Let’s Talk with Cheryl Hollon

Split Personality of a Writer

by Cheryl Hollon

At our January meeting of Florida Gulf Coast Sisters in Crime chapter, I interviewed one of St. Petersburg’s newest debut authors, Gale Massey. The interview was casual and intended to mimic a conversation. One of the topics we talked about is the split personality aspects of being an author. There’s the actual fingers-on-keyboard writing the book part and then there’s the public persona with appearances, readings, blogging and social media.

Although I am mostly an extrovert, I have found that the process of writing two books a year is having a strange effect. I’m now more introvert than extrovert. How did that happen? I have become dependent on the many hours of quiet creation. Yes, I do mean hours. I spend every morning from seven until noon writing the current book. Today, I’m working on Death at Battleship Rock, Paint & Shine Mystery Series Book #2. This brings my number of contracted books up to eight.

Most days, I’m writing alone, but two days a week Gale comes over to my apartment complex and we sprint together. This is my most productive time of the week. It doesn’t sound like it would be since Gale and I LOVE to chat, but we have rules.

First, we settle our laptops and coffee, then catch up on personal stuff for about ten minutes. Second, we each declare what we’re working on and how much we want to complete in the first sprint. Third, we put those fingers on the keyboard and don’t even look up for the remaining 45 minutes of the hour. We repeat the process for the second hour. It’s absolutely magic and I more than double my normal progress for those two hours.

Here’s a link to her website: Gale Massey Author

How do you keep the words flowing?


While you’re here, check out our Booklover’s Bench contest. It runs from March 1-18. We’re collecting entries for a book of your choice from our authors. Titles up for grabs are in the contest graphic. Click here to enter!