About E.C. Sheedy
Going on about myself, trying to put a golden glow on the events of my life, is not one of my favorite things to do. That gold is so hard to come by. So to make things easy on myself ( I do like easy!), I’m going to cheat and simply repeat answers I gave to an interviewer a while back. No doubt the interview will tell you more than you ever wanted to know about EC Sheedy.
First the itty bitty bio:
EC Sheedy was born and grew up in the Pacific Northwest. For the past several years she has lived on Vancouver Island, just a short ferry ride from two great cities: Seattle, Washington and Vancouver, British Columbia.
Before taking up the pen seriously her interests were entrepreneurial. She started and ran three successful businesses, the last a computer sales and service company. And while she was glad enough to leave the corporate world behind, she gives it a thumbs up for giving her the discipline to learn and persevere in an equally demanding job, writing entertaining fiction.
She lives only a few steps from the ocean, and if a walk on the rocky beach while communing with Mother Nature doesn’t bring fresh ideas for her books, a few minutes thinking about the quirks and quandaries of Human Nature most assuredly does.
People are, she believes, complex and endlessly fascinating, each of them part fact and part fiction—each worthy of their own book. With so many souls to explore, both dark and light, she knows she won’t run out of stories anytime soon.
Now the questions:
HAS YOUR LIFE CHANGED SINCE BECOMING A PUBLISHED AUTHOR?
Oh, yes! Attaining your dream changes everything. It’s as if something settles inside you. Besides, toiling alone and unheard in a cold drafty garret gets old very fast. Being published allows you to connect with readers—and absolutely nothing beats hearing from a reader who’s been touched in some way by your books.
HOW DO YOU RESEARCH YOUR SETTINGS AND CHARACTERS?
The Internet, of course. Google is my life. But I use it mainly for help with settings and fact checking. Characters and what they do on the page comes more from instinct and imagination than anything else. My Mother used to use the phrase, “I wouldn’t put it past him.” Old and unintentionally sexist, yes, but the underlying truth is proven time and time again. People are capable of just about anything and will do wondrously good or stunningly evil things to reach their ends. They mystify me, puzzle me, and often frighten me, but they are a constant source of inspiration.
WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE TO BE THE THREE MOST ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS IN WRITING ROMANCE?
For me, the first “essential” is believable characters, characters a reader can easily see moving from the first blush—or lust—of early love to happily ever after. The hero, no matter how conflicted or wounded, must be honorable on some very deep level. I believe true love brings out the best in people, makes them more than what they were before that special love entered their lives; I try to bring this to my books.
Talk is the second essential. I like to hear and read the language of love, the dialogue of the heart between people destined to spend their lives together—and I love writing it. If characters, who are supposed to be adult, can’t talk to each other, I can’t imagine their happily-ever-after and that leaves me vaguely unsatisfied.
And the third essential? Great sex. This doesn’t mean that a writer can’t close the bedroom door if that’s her choice, and it’s right for her story and readership, but certainly the anticipation and promise of a happy and fulfilling sex life needs to be present on the page. I enjoy reading and writing evocative love scenes that grow naturally from who the characters are, and I relish the building tension that leads up to, then behind, the bedroom door.
AS A ROMANCE AUTHOR, HAVE YOU EVER CONSIDERED EXPLORING ANOTHER GENRE OF BOOKS?
Never say never, but truly, I am very, very happy writing romantic suspense. The genre is open to my style of writing, my voice, and the directions in which those sometimes mercurial distinctions take me. While one of those directions is danger and mystery, the other is writing love stories set in perilous and frightening times—when falling in love is the ultimate in bad timing. There’s a challenge in there I can’t resist. But I’ve had my lighter moments, being part of some terrific, and very sexy, Brava anthologies. I so enjoyed writing those!
WHAT QUALITY SETS YOUR BOOKS APART FROM OTHER ROMANCES?
This is a tough question . . . To state the obvious, every writer has a story to tell, a story born from their own fascinations with life and love. My fascination is with people, good and evil, the secrets and lies that bind them, and the change—the danger—that truth and honesty will bring to their lives. I’ve been told my writing is dark and my villains twisted; I suppose that’s true, but at the core of my books hope, salvation, and love are always present—and they always triumph.
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR ASPIRING WRITERS?
Probably more than they’d ever want to hear. But boiling it down? Learn your craft. Write your own story. Then rewrite it—about a thousand times.