Paperback Writer welcomes Rie Sheridan Rose, author of the epic quest fantasy, The Luckless Prince.
About Rie Sheridan Rose
Rie Sheridan Rose has been writing professionally for the last ten years or so — though she has just added the “Rose” on the end. After putting up with her for the last eight years, she figured her husband deserved the recognition. Prior to last year, her work appeared under “Rie Sheridan.”
In that decade, she has published 4 novels, 1 short story collection, 2 chapbooks of collected stories, and five poetry collections as well as contributing to several anthologies.
Her stories have also been published in The Eternal Night, ShadowKeep and Verge e-zines, as well as the EOTU and Planet Relish websites.
Her poetry appeared in the print magazines Mythic Circle, Dreams of Decadence, and Abandoned Towers as well as the Electric Wine and Tapestry ezines.
The Half-Price Books 1999 “Say Good-Night to Illiteracy” Anthology contained her children’s story “Bedtime for Benny”.
Both her short story anthology RieVisions and poetry collection Dancing on the Edge were finalists in the 2003 EPPIE awards. Poetry collection Straying from the Path and Young Adult novel The Right Hand of Velachaz were finalists in the 2004 EPPIE awards.
Her most popular stories to date are the Adventures of Bruce and Roxanne, humorous horror shorts several of which have been collected into two print chapbooks by Yard Dog Press.
She has also written the lyrics to several songs for Marc Gunn. Their “Don’t Go Drinking With Hobbits” CD is due out in August.
The Luckless Prince is an epic quest fantasy. Prince Roland and his squire, Stefan, journey
downriver to negotiate a fur deal for his father. But the seemingly innocuous mission becomes
a nightmare as the raft is attacked by a band of raiders. And their troubles are only beginning.
As Roland tries to return home and reassure his father of his safety, he finds himself taken
prisoner by the mysterious elves of legend. And, in the end, only by forming an uneasy alliance
can their common enemy be defeated.
Q: Give us an example of a typical writing day.
I never have a typical writing day. I am not one of those people who can sit down and make sure to write everyday — except in November, when I really try to get 50k in a month for NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). In a normal day when I am in the writing vein, I will sit down at my computer and try to get from Point A to Point B in the most logical manner I can think of. If I have something happen to a character, I think “what would the result of that action be?” And let that consequence guide me to the next one. I am not good at focused time either. I am likely to get up and wash a load of dishes or feed the cats in the middle of a chapter and come back.
Q: Do you write on a computer or with pen/pencil and paper?
A little of both. Sometimes I write directly into the computer. During rewrites for sure, and if I am writing to a goal. Other times, I carry my notebook around and write down whatever strikes me. I seem to always write poetry and lyrics in the notebook first. Maybe it is the short format, but I find those easier to do by hand first, then transfer and tweak if necessary.
Q: Do you work from an outline?
Almost never. I have tried to outline, but it seems to leech the spontaneity for me, and I don’t like the results as well. I sometimes have a vague idea where the story will end up, and sometimes it is a complete surprise. I like it better that way.
Q: Biggest Pet Peeve about the writing life.
Not being taken seriously. Of course, part of that is my fault. I don’t treat it as much like a full-time job as I ought to myself, but no one else takes it as a job at all it seems. Your time is not as important as it is when you have a 9-5 sit down career — unless you make it one. This is something I know I need to work on as well. I need to practice more of the Butt in Chair method of writing.
Q: Biggest Career Surprise
I’m still waiting for it. I can’t really think of any big surprises…well, I did have someone ask me to work with them as a lyricist because he had heard about me on Marc Gunn’s blog, and that was a nice surprise — of course, when I quoted him a price for the work, he thought he would go it on his own for awhile. But it was a flattering surprise anyway. 🙂
Q: Worst rejection you’ve ever received?
I guess my worst rejection to date was submitting to a publisher I was editing for and being turned down. I know now that I DESERVED to be turned down — someday I’ll get that revision done and it will be a good book, but at the time, I really felt crushed.
Q: Nicest rejection you’ve ever received?
The nicest rejection I ever received had a piece of advice in it that let to my first book being published eventually. I had submitted to a midrange house who asked to see the full then rejected it because of the pacing. The editor suggested I get a book doctor to work with me, and when I did, I submitted my revised full to the now-defunct NovelBooks Inc. and got my first sale.
Q: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Hopefully with another five or six new releases on my vanity bookshelf. A girl can dream. I know I’ll keep writing — just need to do it a bit faster and more industriously.
Q: What’s next for you?
Very next thing will be the release of the Don’t Go Drinking With Hobbits CD which will be my first major foray into the life of a lyricist. It’s been an interesting experience, and a load of fun. I hope to write many, many more songs.
Q: Who is your favorite author?
