Sherry Jones: Confessions of an Eccentric Bookaholic

04 Feb

Confessions of an Eccentric Bookaholic



What first inspired you to write or who inspired you?
The books I read as a child inspired me to write—Little Women was a favorite, and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland–and my second-grade reading teacher, whose name I have, unfortunately, forgotten, who praised my stories and poems in class and said, “If you ever write a book, keep your maiden name so I’ll know it was you.”


Do you take notes when reading or watching a movie?
Always when reading a book. I have to highlight memorable turns of phrase! In movie theaters it’s too dark to see a notepad, but I always pay careful attention to plotting and characterization. My work is highly influenced by film techniques.


Has writing always been a passion for you or did you discover it years later?
I have written all my life, but I never dared to try fiction until I was nearly 40. I wrote an autobiographical novel that was truly terrible. Whew! I’m so glad I got that out of my system!


Do you have a day job?  What do you do?
I work as a freelance writer, writing travel stories and marketing content for technology and cybersecurity companies.


Can you name three writing tips to pass on to aspiring authors?

  1. Do Natalie Goldberg’s “writing practice” for 10 minutes each day, to warm up. 
  2. Remember that, as Hemingway (and Anne Lamott) said, the first draft is always shit. 
  3. Take as much time as you can between drafts, so you approach the material with a fresh eye before revising. The late, great John Garner recommended six months between drafts.


Do you let unimportant things get in the way of your writing?
All the time! Because nothing is as important as writing books.


What hours do you write best?
I’m at my best first thing in the morning and late at night.


How often do you write?
When I’m working on a novel, I write every day. I become obsessed with the project. Whan I’m between novels, I’m more casual about it. But I don’t spend much time without a novel to work on. Life is too short!


Are you an avid reader?
The only think I love more than reading is writing. Even sex can’t compare.


What are you reading now?
The Summer Before the War by Helen Simonsen. Next on deck is The Milkman.


What are you currently working on?
I’m working on a novel about Billy Tipton, a transgender jazz performer who presented as a man and somehow kept his biological, female gender a secret until he died—even his three wives and adopted children never knew. He spent the last 34 years of his life in Spokane, where I live. Just as JOSEPHINE BAKER’S LAST DANCE adds to the conversation about race and racism, I hope this novel will provide food for thought about gender identity and the experiences of transgender people.


Where can visitors find you online?
I’ve recently joined Book Bub:

I love Goodreads:

And, of course, there’s my author website:

Come to Facebook for the sordid details of my personal life:

On Twitter, you’ll learn about my liberal, feminist political views:

On Instagram, you’ll see pictures from my life and my reading life:

Also on Instagram, I have a site that’s all things Josephine Baker:


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: