Whoosh! Issue 85 - January 2004

By Amy Murphy
Content © 2004 held by author
WHOOSH! Edition © (c) 2004 held by WHOOSH
7305 words

Brigid's Head
Brigid's Stories



Brigid Doyle is a Xena: Warrior Princess fan fiction writer.

Brigid's Head

Why did you start writing?

I started writing when I was in third grade. I loved to put words together to form pictures and I used to make up stories in my head all the time. My mom read to me from the time I was a toddler and from that I just started making up my own stories and actually seeing them come to life. At three I had an entire story about a zoo that existed in the stairwell of our apartment and I would tell it to anyone willing to listen. It lasted until a friend of my dad's told me one of the lions escaped, after that I moved on to pirates that lived in the attic and an entire tribe of Indians that lived under my bed. But I put pen to paper when I was eight and impressed my third grade teacher who inspired me to be creative. By the time I was a teeny-bopped, I was penning the beginnings of fan fiction for my favorite show at the time, Here Come the Brides. I actually still have all the hand written copies on school tablet paper. It really ate up time in study hall.

If you had to do it all over, would you be a bard?

Do you mean would I choose writing as a profession? I think not. I like it as a hobby, a way to escape all the pressures of the world. It's like pretending for grownups.

Would you write?

I would write no matter what I had chosen to do with my life. In my profession I do a lot of writing, but rarely is it for myself or for pleasure.

Give us a brief day in the life of Brigid?

Up early, between 6 and 6:30 in order to be at school before 7:45 a.m. Have to get the kids to their schools by 8:00. Did I mention I drive a school bus in addition to being Director of Education for two small private schools? That is the beginning of the day. I take 48 children to 7 different schools in a rather large yellow vehicle with lots of flashing lights. Then it is back to school and deal with the morning's dilemma's that range from absent staff to lost sneakers, to babies without diapers, to toddlers who like to bite on other toddlers, to parents who do not like rules and refuse to follow them to parents who are upset with the parents who don't like rules…and then I have a cup of coffee and check the mail. Then I am off to my second school where it is usually a repeat of all the above insanity with a bit of a neurotic food service director thrown in for added seasoning.

From there I do city, state and federal reports, take payments, do deposits, take calls and do pre-visits, visit the classrooms and the kids, talk to my staff, usually have at least one group going on some sort of field trip so I am off on my little yellow bus again. By 1 p.m. the administrator arrives and she usually has two or three (hundred) things for me to do before I pick up the kids and return them to their respective schools, put the bus away and get ready for the 4:00 insanity. 4 P.M.! AHHHHHH! That's when most of the staff goes home and most of the kids DON'T. So we move heaven and earth to be sure everyone is where they need to be. Then it is deal with all the afternoon craziness, parents, kids, staff…payments, administrator, and pretty much the same old same old. By 6 p.m., I am closing shop, providing the printer has cooperated and printed all the day's reports without shutting down 10 or 20 times. Home to my mom and my puppies for supper and a bit of relaxation before I get ready to do it all again.

How do you handle stress?

Stress?? Me, stress??? Would you believe I have a lot of broken pencils in my desk? But seriously, I find that writing relaxes me and I have a secluded woodland get-away where I can commune with nature, take long relaxing walks and just listen to the pine trees grow.

Years from now, how would you want to be remembered?

That I made a difference, that something I did or someone I touched somehow made the world a better place.

What is your pet peeve?

When people park in areas that are clearly designated by 2 foot high NO PARKING signs!

Who is Brigid?

Brigid is my alter ego, the person who isn't afraid to say what she feels or take a chance with something she creates. I quietly take the back seat so that others can be in the forefront. That sounds a bit strange considering my occupation, but personally I am not the same person I am professionally. I don't do a lot of socializing, being painfully shy since a tragic event in my childhood. I like dogs and penguins and birdhouses and gardens and writing, of course. James Joyce once said that a successful writer is a failed conversationalist. I guess that is true of me.

Do fans expect too much from stars?

