Jasper is no ordinary parrot.
He lives in the rainforest, which secrets he’s eager to explore. Jasper loves his home and his family, and he’s also in charge of his younger brother Willie – a responsibility Jasper takes very seriously.
When he meets Charlie – a spider monkey with a penchant for food and a laid back attitude – he realizes he’s in for an adventure he never thought possible. Even if this means getting into danger and worrying his mother to no end.
Exploring the boundaries of the forest, Jasper understands that there is more to the world around him. Who are the strange new creatures that have come there? With Willie and Charlie by his side, he will soon find out.
Sharon C. Williams is a native of New England and was raised in Northern Maine. She lives in North Carolina with her husband, son and a flock of birds.
Sharon has a B. S. degree in Chemistry. Plus, an A.S. degree in Biology and in Math. She loves to read, sketch, take pictures, walk, exercise, go to the movies, and listen to music. She is a budding bird watcher, and knits on the side. She is a huge sports fan of baseball, basketball, hockey, and football. She is also a shutterbug and is always looking for the next big shot.
Hi Sharon…let’s dive right in, shall we? Tell us what do you love most about Writing? I love the freedom it gives me. You can write about anything you want. All one has to do is look around, feel or do a picture or word prompt. Literally all I have to do is be observant. Making things up out of thin air is magical. I guess it is hard to explain the love I have inside when I write. Perhaps only other writers might get it. It’s pure joy. It’s just hard to explain but yes, pure joy.
I entirely understand! How did you get your start writing? My husband had told a friend of mine earlier that he felt I wrote well. Upon her telling me this I thought to myself, “Why not?” I started seriously writing in the Fall of 2009. I had a story in my head that would not let me rest. Having two surgeries at the end of 2009, non-related, gave me a lot of free time to put to paper the story.
What Inspired you to write your book? I started with the idea of writing a book for any future grandchildren I might have. Thinking on what kind of story to even begin with I literally looked around my house. I was hoping for something to hit me in the face.
Laying my eyes on him it hit me. Jasper. You see I live with my main character. How many people can say that? He is our Amazon Yellow Cheek parrot who we rescued and adopted in 1999 at the age of five. Knowing I could use my knowledge of birds it just meshed together for me to connect the dots. Learning about where he is from, the Amazon rainforest, made me want to write about the issues there. Plus, I wanted to engage kids in entertainment and also educate them at the same time.
Pets are such a blessing…and in this case, not only to you! Thats awesome. So, when you’re writing, are you a painstaking plotter or are you a discovery writer? I’m a discovery writer. I love letting my characters decide where my manuscript goes. I also don’t want to take the time to plot. I feel, as far as I am concern, that it restricts my creativity. I love to free style. Majority of my books have arrived from me free styling.
Although it’s often hard to select just one, do you have a favourite or least favourite character? You’re right, it is hard. But I would go with my main character, Jasper. This is do to the close connection and interactions I have with him. We rescued and adopted him in 1999 at the age of five. He has been with us for 20 years now. He is truly a special animal. His personality and his mannerisms are all over this series. So you see I was already in love with him prior to writing the book.
Ok, that was kind of a gimmie. How about tips for aspiring writers…what would you best advice be? Believe in yourself and your book. Sometimes you might be the only one who does.
I say that too, but it’s so true. If you don’t love your book, who else will? Besides your own, what types of books do you like to read and does this differ from the genre that you prefer to write? I grew up loving horror and mystery. That has not changed. I always been someone who love watching horror films and that just translate to books. Being from Maine I am fortunate to have the great one, Stephen King, in my mist. The genre I prefer to write in is a hard one to answer. I write in a variety of genres and they all excite me- children’s, (I’m known for this one), true life, comedy and action and adventure.
As a writer, but also a reader, is there a book you consider a must-read- and if so, why? Story Engineering by Larry Brooks. In fact anything by him will help you in some way. I had never heard of writing a book in the way he breaks it down in such an effective form. I just about highlighted the entire book and earmarked the rest. His methods are simple but just so effective.
OK, here’s the hard one…at least, I think so…what is the hardest part of editing- grammar checks, reducing content, or something else? For me it would be grammar checks. I am too good at using past tense and the misuse of commas in my WIPs. But the real hard part is I hate to edit. I rather be writing away coming up with characters, plots and conflict than to take time and work on edits. I am not one of those authors who edit as I write. I rather just write. So when it comes to this part of the puzzle I am filled with dread.
And just because ….Do you have a Mantra- a Quote you try to live by? Love your book like no other. If you don’t love it why will anyone else?
I’d like to thank Sharon for sharing her stories about Jaspar with us. The series sounds perfect for YA readers…or anyone who wants a smile of a read 🙂