About Sharon Bayliss:
Sharon Bayliss is a native of Austin, Texas and works her day job in the field of social work. When she’s not writing, she enjoys living in her “happily-ever-after” with her husband and two young sons. She can be found eating Tex-Mex on patios, wearing flip-flops, and playing in the mud (which she calls gardening).
What inspires you to write?
In a word…everything! I’ve been a prolific daydreamer since I was a child, constantly making up stories in my head for my own amusement. As an adult, I’ve enjoyed turning those daydreams into stories to amuse other people too.
Tell us about your writing process.
I’ve never felt like I’ve had a “writing process.” I just do what my muse tells me to do. That generally means that I write when I’m inspired to write, which is unpredictable. I consider myself a “plonster”–a mix between a plotter and a panster. I do plan out my stories, but the characters often disobey me and take the story in other directions. But I love it when they do that. I love the feeling of discovering the story as I write.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Yes, I talk to them all the time. Here is a recent example:
Me: You can’t do that. The readers won’t like that.
Character: I don’t care.
Me: Well, the readers HAVE to care about you. So be nice.
Character: I don’t care what readers think. Readers don’t exist.
Me: No, you don’t exist.
Character: No, YOU don’t exist.
What advice would you give other writers?
WRITE. It’s so easy to get distracted, confused, and discouraged by the whole publishing and marketing side of things. Yes, all of that is important, but it’s all meaningless without the writing. Just keep writing, no matter what. It’s the writing process that breathes life into you as a writer, not hanging out on social media.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I think self-publishing is a wonderful choice, and I love the way it gives power back to the author, but it wasn’t my choice. I have had the goal of publishing a book since I was a little girl, and to me, that goal only felt met if someone else decided my work was worth publishing. Also, I’m a social worker and my husband is a teacher, so I didn’t think I would be able to invest the money needed for a good cover and editor. I’m thrilled to be published with Curiosity Quills Press!
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I expect that the digital format and independent and small publishers will continue to thrive. It will be harder and harder to sell books in the traditional fashion and large publishers will need to adapt. However, I don’t expect physical books or bookstores to disappear from the world anytime soon. Bookstores serve a purpose in the reading community beyond just being a place to buy books. Whatever happens in the future of book publishing, I hope I’m a part of it!
What do you use?: Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?: Fantasy, Science Fiction
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print