Perhaps they do. They expect them to share too much of their personal lives and thereby take away a lot of personal joy for them. It is hard for them to do the things we take for granted. I once saw a star discussing her child's birthday party and saying how the photographers kept pestering and the children were afraid. I think we need to back off a bit.

What are your feelings on censorship?

A loaded question. After seeing some of the things that children are exposed to on television and radio I have to say that I do believe there is a need for some sort of censorship. We, as adults, do have the freedom to choose and if we make bad choices we only have ourselves to blame. Children should not be subject to some of the things adults choose and unfortunately there are many adults who lack the maturity to shield children from these things. Innocence does not last very long and children so need that time that the lack of censorship is taking away from them.

If you can cure one disease, what would it be and why?

I would cure cancer, all kinds. If I did my dad would still be here and my mom would still have her true love, her soul mate, and her light. He's been gone for one year and my mom is still hurting every minute of every day. In curing his illness, I could also mend her broken heart.

Do you believe in capital punishment? Why?

I have to say that yes I do believe there should be radical punishment for radical crime. Human beings have such an incredible ability to inflict so much pain on other human beings. They use excuses and crutches to justify this; they pay lawyers to find reasons to save them yet no one saved the victim of their crime or the victims their crime left behind. It is sad and it is cruel, but something needs to be done. There are times when it is not in the best interest of society, but in cases such as Timothy McVey who had absolutely no remorse for the pain he inflicted, I have to agree with American jurisprudence.

What is the most sensitive part on your body?

Well, I've broken my ankles several times, but I'd have to say that my heart is the most sensitive part of my body.

What do you see yourself doing in the future? Future projects?

In the future I see myself as administrator of my school, finally having the chance to make the decisions without going through h*** to get an answer. As far as writing goes, I will always be writing something. If it isn't prose, it will be poetry. It's like a force I cannot control. I have one very long piece I am considering submitting for publication. It needs a lot of editing. I'd love to write children's books as well.

How do you handle depression?

Not very well, I'm sad to say. When I am down I am really, really down. I've lost a lot of friends because of it. Luckily it doesn't happen very often and usually it is because of something that I have done or a mistake that I have made that I can't forgive myself for. I am harder on myself than any critic or supervisor could ever be.

What was the hardest thing you ever did?

I gave the eulogy at my dad's funeral. It was heart wrenching but I had to do it or I would never forgive myself.

What was the easiest?

Learning to use the computer!

What advice can you give to future writers?


What has the show Xena meant to you?

It helped me to see that it's okay to be strong and stand up for yourself. It also helped to teach me that in doing so you needn't be harsh or cruel to others. It taught me that I have many friends who care deeply about me and that I care about them in return. It brought me from a darkness I had surrounded myself in to a light I don't think I ever believed existed. I learned to take a chance. I learned to risk and to take a leap of faith. I learned that my faith had never really left me, but only stood back waiting for my return. It touched me deeply in ways I have no words to describe.

How do you feel about its end?

Hated it, yep hated it 100%. I watched for six years and never cried once until that gawdawful ending! What in Tartarus were they thinking?!?!?? Killing her??? Leaving only one to go on, leaving so much unfinished and unsolved. The episode itself was powerful and well done, the acting superb, but the story line was dreadful. It left me with a feeling of all that…all they survived…for this????? BUT in my little writer's mind the wheels have turned and devised a new ending, a better ending…a peaceful ending…do I feel a story coming on?

What are your dreams? Hopes? Wishes?

I dream of being happy with a family of my own and a husband that loves me dearly. Seems silly I know and trite as well, but my parents had that and I'd love to feel just once that I was that special to someone. I hope not to live my life alone and to always be a part of something worthwhile. I wish that I find the courage, the peace, and the wisdom to find these things.

Who do you trust?

For a long time I trusted no one and nothing…now I trust myself and my own judgement.

What would you say every writer needs?

I would say that every writer needs a place where their imagination can run wild and of course they do need that imagination. A writer needs time and space and peace of mind to create what is in their heart, but mostly a writer needs people who are interested in what they have written and continue to read every word. Basically a writer needs readers, simple but true.

Do you believe in prayer? Explain.

Very much so…I was away from my faith, as I mentioned before…for a very long time. I was angry with everyone and everything. I thought that even God had turned away from me. In reality I turned from God and let anger consume me. It may sound corny but watching Xena brought me back. Some of the episodes exhibited so much faith that I could not help being overwhelmed by it. After watching 'Forgiven' I swallowed my pride and returned to my religion. While I don't consider myself preachy, I do practice my faith. I pray a lot and I realize that the answer cannot always be yes, but it will always be what is best.

How do you feel about subtext?

The other loaded question…subtext is the implicit or metaphorical meaning of something literary. A metaphor, of course, is the use of a term, which literally denotes one kind of object or idea but is used to connote a likeness or analogy. It is usually quite subtle and glides quietly beneath what we see before us. Subtext can be what we want it to be since it is more a matter of perception than true vision. We fill in the blanks that a writer or painter leaves behind with the ideas and desires we have for the piece. It is something left purely up to the individual. Do I think it existed on Xena? I do believe it did. Did I perceive it to be a romantic subtext? No I did not. I saw a beautiful and everlasting friendship that went far beyond the boundaries of truth and knowledge. Something ethereal while at the same time stronger that any force put against it.

What makes your best friend your best friend?

My best friend has stuck beside me through some rough times over the last 22 years, just as I have always been there for her. We don't always agree and we've had some nasty arguments, but in the end we are still friends. She isn't afraid to hug me when I am feeling lost or to knock some sense into me when I get so down I refuse to get up. She laughs with me and cries with me. She teases me and doesn't share my zest for the warrior princess at all. It's hard to say what makes a friendship, when we are so very different yet here we are after all these years still holding on to this wonderful bond. About a week ago she was ranting about how one of her friends went away without a cell phone and that she loaned him hers. She told him it was too dangerous to travel without one. I asked if she yelled at him. She was appalled! "No," she said, "he's my friend. I wouldn't yell at him." I just stared for a bit, then said, "well, you yell at me." She smiled, laughed a little and said, "that's different…you're family." That's what it is…after all this time…we're family.

Could you or have you ever experienced, you or someone else reading one of your stories aloud in the public? What did / would you feel?

I guess it would depend on the circumstances. If someone were reading it because they enjoyed the story I would be honored to have my work read. However if someone was heckling or poking fun, I imagine I would be very hurt.

What's the most romantic thing anyone has done for you?

Romantic??? I'll get back to you when it happens…once someone asked me why I don't write 'steamy' love novels…the answer is quite simple. You write about what you know and honey, I ain't never been 'steamed'.

What theme would you like to tackle in your next work?

Are we talking fan fiction or original work? Fan fiction I am certainly considering writing my version of the 'end'. I also have a story in the works that is sort of 'Stephen King-ish' with a bit of Psycho thrown it. I love a mystery! There is also a FIN resolution gathering in the back of my brain that just will not let me rest.

What was the last thing that made you smile recently?

An e-mail from my crazy cousin with an invitation to 'do the town'. She knows how timid I am about that but manages to get me out there anyway and never ever fails to get me laughing hysterically.

What made you angry?

The way young people treat older people. I mean teens and seniors. It is appalling how my own nephew speaks to my mother. It infuriates me!

You now have absolute authority over the world. Omnipotent in all areas. (Congratulations) What's your first move?

To do away with every cigarette, tobacco product and tobacco manufacturer, including every tobacco plant in the entire world for good. Smoking is a disgusting habit. Of course this would only be the FIRST move I'd make…there would be others……………….

How would you categorize your best writing, and give the URL's for them if posted?

I really don't think I can categorize my best writing. I constantly try to improve or find more innovative ways to describe what I want my stories to say. My favorite peace would have to be Halfway to My Heart. It was a trial to finish, but I completed it and although it started out as a uber piece, somewhere it took on it's own life. I poured a lot into that.

What stupid thing did you do as a teen?

The most stupid thing I did as a teen was nothing. I did nothing. I crawled into a little box and stayed there. I was terrified of everyone and everything and missed the best years of my life. I never went to a dance or a prom or even a silly game. I was so self conscious about everything that I withdrew like a caterpillar, but never emerged like a butterfly. It is my biggest regret and the one time in my life I wish I could have again. Not that I want to go wild or be wild, but to have the opportunity to stand up for myself and be who I wanted to be. If I knew then what I know now…

What, if anything, can stop you writing, if only for a while?

Mostly it is when my head falls against the keyboard due to total exhaustion! But a lot of distractions will pull me away since my concentration gets off track.

In your opinion, do you fit your astrological sign?

Absolutely!! I am a moonchild, born on July 6th. I am ruled by the lunar cycle and wax and wane with the lesser sun. I take great pleasure in the comforts of home and family, being naturally domestic and maternal in my nurturing. Tradition plays a great part of my life and a good time can me nothing more that trading memories around the kitchen table with family members. I get very emotional and most of the time wear my heart on my sleeve. I can get moody and retreat into my Crabby shell where all the forces of Hercules AND Xena cannot pry me free. I am the first to laugh and the first to cry, tenacious in holding on to what I love even it means losing a limb before letting go. I am strong-willed, kind and gentle but will stop at nothing to protect my home and my loved ones.

What to you is the worst feeling in the world?

Loneliness, that empty ache that nothing fills. It's a darkness that light cannot permeate and a wall no weapon can pierce. It isn't the same as being alone, for being alone can be peaceful and rejuvenating. But loneliness strips away everything and leaves you naked to the elements of fear, hate, cold, and pain. There is nothing between your soul and terrors that hope to consume it.

The best feeling in the world?

Knowing with all your heart that someone loves and cares about you. I don't even think it is the loving, but the knowledge that the love exists. It's like a warm coating that slowly engulfs your entire self, inside and out. It's a shield that protects you from harm and a badge of courage that pushes you toward goals you barely knew existed.

Favorite song of the moment?

"There You'll Be" by Faith Hill

What is the first thing you think of in the morning?

'I wonder who called off sick today…'

Is there one part of the writing process where you usually get stuck? What have you tried to change that, successful or not?

I get stuck when I can't find the right word to describe what is happening. I can go for hours or days trying to find the word I need. I also get stuck at transitions in the story line and have to keep re-reading in order to get back on track. I don't really know how to change this. It is just a part of the process. I am a bit of a perfectionist and nothing will work until I find that perfect descriptive term.

What does gossip mean to you?

I really hate gossip and stay away from it most of the time. Unfortunately, it is everywhere like some crazy vine that just keeps creeping over all of us. I half listen and then forget it.

Are people easily swayed by 'hearsay'?

Yes, I believe they are much too easily swayed by hearsay. People don't want to know what really happened and rarely listen beyond the 'hearsay'. What I tell my students and my staff is that there are THREE sides to everything….his/her side…his/her side and somewhere right down the middle is the right side…a combination of everything.

What are your feelings about people who use others for personal gain?

People? I think that term is used rather loosely here. A being that uses others for their own gain is usually called a parasite if I am not mistaken. I think that might say just about enough about what I think about them.

What is a hypocrite?

A hypocrite is one of those people who tell you 'do what I say, not what I do'. They usually make an awful lot of rules but find themselves to be above following any of them. They say things like I am in charge I do as I please. Yep, just because you have the right to do something, doesn't make it the right thing to do.

What kind of doughnut do you eat?

I rarely eat any doughnuts but Bavarian Cream is my ultimate favorite. I like just plain old plain doughnuts too.

Does the best writing flow for you, or does it come from rewrites?

It sort of swings back and forth, sometimes I just get on a roll and there is no stopping the process. Other times I read over what I did a week or a month ago and find myself thinking, 'hmmm, this could have gone this way' or 'geez! Does that sound stupid!'. Then of course the flow starts again and takes me on a rewrite roll.

Which part of writing do you enjoy most and why?

Research! I love research! I love to track down places and names and look at old maps and search for answers to questions. I have to say that sometimes I get so involved in that aspect of the writing I forget about what I am doing and just fall into the beauty of the search.

How often do you think about a piece when you're working on it and when do you think about it?

