Thrilled to welcome debut author Sharon Bairden to The Bandwagon!
By day Sharon Bairden is the Services Manager in a small local independent advocacy service and has a passion for human rights; by night she has a passion for all things criminal. She blogs over at Chapterinmylife and is delighted to be crossing over to the other side of the fence to become a writer.
Sharon’s debut novel, Sins of the Father, is out November 2020 and is published by Red Dog Press
Sharon lives on the outskirts of Glasgow, has two grown up children, a grandson, a Golden Labrador and a cat. She spends most of her spare time doing all things bookish, from reading to attending as many book festivals and launches as she can. She has been known to step out of her comfort zone on the odd occasion and has walked over burning coals and broken glass – but not at the same time!
How did you get into writing?I always wanted to write but firmly believed writing was something “other people” did and then I met the book community! Five years ago I set up a blog after meeting other book bloggers online. This led to me meeting up with them at book festivals up and down the country and getting a real sense of community and support from those in the business, from bloggers, writers and publishers. This helped me step out of my comfort zone and give it a go myself! I took part in a number of workshops and courses and started writing seriously for the first time. Then two years ago, I went along to Crime and Publishment, a weekend writing course, run by authors Graham Smith and Michael J Malone. That weekend gave me the boost and confidence I needed to get my butt in the writing seat and finish what I had started! That same year, I won a typewriter signed by Linwood Barclay in the First Line competition at Theakston’s Crime Festival in Harrogate. Linwood also signed a book with the words, ‘now go and write the book’, and the rest is history!
Why did you choose to write in this genre?I am a crime/psychological fiction addict! I devour it from the books I read and the programmes I watch. I couldn’t imagine writing in any other genre!
Who are some of your favourite authors?Ahhhh, that’s like asking me who my favourite child is! So many I want to mention but since you are making me pick then I’m going to go for SE Lynes (she is genius!), Angela Marsons, Michael J Malone, and one to watch is SE Moorehead, whose debut Witness X blew my mind!
Are you a plotter or a pantser?Oh most definitely a pantser! A scene or a line will come into my head and I take it from there, with no idea what is going to happen next! However, Susie Holliday recommended a book especially for pantsers like me! Take Off Your Pants by Libbie Hawker takes you through the outlining process but still allows for flexibility. So for the very first time I have tried using an outline…I may be deviating slightly from it already as the voices in my head direct me!
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?Take all the advice you are given but use what works for you; don’t get hung up on what other people are achieving in terms of word counts etc. Set your own realistic targets and don’t beat yourself up for not making them every day. Just sit down and write as you can always go back and edit it. After all, you can’t edit a blank sheet can you? That’s my mantra!
Finally, what are you currently working on?I’ve just submitted my second book, You Need Me, a standalone psychological thriller and while I’m waiting to hear back about that, I’m working on Book 3, currently nameless. Alice is losing control as the life she has built begins to fall down round about her; dark family secrets never stay hidden forever.
Check out some of our other author spotlights and psychological suspense news here.