About Sherrill Willis:
I am the Author of Ruby Lake, A Wedding in Ruby Lake and Stay a While in Ruby Lake. I started reading when I was 3 and my parents encouraged me to start writing soon after. I wrote my first poem at age 5 (about a tree I believe) and this has been my passion for my entire life. Writing is what keeps me sane, and hopefully, connects me to others. I’ve always felt we are all connected, whether through experiences, blood or community. With my writing, my ultimate hope is to transcend barriers and reach out to those I might otherwise never meet.
I’m always writing in my head, and there are days I don’t get a word done on the manuscript, and other days it just flows like a winding river, picking up it’s own pace as I keep writing. No matter what your passion is – do it. Don’t listen to the critics, the naysayers – believe in yourself despite what others say you can’t do. Truly, the best revenge isn’t just living well, sometimes it’s also being able to smile triumphantly at those who tried to hold you back.
What inspires you to write?
Everything. From clever things my children say, to art I see, movies, other books, clouds, news reports: you name it. In fact, I am currently writing a futuristic novel and I so desperately want to use JD Robb’s ‘Auto Chef’ – it would be perfect! Anyone have an in with Nora? 😉
Tell us about your writing process.
My writing process is fairly linear, with the one major difference being I always know how the book will end before I start writing. I have to have the last line in my head (or written on a post it note or my current work notebook) or I really fumble. Once I have that, the whole book flows for me. This may be due to the fact I read the last page first of every novel I read so I can enjoy the journey, instead of rushing through it.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Most of the time for me, I have a “movie” of my book in my head, and I just try to keep up! The only time my characters speak directly to me is in my dreams, and they are usually mad and want more page time than I’ve given them.
What advice would you give other writers?
Get a Professional Editor! I did not do this prior to releasing my first novel, and I regretted it immensely. I did go back and have all my books edited, and re-released them. The difference was overwhelming (both personally and with my readers). Do not skip this step. Ever. Even if you are going the traditional route, I’d still advise a professional editor before sending out any query letters to agents/publishers. It could make or break you.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I had been in communication with Random House for several months about Ruby Lake. They were very interested, and then after a few months all communication stopped. I was never sure what happened, I never got a rejection letter, just nothing. So, I decided to go the independent route instead. At the time, there was a boom in indie author publishing, and I hit it at the right time, and did rather well. For my current work, I do plan on trying the traditional route again, but won’t hesitate to independently publish it if that doesn’t work for whatever reason.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I do not think the Kindle will kill paper books. As a Kindle author (I’ve sold FAR more books there than in paper), I absolutely appreciate the readership, but at the same time I recognize it is only another avenue of reading. Personally, I love the feel of a heavy book in my hands, the heavier the better!
What do you use?: Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?: Romance, Comedy, Suspense, Murder/Mystery, and Women’s Fiction
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
Link To Sherrill Willis Page On Amazon
All information in this post is presented “as is” supplied by the author. We don’t edit, to allow you, the reader, to hear the author in their own voice.