If I am really into the story I usually can't get it out of my head. I think about it on the way to work, and any time I am driving anywhere alone. Any time it is quiet or my mind has nothing to occupy it, the story floods in and takes up every ounce of mind-space. I fall asleep thinking about it and wake up with the same thought. I make notes on all kinds of things; napkins, envelopes, brochures, business cards, or any bit of paper I have at the moment.

When someone walks into your bedroom, what are the first 5 things that they're likely to notice?

Probably my penguin collection, my Xena calendar, and my anterior room, which was a closet at one time but was converted into a great little TV/computer room.

Do you feel in control of your writing, or do your inspiration or characters carry you away?

I do feel in control of my writing. I think that is why it is such a relaxation for me. Most of life is out of control, things happen and we have to deal with them or we just have to accept what is and learn to live with it. In my writing I make the choices, the decisions and ultimately the resolution for the characters and their situations. That makes me sound like a real control freak, doesn't it? I do try to make the stories believable and entertaining as well. It's not all a matter of control, just a matter of fun.

If you consider yourself to have a muse, what exactly do you mean?

I hear a lot of writers refer to their muse and some of my, (shall I call them fans?), ask if mine is speaking to me but I really never thought about it. To me there is just this part of my brain that is full of stories, like a giant library. Every once in a while I happen upon one of the stories and it just bangs around in my head until I put it on paper…er screen…keyboard…well, at least write it down.

Tell the truth--are you your favorite writer, or in your own top five? Why or why not?

I really don't consider myself that good, nor in the same class as some of my favorites. I am an amateur. I do like what I do, but there are others that do it so much better.

Would the world be a better place if women ran it or would it be basically the same?

IF women ran the world? You mean we don't???? Men are the hunters, the gatherers, and the great protectors and it is our job, as women, to make them believe that. I believe that the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world, don't you? Seriously, it would certainly be a different world, hopefully one that would be better as well.

What is your favorite spot where you live now?

My favorite spot is anyplace that I am surrounded by family and good friends involved in good conversation and feeling totally safe.

What books are you reading now? What about it/them is holding your attention?

I just read 'A Fly Went By' one of my ultimate favorites….oh, you mean adult literature, right? You have to realize I read a LOT of children's books and hope to get my hands on my cousin's copies of Harry Potter very soon. Right now I am not reading any books, per say, but a lot of contracts, grant proposals, and department of education order forms. Takes up most of my time.

What would your friends say is your worst trait?

I am a terrible procrastinator, in fact they call me the Queen of Procrastination.

Do you type with your fingers on the 'right' keys?

By all means!

What is the longest any plant in your home has been with you?

We have this ivy plant that is in the window behind the kitchen sink, I don't ever remember it not being there so I'd have to say about twenty five years give or take a few. It was a gift from my brother's girl friend to my mom. Incidentally, he married someone else but the plant is still going strong!

Do you have any particular bedtime rituals (glass of warm milk, etc.) that you follow every night?

Not really, I just fall into bed, then my little white dog crawls up next to the pillow and curls into a little fuzzy ball next to me.

If you find a spider in the bathtub, do you help it out or squish it?

By the time I run out of breath from sprinting away from it, I am sure someone else has rescued the little critter. No one in my house ever kills a spider… no, no, no…very bad luck to kill a spider inside…my granddad used to tell the story of the spider that saved the Infant Jesus. I'm sure it was a legend, be we listened intently and NEVER killed a spider in the house.

What was the last thing you bought that you really didn't need?

A little birdhouse shaped like a teapot with tiny chimes under it, I'll hang it in my apple tree. I love the sounds of the chimes.

Have you ever smoked cigarettes--explain

NEVER! It's just a very expensive, disgusting habit that I had no use for. I was always repulsed by cigarettes and the smell of smoke that lingers on smokers, their cars, their homes, their clothing, their children, their dogs, etc.

Who is your favorite Greek God?

In the Xenaverse? Ares! Absolutely! In mythology, I always liked Athena, so strong and female. I don't picture her as she was portrayed on Xena, vain and bitter. She, to me, was always the wisdom and power of woman personified.

Why do fools fall in love?

Do they? I think maybe it is just the opposite, love makes fools of everyone!

