Author of Welcome to Sharonville.
Jacqui has acted as a great cheerleader for my career, complete with pom poms and a great high kick! I feel all writers need that – what Julia Cameron calls, “a believing mirror.” I know for a fact that, without her encouragement, Welcome to Sharonville would not have been published, because before she read it, it had languished in the notorious metaphorical drawer for over two years after contradictory editorial advice, knock downs from agents and various life events had beaten my confidence in it to the ground. In one phone call, Jacqui gave me hope back – a gift of great price and one which kept me going through the rest of what turned out to ultimately be a journey of almost twelve years from the conception of the initial idea for Welcome to Sharonville to its publication. Literary experts told me the book was “midlist,” too quirky, would not be my “breakout” novel, but Jacqui’s and others’ faith kept me submitting, kept me somehow believing, despite all the outright rejections which hurt like a potato peeler thrust into the gut. This is why I call Jacqui, “Yoda,” – even though she is way better looking and has much more fluent grasp of grammar! – and why she utterly deserves that name.
In the end, though, after working with Jacqui, I started getting more and more near misses with agents and major literary competitions which I told myself meant I was getting nearer – and, as it turns out, for once, I was right. One day on Facebook, I stumbled on Unthank Books and really loved their unconventional and distinctly literary approach to publishing – and, luckily, when I sent them Welcome to Sharonville, they liked what I did too.
Jacqui’s belief in me and her mentorship, coming from her own intense literary gifts, plus the fact that she had already trodden the path I was embarking on, made the difference between my novel being published and not, between a dream come true or a dream bitterly lost.
Find out more about Dr. Sharon Zink
Read the full text of her article: Everyone needs a Yoda – or Why Mentors Matter.
I interview Sharon Zink – the video link is on the home page of this website or you can find it in my post about her book launch.