Today, I have a special guest visiting my blog. Sylvia Stein is here, she's the author of Closure and Chasing Clarity. She stopped by to talk more about her books, her upcoming projects, and shares a few of her favorite things.
So please give a warm welcome to Sylvia Stein.
Sylvia, thank you so much for joining us today. To start off, tell us a little about yourself and how your writing journey started?
Thank you for having me Carol. I really appreciate it. Yes, well my name is Sylvia Stein and I am an indie author who resides in Fuquay Varina North Carolina with my amazing and supportive family. My wonderful husband Jeremy and our three beautiful children Paul 11, Michael 9, and Consuelo (Connie) 6. I have always wanted to write since I was a kid. However, I began on my path back in 2011 when I joined a Writer’s Group on Linked in called the Writer’s 750 and then enrolled at Southern New Hampshire University Online in September 2012 and obtained my Masters of English and Creative Writing with a concentration in Fiction in August of 2015. It was then that I joined another Writer’s group while at SNHU that I began developing my own books after working on several anthologies.
Your second book Chasing Clarity was just released, what was the inspiration behind the story?
Yes, my second book my first YA was published in October 8, 2015. The inspiration behind the story happened when I woke up to the news that a beloved actor and character from a show I loved had died due to an accidental overdose. I was so shocked and I could not believe it had happened. I mean it was like I had lost someone I knew and very close to me. I then began thinking about all the family and friends that loved him. Then in November of 2013 during Nano Chasing Clarity was born. I called it Clarity at first and it later changed to Chasing Clarity.
Do you find that it easier writing the second book or do you feel pressure for it to live up to the first?
Yes, I felt more pressure on the second than the first one. Since Closure was more of New Adult and Chasing Clarity was my first YA with the subject of Grief. I also wrote in first person.
Closure is your first book and like Chasing Clarity it's an emotionally charged story, do you find it hard writing these types of stories?
Actually, yes I do find it hard to write these stories but the main motivation behind them is to bring out a message of hope when all is lost or as in Sara’s case with her father she is trying to pick up the pieces of what he put her through and finds new life with her Aunt and Uncle. As with Mia in Chasing Clarity and her being a young woman who has lost her love and then trying to see if she can bounce back and move forward. At times it has hard to write these stories but it is also very rewarding to be able to create hope and a message that in the end my characters are going to be okay.
Out of all the characters in your books, which one do you connect with the most?
I love them all but I connected so much with Mia. I love her and Sara so much. However, Mia challenged me by making me feel all the stages of grief and all that she lost. I cried as I wrote almost all the book. Not that I did not cry with Closure I did but Mia really drained my emotions and the scenes with her at the funeral and saying goodbye to Leo brought me to when my Dad passed away in 2005 and I sat in the hospital bed as he took his last breaths and then passed. It was quite emotional as I am telling you this I can’t help but cry.
What has the responses been to your books, do you have a review that's your favorite?
Oh the response to my books have been wonderful I have many reviews for Closure and I have a few for Chasing Clarity but I think for me all of the reviews are wonderful. However, I do enjoy when a reader will specifically state how they loved both Sara and Mia and how they went through something similar as is the case for Sara in Closure and the abuse by her father and how reading the book really helped them. For Mia I love how they rooted for all she went through and how her faith and family helped in the end. I feel very fortunate and blessed because Faith is key for me as well and I always try to add that in my stories.
How supportive has your family been in your writing career?
My family has been the best. I have the most amazing husband he is my rock and is always my biggest fan. Also my children my mother in law and father in law as well as family back home in Texas and our family in Michigan.
Can you tell us what projects you're working on at the moment?
Yes, I can. Well my next novel will be out in the summer June and it is the Prequel to Closure and this is taken from Garrison’s point of View.
Also in 2017 late by October I will be releasing my first Thriller New Adult. I will give more details on it later.
Last question, what advice would you give new authors?
I would tell them not to give up. To work hard and write everyday set up a schedule and outline and never stop. No matter how hard it gets just push forward and work towards publishing whether it be self publishing which has worked out for me or they can also go the traditional route. Never give up just do your research and make sure to write everyday.
Just for fun:
Favorite Movie: Wow that is tough one I have many but my one favorite of all time is My Big Fat Greek Wedding.
Favorite Food: That’s easy Southern Fried Chicken
Favorite Book: To Kill a Mockingbird Harper Lee changed my life.
Special Memento: Wow well the birth of my children, getting married and publishing my first books. I know that is more than one.
Thank you Carol!
Sylvia Stein is a published author with several anthologies with her Writer’s group 750 on linked
in. Stein obtained a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing and English from Southern New
Hampshire University this past July 2015. She is a mother of three beautiful children Paul 10,
Michael 9 and Consuelo 6. She resides in the city of Fuquay Varina with her amazing husband
Jeremy. Stein has also published two solo books one was her first novella Closure which she
worked on while attending SNHU and published in July of 2014 and the other her first YA
Chasing Clarity was published this past October 2015 and it was created during National Novel
Month (Nano) in 2013. She is currently working on her prequel to Closure which is due out in
April 2016. When she is not writing she enjoys time with her children and husband. Her latest
work will be out this summer 2016. A Prequel to Closure entitled, “ The Diary of a Broken