Do you keep a diary and if so what do you call it? If so, what effect has it had on your writing?

Nope, don't keep a diary…. I did a long time ago, but then I was told not to hold on to the things that made you angry or sad…throw them away and start over. I did and my life changed for the better.

How has online writing affected your life and how you see yourself, your goals?

I'd have to say that it has surprised me quite a bit and given me a lot of confidence in my skills. I was always very apprehensive about taking a chance, afraid people would laugh at my ideas…seems to have had much the opposite effect. I am still astounded by the number of e-mails I get in regard to my work.

What skill would you like to have that you don't have now?

I'd like to have more people skills, more understanding of people's feelings and situations. I'd like to be more social, more approachable, to know the right thing to say and when to say it.

Who is your real life hero and why?

I'd have to say mother has always been my hero. She is a tiny lady with a lot of courage and spunk. She handles anything that comes along and uses strength that she finds 'god knows where'. When I was young she always told me 'never underestimate the power of a woman'. I always remember that and never thought there was much I couldn't do if I put my mind to it.

What fan fiction story touched you so much that you still remember it vividly?

The Best in Love, by PeriBear (http://xenafan.com/fiction/content/thebest.html) and All Through the Night by Rebekah ( http://www.bejay.com/cave/stories/fanfic/xenaff/attn.htm)

If you could only choose a single climate with no variation would you prefer it to be sweltering hot or freezing cold?

Two choices????? Ugh! I HATE to be cold, I'd never last in that climate…so I'd have to take sweltering hot. I think I could get used to the heat, but never the cold.

What is the first thing you notice about someone when you meet him or her?

Their voice and mannerisms, not so much what they say but how they say it. It's a language all its own and says far more than words.

Have you ever done something that accidentally caused something really bad to happen to someone?

Yes, but it was many years ago…my younger brother picked up a large knife from the kitchen table at my grandmother's house, he picked it up by the blade. I knew he shouldn't have it and grabbed the handle and pulled. To this day I don't know how he didn't lose all of his little fingers and only managed a tiny cut across his palm. I can still remember the sound of the knife as it swooshed from his hand. It is something I never forget and something he never remembers.

How is $25 well spent?

With me it is usually on some sort of book or school supply item, if not something one of my teachers or students need.

Would you rather live in a sociable suburb, or alone in the deep woods?

Again, only two choices?? Like I mentioned before I am and never have been a social butterfly, but on the other hand I don't care much for being alone in the deep woods. Would you settle for living on the border of town and the woods….my front porch facing the nice social street where I can see and wave to neighbors from the safety of my roost and the back door leading to the woodsy landscape where I can find peace and solitude when I need it?

What literary character did you most identify with as a child?

I always identified with the person who helped others, who somehow saved a situation or a person by some sort of courageous action or self-sacrifice. I never really read books that everyone else read…I was a social outcast even then.

What is the source of your inspiration?

It is always different…sometimes a word or a song or just something I see makes me think of a theme or something that might happen. I think and think about it to the point of obsessing and eventually it becomes a story.

Where do your ideas come from?

I am sure from my very overactive imagination and the need to fill a very over active mind. I can't stand to have nothing to do, my mind has to move constantly. Some ideas are born of experiences that I just turn into other events and some from wishes or dreams that have been in my head for years. Others are deeply buried emotions that seem to sneak out in story form.

What do you find most satisfying about your job?

The challenges it brings and the fact that I find within myself the ability to rise to each.

What are the three things you enjoy most about writing?

Relaxation, escape, entertainment

What were your favorite book, TV show, and movie when you were a teenager and what do you think of them now?

I love a mystery and loved reading any kind. I got hooked on Agatha Christie stories as well as the series of mysteries about the Partridge Family (all of which I still have)…of course we are talking about a period of at least ten years and my tastes changed rapidly between 13 and 20. As far as TV shows went, of course it was the Partridge Family but later my taste went to Remington Steele, Matt Houston, Simon and Simon, MacGyver and Beauty and the Beast. Lots of changes there. My favorite movie of all time is The Sound of Music, which I've probably seen at least 25 times in the theater. I also love To Kill a Mockingbird and An Affair to Remember.

