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Shelley Widhalm
sawidhalm@yahoo.com

Questions

How would you describe your writing style?
It is mainstream modern with a literary flair. It’s introspective and a bit off-beat.

Where do you get your material for your writing?
Most of my material comes from my personal life, probably because I am writing what I know. I write from observation, experience and curiosity. I want to discover what a character could become if I put her in certain situations. I mostly write from the female perspective, because for me it is the most comfortable and what I know best.

What are you trying to tell your readers? Is there a message in your books, or are you simply trying to entertain?
Each book I write has a different message, but they all have a common theme of struggling and overcoming, learning through the process and gaining self-confidence in the end.

How did you get started writing?
In second grade, I wrote a story about a dinosaur with a crazy long made-up name, which I still have with some of my old school papers. I also started journaling, something I have done ever since except for three years while I was in college. I wrote too many essays to want to do any of my own writing. My poetry writing also began in elementary school, probably in third or fourth grade, when I wrote bad rhyming poetry about flowers and nature. In junior high, I moved on to writing about boys and love, something about which I did not have a clue. Since then, I kept on writing stories and poems, knowing I had to write.

What teacher or person had the most influence on your writing?
One of my creative writing teachers in college edited our stories, and we would turn them in, only to get more editing. I learned that writing is a process, not a final draft on the first go-around.

What do you love about writing?
To me, it is as necessary as breathing.

What books do you like to read and why?
I like literary fiction, classics and chic lit. I’ve read a mystery or two. I like the occasional romance. I like the books that have a good plot, believable characters, lifelike dialogue and a story that keeps me turning the pages.

What do you love about reading?
I love the feel of words moving through my mind and feeling the language as I make a movie from their meanings. I love reading books to enter into someone else’s life and travel to other places. I always have a book with me wherever I go, even to work when I know I won’t be able to read, and I have several waiting for me on my bookshelves and on hold at the library.



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