Tuesday, 7 February 2012

SHARON JONES: One of the Twelve Voices Chosen for SCBWI-BI's Undiscovered Voices Anthology 2012

* Congratulations, Sharon, on achieving a coveted place in Undiscovered Voices 2012! and welcome to tall tales & short stories. 
The floor is yours, please tell us all about yourself, your writing journey and anything else you'd like to add.

Hi Karen and Tracy, thanks for having us!

I guess I started writing seriously about five or six years ago. I joined the Kidcrit section of the CompuServe Books & Writer’s Community where I made some great friends and ‘met’ some incredibly talented writers. It was they who encouraged me to keep going when I didn’t have a clue what I was doing.

Then, at a workshop I met Ellen Renner who was positively evangelical about SCBWI. She said I had to join, and so I did! With SCBWI I found my second writing home. Not only did I learn loads by going to the Winchester conferences and Birmingham critique group, I also found friends and colleagues who have supported me through good times and bad. (Sorry, did you not want an ode to Scoobies…??)

I received an honorary mention in the 2010 Undiscovered Voices anthology and that was absolutely huge for me – a great encouragement to keep going. But for the last couple of years I decided not to submit anything anywhere. It was a bit of lack of confidence, and a bit of wanting to take some time to practice writing and well, just enjoy it for its own sake. I began writing stories as a teenager, purely for the joy of coming up with situations that would make my friends laugh and cry. And sometimes I think that in the race for publication we can easily lose some of that joy. I was determined not to let that happen. (A couple of my friends will tell you that this is tosh and actually I suffer from that terrible affliction: submitaphobia!)

Then along came the submission call for Undiscovered Voices 2012 and there was no way I was putting anything in! Strangely enough, it was the very person who’d encouraged me to join SCBWI that then gave me a strict talking to (and she can be a bit scary, I can tell you!) After Ellen had beaten me around the head a few times, I agreed to put something in. Thank goodness she did!

Being told that Dead Jealous was going to be included in the anthology was mind-blowing. I thought I’d have no chance, and now having read the other entries, I’m really humbled to have Dead Jealous along side such brilliant pieces of writing. I’m really grateful to the Undiscovered Voices team and all the wonderful writers who give of their time to help those of us who are learning the craft and trying to make sense of the publishing world. Hurrah for children’s and YA writers – they’re the best!

* Could you tell our readers all about your winning entry and why they are going to love it!

I wanted to write something that married romantic suspense with traditional murder mystery and out of that mix came DEAD JEALOUS:

Poppy St John knew jealousy could tear you apart. She didn’t realise it could get you killed. When Poppy finds a body in the lake the police call the death accidental. She calls it murder. Determined to prove she’s right, Poppy begins an investigation of her own. In the web of lies, drugs, jealousy and magic, no one is who they seem to be, and love might be the one thing that can save her.

It’s a fast-paced contemporary young adult thriller weaving strands of folklore, magic and romance with murder mystery. As for whether people will love it, I hope they will but that remains to be seen!



...WIN a copy of Undiscovered Voices, by Working Partners & SCWBI-BI.
Your chance to read all the selected excerpts, see the fabulous illustrations
and read what the judges had to say!


It’s easy to enter -- Here's what to do!

•  Leave a comment on the blog; say hi, leave your name and tell us if you'd like to be entered for the draw. 

If you want to leave your email address that's great, if not, we'll be announcing the winners after midday on the 1st March, UK time. So make sure to check in here and on twitter.

All entries go into a hat and TWO winners will be chosen at random.

Sorry, but this competition is open to UK entrants only.

Competition Deadline: 
Midnight 29th February 2012, UK time.



Rebecca Brown said...

Put me in the draw please!

Huge congrats to Sharon and all the other UV-ers!

TeriT said...

Oh yes please, put me in the draw!

And Sharon is far too modest. She is an amazing writer - I predict great things for her - in fact, I'm mentally deciding what to wear at her first book launch, right now.

Go, Sharon! and all the other UV winners.

Jackie Marchant said...

Well done to Sharon - and to scary Ellen!

Luisa Plaja said...

Huge congratulations to Sharon, and hurray for Ellen! Two truly wonderful writers.
Please do put me in the draw - I'd love to read it.

jongleuse said...

Hi-i'd love to read it! Very excited for all the winners.

Candy Gourlay said...

Sharon, your character has such a strong brilliant voice, I'm in no doubt that we will be seeing the book on the shelves of a bookshop very soon. congrats!

Sally said...

Well done Sharon, I've read your extract in the anthology, and I was totally hooked - can't wait to read it when it's published as I've every confidence we'll see it in the shops soon!

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