Sharon Goforth is a native of Middletown, Ohio, where she currently lives. Following high school, she served a brief stint in the US Army, then received an Associates Degree in Secretarial Science and attended classes as a history major at Wright State University. She has worked as an administrative assistant for over 25 years and her current position supports the sales department of a foodservice equipment manufacturer. Sharon has been an avid reader her entire life. She enjoys classic and contemporary literature, historical fiction, mysteries, and non-fiction (history, memoirs, biographies). She loves to participate in reading challenges and is host to several in addition to her own reading projects. Sharon blogs at Ex Libris.
Why do you blog? > Blogging is a way to share my reading experiences with other readers around the world. In return, I gain the benefit of their insight and experience through their comments and by reading their blogs. Blogging also provides a wonderful opportunity to work directly with authors and publishers. Everyone benefits from it.
What has been your best blogging experience? > Having my Russian Reading Challenge mentioned in Newsweek magazine last year.
What has been your worst blogging experience? > Having writer's block (blogger's block?) for several days at a time.
What would be your main blogging advice to a novice blogger? > Network with other bloggers, publishers and authors as much as you can. Visit other blogs and leave comments. They will return the favour and visit yours. Post as often as is reasonably possible (given your real-life schedule).
What are you reading at the moment? > Nana by Emile Zola; The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins; and Under the Lilacs by Louisa May Alcott.
What is the best novel you've ever read? > The best novel I've read is The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers, but my sentimental favourite is Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell.
What is your favourite movie? > Gone With the Wind. As with the book, I never tire of it.
Who is your favourite composer? > Frederic Chopin.
Can you name a major moral, political or intellectual issue on which you've ever changed your mind? > Not so much a particular issue, but I have changed from being a political conservative (I was raised in a very conservative home) to being a liberal. I feel that reading has contributed greatly to that.
Can you name a work of non-fiction which has had a major and lasting influence on how you think about the world? > Again, not a specific title, but there is no doubt that the reading I did as a history major greatly influenced my opinion.
What do you consider to be the main threat to the future peace and security of the world? > Religious extremists (in any religion).
Do you think the world (human civilization) has already passed its best point, or is that yet to come? > No matter what or how bad a crisis is, civilization always manages to reinvent itself, so we should not rule out that the best is yet to come.
What would be your most important piece of advice about life? > Roll with the punches. It is less stressful to get through a crisis if you are flexible.
If you were to relive your life to this point, is there anything you'd do differently? > I would finish my higher education. It is the biggest regret in life that I have.
What would your ideal holiday be? > By the sea with unlimited numbers of books to read and no interruptions.
What do you like doing in your spare time? > Reading, cooking, doing volunteer work with a cat rescue, listening to classical music, taking my granddaughter to the library or bookstore.
What is your most treasured possession? > My books and my pets (four cats and a dog).
What talent would you most like to have? > The ability to write well.
What would be your ideal choice of alternative profession or job? > A book-related job - whether in a library, a bookstore, or in the industry.
Which baseball team do you support? > I was an avid Cincinnati Reds baseball fan until the players' strike in 1994. After that, I lost interest in professional sports. It is all about the money and no longer about the game.
How, if at all, would you change your life were you suddenly to win or inherit an enormously large sum of money? > I would pay off all debts, buy a house, help my children as needed, put money aside for my granddaughter's education, and bank the rest.
If you could have any three guests, past or present, to dinner who would they be? > Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Barack Obama. I would love to hear their thoughts on the evolution of civil rights in this country.
What animal would you most like to be? > A cat or dog adopted by me. They live a good life (as they should).
[The normblog profile is a weekly Friday morning feature. A list of all the profiles to date, and the links to them, can be found here.]