The Literary Spotlight with Mia Sheridan
Join me as we step into the enchanting world of Mia Sheridan, a beloved and acclaimed author, whose compelling stories have touched the hearts of readers worldwide. Get ready for an intimate and insightful conversation with Mia Sheridan, as we unravel the magic that breathes life into her unforgettable characters and transports us to worlds of love, hope, and healing.
Enter the captivating realm of Mia Sheridan, a gifted wordsmith whose literary prowess has garnered widespread acclaim and accolades. Among her many celebrated works, "Archer's Voice," a New York Times bestseller, stands as a testament to her extraordinary storytelling ability. Through this emotionally charged masterpiece, Sheridan invites readers into a world where love knows no bounds, healing the scars of the past and igniting a timeless connection that resonates long after the final page is turned. Mia Sheridan, an accomplished and celebrated author, has enchanted readers with her enthralling storytelling and masterful prose. With a remarkable ability to craft emotionally charged narratives, she has earned a devoted following of fans who eagerly immerse themselves in the worlds she creates. Each of her books is a journey of the heart, exploring themes of love, redemption, second chances, and the resilience of the human spirit. As a prolific writer in the contemporary romance genre, Mia Sheridan's works have touched the hearts of readers worldwide. Her compelling characters come to life on the pages, drawing readers into their tumultuous lives and intricate relationships. From heart-wrenching tragedies to heartwarming triumphs, Sheridan weaves tales that resonate deeply with her audience, leaving an indelible mark on their souls. Whether she's transporting us to a picturesque small town or to the heart of a bustling city, Mia Sheridan's narratives are an escape into a world where love prevails and hope springs eternal.
C.A: Could you please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about your writing background? What inspired you to become a writer, and how did your writing journey begin?
Mia: My name is Mia Sheridan, a New York Times, USA Today and Wallstreet Journal bestselling author of (as of this moment), twenty-six romance/romantic thriller novels. My author career actually had a sad beginning as I began writing as a way to cope with the loss of a baby girl in 2012. I was reading a lot of romance at the time (happy stories of love and hope) and my husband encouraged me to try my hand at one of my own. I did, and I self-published that novel (Leo) and was absolutely blown away by the unexpected response. It's been somewhat of a whirlwind since then!
C.A: Could you share a glimpse into your creative process? How do you approach developing ideas and turning them into stories? Do you have any specific rituals or habits that help you get into the writing zone?
Mia: I typically write in the mornings as that's when my brain is clearest/most creative. :) I like to come up with an outline although it's usually pretty basic (bullet points of main storyline happenings). I allow the characters to lead me between the bullet point spaces and am sometimes surprised at where a story goes.
C.A: Who are some of your favorite authors or literary influences, and how have they shaped your own writing style? Are there any books or works that have had a profound impact on your writing career?
Mia: I've always been a huge reader and enjoy every genre under the sun, although romance will always be my first love. I remember absolutely devouring novels by V.C. Andrews when I was a teen, and I've always been a huge Stephen King fan. I love Nora Roberts too and am especially influenced by how capable she is as far as writing both romance and suspense.
C.A: What challenges have you faced as a writer, and how did you overcome them? How do you handle writer's block or periods of self-doubt?
Mia: Critique can be very difficult, especially as any creative process comes from the heart and so to be judged harshly over something so personal can be crushing. I've gotten better at letting negative comments roll off my back, although being sensitive is also part of what makes me good at my job (I believe), and so I try not to toughen my skin to such a degree that my emotions are hard to access. It's a balance. As far as writer's block, I simply don't allow myself to get stuck. If I don't feel like writing or feel uninspired, I write anyway and move the story forward. On those days, the writing is often bad, but that's what editing is for!
C.A: How do you approach developing compelling and relatable characters in your stories? Are there any strategies or exercises you use to ensure your characters feel authentic and three-dimensional?
