Shunning Sara, discusses her book, her journey as a writer, and self-publishing on Kindle.
DAVID WISEHART: What can you tell us about Shunning Sara?
SHARON SCHENBECK: Sixteen-year-old Sara belongs to a small religious cult that was started by her grandfather. She was being shunned by everyone in her tight-knit community but she didn't know why. There is a paranormal theme throughout the story. There is also a forbidden 'friendship' with her older brother and an 'outsider' girl. It is the age-old conflict between one set of ideals and beliefs against another.
DAVID WISEHART: How do you develop and differentiate your characters?
SHARON SCHENBECK: I like to pull my characters from 'real life' and news stories that interest me. I give them problems and hurdles they need to overcome. The characters progress as the story finds its own path. Sometimes it is as much a surprise to me as to what happens on their journey.
DAVID WISEHART: Who do you imagine is your ideal reader?
SHARON SCHENBECK: Young adults and older readers would enjoy my novels. My main characters are usually in their teens and twenties because it is the age of self discovery. There is a lot of angst and drama that goes along with characters in that age range.
DAVID WISEHART: What was your journey as a writer?
SHARON SCHENBECK: I've always kept a daily journal. It was a natural process to 'imagine' what someone else would do in certain situations.
DAVID WISEHART: What is your writing process?
SHARON SCHENBECK: I get comfortable with my laptop and follow my storybook characters around. I write down what they say and do. Its a lot of fun and I am surprised every day at the situations and circumstances that surround my characters. Their personalities literally come to life in front of my eyes!
DAVID WISEHART: What authors most inspire you?
SHARON SCHENBECK: Robert Parker made writing seem effortless. He was a joy to read! His dialog was fun and natural. I thought if I could do that, I might be able to write a book.
DAVID WISEHART: What one book, written by someone else, do you wish you'd written yourself?
SHARON SCHENBECK: I loved Geraldine Brooks, Year of Wonders. It was a interesting story based on an actual incident during the plague in the 17th century. It was a beautifully written book even though the theme was about the Black Death!
DAVID WISEHART: How have you marketed and promoted your work?
SHARON SCHENBECK: I sent a press release to one of our local newpapers and they did an article on my first Children's book, Barky's Bone. That generated a lot of interest. I have also donated several copies to our local libraries. I send updates to my Facebook friends who have even more friends. I enjoy posting at CreateSpace with the people who have a passion for writing.
DAVID WISEHART: Why publish on Kindle?
SHARON SCHENBECK: It is the perfect place for wide readership. It is also a wonderful place to try out a 'new' author. There are so many amazing and talented writers whose work would never have seen the light of day without Kindle!
DAVID WISEHART: What advice would you give to a first-time author thinking of self-publishing on Kindle?
SHARON SCHENBECK: Just do it! You have nothing to loose. It costs nothing. Just upload your text copy and your novel will be made available! There is nothing like the feeling when someone buys your 'book'. Someone actually wants to read what you have written. It is a rush and it also validates what you've been doing and keeps you going with even more enthusiasm!
DAVID WISEHART: Thanks, and best of luck with your books.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
"I woke up one Saturday morning and started to write down this very vivid dream I had had the night before. That was the beginning of my writing hobby. That's what I called it before it became a way of life. Now, I write every day because I love it! I didn't know I could write a book until I tried it. A few years after that, I thought I would try writing a book for children. That one became 'Barky's Bone'. It is the first in a series of five books so far. I've since added several more adult books to my growing list of novels.
"I have two adult daughters. One is a music teacher and the other is a personal trainer. My husband of 37 years recently retired. We have a crazy cat who thinks he is a dog. He likes to hang out with my husband when he is working outside. He even comes when he is called. We think that is very dog-like."
Visit her website.
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