About Jo Sparkes:
A well-known Century City Producer once said that Jo Sparkes “…writes some of the best dialogue I’ve read.”
Jo’s body of work includes scripts for Children’s live-action and animated television programs, a direct to video Children’s DVD, commercial work for corporate clients, and a feature writer on ReZoom.com, where one of her subjects landed the website’s ‘Man of the Year’ award. As a contributing writer for the Arizona Sports Fans Network, where she was called their most popular writer, she garnered popularity with her humorous articles, player interviews and game coverage. Jo was unofficially the first to interview Emmitt Smith when he arrived in Arizona to play for the Cardinals.
She has served as an adjunct teacher at the Film School at Scottsdale Community College, and made a video of her most beloved lecture. Her book for writers and artists, “Feedback How to Give It How to Get It” was born to help her students — and indeed, all artists.
Her original script, Frank Retrieval, won the 2012 Kay Snow award for best screenplay. Her fantasy series, The Legend of the Gamesmen, has garnered two B.R.A.G. Medallions and a 2015 silver IPPY award for Ebook Juvenile/YA Fiction.
When not diligently perfecting her craft, Jo can be found exploring her new home of Portland, Oregon, with her Husband Ian, and their dog Oscar.
What inspires you to write?
I'm stalked by stories!
They sneak up on me, pounce in the night. If I ignore them, they make my life difficult. A character wants his/her story told.
I suppose I'm haunted, really.
Tell us about your writing process.
I'm an early morning writer. 5 am, coffee in hand.
It begins with ideas trickling in – a character trait, an odd situation, an enticing theme. These sort of simmer as more bits are added – until ready. Then it's back and forth between overview/outline and actual writing. I can write a whole chapter that's never used, but somehow helps me see the story.
Once I begin, the rough draft can take less than 3 months. But the rewrites take much longer.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
When you're really in the 'groove', writing is nothing more than putting your characters in the situation and then just recording what happens.
What advice would you give other writers?
Write. Do your best with the story/book/screenplay. And move on to the next.
You learn more from the next than you did from the last.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
In professional writing I was always working for someone – an editor who wanted to cut something, or a director who wanted to change things.
You need the editor or director – they're mirrors. But the ideal is to listen to their suggestions – and make your own choices.
I like choosing.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think it's exciting that the gatekeepers – those who decide what will and won't be offered on the market – are dwindling.
What genres do you write?: Supernatural Thriller, Fantasy, YA Fantasy, and more to come, I'm sure.
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
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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.
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