Interview with Sharon Srock

DSC_0022Today we have the visit of Christian Author, Sharon Srock. I hope you enjoy our conversation.

Sharon, thanks for being with us today at The Rising Muse. Tell us, How much of yourself do you write into your characters?

I don’t, intentionally, write any of me into my characters. That doesn’t mean you won’t find a little piece of me in all of the women. Callie teaches Sunday school and loves her guacamole, Terri is looking for God’s will in her life and arguing the whole way, Pam is learning lessons in forgiveness. Yep, there I am.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?

Believe it or not, I went to bed one night, a normal person, and woke up the next morning determined to write a book. I know, now, where that came from. It was more than a little weird at the time.

How do you keep your sanity in this crazy fast paced world of ours?

I guess I’m a product of our environment. I like being busy. Even on a vacation I have to consciously tell myself to slow down and enjoy the moment. Sanity…I’m a writer, that option took a hike a few years back.

What is your current work in progress?

I’m working with my editor to get Terri’s story complete. Pam’s story is close to being at the word count I want. Then I’ll start the serious editing process for her. Samantha is knocking…

If you could invite a fictional character to dinner who would it be and why?

Oh, can I pick two? Merlin and Spock. Merlin because I’m captivated by the whole knights in armor, Arthur, slaying the dragon thing. Spock because…well…because the idea of extraterrestrial life interests me. If we ever find life out there, I’d hope they would be wise and beneficial sort like Vulcans. Not the I’ve come to destroy your world we see portrayed 99% of the time.

What do you hope readers will take away from this book?

That sometimes we spend too much time beating ourselves up for something God has already forgiven and forgotten. That we do a disservice to ourselves and others when we indulge in those feelings.

What is your favorite material item that you own (examples: iPod, Gone with the Wind book, grandmother’s rocking chair)

My Kindle. It’s just the most amazing machine.

Do your characters ever give you surprises when you are writing? Can you give us an example if they do and if they don’t do you know why?

My characters constantly surprise me. Their individual determination to be front and center in my brain is relentless. I’m a SOTP writer. I don’t work with an outline, so I can’t give you an example of where I planned to go one way and they insisted on taking their own way, but I continue to be amazed.

Do you have a favorite scene in this book and what would it be?

I think where Pam, Karla, and Terri come to Callie’s house with groceries and stuff for the girls. That is exactly like it would happen, has happened, in my life. Our church family is so generous. I have been on the giving and the receiving end of help.

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?

A lack of time. I don’t think there is a way to overcome it until I retire. I just have to deal with not enough hours in the day.

Which character in your book are you most like? What have you learned about yourself in writing this story?

For this book. Callie, of course. I didn’t really need to learn the life lesson that Callie had to learn, but writing the story taught me so much about persistence, trust , and patience.

As a writer how have you had to grow and stretch out of your comfort zone?

You are looking at it. Learning the craft, editing, and revising were easy compared to putting myself in the path of perfect strangers and begging for their attention. I’m a pretty solitary person. If I had my way, I’d write the book and pay a look alike to go out and face the public.

Thank you so much for sharing all this with us. Please tell us where we can find you on the internet and where can we get your book?

Visit my BLOG at: http://www.womenofvalleyview.blogspot.com/
Connect with me on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SharonSrock#!/SharonSrock
Follow me on Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/SharonSrock
Find me on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/10758698-sharon-srock

The Women of Valley View. Ordinary women using their faith to do extraordinary things

Three dire circumstances. Three desperate prayers. One miracle to save perf5.500x8.500.inddthem all.

Callie Stillman is drawn to the evasive girl who’s befriended her granddaughter, but the last time Callie tried to help a child, her efforts backfired. Memories of the tiny coffin still haunt her.

Samantha and Iris Evans should be worried about homework, not whether they can pool enough cash to survive another week of caring for an infant while evading the authorities.

Steve Evans wants a second chance at fatherhood, but his children are missing.  And no one seems to want to help the former addict who deserted his family.

