Episode 077 – Sydney Avey has written two literary fiction novels about the human experience.

Show Overview

  • Sydney Avey has written two literary fiction novels. She saw writing as a lifestyle – a way of life, and she knew her life would change as she got into writing. Her husband supported her desire to write and they both talked about the costs of doing this. Friendships and commitments changed. Her love of writing began with assignments to write poetry in the 3rd grade. She wrote all the way through school and college. She wrote for magazines, journals, and literary magazines, even winning a silver pen award for a letter to the editor. Those all affirmed her desire to write and provided great connections to other writers. She values the collaborative effort between authors and the editor and publisher – knowing her work would be better because of it. We talk about her writing processes, story development, plot and character development, creating a timeline for the story, trying one novel into the previous one, thinking about your audience, and more. She talks about the fun of writing in Scrivener. Sydney shares the importance of knowing how your novel ends, understanding the two paths of writing and which brings you joy, and more.


  • Literary fiction

My Books

My Writing Motivation

  • I can’t not write. I come from a long line of writers.

My Advice for Those Trying to Become Published

  • Study your craft, go to writers conferences, study the market, ask yourself if you really need to be published. If so, you have to make sacrifices of time to learn the craft and manage writing projects.

My Most Difficult Writing Challenge

  • It’s the physical challenge and the focus. Once I get there, it’s staying in that moment.

The Most Important Thing I Learned About Writing

  • To me, writing is a lifestyle. My husband and I counted the cost and made the changes necessary for me to write. It has paid off and he’s proud of me.

My Most Rewarding Moment as an Author

  • My most rewarding moments are when readers tell me they have learned something from my characters. That they were affected by my story and are still thinking about it.

The Best Advice on Writing I Ever Received

  • A presenter said to always know how your novel ends. Not everyone agrees with that, but it has served me well.

My Best Advice for Struggling Writers

  • Focus on the joy. Understand what motivates you to write. Is it the process or the product? Those are two different paths. Understand which of the paths is where your joy is.

What Writing Success Means to Me

  • If I keep writing, I’m successful. If it is a big part of my life, I’m successful.
If I keep writing, I’m successful. If it is a big part of my life, I’m successful. @SydneyAvey Click To Tweet

My Favorite Book on Writing

The Author That Inspires Me

  • Marilynne Robinson, a Pulitzer prize winner, because of how deep she goes into her characters.

How To Find Me

About Sydney from Her Amazon Author’s page

  • Sydney Avey lives in the Sierra Nevada foothills of Yosemite, California, and the Sonoran Desert in Arizona. She has a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of California, Berkeley, and a lifetime of experience writing news for non profits and corporations. Her work has appeared in Epiphany, Foliate Oak, Forge, American Athenaeum, and Unstrung (published by Blue Guitar Magazine) and Ruminate. She has studied at the Iowa Summer Writing Festival. Sydney is the author of two novels, The Sheep Walker’s Daughter and The Lyre and the Lambs. She blogs at sydneyavey.com on topics related to loven and mystery, family relationships, conflicts between generations, and how faith functions in real life.

From My Perspective

  • The From My Perspective segment of the show introduces listeners to Reedsy Learning and their free online courses on writing, marketing, publication, design, and more.

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