Friday, February 10, 2012

Guest Post: Author Sheryl Steines

Today Sheryl Steines, author of "The Day of First Sun" has been kind enough to stop by the blog to share her inspirations with us! 

I knew I wanted to be a writer when I was seven years old.  Without question.  But wanting something and doing something about it are two different things.  I can’t pinpoint one inspiration for why I finally wrote my first book.  I guess it came out of years of experiences and life’s events, some amazing and wonderful, some heartbreaking and bittersweet.  But they each lead me to a point, that lead me to my book. 

It started with Nancy Drew.  I remember riding my bicycle to the library and then locking myself in my room with that day’s book.  I was a voracious reader.  But at the same time, I didn’t just want to read the story, I wanted to write it, and wished like mad, that I had come up with it.

So my seven year old self, who had an overactive imagination, daydreamed a lot.  Eventually characters were born and a story followed.  And somewhere along the way, I started to write my own detective stories. 

Sometimes, life pushes and pulls.  Sometimes we stay on the track we plan for ourselves, sometimes we stumble a bit or sometimes, we’re pushed off.  You know the job, the kids, the PTO meetings and I forgot the dream I once had.  It was as if I forgot how to use my imagination, get lost inside of it and I forgot how to dream and create.  I still read, but writing, I just couldn’t do it.  And then, I discovered Harry Potter.

My kids were too young to have read Harry Potter and it was just by chance that I had heard about the books.  I was deeply curious to find out why kids of all ages chose to spend hours at a time, in line, waiting to purchase a book.  So, I read them and I was hooked. 

I was hooked for several reasons.  I could start with good writing, good story planning, fabulous characters or inventive use of Greek Mythology.  It was a combination of those and JK Rowling herself.   Her life story was impressive.  Her rock bottom brought her to the point of writing Harry Potter.  The books reminded me how much I loved the fantasy novel, her life inspired me to do what I hadn’t done yet, and that was to write my own novel.

Writing a novel had always been a dream.  Actually, it had been number 7 on my bucket list. I was in between jobs, unsure of what I wanted to do and then I remembered.  The funny thing is, I was 41 years old when I remembered.  And the decision to write my first book was, by far, the best decision I had ever made.  So after living with the characters in my head for awhile and developing their stories, I had, as it turned out, my first book, The Day of First Sun.  A Young Adult, modern day fantasy in which the heroine and hero are Wizard Guards, magical police officers who protect magic and keep it secret. 

I wrote for them, a murder mystery, in honor of the first books I loved.  Being that they are wizard police, the opportunity for these characters is boundless.  I loved the story line. I loved the chance to turn them into a series, to tell their stories in full.  My next project in The Annie Loves Cham series is She Wulf, the continuation of Annie and Cham, their relationship as it changes, and their growth as Wizard Guards.  My intention was to put them into a completely new situation and see how they faired at the end of their new adventure.  I’m proud of them and the direction that the series is taking. 

I chose not to regret the course my life took, though sometimes I wish I had written the book sooner.  But sometimes we have to take advice from the strangest places and move on.  As I secretly wished I started the process sooner, Katy Perry sang in Firework,

“Maybe you're reason why all the doors are closed -- So you could open one that leads you to the perfect road” Katy Perry. 

I realized, I hadn’t been ready to undertake the process of writing a novel.  When I was ready, I did.  I thank the other writers who came before me, both novelists and songwriters too.  Without them, I wouldn’t have had the childhood I had, and the dreams I had.  And this path never would have come before me.  They came before me, inspired me to do more than just read.  They inspired me to imagine and create.  And to them, I am forever grateful.

About the Author: 
Sheryl Steines’ mind is chaotic and surprising and it shows in her writing.  Never one to sit back and see what may come, Sheryl is driven to write everyday. Somehow, amidst the chaos, she finds the time to volunteer and give talks to book clubs and students about her writing.  She even walked the Avon Breast Cancer walk two years in a row. 

Sheryl’s series Annie Loves Cham is full of surprises and mystery.  Refusing to be restricted by genre Sheryl has taken the characters she loves and set them in new situations which test them and their friendships.  

The second book in the series is set to release in late summer 2012. Sheryl can be found on Twitter, Facebook, or her blog. She also encourages her readers to email her and let her know what you think of Annie and Cham!

1 comment:

  1. That's a powerful cover image. Very eye catching.


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