Thursday, May 11, 2017

S.R. Mallery - An Author Interview at the HBS Author's Spotlight

Today our blog puts the Spotlight on Author S.R. Mallery. She is the award-winning author who writes stories with authentic characters. Sarah writes Historical Fiction, Women's Fiction, and Mysteries.

Author: S.R. Mallery

Author Genre: Historical Fiction, Women's Fiction, Mystery

Website: S.R. Mallery's AND HISTORY FOR ALL
Author's Blog: S.R. Mallery
Twitter: @SarahMallery1
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
Pinterest: Check Out Pinterest

Amazon Author Profile

Author Description:
S.R. Mallery, Gold Medalist winner of the 2016 READER'S FAVORITE Book Awards for Anthologies, has been labeled nothing short of 'eclectic'. She has been a singer, a calligrapher, a quilt designer, and an ESL teacher. As a writer, History is her focus and is woven into her stories with a delicate thread. When people talk about the news of the day, or listen to music, Sarah's imagination likens the story to a similar kind of news in the past and is conjuring up scenes between characters she has yet to meet.

SPOTLIGHT Questions and Answers with the Author

First things first. Let’s start with what’s next. Can you tell us the timeline for its release and give us a little tease?

I plan on releasing my next book no later than December 2017. Untitled, as yet, my novel is a murder mystery/romance that takes place in 1920s Hollywood, right smack dab in the middle of the silent screen era. In my typical “Forest Gump” way, my fictional characters will get up close and personal with real people of the time––Clara Bow, Lon Chaney, Sr., and Gloria Swanson, just to name a few. Starting out of the gate with a sniper shooting, as the hunt for the killer continues, a stage mother, her reluctant actress daughter, a set carpenter, and a hard-boiled police detective form an unlikely alliance, as both police and Paramount Studios mogul corruption rear their ugly heads.

You have a good following on twitter. How important have your social media relationships been? How did you build your following in your niche? Do you see a carry over to your writing success?

Actually, because I have met such lovely, helpful people on Twitter as well as FB, I would say my media relationships have been quite important to me in my writing journey. As for my “niche,” I decided early on not to pay for services to just bombard me with followers. Instead, I’ve taken the time to follow people, using my own subjective viewpoint, to decide if I want to follow them back or not. Recently, however, I’ve been too busy to do that. As a matter of fact, it’s probably time for me to get more active in that arena again. So thank you, James, for reminding me!

Do you do any book signings, interviews, speaking and personal appearances? If so, when and where is the next place where your readers can see you? Where can they keep up with your personal contacts online?

Alas, although I’ve done those things in the past, I’ve not planned any things such as that recently. Instead, I have chosen to concentrate on writing and getting my new blog out to the “world.” On my “S.R.Mallery’s HISTORY FOR ALL,” readers can easily contact me on my listed personal social media sites.

You have converted Sewing Can Be Dangerous and Other Small Threads into an audio book. What has been the impact on your regular sales? Has the audio books gained a new audience for you?

I’m not sure how much the audio book of SEWING CAN BE DANGEROUS and OTHER SMALL THREADS has increased the ebook/print sales. To me, it has always appeared to be a separate entity. However, because it is also in audio, I have been able to participate in several author events because of that. In time, I do plan on getting each of my other books also made into audio books, so I can increase my exposure.

You have written several short stories. Can you tell us if they had an impact on the sales of your novels? Are shorty’s one of your styles of writing or are they created to give readers a sample of your work?

The “Pundits” claim writing short stories can be the Kiss Of Death in the literary world. But, having started out getting my flash fiction stories immediately published in literary magazines, then recently, receiving a Reader’s Favorite gold medal for my Sewing Can Be Dangerous stories, I’ve come to not worry about all that. I just happened to have started out writing short stories, which in hindsight, I feel, particularly with the shorter ones, has helped to fine-tune my prose. When you have to write a story that’s under 1,000 words, you tend to think more carefully about how each word and each character will fit into your plot. As two separate reviewers on Amazon for my TALES TO COUNT ON collection put it, “... robust stories can be developed and told in short form...when there is a crafty writer behind each word” and “There is never a story ‘too short’ or ‘too long,’ if it’s written well.”

I like the idea of Author bundles. You are a part of a collection called Love in Times of War set. What was the impact on your other sales? What was the main objective of bundling your works with other authors? How did you put something like that together?

Firstly, I cannot claim responsibility for putting together that set. I was graciously invited in by Uvi Poznansky, who knew my work, and wanted to include me if at all possible. This was my first bundle experience, and I couldn’t be happier. All of the authors are far, far better known in the literary world than I, as well as being savvier regarding social media. The result of that has brought me the benefit of a wider audience.

What writer support groups do you belong to? Do they help with the writing, marketing and the publishing process?

Although I belong to various FB groups, there are two main ones that have been instrumental in helping me with marketing and writing. They are: 1) Authors Social Media Support Group (ASMSG), and 2) eNovel Authors At Work. Not only have I learned so much from these two groups, I have made connections/friendships with wonderful authors from all over the world.

Do you maintain a reader list? What are the methods you use to find your readers and create the list and the relationship? Do you use social media, forums, newsletters and/or support groups to build your list?

