Picture this: A retired English teacher (Sharon Bartholomew Buffington) with time on her hands. One day she decides to take the advice of her former students--Just Do It! She puts nimble fingers on her keyboard and three months later she has her first rough draft of The Dreamin’ Tree (not yet titled). The novel is a romantic suspense about relationships in three generations--a coming-of-age saga with lots of sparks.
At the age of five, she'd line up her dolls and pretend to teach them letters and numbers. She'd also read to them or tell them stories. She dreamed of teaching and writing stories. After earning a Bachelor of Science in Education, she began teaching.
The first three years she taught Language Arts II. The next three years and a new school, she taught Language Arts II, Speech and Drama. In school number three, she taught Language Arts (10, 11 and 12 plus Speech and Drama or Creative Writing). In school number four, she taught Word Study, Journalism plus Publication--newspaper and Publication--yearbook then retired, nineteen years in the classroom.
The Dreamin' Tree developed in 1997 and went into editing and changing titles until I heard Tim McGraw's "She's My Kind of Rain". The project sat on a shelf while she tried to teach some very difficult students who had no desire to learn--at least most of them anyway. She was happy to leave this horrid experience behind and retired from teaching in 1999, just months after Columbine. She decided the time was right for retirement and now focuses her time on writing and brain storming with her critique partner, author Debra Walden Davis who writes Police Procedurals: Gambit Investigations Series. (Great reads!).
Member of Sisters in Crime Saint Louis (MO) branch have recently defined mystery subgenres: “Young Adult mysteries have a protagonist between the ages of 15 and 19 who must solve a crime. The mysteries avoid graphic violence. The setting and subject matter explore priorities and worries which differ from the world of adults.”
"Although my 16-year-old protagonist does solve a mystery, she worries more about the changing relationship between herself and her childhood boyfriend," Barth said, "I market The Dreamin' Tree as Romantic Suspense. I have more adult readers than teens."
I enjoy hearing from my readers. Why you purchased the book(s), what you thought about the story, which character is your favorite, etc.