Author Interview with MaryAnn Diorio


Introducing MaryAnn Diorio!

MaryAnn Diorio is a widely published, award-winning author of fiction for adults and children. Her latest release, Miracle in Milan, is about a young, female auditor who discovers evidence that the man she loves is an embezzler. MaryAnn has also published The Italian Chronicles Trilogy (The Madonna of Pisano, A Siciilian Farewell, and Return to Bella Terra); In Black and White (First Place Winner in Historical Fiction in the 2020 Christian Indie Awards Contest): Surrender to Love (A Novella); and A Christmas Homecoming (A Novella and winner of the Silver Medal in Ebook Fiction in the 2015 Illumination Book Awards Contest).  MaryAnn has also written seven books for children. Her eighth, Penelope Pumpernickel: Dynamic Detective, Book 2 in the Penelope Pumpernickel Series of chapter books for six-to-ten-year-olds, will be released in June.

MaryAnn has been married for 51 years to her awesome husband Dom, a retired ER physician. They are parents to two amazing adult daughters, parents-in-law to a very smart son-in-law, and grandparents to six rambunctious children. When not writing, MaryAnn loves to paint, play the piano and mandolin, and make up silly songs with her grandchildren.

You can learn more about MaryAnn and her writing at

Social Media Links:

Amazon Author Central:

Interview with MaryAnn

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

From the time I was a teen, I loved to write poetry. But I never considered writing as a career, although the thought of becoming a journalist very fleetingly crossed my mind.  But at age 30, I sensed God’s call to write for Him. After much prayer and seeking the Lord’s will, I received clear confirmation that He had, indeed, called me to be a writer.

What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

I would say that, because I am very serious about writing, I have to prepare for my writing day as though I am going to a job at an office. This means I get dressed for work and put on makeup before I go to my in-home writing studio to write. I don’t write in my pajamas. For me, it’s all about mindset.

Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?

I am a people-watcher. As I observe life, certain people and situations leap out at me. I liken this to being quickened by a verse when one reads the Bible. So, ultimately, I would say that the Holy Spirit gives me ideas for what He wants me to write, and He uses my life experiences as grist.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I love to paint in oils and acrylics. I also love to play the piano and mandolin, and to spend time with my husband who is now retired.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your book?

I learned that I am truly a co-laborer with Christ in this writing process. When I finish writing a novel, I often feel as though I did not write it, but that God did. In every novel I’ve written, there have been times when I actually sensed the Holy Spirit’s presence hovering over me, leading me and guiding me when I had no clue as to what I was doing. When I write, I feel as though it is really the Holy Spirit writing the story of His heart through me. As I stay in tune with His heart, He reveals His story to me.  But the key is that I must remain in a position of listening to His heartbeat. If I don’t, I get off track.

Do you have any suggestions to help someone become a better writer? If so, what are they?

___Pray, pray, pray. God will lead you as you write.
___Read, read, read what you wish to write. Read outside your genre. Read both fiction and non-fiction. Broaden your horizons through reading. Reading widely will add depth to the stories you write.
___Mingle with people. Live life to the fullest. Enjoy the moment.  The ivory-tower writer is not in tune with humanity and with what makes people tick. As a novelist, you need to understand human character and that understanding comes by hanging out with people.
___Never, never quit when the going gets rough. And it will get rough. Remember that you are called by God, and one day You will stand before Him to give account for what You did with His call.

What’s your favorite part about being a writer? Research? First Draft? Editing?

Actually writing the story is my favorite part. While I love research, I come most alive when I am “in the zone,” writing the story. It is then that I feel most in tune with God. As I mentioned above, there are times when I actually sense His Holy Spirit hovering over me as I write. As for editing, although I edit quite a bit, I do not enjoy the editing process.

What do you think makes a good story?


__High stakes

__Emotional engagement on the part of the author and the reader (When I cry or laugh as I write, I know that the reader will cry or laugh as she reads.)

__Intimate knowledge of my characters

__A strong, well-defined character arc in which the character changes from believing a lie to believing the truth.

As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?

Early on, I wanted to be an astronomer because I loved looking at the stars on summer nights. Then, when I had my first high school French class as a teen, I decided then and there that I wanted to be a language professor.  I actually did become one and taught for a while before I turned to writing full-time.

What project are you working on now, and how do we find your books?

I am working on a historical novella titled The Captain and Mrs. Vye. It is a story set in the late 19th-century in Cape May, New Jersey, not far from where I live.

Here is the summary: When young widow and innkeeper, Loretta Vye, inherits an oceanfront inn upon her husband’s untimely death, she receives more than she bargained for as whaling boat captain Paul Richards becomes her first tenant and disrupts her dull, boring life.

About the Book

Name of Book: Miracle in Milan

Genre of Book: Contemporary Romantic Suspense

Name of Publisher: TopNotch Press

Release Date: May 8, 2021

Back Cover Blurb:

In Miracle in Milan, MaryAnn Diorio has written another amazing story of romance, intrigue, and suspense. When a young, female auditor discovers evidence that the man she loves is an embezzler, she must choose between ruining him and ruining herself.

Set in the enchanting city of Milan, Italy, with a Mafia boss and Interpol in the mix, this story will keep you riveted to your seat and turning pages into the wee hours of the morning.

Purchase links:

3 thoughts on “Author Interview with MaryAnn Diorio

  1. millaholt says:

    Great interview! I loved reading about your biggest writing quirk, getting dressed and putting on your makeup before sitting down to work on your books. Your tips about becoming a better writer are all spot on. Those are the things which help me as well. Thanks for sharing!


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