Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Featured Author Mel Sherratt

FEATURED AUTHOR this month is an ereader1uk favorite, Mel Sherratt.  

Here is the first part of her Q&A, written by our regular contributor, Susan Lobban.

Written in the Scars: An emotional and gritty drama full of suspense

1. How did you decide to become an author? What/Who inspired you?

I’ve always wanted to write a book, although I hadn’t planned on taking so long to become a published author. Now it’s my career. Like any job, it has its ups and downs, but I get to do what I love every day. Through the years, my inspiration has come from authors such as Marian Keyes, Lisa Jewell, and Rowan Coleman. More recently, it’s been Rowan Coleman, Fionnuala Kearney and Talli Roland.

2. Can you describe your typical writing day?

There’s never a time when I’m not working on two books at a time. If I’m writing one, I’m usually editing another and vice versa. So to fit it all in, I try to write or edit 2000 words first thing every morning when I’m fresh. If I’m editing, I’ll then continue editing for the rest of the day. If I’m drafting a book, I’ll add more to the 2000. Mornings are dedicated to writing and editing. In the afternoon, I catch up with everything else, emails, interviews such as this one, social media and marketing, organizing events and travel etc.

3. Where do you write?

I have my own office at home now, but you can always find me with my laptop on the sofa early mornings.

4. How do you come up with your plot lines/characters?


I find ideas for storylines everywhere, and once I get one into my head, then the character pops in there too.It’s the only way I can explain it! For instance Written in the Scars came from a line I heard in a song, and then the ideas from that just flowed.

5. How difficult is it to switch between writing different genres - which comes easier? 

I find it quite easy to switch between genres, to be honest. The Estate Series are a mixture of women’s fiction and crime thriller, so a lot of the time with my crime thrillers, I have to layer in more darkness once I’ve written it. But after writing three novels as Marcie Steele, I’m finding that I want to get back to characters that punch and swear, with plotlines that keep the reader on the edge of their seat. I much prefer to be scared while I’m writing, I think!

6. Do you ever get writer's block and if so how do you get through it?

I don’t get writers block but I do get days when the words just don’t come as planned. Now I’ve realised that this is because I haven’t worked out the plot enough to write it, so I do something else. Away from the writing is when ideas form, so I have to trust my instinct. I find that I get up the next day with everything sorted and I have to quickly write notes to get it all down. When I then sit down to write it out, it all flows again.

7. Did you always plan The Estate and Allie Shenton books to become series?

The Estate Series – yes. I wanted to write about different characters in each book, therefore making each book a standalone novel, but I wanted them to be linked by the place they were set. There are one or two characters that are featured in each one, for instance, housing officer, Josie Mellor.
DS Allie Series – no. My journey to publication is a long one. I started off writing women’s fiction, then the cross genre of The Estate Series. Because my agent at the time found them hard to sell, I was asked to write a story with a police element in it, so I wrote Taunting the Dead. And blimey, did that take off when I self-published it. I hadn’t intended on writing about Allie again as I didn’t particularly like writing police procedurals, and really the series is part police procedural/part psychological thriller, but after the success of Taunting the Dead, I enjoyed writing about Allie so when my publisher asked if I would write two more, I did. Will there be any more after Only the Brave, book 3? Not at the moment, but never say never.

8. Why did you choose to write your romance books under a pseudonym?

I self-published Stirred with Love under the pen name of Marcie Steele because I wanted to use it as a guinea pig to see if it was a viable option to self-publish Taunting the Dead, which had been turned down by lots of traditional publishers. I wanted to be sure that if I did self-publish it, I would know the best way to do it. Also back in 2011, self-publishing was frowned upon, and it was a huge gamble to take. So using a different name was great to try.

Part 2 coming soon!

No comments :

Post a Comment