Author Interview: Lydia Sherrer

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I met Lydia Sherrer at an indie author event last fall. Her urban fantasy books for young adults (and grown ups) attracted my attention because of their colorful covers. She created the Love, Lies and Hocus Pocus series. I have just started reading one of her latest projects, Accidental Witch, which is part of her Dark Roads Trilogy. 

  • Why did you decide to become an author?
    I hated my job. Seriously. After several years out of college trying to work for other people, I discovered I hated being told what to do, and started looking for ways to work for myself. I tried art for a little while, but I’m not a good enough artist to make it in that arena. I tried multi level marketing for a while, but I can’t be passionate about makeup or kitchen implements. Then I realized that I adored writing, I’d been doing it for years already, so why not start my own publishing business? The rest is history.
  • Does your professional background help with your writing?
    My “professional” background at least in terms of my college degree is in language. I studied Chinese and Arabic in college, then decided I didn’t want to work overseas or for the government, or really anyone (I have a problem with bosses), so I came home and started “entreprenuing.” I guess my study of language and culture expanded my horizon, so I can write better about many things, real and imagined. But it is really my natural instincts and talents as a entrepreneur that have best served me when self publishing books.
  • Tell us about your latest books.
    wrathMy latest big project, an epic fantasy called “When the Gods Laughed” (currently available only in the ebook box set Wrath and Ruin) I wrote because I wanted to get into the epic fantasy scene. Previously I have focused on urban fantasy (I’m a huge Harry Potter fan), but my first love was always Lord of the Rings, and I’ve itched to write a story of truly epic scale. “When the Gods Laughed” ended up being 200,000 words, and that is only the first half. Another inspiration was the story itself, about a very worthless man crippled by self doubt, who is thrown into the “hero” spotlight. I have a friend who suffers from clinical depression and it kills me to see what it does to his mind and all the horrible, untrue things he believes about himself, just because of this sickness in his head. It isn’t his fault, and he is an amazing person. I just wish there was some way I could show him that.
  • What advice do you have for aspiring writers?
    Read, read, read! Write, write, write! Really, those are the two best pieces of advice I could give anyone, because they are the foundation of EVERYTHING you do as a writer. You can’t write good stories if you don’t read good stories (or read craft books, advice columns, how-to writing blogs, current publishing news, etc), and you can’t publish anything if you haven’t actually written it! For more detailed advice, check out my becoming a writer series on my blog. I also highly recommend checking out Mark Dawson’s Self Publishing Formula podcast (found on iTunes and Youtube) and Joanna Penn’s really useful blog, The Creative Penn. Being a writer isn’t just about writing stories. It is about being a business person and knowing the publishing landscape today, so you can best decide how to manage your novels and rights and how to reach your audience.
  • What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
    Read Read Read! Write Write Write! Really, those are the two best pieces of advice I could give anyone, because they are the foundation of EVERYTHING you do as a writer. You can’t write good stories if you don’t read good stories (or read craft books, advice columns, how-to writing blogs, current publishing news, etc), and you can’t publish anything if you haven’t actually written it! For more detailed advice, check out my becoming a writer series on my blog. I also highly recommend checking out Mark Dawson’s Self Publishing Formula podcast (found on iTunes and Youtube) and Joanna Penn’s really useful blog www.thecreativepenn.com. Being a writer isn’t just about writing stories. It is about being a business person and knowing the publishing landscape today, so you can best decide how to manage your novels and rights and how to reach your audience.
  • What are some upcoming projects you are working on?
    I am in the final editing phase for my latest story in the Lily Singer Adventures universe, a novella called “Cat Magic” about Sir Kipling, the magical talking cat and the adventures he has while his mistress is away. Here’s a little blurb:

    “I am a magical talking cat who has been cursed with human intelligence. Horrible, I know. My human is a normally sensible wizard who has a bad habit of letting curiosity get her into trouble, and invariably I have to save the day.

    I swear, she’s almost a better cat than me.

    We have adventures. She saves the world. I save her. We all go home happy and I get a nice plate of salmon. Except this time, there is no we. My human has departed for vacation and I am left alone to guard the magical library for which she is responsible. Normally this would not be an issue, but I had a funny feeling in my whiskers this morning, which means adventure is on the horizon. Care to stick around and find out what evil denizen of magic and mayhem I will be thrashing today?”

    LLHPThe story should be coming out sometime in April-ish (being my own publisher, I can set, or not set, my own deadlines. In the meantime, check out this FREE novella that is a prequel to my urban fantasy series full of adventure, magic, snarky humor, and of course a talking cat.

View Lydia Sherrer’s Amazon Author page.

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