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Write From Home
Kim Wilson
P.O. Box 4145
Hamilton, NJ 08610

E-mail: kim @ writefromhome.com

Interview with....

Shaunna Privratsky

             by Dana Mitchells

The Silk RobeShaunna Privratsky is a freelance writer with more than 120 articles published on the Web and in print. She is the editor and publisher of the e-mail newsletter, The Writer Within, and the author of the books Bypass Blunders, Improve Your Prose and The Silk Robe. She lives with her husband and two young children in Fargo, North Dakota.

Question: What made you decide to write a book?

Privratsky: I had a great idea that just wouldn't let me rest until I wrote it down.

Q: What about getting it published?

Privratsky: First book: I went all out--over 30 publishers. Second book: I was more selective-about 15 publishers. Third book: I sent proposals to 8 publishers and received 6 favorable replies. Two
are still pending.

Q: Was it a challenge to write while caring for your children? If so, what did you do to keep the peace?

Privratsky: Bribery. Lots and lots of renting movies.

Q: But what do you do if you are going through writer's block or if you get stuck?

Privratsky: I suffered two months of writer's block immediately following September 11. At the time I did not realize that I was depressed, and so I thought I was a failure as a writer. How I got through it was to just keep plugging away at submitting what I'd already written, TRYING to write and following up on markets. I used the time I'd normally write to search for new markets on the Internet and in magazines.

Q: Did your children understand what you were doing as you worked?

Privratsky: Yes, although they didn't like the time it takes.

Q: Because of your busy life both as a writer and a parent, what writing schedule worked best for you?

Privratsky: I write mostly in the morning, when I'm fresh (and so is the coffee).

Q: Was there anything you had to sacrifice in order to get your writing done?

Privratsky: Just television. I cut way down on my viewing time.

Q: Is it harder to write fiction than nonfiction while you are also being a parent?

Privratsky: They are equally challenging at times, relatively easy at others.

Q: Did you at any time ask for help so you could get some writing done? If so, do you regret it? If not, do you wish you had?

Privratsky: No--I just worked when I could and snuck in extra time when I needed to.

Q: What surprised you the most as a parent while you were writing your books?

Privratsky: How fun it is.

Q: In the face of any problems with parenting, what helped keep your confidence in your ability to juggle parenting and writing alive?

Privratsky: I just did it. I was (and am still) so passionate about writing that I made time for it and worked around the parenting issues. I had to sacrifice some things, like a perfectly clean house and most of my TV shows.

Q: How did you manage to juggle promoting your books with parenting?

Privratsky: I brought my kids along to my book signing and The Write Event, an evening presentation at our local library.

Q: What did you learn about yourself as a parent while you were writing your books?

Privratsky: I can get a lot done in the time it takes one video to play.

Q: What’s the best writing advice you’ve been given?

Privratsky: Just do it.

Q: What’s the best advice you have for other writing parents?

Privratsky: Prioritize and take advantage of every second of free time you discover.

Dana Mitchells is the online pen name of the writer and poet Dawn Colclasure, who writes for both print and online publications. She is also the author of a poetry chapbook, Take My Hand, available from Amazon.com. She has been published on sites such as e-fido, Absolute Write, The Writer Within and Writing Etc. She’s also had poetry published under her real name in the newsletter AIA and Chris Lindsay’s Pro-Life Poetry Page. She has a book review at Crescent Blues E’Magazine. While at work on rewriting one of her three unpublished novels, she lives in California with her husband and daughter.









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