About Judy Penz Sheluk:
Judy Penz Sheluk’s debut mystery novel, The Hanged Man’s Noose, was published in July 2015 by Barking Rain Press. Her short crime fiction appears in World Enough and Crime (Carrick Publishing), The Whole She-Bang 2 (Toronto Sisters in Crime) and Flash and Bang (Untreed Reads).
In her less mysterious pursuits, Judy works as a freelance writer, specializing in art, antiques and the residential housing industry; her articles have appeared regularly in dozens of U.S. and Canadian consumer and trade publications. She is also included in two cookbook collections, Bake, Love, Write and We’d Rather Be Writing. In addition, Judy is currently the Editor of Home BUILDER Magazine, and the Senior Editor for New England Antiques Journal.
Judy is also a member of Sisters in Crime International, Sisters in Crime – Guppies, Sisters in Crime – Toronto, Crime Writers of Canada, International Thriller Writers, Inc. and the Short Mystery Fiction Society. She lives in a small town northwest of Toronto, Ontario.
What inspires you to write?
For many years, I worked in the corporate world with a lengthy commute. I used to make up stories in my head. I thought everyone did that. Turns out, they don’t! About 15 years ago, I started writing my stories down, and in 2003, I had my first short story published. Today, I can’t imagine not writing. Everything I see and experience is stored for future reference.
Tell us about your writing process.
Definitely a pantser. I start off with a premise (for example, in The Hanged Man’s Noose, a greedy developer comes to a small town with plans to build a mega-box store on historic Main Street). Then I think…”What if this happened” and I go from there. I suppose in a way, my first draft is like an outline, because I really have no clue where the story is going to go or how it’s going to end.
What advice would you give other writers?
Agatha Christie said,“Write even when you don’t want to, don’t much like what you’re writing, and aren’t writing particularly well.” That’s great advice, and it certainly worked for her!
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I’ve written extensively about this on my blog/website. The posts are honest and heartfelt: the highs and the lows explored in equal measure. But to recap it here, I definitely wanted my first novel to be traditionally published, to have a partner in the process.
My advice would be that new authors should do their research and ask themselves honestly WHY they want to choose one option over the other. One size does not fit all.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I’ve been encouraged by reports of paperbacks making a “comeback” as eBooks seem to have settled into a 30-35% share of the market. That said, I think eBooks are a great for travel, commuting etc. and because they tend to be less expensive than print, I’ll often try new authors in digital format. I think that’s also a trend and that it will continue.
What do you use?: Professional Editor, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?: mystery, amateur sleuth
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
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.