Monday, February 6, 2012

Shawna K Williams, Guest Author, February 7

Lynette: I am so excited for you. Three e-books in this series and the first of the seriest now in print, is that right?
Shawna: Yes, No Other is the first book in a series of three, and has just released in print. It was published digitally in May 2010. In All Things is the second book, and The Good Fight is my latest new release and the third in the series.

Lynette: How long have you been writing? What is your first writing or composing memory?
Shawna: I've been writing off and on for ten years, but only seriously for the past five. I had never intended to be a writer. I actually started writing just to satisfy my curiosity about a peculiar dream I had. I had been musing about it for six months and it became too big to keep straight in my head so I had to start writing it. Though I'd not intended to become a writer, I always seemed to have a knack for it, and I do recall my teachers encouraging me when I was in school. My first memory is of a mystery I wrote in the fourth grade. We had to use our spelling list to create a story, and the teacher ended up reading mine aloud to the class. I had forgotten about this for many years, but on facebook just the other week, and old classmate reminded me of it.

Lynette: Wow, that story was memorable to another fourth grader. Sounds like you made an impression with your story even then. Where do you find inspiration for your stories?
Shawna: From all kinds of things; memories, people, pictures, dreams, sometimes it comes from musing about an interesting scenario, or being promped by readers to expand upon a character. My debut novel and the sequel both came from that strange dream I mentioned. Orphaned Hearts was inspired by my grandparents. My granddad was an orphan, and one day I began to ponder what it meant to him when he became a father. Not having grown up with a family and then to have one of his own, his perspective had to be different. The Good Fight and the upcoming sequel to Orphaned Heart were spurred by my readers' enthusiasm to know more.

Lynette: Who had the most positive influence on your life and how:
Shawna: My grandmother, Nonnie. An extraordinary woman. So much wisdom, compassion and strength, within such a small package. She was always a progressive thinker, encouraging -- never judgmental, never critical, but definately practical. If you asked her what she thought, you'd best be prepared to hear the truth. It's hard to describe how she has influenced me in that it's not something so concrete and tangible. It's a grounding, I guess, a sensibility and perspective that's rooted me throughout my life.

Lynette: If you had a time machine and could take one trip to any time in history, where would we find you?
Shawna: Oh, boy! Only one place? Wow! I've actually thought about this because there are so many things I'd like to observe. Live in, however, is another story. I really enjoy running water and air conditioning. But, for the sake of seeing, I'd have to say Pompeii before Vesuvius buried it. At least that's where my mood is swaying at the moment. There's a strong debate taking place in my head that's also suggesting I should travel forward and hope someone has invented a spaceship, and another line of argument telling me to go back and visit my younger self to deliver some practical advice along the lines of, "Don't do that!"

Lynette: What are your hobbies and interests other than writing?
Shawna: I design and sell jewelry locally, and also do custom designs for individuals. It's relaxing to me. I also have a passion for antiques, geology and ancient history.  I like to hike and explore. On occasion I paint, but haven't had time in quite a while. I used to be pretty good at it, though. I work as an editor for two publishers; Desert Breeze Publishing and Solstice. We also own a range and raise grassfed beef. The rest of the time I'm a mom to my three teens and a wife to my husband of twenty years.


  1. Shawna, I just started No Other last night. Can't wait to keep reading. June

  2. Shawna,

    The way your stories evolve from memories, thoughts, and things around you resonates with me. Though we may write diferent genre's, the process is often similar.


  3. Great interview and I enjoyed getting to know more about you. What a busy life you lead!

  4. Book editing, novel writing, cattle raising, teen parenting, jewelry making... You are one incredibly busy woman! :) I love how personal your stories are, and your interesting life must give you a lot of inspiration. It was nice to meet you.

  5. Sounds like an awesome book. Another for my TBR pile. Congrats on the print edition. What a multi-talented lady!

  6. Wow, what a great story. Alas, another book to add to my TBR pile. What multi-talented lady. Congrats on your print edition!

  7. Thank you all so much. So sorry I'm late at checking in. The day has gotten away from me a bit.

    The charaters in a book do become personal, and it's hard for me to let them go once I'm done. I miss them!

  8. Trying again to post. Love this interview and the book sounds awesome!

  9. Why thank you, Jillian.

    Nancy, I agree. I've found that a lot of authors share similar experiences. There's this thing I do that I had thought was so original: character journal. Basically I ramble about the story situation, character dilemma, while in my character's POV in a file specifically for that character. Anyhow, I posted this in an interview once, thinking that it was my own unique idea for character development. Nope! Plenty of other folks discovered it on their own, too. And then I thought I was extremely clever when I started using Myers-Briggs personality typing to better define my characters, only to discover someone had written a whole book about this very thing.

  10. Jillian had difficulty posting here but sent along this comment: Great interview. Loved the fact that your grandmother was such an influence.

  11. It's nice to get to know you, Shawna. I love to learn how others start their writing. Sharing stories from your family is a great way to honor them. My first story came from reading a journal my great, great grandfather kept when he came across country on a wagon train.

    Good luck with your writing.

  12. Tell Jillian thank you for me, please.

    Paisley, let me say congratulations first for your contract with Desert breeze. Welcome to the family!
    How interesting about your great, great grandfather. It's neat to think we can pass on something of our family and heritiage through writing. I love that!

  13. Fun interview, ladies! Thanks for the insights and sharing. We live in a great world (the write world), don't we?