Name Randi M Sherman
Age: This year I will celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of my thirtieth birthday
Where are you from: I am a native Californian, originally from Encino or “the valley” a suburb of Los Angeles and now I live in Northern California, just outside of San Francisco.
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc.:
I laugh every day. I am very happily married to my favourite person and we live California’s wine country. I always bring a hostess gift and I’m a very good parallel parker.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
THE LOBBY is being well received and I am headed to the London Book Fair and then the Combined Book Expo in Chicago to schmooze with agents, large publishers, and other book folk. Plus I have another book ready to go and more in the works.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I have always allowed characters and scenes grow in my mind until they get too big – then I have to let them out. Originally I wrote short stories.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When I spent more time thinking about writing than almost everything else
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I came home after another less-than-thrilling, less-than-fulfilling day at work and said to myself, “There has to be more to life than this. This cannot be the reason I was put on this earth.” That was the day when I decided to figure out what inspires me. I had to admit what my secret dreams were, no matter out outlandish and impossible they seemed. Once I did, I started writing and haven’t stopped.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
When I have an idea, no matter how small, I start there and develop the story forward and backward from that point. I write in scenes, and my style is conversational. People tell me that I write just like I talk.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
The title Anna Karenina was taken, so I settled on THE LOBBY which seemed perfect because people come and go and they always pass through THE LOBBY.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Yes there is. Put down your cell phone and look at the human being in front of you. Everyone has a story, a history and a reason for being where they are at that moment.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic?
Apparently it’s very realistic. You wouldn’t believe how many people have contacted me and told me that they see themselves or people they know in THE LOBBY.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
All of the characters are compilations of people I’ve known or observed, read or heard about. In fact, the story in THE LOBBY about Nancy and Clark March is one I wrote after watching a very sweet couple on the beach while I was vacationing. At first glance they looked out of place. They laid out their own blanket at the end of a row of the hotel umbrellas and lounge chairs where the rest of us, the pretentious umbrella drink sipping snobs sat. The couple seemed so happy and complete. They were so attentive to each other and seemed so unaffected by the people and goings on around them, I felt like I was intruding from where I sat. There was something special about them and I really wanted to capture their essence.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most?
I am a fan of biographies and autobiographies and how people are affected by their surroundings and perceived importance.
Fiona: If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
Erma Bombeck and Nora Ephron, both were able to make the mundane funny.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
The Ugly Renaissance by Alexander Lee and for an upcoming plane ride I have: In Praise of Messy Lives by Katie Roiphe
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I am wrapping up work on another novel about a big, bawdy larger than life character and her humor, drive, hurdles and missteps as she strives to become, everything no one ever thought she could be, fabulous. Although not biographical, this book is written in the first person.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
That would be nice. I would love it if I could be creative and be paid for it but for now I’ll dream and keep my day job.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Nope I love it. I took some big risks and I’m glad I did.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I have always been funny and had an active imagination. About a million years ago when the lava was cooling I performed stand-up comedy at amateur nights in Los Angeles. I wrote my own material. The power of capturing the attention of others was heady.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
I was raised to be pragmatic and responsible. I graduated from college with a degree in health science and found success in the healthcare IT industry using “universally recognized methodologies” which makes me boring at cocktail parties on seven continents, international waters and the space station.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I wish I had more time, that my house was quieter and I have an addition to commas.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
For THE LOBBY I was on the road doing morning show interviews immediately following the release. What a blast! Everyone was so perky. Now I travel to book fairs, festivals and author award dinners (if I win something).
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
After I came up with the concept and dug through thousands of stock photos, the Friesen Press designers pulled it together. Ta-da
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Releasing my characters into the world.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Let go of all pretense and inhibitions, untuck your blouse and run full speed downhill!
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Include EVERYTHING, you can edit later – that’s it.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Escape, enjoy, laugh out loud!
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
I’m sure I read Dr Seuss, Nancy Drew and other children and pre-teen books but the first book I remember in detail is Little Women. I remember feeling very sophisticated.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Nearly everything can make me laugh. I laugh at puns, physical comedy, my own jokes and overly serious people. Personal and team triumph, puppies and I don’t know why but pregnancy announcements make me cry. On the opposite end of the spectrum cruel behavior does too.
Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?
Oscar Wilde because in his writing, he was fearless, thought provoking and highly entertaining.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why?
“Early Arrival.” I’m always early everywhere I go. I can’t seem to help it. I could be invited to a dinner party that begins at six o’clock. Then wanting to arrive fashionably late, I would leave my house at six-fifteen, drive ten minutes and still get there at five-forty-five.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies?
Is daydreaming a hobby? I enjoy working in my garden and cooking, cocktailing, going to the horse races, dancing when I’m home alone and really belting out a tune when I’m driving my car.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Frankly, anything Kate Blanchett is in I would watch. I would buy a ticket to watch her watching paint dry. But besides Kate, anything Woody Allen writes, true crime, documentaries and I LOVE musical theater.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
I’ve never met a carbohydrate I didn’t like.
Pink and Green
I have varied taste in music. I like everything from Top 10 to 70’s Rock to Schubert to Broadway Musical. No one likes to ride in my car with me.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
Definitely an actor … and of course, a ballerina, a cowboy, and a princess
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
Amazon Authors Page http://www.amazon.com/Randi-M.-Sherman/e/B00IHJ16OA/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1