Mason Cooley said, “Reading gives us some place to go when we have to stay where we are.”
A Center Stage Moment shines a spotlight on writers who give us great places to visit with the characters we love and want to call friends.
Today, I have the pleasure of introducing to you H.M. Sholander!
H.M. Sholander has been an author since 2016 releasing her first book titled Escaping the Edge. She has an amazing supportive husband and two lazy cats that she loves more than anything. She loves reading, writing, and traveling. She wants to see the world and explore new things. This world has so much to offer, and our time here is limited.
She encourages everyone to pursue their dreams. Your dreams are the only thing that can make you happy, don’t waste your time on things that make you miserable.
Take a leap and pursue anything that makes your heart sore.
I love reading author bios. Many of them did not start out as writers. Sometimes people stumble upon the craft. Did you always want to be a writer? I wanted to be many things when I was younger. I dreamed of being a writer, an artist, a teacher, and even a graphic designer. The older I got I never could make a decision. I felt I was one of those people who wouldn’t know what they wanted to do with their lives. But then, I picked up reading. I read and read and read every day, consuming as many books as I could. It was when I read The Edge of Never by J.A. Redmerski that I wondered what the heck I was doing with my life. What was my dream? And then out of nowhere, it hit me. Inspiration. Before I knew it, I had written 5,000 words. I remember thinking ‘Wow, this is awesome. I’m going to write.’ And the rest is history. [I like that. I, too, spent a while doing other things before becoming a writer.]
Why did you choose to write your genre? New Adult is the genre I fell in love with when I began reading. It’s not all filled with romance, although that’s a plus for me. There are real, raw stories that are being written about struggles that people in their early twenties are navigating through. They are trying to figure out life, and I completely relate to this because aren’t we all trying to figure out life? Of course, I love a good love story, too.
What is the strangest story you’ve ever written? So far, I only have one published book, but I am working on three other ones now. I would say the topic I wrote about in my first book is a little controversial. It’s about a 25-year-old struggling with addiction. Many people don’t understand addiction or even know the struggles that an addict goes through. It might not be something everyone understands, but I hope everyone can enjoy the story. [I’m interested already.]
What are you currently working on? I’m currently finishing the second book for Escaping the Edge which is called Finding the Light. These works are a little dark, but my next project I have already started is going to be a Romantic Comedy, and I am already in love with it.
What motivated the plot of your latest book? For the Escaping the Edge serial, it was my life that motivated the plot. Yeah that’s a lot for a debut novel, but I felt it was something that needed to be said. My father is an addict. It’s a different world to experience a parent suffering with addiction. To see them at their worst when they are supposed to only show you their best, so they can support you through your worst. As far as my current WIP, it was definitely inspired by my cat, and that’s all I’m going to say about that. [smile]
What was the hardest story for you to write? Definitely Escaping the Edge. It’s super dark which meant having to tap into the darker parts of my mind. Seeing as it was based on things I’ve seen happen made it that much harder because of how personal the story was.
What process do you use to plan your novels? I’m probably one of the only writers who doesn’t outline. I just write. I’ve never been good at outlining. Even in grade school when I was required to outline, I would veer off course. I wouldn’t write anything that I had outlined. It would always be completely different. [So not true. Lots of writers are what’s called pantsers.]
Who has been your favorite character to write and why? A girl named Raegan in my current WIP, The Road Without You. She’s a little crazy, but she knows what she wants and goes after it. I admire that.
Have you ever experienced writer’s block? If so, how did you overcome it? Oh my gosh, yes! Writers block is awful, but my writers block stemmed from self-doubt. It ate me alive for two weeks. I couldn’t write. I couldn’t think. Thankfully, I’m part of a few author groups, and they talked me out of it. As an author, you need a group of people who understand what you’re going through. Self-doubt is an author’s own worst enemy.
Do any of your characters reflect facets of your personality? Another WIP I have going is called Forgotten Dreams. The main character is headstrong and doesn’t listen to anyone. She forges her own path without the help of anyone. That’s definitely me. Headstrong.
If you were to choose another genre to write in, what would it be? Why? I would have to choose Dystopia [yay!]. It’s pretty amazing how authors can come up these fictitious worlds with their own set of rules. A different language. I might have to try my hand at it.
Which authors inspire you? Rebecca Yarros and Micalea Smeltzer. Those girls can crank out some remarkable books. They write beautiful stories filled with incredible book boyfriends. I aspire to be able to write as fast as they do with the same great quality.
What novel would you read multiple times? It’s so hard to choose one novel I would read over and over because the truth is I have several. But if I had to pick one, it would be The Edge of Never by J.A. Redmerski since it is the book that inspired this crazy adventure I’m on.
If you could meet anyone in the world, alive or deceased, who would it be and why? (Person could be a fictional character) I would love to meet J.A. Redmerski. Simply to thank her for inspiring me to find my passion in life through her book.
What is your favorite quote?
What is your favorite animal, real or imaginary? All things cats. House cats. Lions. Tigers. I’m obsessed with all of them.
What is your favorite color? Blue, but black holds a close second. Someone once told me I looked like a bruise from all the blue and black I wore, which I thought was pretty funny.
What do you do when you’re not writing? For my day job, I’m a secretary at an insanely busy hospital.
It was such a pleasure to get to know you, H.M.!
Next week’s featured guest will be Rissa Blakeley.