Saturday, November 9, 2013

Interview With a Special Lady

Greetings, everyone! I am very excited to announce the guest appearance of Author Sharon C. Williams. I had the pleasure of "meeting" Sharon through a Facebook page, and we became instant friends. She is a very talented writer, has a wonderful sense of humor, and is one of the most awesome people I have ever come across. I am proud to call her my friend.  :) (And the green is in honor of Jasper!)

So now, without further hesitation, please allow me to let you get to know Sharon Williams as well.....

Okay, so let's get started:

What first inspired you to start writing?

In 2009 my husband told a friend that he felt I wrote well. Upon her telling me, it got me thinking on the subject. A story started to form in my head. I
’d read enough times for one to write on what one knows.

I have eight birds. This alone has spurred a few short stories, but I focused on my Amazon parrot, Jasper. In the fall of that same year, I had two surgeries within weeks of each other. Being stuck in bed for a few weeks, I started to pen out my first book.

If you could have a glass of Pepsi with any one famous person, (actor, writer, President, etc.), who would it be and why?

Just one? That is hard. I would have to choose Agatha Christie. I have all her books minus the ones that are no longer in print. She was a lady who could masterfully weave a story so tight it kept you turning the pages. I would love to talk to her about her profession, and how she penned such amazing stories.

You just had a book released titled "Jasper, Amazon Parrot." Can you tell us about it? 

My first book, “Jasper, Amazon Parrot: A Rainforest Adventure”, was released on September 7th of this year.  The premise of book is about a young Amazon parrot named Jasper who is being raised in the rainforest. Along for the ride is his brother, Willie, and their friend, Charlie, who is a Spider Monkey. 

They explore their home together as they encounter mischief and danger. Along the way, Jasper learns about some life lessons important to the young parrot and his brother.

It's a children's chapter book that falls in the genre of adventure for children in the age groups of 7-9 years of age.

How are things going with the book since its release?

Things are going pretty good, but at a chaotic pace. For once the book was released, it’s been go, go, go. Even though my book was picked up by a publisher, there is still much work to be done. The economy we all know what it looks like, and how it affects businesses. Marketing and promoting my book is not something publishers can do like they used to in the past.

I have had three online interviews, and have a couple more to go. Two book signing opportunities have fallen into my lap, and I’ve been researching how to get those done properly. I have a shot at appearing at the local library. It is non-stop. One has to keep the foot on the pedal when it comes to one's book, and any success you hope to gain from it.

I have received some really nice reviews from people that have really made me smile. They made me realize that what I was trying to accomplish from writing this book at least with these people had been done.  While sales are doing well, and things are picking up, I have a long way to go, but will definitely give it a good try.

The real Jasper!

What is one piece of advice you would give to young aspiring authors?

One piece of advice? Write on what you know even if it's just one sentence. The beauty is wrapping a book around that one bit of knowledge. It's okay to write outside the box. Heck, I'm wrapping up a novelette that is the genre of paranormal which I had no clue on how or what to write about. It is based on a storm door stuck in a tree. I might not know paranormal but I know about storm doors and what they look like. When I write about something I know and am passionate about, it is a work of love. The pages fly by for me when this happens, and before I know it, I am typing the end.  It's not work at all.

What do you feel is the most difficult part of the writing process from start to publish?

For me, it’s editing. It is a curse word in my vocabulary when it comes to writing. There are people who are meant to be editors, but I am not one of those people. I would rather just sit down, and write to my heart's content, knowing I have an editor in my arsenal that will look at my work and make it into a gem.  Motivation and support from people around you is a big plus in anyone's corner as well.  If you don’t have support from your family or friends, it’s a long road to achieving your dreams.

Do you feel that traditional publishing is fading away due to the craze of self-publishing?

I feel that traditional publishers need to embrace this form of publishing. Self-publishing is here to stay.

I have works that have been published with both options.  However, people like myself will always be around. Those who love going into a book store, as hours tick away, are oblivious to us. I love the feel of a book in my hand. I want to be able to turn a real page, and inhale the essence that is a real book.

I do have a tablet, but my preference will always be a real book. For the record the tablet was given to me. So long as there are people like me out there, traditional publishers won't fade away. They may downsize, and be more particular of whom they publish, but to have them no longer be around would be a true injustice to the reader in me.

Are there any special writing habits or traditions you have that you absolutely cannot live without?

I have a pen that a friend bought me for my birthday. I like how it feels in my hand, so I tend to use this pen when I write. My words are done via longhand before ever reaching my computer.  Any paper will do, but I will always write by hand first. I will also have a can of Pepsi sitting nearby, for the most part, depending on what time of day I write.

What Social Media outlets do you use to promote yourself and your work

I have two blogs. One is strictly for reviews of books while the other is for my author brand. Other sites include the following:

Website for reviews:

Sharon Williams

Thank you so much for sharing with us, Sharon. It has been fun, and interesting. 

Y'all be sure to check out Sharon's latest book, Jasper, Amazon Parrot: A Rainforest Adventure and don't forget to follow Sharon on FaceBook and Twitter and Goodreads and more! 

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