Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Return to your childhood with Sheri Fink

Sheri Fink
Tell me about your book. How did you come up with the story?
The Little Rose is a children’s picture book about a rose who grows up in a weedbed and believes that she’s the weed. Teased by the weeds around her because she’s different, the Little Rose almost gives up but then learns to accept and love herself for what she really is, a beautiful rose. The story inspires children ages 5-10 to embrace who they are despite what anyone else thinks or says.
The Little Rose’s experiences are based on events in my own life. We’ve all had times in our lives when we’ve been picked on, felt different from everyone else, been bullied, or just felt left out. That’s why the story of The Little Rose is so easy to relate to, because we’ve all been there at some point. The important thing is to realize that we’re so much more than our environments. What other people think or say really doesn’t matter as long as you’re embracing who you are and following your heart. It’s a great message for kids and a nice reminder for adults.

How did you get interested in writing children's books?
My mission is to inspire people to live their best lives. I want children to know how precious they are and to love themselves no matter what’s going on in their lives and no matter what anyone else says. The Little Rose book teaches this lesson about self-esteem, overcoming bullying, and believing in yourself. I’m delighted to write books for children that plant the seeds of self-esteem that can have lifelong impact.

What kind of research did you do for this book?
Buy The Little Rose Now!
The Little Rose was my first children’s book so the whole industry was completely new to me. I researched everything from how to publish a book, how to print a book, and how to market a book effectively. I talked with best-selling authors and asked them what worked, what didn’t work, what they would do differently, and their advice for me and my book. Their insights made a huge difference.

What is the hardest part of writing for you?
The hardest part of writing is sitting down and getting it done. There are so many things competing for our attention these days and it’s easy to let the writing time slide if we don’t make it a priority. Scheduling writing days on my calendar and creating a book launch timeline really help me stay on  track.

What are you working on now?
I’m writing my next inspirational children’s book, The Little Gnome, and I’m excited that it will be published in March 2012. I’m also developing an author mentoring program to help aspiring authors bring their books to life and successfully reach their ideal readers.

What advice would you give aspiring writers?
1. Network with other authors. I have learned so much from the process of writing, publishing, and promoting my book. One of the best things I did was go to conferences where I met people who had already been through the process. The insights from these authors have been so helpful to me and shaped my decision-making. And, they’re delightful people who share your journey and could become great friends.
2. Talk to people who’ve accomplished what you want to accomplish and learn from their experiences. I reached out to people in my network, told them about my book and my mission, and asked if they knew anyone I should talk with. I cultivated relationships with many incredible new friends by asking first how I could help and support them with their missions. As a result, people have been very generous with their time. That’s the best way to learn: from people who have already achieved your goal – they have so many great insights on what works, what doesn’t work, and what they’d do differently next time. It’ll greatly accelerate your learning and your success.
3. Hire a coach/mentor. Having a coach or mentor who’s successful in the area in which you want to succeed can be invaluable. They can serve as a guide and hold you accountable for stretching outside of your comfort zone in order to achieve your goal. It’s no coincidence that some of the highest achievers and most powerful people in the world have good coaches and mentors, they can dramatically improve your results.

What question have you always wanted to be asked in an interview?
"Your book can make a difference in a lot of people's lives. What has made a difference in your life?"
Giving back and contributing to a larger cause is really important to me. I enjoy partnering with non-profit organizations that have made a positive impact in my life. One organization that made a major difference in my developmental years is Reading Is Fundamental (RIF). RIF brought books into my school when many families couldn’t afford to buy new books for their children. The books I received from RIF were some of my most cherished possessions as a child. Falling in love with reading is one of the reasons I wanted to become a writer. I’m delighted to be working with RIFSoCal to expand awareness of the wonderful work they do and to help ensure that they can continue to serve over 100,000 children in Southern California. Discover more about RIFSoCal at

To find out more about Sheri Fink click the links below