Author Interview (January 2012)

Sylvia neySylvia Ney resides in southeast Texas. She is a published author who sometimes ghost writes for others. Her poetry, short stories, essays, articles and photography can be found in journals, anthologies, newspapers, and online. She keeps a regular blog:Writing in Wonderland. Sylvia taught both elementary and high school students over the last twelve years. She is currently a stay-at-home mom to two preschoolers and editor of GATOR TALK newsletter.

1) What are you reading now?I’m always reading several books at a time. Right Now – How to be Like Walt: Capturing the Disney Magic Every Day of your Life by Pat Williams with Jim Denney, Stephen King’s On Writing(again), Writer’s Digest: Februaryissue, and Shadow Music by Julie Garwood.
2) Classic you’ve been meaning to read? War and Peace – I might cheat and watch the Audrey Hepburn movie version to get motivated.
3) The last book you finished in a single sitting? The Napping House by Audrey Wood – my daughters love this book.
4) Book you borrowed and never returned? Only heathens would do such a thing! 😉

5) Favorite book from childhood? The Fire Cat by Esther Holden Averill and then the Nancy Drew series by Carolyn Keene.

6) Best thing you’ve read online recently? There are a number of blogs and sites I visit continually, but one of my favorites is Author, Jody Hedlund. She is a talented author who is never afraid to expose herself and share what she has learned. I’m always learning something and finding nuggets of inspiration on her blog.

7) What do you do when you have writer’s block? Exercise, read a book, watch a good movie, listen to great music, travel – anything that gets me away from the work and relaxed. Then I can return with a fresh mind and renewed energy.

8) What is your writing process like? Certain hours that you find more productive, a routine, a set amount of time or a number of pages you make yourself write every day etc. I don’t have a set goal or defined process. I’m a stay-at-home mom to two preschoolers so I write when I have time or am inspired. When the children are in school, I hope to develop a more defined daily schedule.

9) When working on your current MS did you complete an outline first or did you just start writing? I never preplan. I always start out with an idea, scene or emotion and write until I can’t go anymore. When I run out of steam, I take a break and then write out an outline or sets of goals for the story and its characters.

10) Are there any tips you would like to share with new writers? Read and write every day. Read a variety of genres, read books on the craft, read blogs of other authors. There is a multitude of information and contradictory advice out there. Weed through and find what works for you. Our minds don’t work the same and we all have different interests and strengths. Be willing to learn and find your own process for success.