Monday, April 23, 2018

Straight from the Mouth of Children's Author Cheryl C. Malandrinos

Cheryl C. Malandrinos is a freelance writer and editor. She is the author of Little Shepherd, A Christmas Kindness, Macaroni and Cheese for Thanksgiving and the recently released, Amos Faces His Bully. A blogger and book reviewer, she lives in Massachusetts with her husband and two daughters. She also has a son who is married. 



Thanks for letting us interrogate interview you! Can you give us a go-for-the-gut answer as to why you wanted to be an author?

You don’t want to be an author. You are one. You can’t deny it. You can’t ignore it.

Tell us (we won’t tell promise!) is it all it’s cracked up to be? I mean what are the perks and what are the demands?

Being an author is great…as long as you don’t expect to become a millionaire. There are big names out there, but for a lot of us our writing won’t allow us to quit our day job. Big perk is meeting new people and hearing they enjoyed your book. That, however, demands you sit your butt in the chair and write, then edit, then submit it somewhere and hope it gets accepted. Once it’s accepted you have more work to do and, once the book is finally ready to meet the world, there’s more work to be done promoting it.

Which route did you take – traditional or self-published – and can you give us the nitty gritty low down on what’s that like?

All four of my books—Little Shepherd, A Christmas Kindness, Macaroni and Cheese for Thanksgiving, and Amos Faces His Bully—were published by small independent presses. I like the opportunity to be involved in my books from beginning to publication and beyond. It’s also nice to support small businesses. My books appear at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other online retailers, so I don’t feel like I missed out on anything by not going after the big names.

Tell us for real what your family feels about you spending so much time getting your book written, polished, edited, formatted, published, what have you?

My children have always been very supportive. My husband doesn’t understand why I do it, but he doesn’t try to stop me either.

This is for pet lovers. If you don’t own a pet, skip this question, but do your pets actually get their food on time or do they have to wait until you type just one more word?

Now that we have a dog, all the animals get fed first thing in the morning. Do they get their supper on time? No comment. :)

This is for plant lovers. If you don’t own a plant, skip this question, but if you do, are they actually still alive?

I have two plants in my office struggling for survival as we speak. I hear you are supposed to water plants. Whoops!

Out of all the people involved in getting your book published, which one would you say did the most for you?

This is like asking which kid is your favorite. I’m grateful for everyone who has helped me along the way. My mentors have been wonderful and supportive. My critique group priceless. My publishers are open to new ideas. Pump Up Your Book is there to help me promote my books. It’s always a team effort.

In writing your book, how did you deal with the phone ringing, your family needing dinner or your boss calling you saying you’re late?

These days I write at night, so most of the people that need to reach me are in bed.

How about the social networks? Which ones do you believe help and which ones do you wish you could avoid?

I use Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram a lot. LinkedIn too, but not as much.

Book sales. Don’t you just love them (or lack of?)? How are you making the sales happen for you?

With Amos Faces His Bully I’ve done a much better job of getting the word out locally than with my previous books. This virtual book tour is a big help online. I blog and guest blog when I can to keep my name out there.

What is one thing you’d like to jump on the rooftop and scream about?

I wrote this awesomely fun picture book that I had been struggling to get to come together for several years. It’s polished and I’m on the hunt for an agent.

Okay, too much sugar for you today! Here’s a nice cup of Chamomile tea and come on over and sit under the cabana and watch the waves roll in. Now…can you tell us what you love about being a published author and how all those things above doesn’t matter because it’s all part of the whole scheme of things and you wouldn’t have it any other way?

Writing isn’t for everyone. It takes discipline and dedication. I have the second one down, but still working on that first one. I can’t imagine not being an author. It’s part of who I am. Yes, it can be challenging to carve out time for it, but anything worthwhile won’t come easy.

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