A creative spirit from a young age, she experimented with acting and wrote one-woman shows and plays. She produced a short performance piece called Doing Lunch which made its way into a short film trilogy directed by Hal Trussel. That film won “Best Dramatic Short” at the Houston Film Festival in 1993.
The author is also a spiritualist and metaphysical adept. She has studied mediumship, pagan and Huna rituals, as well as an energy healing method called “Crystalline Consciousness Technique.” She also studied a variety of shamanic clearing methods and healing rituals. She creates her own line of healing essential oils and elixir sprays.
Shiu’s Moa series – Moa, The Statue of Ku, and Iron Shinto – sparked by her firsthand encounter with an ancient Hawaiian spirit, takes readers on a journey of exploration through her world of spiritual healing. Each chapter of the books begins with a meditative ritual that pertains to that chapter. The rituals from the first book have been published in both eBook and audio form as The Gatekeeper’s Guide to Ancient Essential Oils and Rituals.
In addition to her creative and spiritual endeavors, Shiu has worked as a high-level Executive Assistant for some of the most influential business executives in the Fortune 500, including Rupert Murdoch.
Tricia Stewart Shiu currently lives in Southern California with her husband and their nine-year-old daughter, Sydney. Sydney is a gifted artist, whose photographs adorn the covers and illustrations grace the interiors of all three Moa books.
Media Contact: To schedule an interview with Tricia Stewart Shiu, please contact Scott Lorenz, President of Westwind Communications Book Marketing, 734-667-2090, Cell: 248-705-2214 or firstname.lastname@example.org or http://www.book-marketing-expert.com
What inspires you to write?
When I have a personal experience, I must write about it. Inspiration comes from my act of expressing those emotions, thoughts, beliefs, judgments and, yes, stories that bubble up from deep within.
The time between stories is the most challenging for me. When I am inside a story and writing I am at my most peaceful and joyful. Not only do I mourn the end of a story when I write, I also do it when I read a great book.
Tell us about your writing process.
Every day is different. Sometimes words pour out faster than I can write or when I’m not near a computer so I have to grab a grocery receipt and quickly squeeze in all the juiciness that comes forth. Other times, I space out the writing and sit in a busy cafe listening to snippets of stranger’s conversations.
One thing is consistent, I do not judge myself, my writing or my process. If I do, I stop and give myself time to let that go. Then I begin again and pick up where I left off.
The stories come in, in waves of loveliness, or shards of anger, or slippery plots that I have to chase around and around to find my path. Whatever my course, I stick with it, I can edit later and I only edit after I let it all out–every last bit.
After I’ve done all of the above, I write a loose outline. It doesn’t include numbers and I’m the only one who knows what it means. Parts are in my head, parts are on receipts, tucked in the depths of my purse or in my computer, labeled with the story, date and version.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Yes! My favorite part of writing is having a conversation with my characters. In fact, early in the process of writing “Iron Shinto,” I hit a wall with my main character, Mina. My incredibly wise editor, Rebecca Gummere, suggested I chat with her. That event broke open the story in a way I never could have created, had I done it any other way.
Here’s what I did:
I wrote out the questions ahead of time and made an appointment with my character, just as I would with anyone I know. Then, when it came time, I sat in a private place and had a visit with Mina.
I asked the questions and waited for the answers. Sometimes they came in right away, other times I had to relax and let the answer come. A few times, I had to stop and say, “How can I tell if I’m making this all up?” and my answer was simple, “I can’t.”
But, as I chronicled my conversation, made note of all the directions, nuances, twists or straight-aways, I noticed that I felt “in the flow.” I kept these conversations up and would even have the occasional disagreement with Mina.
In the end, I knew I had to let the self-editing, judging and critic go and allow my character to tell me about her journey.
What advice would you give other writers?
Persistence is everything. When you feel low, do a search on how many times famous writers were rejected. “A Wrinkle in Time” by Madeline L’Engle was rejected 29 times before it was published. Or read inspirational books by authors who have weathered the storm, “Bird by Bird,” by Anne Lamott is a good one.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
With the Moa Series, I had no doubt that I wanted to publish these books. I needed to have complete control over the layout (to highlight the incredible illustrations by Sydney Shiu), the cover as well as the marketing and distribution.
Best of all, i get all the royalties and no one owns the rights to my book, but me.
Things have gone better than I could have possibly imagined!
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
Books and book publishing are alive and well! However, the way they will be purchased, read and distributed is a whole different story.
Whatever changes occur in the publishing world and new technologies that pop up, I know I will continue to write and read and I am absolutely others will too.
What do you use?
What genres do you write?
Fantasy, Metaphysical Fiction
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print