Monday, July 21, 2008

In Touch with Urban Christian Author Sharon Oliver

Born in Baltimore, Maryland, Sharon Oliver is a resident of the Atlanta area. She is also a contributing writer for an online magazine and currently working on her third novel, a murder mystery.

To learn more about Sharon and her literary works, you can check out her WEBSITE!

Fill in the blank: "Reading KEEP YOUR ENEMIES CLOSER will make you laugh, think and last but not least, honor God. Hopefully, the reader(s) will recognize God’s grace in the book as well as in their own lives."

In screenwriting, a logline is a one-sentence summary of a script. Typically, a logline does three things: tells who the main character is and what he/she wants, tells who or what stands in his/her way, and tells what makes the story unique. Having said that, imagine the poster for KEEP YOUR ENEMIES CLOSER: THE MOVIE. What would its logline read?
A weary young divorcee sojourns in the deep south to rest and regroup only to find big city drama in a not-so sleepy small town.

What's your favorite thing about KEEP YOUR ENEMIES CLOSER?
The humor even when intertwined in a serious message.

What have you done or what do you plan to do - as author - to promote KEEP YOUR ENEMIES CLOSER?
I’ve scheduled book signings, advertised in magazines, mailed and passed out brochures, sent email blasts and participated in online interviews.

Why do you feel compelled to write fiction that integrates Christian values?
A fellow Urban Christian author summed up Christian fiction and there is one key point I’d like to borrow from her to answer that question. That is, it is a ministry I feel God has given me a heart for. I don’t have a desire to write erotica, horror, etc. So far, I’ve not been given any ideas for writing romance either and romance novels are the norm these days. I’ve always enjoyed mystery/suspense books as well as humorous novels. With that said, I’d like to reach that like-minded audience and add Jesus to the mix. Nothing too heavy, but enlightening, creating and/or keeping a thirst for God.

Do you see yourself integrating Christian values into future works?

INSIDE YOUR MP3 PLAYER: What three tracks MUST you listen to these days?
Chris Tomlin’s HOW GREAT IS OUR GOD, Israel Houghton’s ALPHA & OMEGA, and whatever the day’s mood calls for.

Sharon Oliver: THE SOUNDTRACK! What three tracks would make it onto a soundtrack of your life, and why?
FENCEWALK, by a 70’s group named Mandrill just for the old school jam; Richard Smallwood’s, ANTHEM OF PRAISE for the uplifting and setting the tone and Marvin Sapp’s, NEVER WOULD HAVE MADE IT because…I mean, come on.

Who are some of your favorite writers, and how do they inspire you as a writer?
Agatha Christie, Walter Mosley and Elaine Viets. Agatha’s fictions are just classics. This brilliant creator of methodical sleuths introduced us to a host of suspects, dreamy locales and crafty villains. Walter Mosley’s Easy Rawlins series are film noirs in print. I grew up watching black and white movies and still enjoy a good AMC or Turner Classic film. Mosley gives it to you with an African American as the major player. Elaine Viets’ books keep me in stitches while trying to figure out whodunit. She’s excellent at creating comical lines and conversations between the characters.

Click the cover above to order your copy of KEEP YOUR ENEMIES CLOSER Today!

What have you learned as a writer since the publication of KEEP YOUR ENEMIES CLOSER?
Whew! Where do I start? Actually, I’m still learning. One thing for sure, you can never have enough pair of eyes for editing. Connecting with others in the field is important. Be patient and have perseverance because God can sure make those crooked paths straight.

Dream-on: You've just been told that someone wants to turn KEEP YOUR ENEMIES CLOSER into a movie. Who would play Charlotte Morley and Reverend Holiday?
Nia Long as Charlotte and Anthony Anderson as Reverend Holiday. Might I add that Tasha Smith would be perfect for the part of Timmi and donning a wig and makeup to look aged, the effervescent Jennifer Lewis as Miss Sista.

What's currently going on in your WRITING LIFE?
Right now, I’m working on a 3rd novel, which happens to be a murder mystery and yes, it is still Christian fiction. I’m also branching out as a contributing writer for a couple of online magazines.

Word Association. What comes to mind when you see the following words:
ENEMIES: defeated
WRITING: evolving
KEEP YOUR ENEMIES CLOSER: if you know what I know you, you will (Oops, that’s 9 words. Sorry)
FAITH: necessary


Jennifer C. said...

Another wonderful interview. I may just have to add this one and the sequel to my wish list.

Shonell Bacon said...

Do it! :-)

LaShaunda said...

Congrats on our new book. Good interview. Its always nice to meet new writers.

rhonda mcknight said...

Nice interview. I'm looking foward to reading Sharon's book and featuring her on my blog next month.