For Steve to regain the relationship he abandoned, for his girls to receive the care they deserve, Callie must surrender her fear and rely on God to work the miracle they all need.

You can obtain Callie at:

And here’s the chance to win a huge basket of gifts. Keep reading

A copy of Callie’s story
A certificate for Terri’s story when it releases in April
A 6 piece Cherry blossom bath set
A cosmetic bag
A Bath Wrap
A Cozy pink eye mask
A Pair of aloe infused booties
A Hair Turban
A Tennis Bracelet
A 25.00 Amazon gift card
The rules are easy. For every reader that comments on this post, you get an entry into the drawing. A winner will be drawn Monday November 19th. The items add up to well over 100.00 in value.

Standing up for NaNoWriMo

I was really disappointed to read this article by Laura Miller, senior writer for Salon (posted at the bottom). I felt I needed to respond because NaNoWriMo is very dear to my heart.  I do respect everyone’s opinion, but I think there’s a lot that is being missed regarding the purpose of NaNoWriMo. The author of this article qualifies this event as a waste of time and energy. There is a lot worse things you can do in November than write a novel.

As an amateur writer, this event has given me opportunities that otherwise would have been difficult at best without it. As someone living in a big city, when you have a dream, where do you begin? Obviously, I’m not yet on the best seller’s list, but through launching myself into this event last year for the first time, I’ve started making baby steps into the literary world.

NaNoWriMo was the tool that saved my sanity last year. When I decided to join NaNo, it was just part of a challenge, not knowing that adversity was around the corner. It was one of the most difficult times in my life on the personal front and yet the eagerness to get this novel completed allowed me to channel my energy there and not focus on the adversity that was going on in my life. Not only did I win, but I ended with a finished product. I understood that there was a lot of editing that needed to be done after finishing the novel and that particular novel is still being edited as I plan to publish it.

I don’t think it’s fair to blame NaNo for people who do not spend the time editing their work and presenting it to a publisher. That would be like blaming Duncan Hines for a cake that didn’t come out right because you didn’t follow the instructions. The NaNoWriMo website and staff are always mentioning December as the editing month. They make it clear that the work done in November is a raw product that needs development and in some cases, it may just need deleting, but it allows an individual to organize their thoughts for a month and be creative.

The other thing that NaNoWriMo gave me was community. I’ve met people that I probably would not have met under other circumstances. We have something in common, the desire to write. We learn from one another, we encourage one another and guess what? we have fun; clean unadulterated fun. I think I’m on the other end of the spectrum thinking that there should be more events like this worldwide.

The author states that writing more novels is a waste of time, as we have too many already. Maybe we should tell Starbucks to stop opening shops as they have one on every corner. Although, by the way, I need one closer to my house or they need to seriously start delivering, especially during NaNoWriMo.

She also states that there are better things to do in November. That’s a matter of opinion. As a balanced person during November, I still go to work, pay my bills, walk my dog (less frequently bless her heart), go to church and participate in those things that I’m involved with, talk to my friends, take care of my Café World and Farmville in Facebook,  go to the gym, visit my family and have Thanksgiving dinner. The only difference is that instead of watching another re-runs of Law and Order or Criminal Minds, I choose to write. How dare I?

Aside from all the creative work that NaNoWriMo promotes, it attracts people to help others through the fundraisers that help charities. That apparently is also a bad thing.

I just felt the need to stand up for an event and a company that I believe in and that encouraged me to go forward with chasing my lifelong dream of being a writer and pursuing the gift God gave me.

About reading, it’s also inaccurate to assume that these 130,000 NaNo writers are not readers as well. I can only speak for myself. I am enrolled in Goodreads where I post the reviews of the novels I read and share those with my friends. I also belong to a book club that discusses a novel every month and that’s on top of all the online reading regarding articles, news, blogs and other things that capture my attention.

With all this said, I think that this article didn’t do NaNoWriMo justice and I have written almost 750 words that I can’t include in my novel…so enough of this and let’s get back to writing!!