Mia: Creating imperfect characters is important for making them feel real and three dimensional. Human beings are so multi-faceted and if your characters don't feel that way, readers won't connect. The same is true of villains. The very best villains are just a tad bit likable or at LEAST you understand their motivation.
C.A: Where do you find inspiration for your stories? Are there any specific themes or topics you enjoy exploring in your writing?
Mia: I was a psychology major in college and so I'm forever fascinated by WHY humans do what they do. And why two humans who have experienced very similar circumstances make such different choices. I explore that theme a lot, especially in my romantic thrillers. Trauma is also especially interesting to me, and the ways in which it affects people/characters.
C.A: Is there a particular book or project you are most proud of? Could you share the story behind it?What is the most rewarding aspect of being a writer for you?
Mia: Archer's Voice is probably my most popular book and I'm proud of that one because at the time I wrote it, I took a risk in creating a vulnerable male romance hero. In 2013, the genre was bursting at the seams with alpha males and so I was really nervous to introduce a disabled male lead who was shy and awkward and intensely vulnerable. So to watch the way in which Archer has been embraced has been absolutely amazing and so rewarding.
Editing and Revision:
C.A: How important do you think the editing and revision process is for a writer? Could you share your approach to editing your own work? Do you have any suggestions for writers on how to improve their editing skills?
Mia: Editing is the point at which you know and understand your entire story arc and each one of your characters. I love the editing process because all the doubt about where your story is going and how you're going to weave it together is over and now it's all about polishing and refining and creating threads that link small things in the beginning to happenings at the end. That part is really important because you can make yourself appear far more clever than you actually might be. :D The editing process is great because you can make it seem like you had something in mind from the beginning that you actually came up with later on and wove in. I also love figuring out the easiest way to fill plot holes that you discover. I've found that almost 95% of the time, a plot hole can be filled with a line or two of explanation or dialogue.
Publishing and Marketing:
C.A: What has been your experience with the publishing industry? Any advice for aspiring authors on finding agents or publishers? How do you navigate the world of book marketing and promotion? Any tips for authors looking to build their audience?
Mia: The publishing world is great right now because self-publishing is an option for those who don't want to wait to be noticed by a publisher/agent, but paperback sales are also on the rise (thanks in large part to BookTok) and so publishers are looking for more content to put on shelves. Either way, it can be really hard to get your foot in the door, but it's all about persistence and dedication to your craft. Write a book, put it out there, market it in the best ways you can, read, learn, research, and most importantly DON'T STOP WRITING MORE BOOKS. You never know which project might be that breakout. There are stories upon stories of authors who wrote 30 novels before that *one* became a bestseller. I'm beyond grateful for the timing of my own success, but I would say it's definitely not the norm. And even though I've experienced some success in the industry, I have to keep writing too to remain relevant. It's some amount of pressure, but at the same time, if writing is your passion, you couldn't stop writing even if you wanted to.
Advice for Budding Writers:
C.A: What advice would you give to aspiring authors who are just starting their writing journey? How do you handle rejection and criticism in the publishing world?
Mia: Rejection and criticism is part of the publishing journey. Know that going in, and be prepared to shield yourself from some of it (I don't read reviews anymore) because negative voices in your head only deplete your creativity. But also know that even some of the most beloved classics on earth have hordes or terrible reviews. Art is subjective, but if you are passionate about what you do, you will definitely find your audience. Keep honing your craft - just like with everything, the more you do of it, the better you'll get.
C.A: What’s your favorite quote that keeps you going in life?
Mia: I don't know that I have only one favorite quote, but I love this one and it has buoyed me in times of grief or weakness: "Always remember you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, smarter than you think, and loved more than you know."
C.A: Could you give us a sneak peek into any upcoming projects or books you're currently working on? Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers and aspiring writers?
Mia: I'm currently working on a sweet romance book in my Pelion Lake series! And then I have a romantic thriller coming out in November from Montlake that's pretty twisted. :D