When it comes to her literary endeavors, Patricia Bossano found herself questioned, as many who pursue arts full-time are.
“My mom had always been very business-like,” Bossano said. “It was, ‘How are you going to make a living out of it? Usually authors don’t money money until they die.’”
No matter. Southern California born, South American raised, and now anchored in Fairfield, the married mother of two is doing well, unveiling her fifth novel, “Love & Homegrown Magic,” on Halloween.
“As a ‘folk magic’ practitioner, when I found out there was going to be a blue moon on Halloween night,” it seemed ideal for release, Bossano said in a phone interview earlier this week.
The novel, briefly: “Love is the guiding force, even when Maggie, ever the planner, chooses her mind over her heart. Family comes first and she has always known her purpose is to be a guiding light to her siblings and, one day, her children. But a dash of destiny, and two loves blessed by the stars tug at Maggie’s heartstrings in a way she could never have planned for.”
Bossano based the book somewhat are her experience with her two sisters and mother after her father died in 2015.
“Things started happening to my mom,” she said. “She was, all of a sudden after 50 years of marriage, a widow. And I started noting some changes in her personality and what was going on with her. That’s when the idea for the book came up. She was going back to her youth, it seemed, and I started figuring out how we felt about that and the philosophical journeys dealing with an aging parent. It was comical and at the same time, infuriating.”
The story “was altered a bit and became more of an ancestral cleanse to me,” Bossano said. “I think I’ve done a pretty good job of portraying these women.”
“Love & Homegrown Magic” follows “Faery Sight,” “Cradle Gift,” “Nahia,” and “Seven Ghostly Spins: A brush with the supernatural.”
Bossano has created a niche for her “philosophical fantasy novels,” which, she explained, “is when you put the characters of your book in situations that force them to learn about themselves and grow from the experiences that they have. That’s a way that I think is the way we all go through life. We have experiences and come out with who we are from what life throws at us.”
Though some of the characters’ situations “are slightly unrealistic in a way” — some may cast spells or curses — “when they do these things, they are growing, they are making choices. I think that is when the ‘philosophy’ part comes into play. That’s what I’m aiming to do to illustrate the character growth.”
Bossano started her writing with “Faery Sight,” though it was started in 1996 but went unpublished until 2009.
“I wrote it the year my son was born and, of course, when you’ve got two little kids, you can’t devote the time …so the book went into a drawer for years.”
Though fully-confident in her writing, Bossano’s wise enough to hire an editor.
“I don’t trust myself with the technical stuff,” she said. “Working with multiple editors over the years has dramatically improved my writing process and writing capability.”
Though “there are quite a few men who have ready my books and enjoy them, I think that I write for women,” Bossano said. “I write for that worldwide sisterhood. I think the common thread in all my books is the relationships between women and family, especially with ‘Love & Homegrown Magic’ and ‘Faery Sight.’”
While never straying far from writing, Bossano has held several jobs as a translator. Born in Southern California, her father decided to return to his native South America when Bossano was 3. He gave the family the ultimatum of staying in Southern California without him or going with him back to his native Ecuador.
“I was too young to know what was happening. I didn’t find out what went down until I was in my 20s,” says Bossano, who spent seventh grade in Colorado learning English before returning back to South America. She came back to the states for good at 18.
Bossano appreciated living in a remote location “after the fact.” No cell phones. Not running water. Not even electricity.
“My first phone was a box with a crank that hung in our dining room,” Bossano said.
“We were so far away, people couldn’t visit us,” she continued. “Our friends didn’t have cars and their parents wouldn’t let them ride the bus to see us. Things were completely different. I grew up climbing trees and mountains. I didn’t appreciate it until I was an adult.”
Bossano’s father, a procurement manager for an oil company, died at 84.
“We never wanted for attention from him. He was always a loving father and fun to be around,” Bossano said.
When Bossano returned to the United States, every corporate job she secured was because she was bilingual.
Writing “for sure” is more fun than working a corporate gig. When she started her own translation business, it allowed her to work from home and be with her children. She returned to the corporate world until getting laid off in 2016.
“A big reality check,” Bosssano said.
But an opening for diving into writing.
“I thought I’d skyrocket in one year. It, of course, didn’t happen that way,” Bossano said.
Still, she’s been a full-time author since and can’t be happier. She eagerly awaits her upcoming book release, though a COVID-19 Halloween isn’t the same for a person who loves getting into costumes.
“I was raised Catholic, but I’ve always had this rebellious streak,” Bossano said. “Since 2016, I’ve attended comic conventions. It’s like running off with the circus.”
And this Halloween?
“I was so looking forwarding to participating this year,” said Bossano, lamenting the pandemic. “It was not to be.”
For more about Bossano’s work, visit patriciabossano.com.