Interview with Sherry D. Ramsey

What's the story behind your latest book?
Like many (most) of my novels, the first draft of The Murder Prophet came into being one November during National Novel Writing Month (www.nanowrimo.org). I had written the first drafts of several novels during previous Novembers, and this one year I wanted to do something different and didn't have a novel in mind to write. So I decided that, as an experiment, I would use online generators to guide many aspects of the book, and see what happened.

It started with the title. I had no story idea to start with, and the entire novel grew out of the title, The Murder Prophet, which came from an online generator. I used generators to come up with many of the character and place names, items in the novel, ideas, plot twists—you name it. Any time I was stuck for an idea, I went to the generators to see what they would come up with. Although I expanded and refined the story in the course of several revisions, the novel stayed very true to that first draft.
What is your writing process?
I like to let a story idea roll around in my head for a while before I actually sit down to begin writing it. I might make some notes of things I don't want to forget, but I generally don't make a detailed outline. I find that if I do that, I don't want to write the story any more. So in that way, I'm very much a discovery writer. However, I like to have some handwritten notes to use as a guide, too--which consist mostly of asking myself questions about the story, and then writing down possible answers and ideas. Then when I feel I've thought about it enough, I tend to just sit down and write the first draft as quickly as possible, to get the story down. My first drafts are pretty sparse; description and details will come in during rewriting.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I'm also traditionally published, but The Murder Prophet is a bit quirky--it's contemporary fantasy, and mystery, and humour, and romance, all rolled into one. I wondered if a traditional publisher would want to take a chance on it, but it's a fun book and I felt sure that it would find an audience. So the independent route seemed a perfect fit!
What do your fans mean to you?
I love hearing feedback from readers who enjoy my stories. I think that's one of the greatest rewards of being an author. To know that you've brought someone pleasure and enjoyments--that's priceless.
What are you working on next?
My next big project will be another book in this series, which I've decided to call "Magica Incognita." The Murder Prophet is the first book in the series, and I have plans for several more.
Who are your favorite authors?
The answer to this question is ever-changing, which is probably the case for all avid readers as we discover new voices. But some of my favorites are Terry Pratchett, Connie Willis, Lilith Saintcrow, Janet Evanovich, Jack McDevitt, Nancy Kress, and Elizabeth Peters. But there's always room for more on the list!
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I'm a bit of creativity addict, so I have a lot of other creative pursuits. I make jewelry and like to dabble in art, and spend summer days in the garden. I also sew, edit projects with Third Person Press, and, of course, read. I don't really understand it when people say "I'm bored." :)
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I follow deals, subscribe to newsletters, and use book recommendation sites to find new authors to try out--as well as share recommendations with friends. And sometimes just browse the types of genres that interest me. I'm almost always willing to take a chance on a new or independent author.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
The first complete short story I remember writing was for an English assignment in the seventh or eight grade. It was a creepy, haunted-house tale, and I still have the scribbler it's in!
What do you read for pleasure?
My favorite genres are science fiction and mystery, although I've been reading a lot of urban fantasy lately as well. I used to read a considerable amount of epic fantasy, but strayed more to the science fiction side as time went on. I still enjoy a good fantasy, but it has to be a bit out of the ordinary to catch my eye. I also like non-fiction books about nature, science, and technology. And I love humor mixed in with any of the other genres.
Published 2014-09-20.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Beyond the Sentinel Stars
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 132,760. Language: English. Published: December 20, 2017 by Tyche Books Ltd.. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Space opera
Luta Paixon and her brother must work together to discover the secret forces plotting against Nearspace and prevent an interstellar war.
Dark Beneath the Moon
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 116,350. Language: English. Published: September 1, 2015 by Tyche Books Ltd.. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Space opera, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
When a mysterious attack leaves them all stranded in an uncharted system, Luta and her crew must decide who to trust.
The Murder Prophet
Series: Magica Incognita, Book 1. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 83,570. Language: English. Published: September 20, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Contemporary, Fiction » Mystery & detective » Women Sleuths
Kit Stablefield is a detective with a secret and a crush on a guy she knows only online, in a future where magic is a part of everyday life. But when millionaire Aleshu Coro walks into the offices of Darcko and Sadatake with a message from the Murder Prophet and fourteen days to live, everything changes.
One's Aspect to the Sun
Price: $6.99 USD. Words: 97,860. Language: English. Published: October 28, 2013 by Tyche Books Ltd.. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Space opera, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
Greedy corporations, nanotechnology, and family: a space opera with heart.
Grey Area: 13 Ghost Stories
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 56,460. Language: English. Published: October 24, 2013 by Third Person Press. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - multi-author, Fiction » Anthologies » Horror
Edited by Nancy S.M. Waldman, Julie A. Serroul, Sherry D. Ramsey Imagine that you are trapped in a grey area, neither here nor there, in-between time, space, colours, lives. The vivid stories in Grey Area: 13 Ghost Stories bring this scenario to life. Thirteen strong authors show us what it is like to be in-between in this contemporary, varied, spooky and often touching collection.
Unearthed: The Speculative Elements, vol. 3
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 102,980. Language: English. Published: July 10, 2012 by Third Person Press. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - multi-author
Earth--the ground of our being, the dust from which we come, and to which we will return. Imagine what might arise from and disappear into the soil...what grows, what is buried, what teems unseen. This collection, exploring the ends of the Earth and beyond, offers tales from the depths of darkness to the lightest heights. Dig in. These twenty-one stories will thrill, scare, surprise and delight.
To Unimagined Shores: Collected Stories by Sherry D. Ramsey
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 99,400. Language: English. Published: November 23, 2011 by Third Person Press. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author
What sorts of things wash up on unimagined shores? Hitch-hiking aliens, kidnapped embryos, Victorian time-machines, spaceport detectives, itinerant scribes, and more. The seventeen stories in this collection are by turns funny, tragic, light-hearted and serious, but all share this: they will carry you to distant shores of imagination, and, once there, show you things you hadn't known before.
Airborne: The Speculative Elements, v.2
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 91,130. Language: English. Published: October 10, 2010 by Third Person Press. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - multi-author
These fourteen stories and three poems, all in the SpecFic genres, breathe unexpected possibilities into the atmosphere that surrounds and fills us. Take flight with these tales and explore what is always elusive: microscopic particles, airwaves, wind, space, sound, and spirit.
Undercurrents: A Cape Breton Anthology of Speculative Fiction
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 82,990. Language: English. Published: October 1, 2010 by Third Person Press. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - multi-author
The fourteen stories in Undercurrents ply the literary oceans of time and space, possibility and imagination. Inside are stories that ripple and swell with the unusual: fiddle-playing ghosts, malevolent cats, urbane vampires, and ordinary folks who have drifted into the realms of the extraordinary. Set your oars in these unusual waters and see for yourself what swirls in the undercurrents.