind me said, “Hi.”
I didn’t reply. You don’t, when microscopic droplets of saliva could contaminate your work. I am known for my impeccable sterile technique.
I closed my vial and plunged it into its dry ice and ethanol bath. The bath boiled up the way a cup of rum punch boils around a hot poker—but didn’t boil over. I always get my proportions right. Satisfied, I turned…