What inspired you to write that first novel?
An agent inspired me to write my first novel because the children’s market, where I already had books in print, was doing poorly at the time.
Yes, that novel was published by Abingdon Press and is titled Delivered with Love.
You write both women’s fiction and stories for tween girls. How do you make the transition from one genre to another? Which is easier to write?
I like variety, so it’s fun for me to write in multiple genres. My natural writing voice is a twelve-year-old girl, so writing books for tweens is a bit easier for me. After writing a “sweet and mild” novel, I’m ready to change it up and write books for kids.
The hardest part of writing for me is definitely making sure there is enough conflict in a scene. As a middle child, I like peace and harmony, but that doesn’t make for an interesting story, so I always have to make sure there is enough tension to keep readers turning pages.
What’s the best encouragement you’ve had in your writing?
Writing is a tough business, and it takes perseverance and dedication to keep going. The best encouragement I’ve received is from multi-published authors who tell me I’ve got what it takes, as well as editors who keep offering me contracts. However, the readers make the biggest impact on me. I love getting encouraging emails!
We have all experienced writing rejection. How have you learned to write past it?
Rejection is a part of writing. Fact is, not everyone is going to enjoy what we write. We have to remember that we are not writing for everyone but for a select group of people. Once we figure out who that is, we can focus on writing specifically for them.
I wish I would’ve known how important the writing community is and how each connection builds on the next. I went to my first writing conference after several years of taking online writing classes. Some of the writing friends I made at that first conference are still some of my best friends to this day. Writing, for the most part, is a very solitary job. And if you are an extrovert like me, you will become lonely if you don’t make the effort to connect with others.
What is the best writing advice you’ve received or could give?
The best writing advice I can give is to pray before you write. There’s nothing worse than staring at a blank screen and feeling the pressure to fill it. But if you pray before you write and ask God to help you, you will be surprised at how you can accomplish your word count goal—that’s if you put aside the “editor” part of your brain and just write!
What is the next book coming out? Can you give me a short synopsis?
My next book is in the very early stages, and I’m not quite ready to share a synopsis. I can, however, tell you about my latest release!
A heartwarming story about accepting others, celebrating community, and the rush of falling in love in autumn.
Amanda Richards moves to the island of Nantucket to take over the Blue Crab Café that her aunt and uncle have successfully run for forty years. Hoping to prove her worth to a somewhat skeptical community, she volunteers to organize the annual Cranberry Festival at the Milestone Cranberry Bog. When a handsome electrician and other residents of the island step up to help with the festival, she must discern whether they really have her best interests at heart.
Tyler Adams, owner of Adams Electric, is having a hard time accepting the news that the Blue Crab Café has been sold and the former owner is moving away—a man who’s been a father figure to Tyler since his dad’s death two years ago. When Amanda, the new owner, steps up to head up the Cranberry Festival planning committee, he volunteers to help her and quickly falls for the newest member of the community. The only thing he hadn’t planned on was his ex-fiancée returning to town with her sights set on winning him back.
Sounds like a story with some good torque. If you’d like to learn more about Sherry’s books, here are some links to get you started.