What's your idea of a perfect world?

In a perfect world kids don't face the terrors that await them today. In a perfect world we, as adults, still protect their innocence and keep them safe from the harm we have in recent years felt it is harmless to expose them to. They are our greatest natural resource and our last best hope for the future. In a perfect world, we would not have forgotten that.

How real is your fiction to you?

Only as real as my imagination, it is a place to escape all the stress and insanity of the world…but in the end it is only fiction. I love being there, love living it, but I know when to come 'home'.

What Disney character do you most identify with and why?

Probably Goofy because I am big and schelpie and no one really knows what to make of me or just what the heck I am supposed to be.

Who do you read for inspiration?

Poetry…Thoreau, e. e. cummings, Dylan Thomas, Frost and others

What's your favorite website?

You mean other than WHOOSH???? My first stopping place is always MaryD's site (a href=http://ausxip.com target="_blank">ausxio.com).

When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?

Actually I wanted to be a teenager and a farmer because I wanted to have horses. Later I decided that I wanted to be a teacher…I was probably about 10 or 12 by then and realized teenager-dom was not quite what it was cracked up to be (GOD!!! The 60's were a scary time!!!!!!). I hung on to that dream for quite a while and almost missed the opportunity to follow it, but hey HERE I AM!!

What are the limits in sacrifices for true love?

I am not quite sure what you mean by true love. Is there such a thing, especially in today's world? So many people that I have known for so very long (and thought…hey, now that is LOVE) have gone their separate ways. I see families fall apart on a day to day basis. I deal with women that have three or four children by three or four different fathers. I see teens as young as 14 with newborns in their arms. All of these people really thought they truly loved someone and that someone truly loved them back. Actually it terrifies me because I cannot but wonder if love is near extinction in the rush to merely satiate physical needs. How low we have sunk. I am afraid this question is beyond my power to answer.

If you could interview your favorite author, what questions would you ask? And, WHY?

I'd want to know how many times he was rejected before he actually sold a story and what made him keep going. I'd ask how long it takes to complete a story and if he ever scares himself with his plots.

What makes a great kisser?

I'm afraid I have no idea.

What have you learned from your animals?

Always greet the people you love like you haven't seen them in years and with so much exuberance that you take their breath away.

Does our society glorify violence to the point we have become desensitized to it and the consequences?

ABSOLUTELY!! And it is getting worse every day.

What is your motto?

Live and let live, to each his own.

What do you think we take too seriously as writers?

Criticism from those who don't care for our genre of story telling.

What questions should I have asked? Then answer them

Can't think of a one…..pretty much covered the whole 'nine yards'.

Brigid's Stories

Brigid's address: LPDir@aol.com

Brigid's site: http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507

Between the Times Series

Lesson 1 - Swords are NOT Toys
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/betweenthetimes1swords.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/b/betweenthetimes1.html
Gabrielle learns why Xena isn't likely to teach her how to use a sword, set after DREAMWORKER

Lesson 2 - Staying Put
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/betweenthetimes2stayingput.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/b/betweenthetimes2.html
Cyrene steps in to help solve a crisis between Xena and a very young and exasperating Gabrielle

Lesson 3 - Following Directions, Spoken or Unspoken
Gabrielle sets off to deliver a message to a young Amazon but soon finds herself in a bit of trouble when she 'forgets' to stay on the trail

Lesson 4 - Don't Leave the Bard Behind
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/betweenthetimes4dontleavethebardbehind.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/b/betweenthetimes4.html
Xena learns the art of patience after leaving a very ill Gabrielle alone

Lesson 5- Lessons of Titanic Proportion
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/betweenthetimes5lessonsoftitanicproportion.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/b/betweenthetimes5.html
Set after THE TITANS, Xena ponders her use of discipline when her temper gets the best of her

Lesson 6 - One to Grow On
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/onetogrowon.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfic14/betweenthetimes.html
Xena introduces Gabrielle to the family tradition of celebrating birthdays

Miscellaneous Stories

Another Way
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/anotherway.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/a/anotherway.html
Set after MATERNAL INSTINCTS, Xena is summoned to a strange town by an even stranger woman in order to save the one she seeks to destroy.

