M L Sparrow Interview
Self-Publisher’s Showcase: Today we are joined by M L Sparrow, author of The Demon Inside, Ghetto, No Rest for the Wicked, Player and A Tangled Web. Welcome to the Showcase Lounge, M L.
SPS: For any of our readers that haven’t come across your work previously, can you take a moment to tell us all a little about yourself and your work?
MLS: Well, the main thing about me and my work is that I don’t stick to any one genre. I’ll read everything from YA romance to hard-core horror and I enjoy having the same freedom with my writing. It also keeps my readers on their toes!
So far I’ve written two YA sci-fi, a contemporary romance, a romantic fantasy and a YA coming of age novella and I have plenty of ideas for other genres, too!
SPS: What are your perfect writing conditions, and how often do you write?
MLS: I write every day, even if it’s only a sentence or two. Ideally I like to have the house to myself, with the TV on in the background and a cup of tea to hand!
SPS: Can you put your finger on the moment where you decided that you wanted to publish your work?
MLS: Hmm… I’ve always wanted to be a published author; every since I was very little it has been my dream to be able to support myself through my writing. For a while I spent time searching for an agent, so that I could be traditionally published, however, anyone who has gone down that route knows how soul-destroying and unproductive it can be. Most agencies don’t even send replies. One day I just got bored of putting in all the effort and getting nothing out of it so I decided to try out self-publishing. Two years later, I’ve learnt so much and am really happy that I decided to self-publish.
SPS: Why do you think it is that you have found yourself writing in the style that you do?
MLS: Personally, I feel that my writing style has developed so much since I wrote my first novel. I have grown and matured as a writer, therefore, my style has naturally changed. I also tend to vary my style depending on the audience I’m writing for, the vibe I want for the book and the genre of book.
SPS: What would you say, if anything, best differentiates you from other authors?
MLS: I think the fact that I flit between genres, rather than just sticking to one or two, sets me apart from most other authors. In a few years I hope to have something to suit all tastes!
SPS: Where does the inspiration for your work come from?
MLS: The inspiration for my novels come from many places; even the smallest thing can spark an idea. Ghetto was inspired by something someone said to me at a fair one year. I’ve also done a fair bit of travelling and I always find it inspiring to visit new places; I wrote most of A Tangled Web whilst travelling in Japan and it really helped my creativity to be in the place where the book was set!
SPS: Have you received a favourite review of your work?
MLS: I have favourite reviews for each of my books, but one of my all time favourites has to be a review I received for Ghetto from a Love Thy Shelf Blog. I just love how enthusiastic the reviewer was!
If you want to check it out, here it is – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1386691654?book_show_action=false&from_review_page=2
SPS: What’s next on the self-publishing horizon for yourself?
MLS: I have another novella coming out on the 23rd July – it is currently up for pre-order and I am running a competition to win a year’s dolphin adoption… all you have to do it pre-order and PM via Twitter or Facebook, a screenshot of the pre-order confirmation. Red Days is about the Taiji dolphin slaughter and the fight to stop it. It is a work of fiction, however, it follows a series of true events and sticks to the facts as much as possible.
SPS: Was the Self-Published/Indie-Published route always your preferred route for your work?
MLS: I’ll admit, early on I didn’t even consider the self-publishing route and decided to self-published out of frustration more than anything. However, now that I’ve done it, I can see the merits; I’m in complete control of everything.
SPS: Has the experience so far been all that you thought it would be?
MLS: I had no idea what to expect when I first self-published, in fact, I was very naïve. Over the past two years I have learnt so much, not only about writing, but also about presentation and promoting, and I’ve been welcomed into a very helpful and supportive community of fellow writers, editors and cover designers. It’s not easy and at times I wonder what I’m doing, but at the end of the day I’m doing what I love and following my dreams and, hopefully, one day I’ll be able to do it as a full-time job.
SPS: If you could give one piece of advice for someone looking to get into writing, what would it be?
MLS: Keep going. Just keep writing and trying even when it seems like you’re getting nowhere. Write for the love of writing! Most writers don’t get instant success, it is a long, slow process that you have to work at every day, so just keep looking forward!
SPS: Before we bring this interview to a close, it’s your chance to name-drop. Anyone who you feel is deserving of more recognition at present or someone whose writing you have recently enjoyed? Now is your chance to spread the word…
MLS: There are so many great people I’ve met and worked with, but the two I think deserve some love are Kathy Denver and Samantha Gregory. They’re both great authors, but they also have other skills! Kathy Denver, otherwise known as The Cover Girl, does brilliant cover and designed the cover for my book, Red Days, as well as most of the promotional material. And Samantha Gregory is also a great editor, who has edited all of my books.
SPS: Thank you for joining us today, and all the best for the future.
MLS: Thanks! It was great chatting.
SPS: For more information on M L Sparrow and her work, please do visit here.