Alas, since I’ve just put up my blog to the world, I don’t currently have a newsletter. That’s something I plan on for the future. Bit by bit, or, as my adult ESL Latino students used to say, “Día a día”... (day by day).

What is your method of getting reviews for your novels? Do you seek professional reviews, use social media or do you rely on your reading audience to supply them?

Now, I mostly get reviews from readers, although in the past, I also gave ARCS to various bloggers, reviewers, and authors. I also went on various book tours, and paid for several “honest” reviews.

You and Uvi Poznansky put together a summary of Love in Times of War boxed set called Book Bites which you offered samples for all 12 romance novels and novellas included in the set. How did you come up with the idea? Could you tell how much impact the summary on the sales of the Romance set? Love in Times of War was featured on the HBS Author’s Spotlight.

Actually, this sage idea was through Uvi Poznansky, who noticed that other boxed sets were doing this and thought it would be a good idea for us to follow suit. I give her full credit for organizing and suggesting so much. Being inexperienced in these matters, she has been a godsend!! As for the complete summary details, again, I am a dilettante when it comes to these matters. Uvi has amassed all the full figures in this area.

Author's Book List
Genteel Secrets
What do a well-bred Southern Belle and a Northern working class Pinkerton detective have in common? Espionage . . . and romance. At the start of the U.S. Civil War, while young men begin dying on American battlefields and slavery is headed toward its end, behind the scenes, female undercover work and Pinkerton intelligence are alive and well. But in the end, can this unlikely Romeo and Juliet couple’s love survive, or will they be just another casualty of war?

Order the Book From:
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store

The Dolan Girls
The Dolan Girls by S. R. Mallery has it all. Set in Nebraska during the 1800s, whorehouse madams, ladies of the night, a schoolmarm, a Pinkerton detective, a Shakespeare-quoting old coot, brutal outlaws, and a horse-wrangler fill out the cast of characters. Added to the mix are colorful descriptions of an 1856 land rush, Buffalo Bill and his Wild West Show, Annie Oakley, bank/train robberies, small town local politics, and of course, romance. Two, in fact!

Order the Book From:
Barnes and Noble

Unexpected Gifts
A TRUE AMERICAN FAMILY SAGA: Can we learn from our ancestors? Do our relatives’ behaviors help shape our own?

In "Unexpected Gifts" that is precisely what happens to Sonia, a confused college student, heading for addictions and forever choosing the wrong man. Searching for answers, she begins to read her family’s diaries and journals from America’s past: the Vietnam War, Woodstock, and Timothy Leary era; Tupperware parties, McCarthyism, and Black Power; the Great Depression, dance marathons, and Eleanor Roosevelt; the immigrant experience and the Suffragists. Back and forth the book journeys, linking yesteryear with modern life until finally, by understanding her ancestors' hardships and faults, she gains enough clarity to make some right choices.

Order the Book From:
Barnes and Noble

Sewing Can Be Dangerous and Other Small Threads

2016 GOLD MEDAL WINNER of Reader's Favorite contest in Anthologies, these eleven short stories range from drug traffickers using hand-woven wallets, to a U.S. slave sewing freedom codes into her quilts; from a cruise ship murder mystery with a quilt instructor and a NYPD police detective, to a couple hiding Christian passports into a comforter in Nazi Germany; from an old Salem Witchcraft wedding quilt curse to a young seamstress in the infamous Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire; from a 1980's Romeo and Juliet romance between a Wall Street financial 'star' and an eclectic fiber artist, to a Haight-Ashbury love affair between a professor and a macramé artist gone horribly wrong, just to name a few.

Order the Book From:
Barnes and Noble
iTunes Store

Curl up and enter the eclectic world of S. R. Mallery, where sad meets bizarre and deception meets humor; where history meets revenge and magic meets gothic. Whether it's 500 words or 5,000, these TALES TO COUNT ON, which include a battered women's shelter, childhood memories, Venetian love, magic photographs, PTDS fallout, sisters' tricks, WWII spies, the French Revolution, evil vaudevillians, and celebrity woes, will remind you that in the end, nothing is ever what it seems.

Order the Book From:
Barnes and Noble

Author Recommended by: HBSystems Publications
Publisher of ebooks, writing industry blogger and the sponsor of the following blogs:
eBook Author’s Corner and HBS Mystery Reader’s Circle


  1. Thank you so much for interviewing/featuring me today, James! Much appreciated...

  2. I just love Sarah's writing. Genteel Secrets is great, and I'm totally immersed in Unexpected Gifts, taking my time reading it and slipping right into the story. fabulous!

    1. Thank you so much, Suzanne. You have made my day! You know how blown away I was by your THE SAVANT FROM CHELSEA! Wow!

  3. Great interview, Sarah, and you're right, Uvi IS a godsend!

    1. Thanks for commenting, Jacquie! Yeah, I cannot believe how much I have learned from Uvi over these past few years...

  4. Great interview Sarah. Uvi has been amazing.

    1. Thanks for coming on to comment, Dawn! I've not been in other boxed sets, but I certainly appreciate all that Uvi has done! :)

  5. Great interview Sarah! Love your writing and your covers are simply beautiful :)

  6. Replies
    1. Thx so much for commenting Tamara! 😄😄