A Tale of Two Mothers
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/taleof2mos.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/t/taleoftwomothers.html
Two women meet and share their tales of the daughters they miss dearly.

Empty Promises
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/emptypromises.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/e/empty_promises.html
Xena and Gabrielle attempt to find the identity of a young woman whose body they find outside of a very apathetic village.

Entwined Destiny
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/entwineddestiny.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/e/entwineddestiny.html
On a dark night a young pirate and a small child cross paths in a story of what might have been

From The Ashes of Disaster
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/fromtheashes.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/f/fromtheashes.html
Set after SACRIFICE 2, the tale of Gabrielle's journey back to the realm of the living

Halfway To My Heart
An original story set in the 1950's of half sister's thrown together by tragedy and pulled closer by an evil that threatens to follow them forever.

A tale of what happened to a curious teen who followed a warrior and failed to follow orders.

Mine...to Have and to Hold
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/mine.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/m/minetohave.html
Gabrielle is trapped in a cave after a mine accident. She and a group of miners are led to the surface by a stranger, while Xena, Toris and an odd group of searchers try to reach them from the surface. Unfortunately both groups must face a cursed chamber of horrors in order to make it to safety.

No Matter What Others May Think
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/nomatter.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/n/nomatterwhat.html
A short piece about how love can take many forms

Pieces of Darkness
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/piecesofdarkness.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/p/piecesofdarkness.html
Xena remembers and relives the punishment she put Gabrielle through at the beginning of BITTER SUITE, while Gabrielle seems to have forgotten the entire incident.

Poetic Justice
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/poeticjustice.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/p/poeticjustice.html
Set after FORGIVEN, Xena and Gabrielle cross paths with Tara who seems to have attracted a little 'side-kick' of her own.

Seasons of Sunset
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/seasonsofsunset.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/s/seasonsofsunset.html
Gabrielle's merriment with a sudden snowfall leads Xena into the play and then turns to tragedy as both lives are threatened by the forces of nature. When an elderly woman rescues both, Xena and the matron fight to save the bard's life before illness can claim her.

Stolen Moments
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/stolenmoments.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfic14/stolenmoments.html
Set after WHO'S GURKAN?. Gabrielle returns to her home to help her sister and niece move to the city. Xena finds a box of memories and soon shares a very special letter with her young friend.

Strength of Vision
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/strengthofvision.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/s/strengthofvision.html
The battle for life and the strength of a mother's love

The Things of Youth
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/tofyou.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/t/thingsofyouth.html
Hercules, Iolaus, Xena and Gabrielle fall victim to a strange curse after trying to help Salmoneus escape from one of his latest 'schemes'.

Thicker Than Water
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/thickerthanwater.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfiction/t/thickerthanwater.html
Xena, Toris and Lyceus travel from Amphipolis to their uncle's farm and encounter the worst of predators on their return

Time After Time
http://www.geocities.com/bdoyle18507/timeaftertime.html or http://ausxip.com/fanfic13/timeaftertime.html
Eve and Gabrielle fall victim to an unspoken wish, leaving Xena to search for answers and solutions to more that she is willing to handle…set between MOTHERHOOD and COMING HOME.


Thanks to Kamouraskan for the beta.


L. J. Maas and Murphy Wilson [Amy Murphy].One Step Beyond ... Uber, That Is. WHOOSH #49 (October 2000)

The "Inside the Head of..." series in Whoosh various issues


Amy Murphy Amy Murphy
Amy Murphy resides in Indiana, and is an avid reader of Xena: Warrior Princess Fan Fiction. If it exists in the Xenaverse, chances are she has read it! Murphy has also tried her hand at writing fan fiction, turning out two very nice pieces that reside on a couple of web sites throughout the Xenaverse.

Favorite episode: IS THERE A DOCTOR IN THE HOUSE (24/124)
Favorite line: "I Have Many Skills" --various episodes
First episode seen: TITANS (07/107)
Least favorite episode: LYRE, LYRE HEARTS ON FIRE (100/510)



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