Lynn Flewelling for her lovely words and wonderful personality. She is my role model as far as how to treat a fan right. I hope to live up to that someday.
Seanan McGuire is also a favorite in both her incarnations. I’ve recently learned of her books, and I have been devouring them all.
Q: What are a few of your favorite genres and why?
I have been a fan of mystery, science fiction, and fantasy my whole life, because that was what I grew up with. These are the books that lined my parents’ bookshelves, so these are what I learned to read. When I began to check books out of the library, I became a fan of classics and historical fiction because they were thick. I looked for two or three inch thick books to read because they would last awhile. Read some fascinating stories that way.
Q: In writing your book/novel if you could do it again what would you do differently?
Well, since this current release is basically a re-envisioning of my first book, I wouldn’t do anything much differently, because I was already correcting the mistakes I felt had been left in the original. If I let myself, there might still be a few tweaks I would like to make, but I swore that this was the final version, no matter what!
Q: Where do you write from?
I write many places. My current favorite, weird as it might sound, is in my husband’s car in the parking garage at his office building. It is fairly quiet, fewer distractions, and comfortable to sit in. I can work from my laptop and don’t have to think about housecleaning. Plus, I get to have lunch with him and talk on the drive to and from, so I actually get to spend more time with him this way.
Q: Do you have a writer’s studio? Describe it for us and what is the view you see from the window?
I do have a writer’s studio. At the moment, it is so cluttered with stuff I need to sort and put away that there is barely room on the desk for the laptop, so I don’t use it often. The window overlooks the roof of the house next door. I do have my collection of key chains on the wall, and my signed James O’ Barr originals, so it is a cool place…it’s just too crowded to work in. I need to straighten it, but I keep getting distracted. 🙂
Q: Time Frame: From start to finish
This is SO variable. For example, if you look at The Luckless Prince, my newest novel, it had its origins in my first book. That book was started when I was about twelve, and took me until 2000 to finish, polish, shop, sell, edit, and publish — about thirty to thirty-five years in total. Then, it sat after it went out of print for a couple of years until I found my current writing partner, we rewrote it through two complete run-throughs, sent it to beta readers, started shopping it again, it was picked up by Zumaya Otherworlds last August, and is now back in the world. So, this book was about forty years from start to finish.
On the other hand, Sidhe Moved Through the Faire was a NaNoWriMo project, so it was written in about thirty days. It had some minor tweaks here and there and went out to the markets. (I don’t think I would ever do this again — nothing gets sent out before going through my writing partner anymore!) It was picked up by Midnight Showcase fairly quickly, and after minor edits, was in print. That one took maybe a year and a half tops.
Those are probably the long and short of the scale.
Q: Writer’s Block – If you have ever experienced it – how did you resolve it?
I think I may be in the middle of it now. I find every so often, I just can’t think of anything to write to save my soul. I know some people advocate pushing through by making yourself sit down and write anything at all, but I am not one of them. I usually just wait for the Muse to be ready to speak again rather than force her to. I am getting the stirrings of ideas lately. I hope to be writing again soon. For now, I have a lot of stuff that I can polish while I wait.
Q: Have you ever abandoned any books/novels in progress?
Abandoned? Not really. Does that mean I have finished everything I’ve started? No. I have at least a dozen Works in Progress. But I expect I will get around to finishing them one day. I’ve never totally given up on a project. I am fickle though, and I may switch to something else for many years before trying it again. And I haven’t figured out the secret to plotting a mystery yet. When I do, I have a couple of those I want to finish too.
Q: Advice for the audience, first time authors, those choosing the writing life.
Write. It doesn’t have to be on a schedule, it doesn’t have to be good, it doesn’t have to be marketable right off the bat, but it does have to be done.
Finish. What sets an author apart is being able to complete a project. Give your story a beginning, middle, and end. Don’t worry about perfection. That’s what rewrites are for.
Polish. I used to hate rewriting. I thought I should be able to write a book from start to finish and then start the next one. That’s silly. Rewriting is when the fun starts. You know the skeleton of the plot now. In the rewrites is the time to add the skin and outfit.
Q: Who or what was your greatest influence that made you want to be a writer/author?
I think it was the great variety of books I grew up with. That, and parents who supported my desire to put words on paper. The best thing a writer can have growing up is a library of teachers to learn from. The authors who have come before us are the best textbooks you can find for learning the basics. What do you like in a book, why? Asking these questions of myself as I read gave me a good background to springboard from as I set out to become a writer.
Q: How did you feel holding your book in your hands for the first time?
Thrilled. That part never changes. The first time you hold your book in your hands is always an exciting, emotional, shimmering day.
Rebecca is a book coach, editor and publicist. She guides aspiring writers, coaches, entrepreneurs and speakers from idea or manuscript to become self-published authors so they share their expertise, knowledge and passion. Let's Book Together!