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Tales from the Woodshed

Q & A with author Nicky Shearsby

What drew you to writing initially?

I have always been fascinated by words, how stories can come to life on paper and last forever. From an early age I knew that I wanted to be a writer, crafting untold stories so that a little piece of me would live on when I’m gone. I began writing at a young age, creating short stories and becoming lost in fictitious worlds. At eight, I won a creative writing competition and by the age of twelve, I’d written a novel. I still have it. Printed on an old fashioned type-writer. I even designed it a cover. It is terrible, of course, but cemented my writing journey.

Can you tell us about your background in non-fiction?

I ran several businesses in psychology, nutrition and skincare and wrote non-fiction books, training manuals and courses over a decade.

Do you find that your experience writing in other formats has honed your creative writing skills?

I do. Writing is more than merely stringing sentences together, and non-fiction writing has given me the dedication to complete books. I take inspiration from people. I am fascinated by how humans think, how often terrible things make them do the things they do. I love the darker side of humanity. The world isn’t all fluffy kittens and chocolate.

As a published novelist, what is your experience with the promotion/marketing side?

Whether you self publish or are traditionally published (like I am), you need to sell yourself as a writer. It takes time to build a fan base. I love working with SRL Publishing. From day one they have made the entire process straight-forward, and despite my relentless questions in the beginning stages, they have always been able to guide the process.

Can you tell us a bit about your work in progress?

I have a new ongoing thriller series coming out in September called The Flanigan Files. Book one is ready for publication and I am now working on book 2 which will be released Autumn 2024. The Flanigan Files is told from both the protagonist and the antagonist viewpoints, following clinical psychologist Newton Flanigan as he works with the police, dealing with difficult cases. Each novel focuses on mental health and the choices we make that ultimately become our existence. I expect there will be at least 30 novels in the series in a few years time.

What advice would you give an aspiring writer?

Write every day and keep improving your craft. Write and rewrite every sentence until your words flow so naturally, they appear effortless to read. The best sentences are the ones that took the longest to create.

To The Bitter End is available on Amazon, Waterstones and all good bookshops.

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