Welcome to author Sharon Michaels who is answering some more questions for us, taking time away from her reading & writing schedule. You can read her initial interview here.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
READ! I am a voracious reader. I read anywhere from 15-20 books a month.
About four years ago my husband and I gave away all our televisions. Haven’t watched TV since. That’s when we both began spending our evenings reading. Honestly, I haven’t missed television. I still keep up with the news, etc. on my computer.
Do you write under a pseudonym? If not, have you ever considered it?
All my writing, both nonfiction and fiction, has been in my name.
Today, my main genre is cozy fiction. A couple of years back I dipped my toes into the romance genre. I do wish I’d used a pen name for the sweet romance short reads I’ve written. I realized that sweet romance wasn’t my true love, so to speak. Readers may get a little confused when they search for my books on Amazon. It is what it is. I’m thinking of maybe taking the sweet romance down and using them in another way – like giveaways for my newsletter subscribers or as a thank you to members of my reader’s group.
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
Write what makes you happy! I’ve learned over the years that you cannot please everyone. No matter how much you love what you’ve written, someone isn’t going to be as enthralled with it as you are. We all have different tastes and that’s okay.
When I press “send” and I can honestly say I’ve done my best, then I am satisfied.
Don’t allow the stars or reviews to dictate how you feel about yourself and your work. Yes, keep learning and honing your craft, but don’t judge your self-worth as an author by the reviews..
Why do you write short reads?
I’ve often been asked why I write short stories, short reads and novellas and not longer books…
Here are my definitions:
Short story – can be read in an hour or less.
Short read – can be read in 90 minutes or less.
Novella – can be read in two hours or less.
I’ve found the majority of my readers don’t have time to sit and read long books. When I started writing fiction, my audience asked me to write short stories – short reads – novellas. My goal is to write complete well-rounded and fun stories/books you can read and enjoy in one to two hours.
Were you a part-time writer before you became a full-time writer? For how long??
Yes and no. I self-published my first nonfiction book in 1996. About fifteen years ago I began writing a weekly column for a popular woman’s online website, submitted articles and was published on Forbes.com and started a weekly blog and podcast. One day I sat back and analyzed my time. That’s when I realized if I wanted to be a full time author of books, I needed to spend my time writing books and not dabbling in other things.
Since 2016 I have been writing fiction full time. Full time means getting up at 4:00 AM and writing for at least two hours. I can generally reach my goal of 1,000 to 2,000 words a day. I have to confess though, somedays are better than others.
Setting my own writing and publishing schedule is what makes being a full time author the best job of all!!!
For me the perfect day is sitting at my computer and writing uninterrupted for hours. The world seems to disappear and my vivid imagination begins to run wild. I have so many stories rolling around in my head, I can’t wait to share them with you.
I’ve been writing and publishing nonfiction for over twenty-five years. It wasn’t until recently I gave myself permission to publish fiction. I guess I was too worried about my imaginary stories being judged. For a “recovering perfectionist” the potential of being judged has been a difficult hurdle to overcome.