Guest Post – Young Adult Author Medeia Sharif

29 Jul
Guest Post – Young Adult Author Medeia Sharif

Years ago, when my manuscripts were buried deep in slush piles all over the country, all I wanted was to have one published book. Even if I couldn’t get all my manuscripts published—and that wasn’t going to happen anyway since I labeled many of them “drawer manuscripts”—I just wanted my moment to shine.

So now my book is out in the world. I thought I would be triumphant and relieved. That’s not the reality.

Here are some things that lay heavily on my mind now….

1) Getting book two published. I’m currently working on two wips. Sure, years ago I said, “Please, may one of my books see the light of day.” But now that my dream has become actualized, I want to do the same for my other manuscripts.

2) All the extras are time-consuming. I didn’t know book launch time would be so hectic. Honestly, I had no clue. I have been or was busy with guest posts, interviews, making bookmarks, getting ready for a book signing…I have to push myself to work on my wips here and there or else I’ll get nothing done.

3) The critics. In college I remember how my classmates and I took apart pieces of literature, and we didn’t always share the same vision for them. I’ve read reviews and received emails that made me aware of people focusing on various facets of my book. Some people love it, hate it, think it’s meaningful, think it’s cute, hone in on the specifics, or look at the overall picture. Personal taste is subjective. I always knew this, but now the concept is being applied to my work.

4) What kind of writer am I? I’ve been asking myself this question. One of my wips is strongly multicultural and the other one less so. BESTEST. RAMADAN. EVER. is pretty much an innocent book, but my latest wip has profanity and some sexual content. I have a third wip on the back burner and it’s a paranormal. I’ve been asking myself if I should jump genres and flex more of my writing muscles. My answer is yes.

When I first started thinking of myself as a contender in the writing business, I thought it would be a relief to get one book out in the world. As you can see, the worries never end. There’s constant pressure, but this is what motivates me to do more. I’m not going to stop at one book, I’ll learn to pace myself better and do things ahead of time with the extra tasks, I’ll develop a thicker skin with the critics, and I’ll genre hop if I want because being a writer means having no limits with one’s imagination.

About the author:

Medeia Sharif is a high school English teacher residing in Miami Beach. Her young adult debut novel BESTEST. RAMADAN. EVER. was released July 2011. You can find out more about her by visiting


Posted by on July 29, 2011 in Idaho


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20 responses to “Guest Post – Young Adult Author Medeia Sharif

  1. Liz Fredericks

    July 29, 2011 at 5:42 AM

    Thanks for posting with Gem State Writers, Medeia. Congratulations on having your first book out and best wishes on the WIPs. I agree with you about the advantages of genre hopping. It’s always good to exercise a different muscle group!

    • Medeia Sharif

      July 29, 2011 at 9:31 AM

      The paranormal is quite fun, if a bit creepy.

  2. Clarissa Southwick

    July 29, 2011 at 6:25 AM

    Thank you for helping us to think past that first sale. I have followed your career with interest as I am facing several of the same multiple-genre questions you have. (I have 1 contemporary set in Baghdad, 1 in colonial Algeria, and 2 historicals set in the U.S.A.) Do I embrace the multiculturalism, which very few people can write, or go with what’s popular? Hard choice.

    It’s nice to see your debut book doing so well. I can’t wait to see what you do next. Good luck and thanks for guest blogging at GSW.

  3. johannaharness

    July 29, 2011 at 7:06 AM

    Thanks so much for this post. In terrific YA style, you assure me my own neuroses are normal. I needed that.

    • Medeia Sharif

      July 29, 2011 at 9:33 AM

      So many times I wonder, “Is this normal?” So I’m glad this is resonating with others.

  4. Janis McCurry

    July 29, 2011 at 7:10 AM

    Medeia, great tips on what to expect “after” that debut novel. IMO, you have a good handle on the way to navigate through the process. Thanks so much for giving us your perspective.

    • Medeia Sharif

      July 29, 2011 at 9:34 AM

      It’s been quite a ride. Thanks for commenting.

  5. Terry Lynn Johnson

    July 29, 2011 at 7:15 AM

    I did love this novel! Medeia’s writing style reminded me of Judy Blume. Great interview. I sure do hope there’s a book two!

    • Medeia Sharif

      July 29, 2011 at 9:34 AM

      Thanks, Terry. What a great honor to be compared to her.

  6. Meredith Conner

    July 29, 2011 at 12:00 PM

    Thanks for blogging with us today, Medeia! It’s good to hear about the “after” process. We focus so much on getting published, we forget about the rest. I love your title and look forward to reading it!

    • Medeia Sharif

      July 31, 2011 at 11:30 PM

      Yes, definitely wasn’t thinking about “the rest.” 🙂

  7. Peggy Staggs

    July 29, 2011 at 4:12 PM

    Medeia, thanks for blogging. Sometimes we’re so focused on the getting published we forget to plan for the what if we do. The after is just, if not more, important.

    • Medeia Sharif

      July 31, 2011 at 11:32 PM

      It is. I was with a veteran author recently and she handled things more rapidly and calmer than I did, so with future books I’m sure I’ll be more at ease.

  8. Mary Vine

    July 29, 2011 at 4:59 PM

    When I was struggling to sell my second contemporary, a successful author told me it can take a long time to sell that second book. My problem was I was trying to submit the second manuscript I’d ever written and frankly it wasn’t ready and maybe never will be. So, I wrote another manuscript and it sold. This author also said that you need to be careful because that second book is going to be what publishers expect out of you. Well, I sold two contemporary books and then one historical so it worked for me, but I went with a small publishing house. I hope all your writing dreams come true! Thanks for posting.

  9. Carley Ash

    July 29, 2011 at 6:59 PM

    Thanks for blogging with us today, and thanks for the heads-up on what’s to come.

  10. Norma Davids

    July 31, 2011 at 7:29 AM

    Love your honesty, Medeia! You are a multi-talented writer with your head “in the clouds” (where it should be) and your feet planted firmly on the ground. A winning combination! Can’t wait to read your next book!


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