Thursday, March 24, 2011

Ten Questions with Sherry Ellis

Today my interview is with Sherry Ellis.

Ms. Ellis is a freelance writer who writes articles for parenting magazines and children’s publications.  Her first book, That Baby Woke Me Up, AGAIN, was published in 2005.  Her second book, That Mama is a Grouch, was published in May of 2010.  It was honored as a finalist in the Parenting/Family category of the 2010 USA Book News Awards. 

Sherry is a professional musician who plays and teaches violin, viola, and piano.  She also enjoys hiking, bike-riding, and SCUBA diving.  She used to be a PADI SCUBA diving instructor before she had kids.

Ms. Ellis lives in Loveland, Ohio with her husband and two children.

Could you describe your desk/workspace?

This may sound funny, but most of the time, my “workspace” is my bedroom floor.  It’s a place where I can go and not be bothered by kids or animals.  Usually I sit down with a pencil and notebook.  If I’m doing research for a project, I may have books scattered around me.  This is where I do most of my creating.  Later, I’ll go to the computer to type the manuscript.  That workspace is a desk that’s usually covered with my husband’s motorcycle catalogues.

What is the best advice you've ever received?

Don’t be afraid to try new things.  I can’t even remember who told me that- maybe my mom.  It’s really good advice.  If you try new things, you never know what doors may open for you.

If you could have coffee with anyone (living or dead, real or fictional), who would it be and why?

Do I really have to pick just one person?  There are so many people I’d like to chat with!  I guess today’s pick would be Jane Yolen.  She is one of my favorite children’s authors.  I’d like to hear her story:  how she got started, what inspires her, the ups and downs of her long career.  I’m sure it would be a fascinating conversation.

What are your top three favorite books and why?

Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom is my number one favorite book.  It really makes you think about what’s important in life!

Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay is a heartbreaking story of a Jewish girl living in Paris during the Holocaust.  It really hits close to home for me.  My husband lost nearly all of his family in the Holocaust.  I cry every time I read it.  I think this book is an example of well-done historical fiction.

I like the Harry Potter books as well.  (I know, there is more than one book in the series.)  They are all well-written and I think the characters are interesting.  Every time I read the books, I notice something new.

What was your favorite book as a child and why?

My favorite book as a child was James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl.  I was in the second grade when my teacher read it to the class.  I was captivated by the story.  When the teacher finished a chapter, I didn’t want her to stop.  I wanted to know what happened next.  That’s how good stories should be.

What are your current marketing strategies for That Mama is a Grouch?

My current strategy for marketing my book includes doing radio interviews, networking on author sites such as Filedby, Authors Den, and Jacketflap, and visiting bookstores and libraries.  I do a fun Pajama Party Story Time where the kids are invited to wear their pajamas and bring their favorite teddy bears.  I show up in my pajamas and we all have a fun evening of music, games, and stories.

Could you share about any current writing projects?

I am working on a series of books for middle-grade readers:  The Adventures of Bubba and Squirt.  I recently completed the first draft of the first book in the series, Big Hole to China.  These books are similar to the Magic Tree House series by Mary Pope Osborne.  The main characters will travel to different countries where they will learn a little about the culture, language, and history of the people there.  There will be adventures to experience and mysteries to solve along the way as well.

What would be the best way for readers to contact you?

Readers can visit my website,, and click on the “contact us” link.  I’m also on Facebook and Twitter.

Where can people find your books, That Baby Woke Me Up, AGAIN, and That Mama is a Grouch?

My books can be found on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.  You can also find them at and

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

If you are an aspiring author, my advice would be to read.  Read as much as you can so that you get a good sense of what readers like, and what publishers want to see.  

Would you like a chance at receiving your own copy of That Mama is a Grouch?  Then be sure to check out these giveaway details:

Open to followers of this blog with a US or Canadian mailing address

Ends 3/31/2011

You are not required to follow this blog to enter.  

Followers recieve one (+1) extra entry.

If you 'Like' Sherry Ellis' Facebook Fan Page URL:  (+1) extra entry

If you 'Like' Stories for Children's Facebook Fan Page URL:!/pages/Stories-for-Children-Magazine/101731646536813  (+1) extra entry

If you follow Sherry Ellis on Twitter URL:  (+1) extra entry

If you follow Stories for Children on Twitter URL:
(+1) extra entry

You must leave a comment to enter.

Your comment should also include any of the above actions for additional entries.


Mason Canyon said...

Sherry, enjoyed learning a bit about your writing. Not having children, I can only image writing for children would be more difficult than most think. Wishing you much success with your books.

Susanne, thanks for introducing me to Sherry and new books to check out for my young cousins.

Thoughts in Progress

Virginia S Grenier said...

Great interview. Thanks for letting your readers learn more about Sherry Ellis and her books.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Great interview. I always love finding out what other people's favorite books are! LOL. :-)

Joylene Butler said...

Thanks, ladies. This was a great interview. It's great meeting you, Sherry. Best of luck with all your endeavours.

Snow said...

GFC Follower

Snow said...

Like' Sherry Ellis' Facebook Fan

fb:suzie p. santos

Snow said...

'Like' Stories for Children's Facebook Fan Page

fb:suzie p. santos

Snow said...

follow Sherry Ellis on Twitter


Snow said...

follow Stories for Children on Twitter


Snow said...

Thank you for this awesome giveaway and the chance to win :)

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi, Mason. Thanks for stopping by to learn more about Sherry.
Hi, Virginia. Thanks for stopping by. I was glad to do the interview.
Hi, Shannon. Thanks for stopping by!

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi, Joylene. Thanks for stopping by to check out the interview with Sherry.
Hi, Snow. Thanks for stopping by to check out the interview with Sherry. Good luck in the drawing! Thanks for becoming a follower of my blog.

SherryE said...

Hi everyone! Thanks for all of your comments, and thanks to those of you who have promoted my books on Twitter and Facebook! I really appreciate it!

Susanne, thanks for having me as a guest on your site. It's been fun!

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi, Sherry! Thanks for stopping by to visit with everyone. I was glad to be two of the stops on your World of Ink tour.

Talli Roland said...

Great interview! I loved 'James and the Giant Peach', too.

Have a great weekend!

Julie Musil said...

What a fun interview! And I agree about writers reading. How lucky are we that it's part of the job?

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Great interview. I've sat next to Jane Yolen during a NYC SCBWI conference. She's hiliarious.

Angela Ackerman said...

Your mom's advice is timeless, but something lots of us forget to do. This was a good reminder. Thanks for the interview. :)

Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

Lynda R Young said...

Great interview. I like the "best advice". It's something I need to remind myself of more often :)

Jennifer Shirk said...

I love the idea of the Pajama Party Story Time!
Following Sherry on twitter now!

Susanne Drazic said...

A big hello going out to Talli, Julie, Stina, Angela, Lynda, and Jennifer! Thank you for stopping by to check out the interview with Sherry Ellis.
: )


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