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E-Spire Entertainment News

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Dorrie Williams Wheeler - Meet the Woman Behind the Books

Monday, May 15, 2006

This week's feature author is Dorrie Williams Wheeler. She's usually the one doing the interviewing, so sit back, relax and get a peek into the world of one of my favorite writers.

Shelia Goss: Tell us about your books.
Dorrie Williams Wheeler: I currently have three books on the market. Be My Sorority Sister-Under Pressure is the most popular fiction title. It’s about a young woman who strives to join a sorority that her immediate family members are a part of. She attends a historically black college where the sorority scene is important. Getting in won’t be easy. It’s pretty much about the college sorority experience. My current non-fiction title is The Unplanned Pregnancy Book for Teens and College Students. It’s a resource guide for young women facing unplanned pregnancies and it’s chock full of resources. This book has its own website http://www.unplannedpregnancybook.com/. My first book was Sparkledoll Always Into Something-2004 Edition. It’s a coming of age novel about a young girl who is basically a wild child from the streets of Chicago who decides to turn her life around and go to college. Once she is in college she faces new challenges and adventures. Basically she learns that college life isn’t much different than city life. It’s a book about friendships (good & bad), relationships and the college experience as a whole. It covers the characters life from around 8th grade to college graduation. All of the books are available from Amazon.com and book stores everywhere.

Shelia: How do you juggle your non-fiction writing with your fiction writing?
Dorrie: Fiction writing is the fun part. I really enjoy fiction writing. My non-fiction title The Unplanned Pregnancy Book for Teens and College Students was a lot of work. Sometimes I get a headache just thinking about how hard I worked on that book. With the fiction writing I am able to be creative and free and I love to write dialogue. I’m sure at some point in my life I will write another non-fiction book. I know a follow up to the Unplanned Pregnancy Book should be in the cards. Something along the lines of raising a child so when the time is right I will do it. I have also always wanted to write a book of innovative curriculum. My master’s degree is in Instructional Technology so I am fascinated with writing curriculum. At this time, I spend the bulk of my time writing creative fiction.

Shelia: Are your characters based on people you know?
Dorrie: For the most part my characters are fiction. However, when I am writing I draw off of real life feelings, emotions and sometimes experiences. The character Lori Baldwin in my first book Sparkledoll Always Into Something, which was re-released in a 2004 edition is very similar to my young self although my family would hate for me to admit it. I was young. I was dumb. I made a lot of mistakes looking for love and had bad friends. Didn’t always make the right choices. If I wouldn’t have had those young dumb years I wouldn’t be the person that I am now. I think that is why so many young readers relate to me because of that book and via my blogs cause I tend to be honest with emotions.

The character of Eva Perkins in my most popular book Be My Sorority Sister-Under Pressure was based on no one. She was very different than me. Metaphorically speaking she was probably the opposite of me in college. She had money (I didn’t), she didn’t have to work (I did), parents were married, I mean not saying I wanted to be Eva I just wanted to put my feet into the shoes of the girls whose lives I had wondered about.

With my recent unpublished works the characters for the most part weren’t based off of real people but real emotion and circumstance. I’m the kind of writer that I really feed off of emotion. I can draw off of past emotions and situations and re-create them in new situations and environments.

Shelia: Do you listen to music when you write? If so, what CDs would you recommend to readers?
Dorrie: Sometimes I write in silence. When I want to feel a certain emotion I turn to my CD collection. I have my personal favorites. Nick Heyward is a great songwriter and he evokes emotion in his music so when I need that emotion I can usually find it in his music. Not just the emotion but there is a lot of imagery in his music so my mind will wander and you know it helps my writing process. I listen to a lot of 80’s music and pop. Right now I’m feeling the new Nick Lachey CD. I like Craig David, Haircut 100, David Bowie, Duran Duran... It’s usually whatever pops up on my iPod. I will say I have artists for every emotion.

Shelia: What's one thing that your fans probably don't know about you and you're willing to reveal?
Dorrie: That I’m really not that cool. A lot of people read my books and visit my websites and think I’m like this really cool person but I’m really just a housewife with a cool career. When you see me in Wal-Mart or Home Depot I’m hardly glamorous. I’m just mad regular and my readers are always surprised when I chit-chat with them on Myspace or something. I don’t have any false airs about me and I have no problem giving them a front row seat into my thought process.

Shelia: What advice would you give aspiring writers?
Dorrie: I would tell aspiring writers to just write. Write first and then worry about where/how you will get your stuff published. Once you find out how your work will get published continue to write so you have something ready to roll when your other stuff is out.

Shelia: What can readers expect from you in the future?
Dorrie: I have two books finished at this time. One book is titled She’s Out There Bad, and the second one is titled It’s Just A Bad Situation. They aren’t sequels they just have similar titles. They are urban fiction titles. They are urban but not gritty and grimy. I’m not street so I don’t really write street. I am now working on a teen book titled My Brother Is A Baller. I just keep writing and I hope to have new books on the market in 2007.

Shelia: How can readers learn more about your books and get in contact with you?
Dorrie: Readers can learn more about my books and get in touch with me at http://www.dorriewilliamswheeler.com/
posted by Shelia, 8:13 PM


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