Today I’d like to introduce you to Sonya Ray, a southeast Missouri girl who is a prolific writer. Growing up among the famous “Throwed Rolls,” high cotton, and the Cards she managed to raise two kids and considers them her treasured gift. Working as a full-time Administrative Assistant with free time dedicated to her family, Sonya still manages to work on her book series that has captured the hearts of readers. Her first installment, Sweet Tea was how I met her. It was published in October 2013 and there’s been no looking back. Several libraries in Southeast Missouri carry her books as does The Book Rack in Cape Girardeau, Missouri. Welcome, Sonya!
You have some very interesting characters, especially Lizzie. Tell me more about her and how she spoke to you.
My daughter was the one who asked me to write a story about a girl who lives on a ranch, who loves horses, and all the stuff her and her friends do. That is how Sweet Tea began. I wanted to write about the area in which I lived, but I wanted to write outside of the box and add a twist. I can tell you my kids were very surprised when their mother wrote about vampires. I believe my daughter was a junior in high school at the time, so I had plenty of resources to pull from. But Lizzie is not based off of anyone. She is a creation, I guess you might say. She is from money, but loves the simple things in life such as fishing, being with friends, and sweet tea. In the world view, she is considered a socialite, but she does not concern herself with such things. She has a whole other world that surrounds her, and even protects her, but she is not inclined to believe in such nonsense—it is not logical. But she does come to terms that she is different and this series is her finding her true self and accepting herself, even if that makes her different.
I know that you have another job besides author. How do you manage writing with such a busy life?
Priortize, prioritize, prioritize.
I love to write and I wish I could spend more time writing, learning about my craft, promoting other authors, etc…But as you said, I work a full time job, commuting an hour a day, and I have a junior in high school. Needless to say, my family comes first. I miss a lot of time promoting my own work and mingling with other authors, but I don’t want to miss any time with that junior.
I think you just have to have your priorities in order and you stay peaceful and productive. If I start losing my peace, then it is time to reevaluate and make a change. My family is supportive and during deadlines or when a book comes out, they understand I need to focus my attention on the book, but sometimes it’s not that easy!
The trilogy is a terrific way to keep the love and momentum going with your novels. What kind of projects are you working on now? Will you stick to the paranormal genre?
The Three Crowns series is actually a seven-novel series. The next installment, Absolution, Vol IV, is scheduled to come out the first of the year. The whole series should be complete by the first of 2016.
I do have other books waiting to be picked up after this series is complete. I have a YA/Paranormal four-novel series, the start of two more New Adult Paranormal books, and a Chic Lit all in the works.
I enjoy writing Paranormal because, well, it is fiction. I can make up something new that no one has ever heard of and make it viable in this make believe world that I am writing. But I do not want to limit my writing to Paranormal. I am excited about my Chic Lit novel. It is edgy and full of drama. We will see what happens when the time comes for that to come out.
What prompted you to write paranormal?
Life is tough. I didn't want to write about everyday things. I wanted to create new kinds of people. New worlds. I wanted to keep it fiction.
Tell the readers something about yourself that might surprise them.
Something the readers may not know is that I am a cancer survivor. I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2000 and our world changed. Everything changed. Had several years of working through different things that the cancer brought on, but we made it through and I have been cancer free for fourteen years.
You've got to tell us more about Broken Boundaries, Volume III.
Broken Boundaries, Volume III
Elizabeth Lancaster has changed, but her true being remains in the shadows, waiting to be revealed. Lizzie continues to muddle through life in her human world, but the Night World feels her growing power, and there are those who will do anything to stop her, and obtain that power for themselves.
While Lizzie concentrates on her human life and the new addition to her family, Cain Atchley and others around her become increasingly vigilant in trying to keep Lizzie safe, alive, and out of the clutches of the Seekers from the Night World. But an impossible traitor, someone she has known all her life, manages to breach the wall of trust Lizzie has with her friends, bringing her face to face with her enemies. The traitor wants Lizzie to know about the true nature of the world that surrounds her. This shakes Lizzie’s faith in her friends, and alters the boundaries that keep her safe, placing her in mortal danger.
It has been so much fun getting to know you better. I know readers are going to enjoy your work.
For the rest of you remember, some Sweet Tea is good anytime of day!
Sweet Tea, Vol. I
North, Vol. II
Listed below is how you can find Sonya Ray on social media.