Name Sharon Black.
Where are you from Dublin, Ireland.
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc After school, I took a degree in History and Politics, and then did a postgraduate in journalism. I worked on and off as a journalist over the years. I’m married with three children.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
My first novel, Going Against Type, will be published by Tirgearr Publishing this September, 2014.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
As a journalist, I suppose I’d been writing for a long time. I also did a bit of creative writing, before I had children, and had some short stories published in women’s magazines.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
My earliest memories are of reading and writing. I remember filling copybooks with stories in school, and asking Santa Claus for a typewriter when I was nine years old…
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I won a short story competition, and the prize included a writing weekend at the Killaloe Hedge School, run by author David Rice. I had started books before, but that inspired me to complete my first book!
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
I tend not to write long, descriptive passages, although I enjoy when other writers do this well. I tune in to how people speak and what they say, so much of my writing is dialogue. So I suppose it’s quite fast.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
My two main characters are opposites of what they’re expected to be. My heroine is a beautiful, funny, feisty sports journalist. And she falls in love with a tall, handsome and very sophisticated fashion writer. Both write anonymous columns for rival papers and are drawn into a war of words with each other. And both refuse to conform to type….
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
It’s a fun read, but if there is a message it’s in the strap line under the title: Sometimes finding the right person is not as easy as finding the right word.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic?
I worked in newspapers myself, although I never worked in sports. So I understood things like press conferences and interviews and deadlines.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most?
That’s a hard one to answer. I’m in a book club, and we read literary fiction. I also read commercial women’s fiction, some historical fiction and short stories. However, I also love a bit of science fiction – in particular anything to do with time travel!
Fiona: If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
The Irish author Kathleen MacMahon gave me solid advice and steered me in the right direction at a crucial time.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I have just finished Burial Rites by Hannah Kent and am dipping into stories in Edna O’Brien’s collection, The Love Object.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I am working on my second book.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members
My fantastic agent, Peter O’Connell, TrueLit Agency.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No, I don’t think so.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I was reading from a very young age and I was a very quiet child (I made up for it later). Writing was a way of expressing myself, I think.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
It’s in the same genre – commercial women’s fiction. That’s all I can say…
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I can only speak for the book I’ve written. I think visually, so I have to see the scenes. So sometimes that was hard.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I don’t have a favourite author. In commercial women’s fiction, I love writers who can make me laugh while making it appear effortless. And I also admire writers who are not afraid to strip back their writing to the bare bones. That’s a brave thing to do.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
The excellent design team at Tirgearr will be designing the cover.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
The sports stuff, actually. Even though there’s fairly little about sport in it, my heroine is a witty sports columnist and I had to do a fair bit of research.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
I learned a bit about football! On a more personal note, I learned quite a bit about myself – and the importance of just going for it.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
I don’t feel I’m in a position to offer other writers any advice – they could probably advise me! But to somebody who has never written, I’d say if you enjoy it, don’t let anyone stop you.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
It sounds twee, but I think it was The Tail of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
I’m quite low key, really. I walk, and I see friends. I quite enjoy cooking and entertaining at home. Maybe I should take up skydiving or something…
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I don’t follow any particular TV shows, although I love historical documentaries and stand up comics. Opposite ends of the spectrum, but there you go… And when I want to shut out the world for a while, a romantic comedy does it every time. One of my favourite movies in recent years was The Time Traveller’s Wife. I read the book first.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
I am quite unfussy but I adore Italian food. Just not too much of it, especially the pasta! Green is my favourite colour although I tend to wear a lot of black and grey. It’s simple and I don’t have to think about it too much. My favourite music is probably Latin American.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I studied ballet when I was younger and fancied myself as a dancer until I was about 15. Then I realized I was never going to be good enough.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
(Sharon Black Author Page on Facebook)