Monday, October 21, 2013

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Sylvia Little

Come and spend a few moments with Sylvia, and you'll find your time well spent. Sylvia is not only a deep thinker, she has a positive attitude about life and what can be accomplished.


Tell me a about yourself. What got you started in writing?
 
Briefly, I would say that I
·   See the glass half-full rather than half-empty.
    Expecting good things to happen will lead to taking actions that produce positive results
·   Think, "Everyone has a gift. [You just have to be able to find it and follow your calling.] and
·   Believe the Chinese Proverb,   "If you give a man a fish and he won't starve for a day. Teach a man how to fish and he won't starve for his entire life."
I can't remember when I didn't write. One early memory of writing is about my high school days. I wrote a monthly column for a Chicago magazine [can't remember the name] on the “happenings— sports, academics, social events, who doing what, and etc.” at Parker, my High School.

What got my to start writing again? I guess you could say happenstance. My three realities converged. I had [1] a granddaughter who loves books, [2] a son who is fluent in three languages—English, Spanish and French, and [3] a burning desire to give appropriate entertaining instructional materials as gifts.

Before I realized it, the gift search had turned into a conceptual design for a book manuscript, just as quickly went through various stages, and finally was a bound book, Tri-Alphabets for Greer—English, Español, Françai. After prodding by family friends and colleagues, it was revised and published as Dr. Little’s Tri-Alphabets and More   English ·  Español  ·   Français.
How and where do you write? Do you prefer a lap top or do you prefer writing freehand?

I keep a pen and paper near when I'm working around the house and jot down ideas as they come to me. Lately, I have tried dictating into my iPhone and then transferring it into a document later. I use a Mac. So I guess you could say that I use both old school and new school methods.

What's your favorite part about writing? Your least favorite part about writing?

Seeing the piece takes shape is what I like best. My least favorite part about writing is editing.

How do you come up with your characters? Why would readers want to get to know them?


The type of writing that I tend to do is not character driven. By that I mean, in one of my books, the ABCs are the main characters.  In my next project, the main characters have been determined by the book subject matter--early African American inventors.

What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing?
 
Because marketing is my weak area and is extremely important, I recently began looking into how to develop a marketing campaign. I know that one can write what many call an outstanding book, receive numerous awards, get outstanding reviews, and sell very few books.   Which has been the case with my first book. You can write a terrible book, have an outstanding marketing campaign, and become a best seller. Need I say more about the value of marketing?

Recently, I started implementing a marketing plan based on Lorraine Phillips' book, Online Book Marketing; The Least Expensive Ways to Create Book Buzz.  For Step One, Your Author Website, Blog, and Facebook: Russell Kyle, my website designer [http://russellkyle.com/ has been invaluable. He is redesigning my website and creating a matching Facebook Author cover.  The redesign website is not up. If you would like to compare the old website with the new, then I suggest viewing http://www.sylviahawkinslittle.com/ as soon as possible. Wait a week, and then view http://www.sylviahawkinslittle.com/ again. This revision speaks for itself. My blog will share my marketing plan's updates.
How do you schedule your writing time? When do you write?

That's a weakness of mine. I tend to work best in the a.m. or late at night. However, it often is when an idea or thought comes to mind.

What are you currently working on? Do you have a new book out?

I’m editing poetry that I wrote years ago into a picture book series on early African-American inventors. Their background and how their inventiveness makes life wonderful for you and me. The series is entitled  "Thank a Black Man".

Kimberly and Tom Goodwin words best delineate why I chose this project.
"It is said that history repeats itself, but we are only doomed to relive our past if we fail to learn from it. The past is not a map to where you are going; it’s a record of where you have been. Its purpose is not to drag you back through emotional muck, but to serve you best by reminding you of lessons learned so you can avoid them in the future."
Do you have a project on the back burner? Tell me about it.

I have an outline for book that uses humor to remind parents to [a] become more invested in their child's education, [b] understand the self-fulfilling prophecy and [c] raise their children as if they were geniuses.

Joseph Joubert once said that, "Some superior minds are unrecognized because there is no standard by which to weigh them."                                                
  What would you tell a beginning writer who wants to 
  publish
  but doesn't believe he/she has enough talent?
 
Go for it. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

 1.    Learn as much as possible about your target audience and use this information to structure your writing.
 2.    Whether you self-publish or choose an agent, edit, edit, and edit your manuscript or have someone do it for you. Think of editing as putting the shine on shoes if you were a shoe shiner or putting the glow on a clients' check diamond if you were a make up artist.
 
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Thank you, Sylvia!

To learn more about Sylvia contact her at:
 
 

 



 
 
 
 





  
 
 


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