Have you always has a vivid imagination?
Yes, as far back as I can remember, I've always had a vivid imagination. For example, me and my childhood friends (Georgia and Cordella) created our own game called "mysteries." We would create scenes and act out solving mysteries.
Where do you get your story ideas? Is there some sort of inspiration behind it?
My ideas are inspired by a variety of things. I'm an observer of people and an information junkie. I read a lot and watch stations like ID, truTV, CNN, etc. My Christian fiction stories were inspired by biblical stories. Delilah is a modern adaption of Samson and Delilah. Ruthless is a modern tale of David and Bathsheba. I put my own special twists in the stories but keep the core theme intact.
Sade's Secret, my latest book, was inspired after hearing story after story about women being sexually abused at an early age. I also ran across news articles of teenagers going through emotional distress due to that issue. I wanted to bring an awareness of the problem and I hope that if anyone is or has gone through sexual abuse, they will no longer feel like they have to remain silent. So many times, secrets can hinder a person from living their life.
Shelia, I know you write adult fiction as well as YA Fiction, do you see yourself writing any other genre?
I want to continue to write in multiple genres. Whatever story comes to me, that's the story I plan to write. I currently write: romance, suspense, Christian fiction, urban, and as you mentioned YA.
When you're reading for pleasure, do you find yourself researching the craft of that author as well?
When I'm reading for pleasure, I don't have my supercritical eye on. I'm reading for enjoyment. When I'm reading because I'm trying to learn how a particular genre is done, then yes, my critical eye is on and I'm observing an author's technique, style, etc.
Do you have a favorite author? Or favorite book?
I have too many favorites to name just one. I'll name a few: Vincent Alexandria, Maya Angelou, Reshonda Tate Billingsley, Wahida Clark, K. Elliott, Brandon Massey, Michelle McGriff, Victoria Christopher Murray, Francis Ray, Kimberla Lawson Roby, and the list goes on and on.
Too many books to name too; however if I had to name one, it would actually be The Left Behind series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins.
How do you manage working full-time, being a full-time mother and writing?
Many would be surprised that I don't have any kids. Although I don't have a regular job, my freelance work and writing is a full-time business. It takes up the majority of my day and night. I've learned to juggle by putting in the majority of the hours during the week, but on the weekends, I'm rarely on the computer. If I don't take two days off, then I would end up burning myself out.
Tell my readers one thing they've be surprised to know about you.
I'm shy and I love stylish purses.
What is one tip you would give aspiring authors?
Learn the craft, research (Google is a writer's best friend) and last, but not least, write.
Book: Sade's Secret by Sparkle
Publisher: Wahida Clark Presents YA
Publication Date: May 25, 2012
A note from the author: SADE’S SECRET is probably one of the most impactful books I’ve ever written. Its edgy and raw and will have readers, young and old, talking back to the book. It’s a book that both mothers and daughters can read.
Sparkle is the pseudonym for Essence Magazine bestselling author Shelia M. Goss. Shelia is a 2012 Emma Award Finalist and has over thirteen books in print. She writes in multiple genres: Christian fiction, romance, women’s fiction, suspense, and young adult. Sade's Secret is the first book by Sparkle. USA Today says, “She has an easy, flowing style with her prose…”
About the book
Fifteen-year-old Sade Washington has been harboring a secret from her two best friends, Crystal and Dena. Her secret is threatened to be revealed when she discovers she’s pregnant. Once Sade’s secret is out, it causes a wedge between her and her mother Joyce. Distraught at her mother’s reactions, Sade toils with a love/hate relationship with her.
Joyce struggles with keeping peace in her household. The relationship between her daughter and live-in boyfriend, Calvin has her in an emotional turmoil. Joyce is determined to make their home a happy one by any means necessary.
Sade attempts to have a normal teen life, but as she turns sixteen, reality hits her head on. She must make choices that will not only affect her future, but that of her unborn child. Sade’s Secret takes the reader on an emotional ride as it deals with a strong subject matter and the dynamics of mother-daughter relationships.
For more information visit sheliagoss.com/sparkle.