Author Spotlight

 

I recently had the chance to visit with a very talented author.  So, without further delay letís hear from

Barbara Sheridan

Did you always want to be a writer and how did you get your start?
I'd been an avid reader since I was very young and when certain characters would make a big impression and linger on after the book came to a close I'd keep their adventures going in my imagination. I was so in love with the Louis and Lestat characters from Anne Rice's Interview with the Vampire that I had to start writing that "continuing adventure" down to entertain myself. It was so much fun and so cool to have all these words pour out of me that I kept at it and began to create original characters.

Tell us about what makes you...you.
Quirky probably sums it up pretty well. I'm as apt to lose myself in a museum or historical center for hours as well as hop on a bus and travel 400 miles to whoop it up at a rock concert.

You write in several genres, do you have a favorite? Is there a genre you would like to try?
Things historical and paranormal have always been a dual love of mine and when I can combine the two in any way I'm thrilled to do so. My absolute favorite period is the mid to late 19th century.

It sounds like you have a very busy life. How do you balance it with your writing?
Actually it's a little less busy the past few months so I fit writing in at all hours of the day and night.

You are obviously a cat person. I love cats, too, but I'm curious about your cat who can "see" things. There has to be a story there.
Princess" is the living example of a "fraidy cat". She's very odd in that she has what we call "the spot of the week". She'll pick a place and be there constantly only leaving to eat or use the litter box. One of these spots was near the dining room window that looked out onto a small deck.
This deck was a good twenty feet off the ground and the only access was through the house. Princess was staring out the window one night as behaving as though she was watching "something". The way the window is situated there's a bit of inside wall with the door to the deck behind it. Whatever she saw must have moved toward the door so she very cautiously walked along the top of the small table she'd been sitting on and peeked around the wall to the kitchen as if waiting for the whatever she watched to come in the door from the deck. There was nothing and no one there. And every so often we'll catch her watching "something" that we can't see.

Tell us some of your favorites...foods, movies, music, authors, books, colors and any others you want to share?
I have a life long love of old thing-books, newspapers, photos, clothing. I love to visit museums and antique shops. I have too much a fondness for good pizza chocolate. I love character driven movies, books and television that contain paranormal or historical elements.  I'm a big fan of Asian films and rock music. That 400 mile bus trip to a concert I mentioned was to see the first US concert of a Japanese band.

Do you have a writing schedule you follow?
I don't have a set schedule but I fit in writing related things whenever I have time to myself.

Do you enjoy hearing from your readers and what is the best way to contact you?
I love hearing from people and I want to know what they think of my stories. I want to know what elements they liked and what elements they didn't. Email is fine bsher213@yahoo.com

How do you promote your work?
I'm very bad at keeping up with email loops and things though I try to comment and take part in excerpt days. If anyone majoring in advertising wants a test subject to practice on I'm your gal. lol

Do you have any advice for aspiring writers? What was the best piece of advice you received when you were first starting out?
I suppose the best advice is to keep learning and trying to improve your craft. Keep writing and act as professionally as possible. Learn to take criticism. Writing is subjective all books won't work for all readers/editors or agents. My motto is "The right story has to hit the right person's desk on the right day".

What do you consider your greatest strength? Any weaknesses?
I like to think characterization is my strong point. It's the thing that keeps me reading certain books and setting others aside. Weaknesses? I struggle with description. I love reading details of settings and whatnot but I have to work at getting the right balance in my own work.

If you could travel to any place and time in history, where would it be and why?
That's a tough one. I think I would love to know for certain how the pyramids were built and if the aliens really did land in Roswell but overall I think I might like to stop over in the late 19th century to wear the beautiful clothes and live with the gorgeous elaborate furniture.

Several of your books are part of a series. Do you enjoy writing series? Do you find it more difficult than writing stand alone books?
I don't think of my solo works and the books I do with Anne Cain as series per se in terms of you need to read them in order for it to make sense. I try to make each a stand alone story that's connected to others-many parts that make up the whole of various fictional universes.

How would you spend a perfect day?
Sunshine is always a plus, but I enjoys being around friends and family and finding things to laugh and be happy about.

Is there anything else you would like to share with us? Any current or upcoming releases?
I have a novella out from Loose-ID that I'm excited about. Samurai Captive is set in Japan circa 1863 and features a plucky British woman named Hannah and a very very sexy samurai named Katsuhiro. The comments that thrilled me most are that I "got it right" in terms of cultural elements. While a few concessions had to be made in terms of genre to show Katsu as a romantic hero I tried very hard to portray him correctly and I'm so glad it comes across.  Anne and I are finishing up edits on a book featuring two of our favorite characters Ryuhei and Kiyoshi from Soul of the Night. I don't want to give spoilers but for anyone out there who was angry at us for certain events in The Dragon's Disciple we promise you that it all works out. We have a habit of making our boys work for their HEA.

Thank you so much for letting me do this interview. It's been fun.

 

     

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