Friday, September 5, 2014

Author Interview – Sarah Dalton - When Darkness Falls

 Book Description from Amazon: Six paranormal novels from six bestselling authors who know how to weave a gripping fantasy tale. From brooding vampires, ghosts and witches, to fallen angels, shifters and fae. Be enchanted with dark romances and sweeping adventures to take you away from the everyday. 

What inspired you to start writing, and when?

I used to like to write when I was younger but I’m not sure how it began. I’m an avid reader, so the two naturally went together. I remember when I decided to be serious about writing. I’d just finished reading Twilight, and found myself almost obsessed with the book. But at the same time I was confused because I could see the flaws in the writing, and I could see that it was such a simple idea. It was then that I realised you could be a writer and not have to be Hemingway, that you could move people with a popular book. Before then, I’d been too overwhelmed by literature. I always thought I wasn’t good enough because I wasn’t Shakespeare!

What is your preferred genre?

I’m a genre hopper. I read almost anything. I love teen horror, but then I also love literary fiction. I love science fiction, too, but I tend to dip in and out of it. I’m not as hardcore as some of the SFF fans out there! I have a huge soft spot for Gothic horror. Daphne Du Maurier, Emily Bronte, Bram Stoker, Anne Rice…

I love all-encompassing books that sweep you off your feet and plunge you into their story.

How many books have you written?  If more than one, are any a series…or trilogy?

Gosh, full length novels: six. Then there are a number of novellas and short stories! I have three series out there. One is finished, the other two are still in progress.

Do you plot or write by the seat of your pants?

A bit off both. I often write the first 30% and then sit back and think about where it is heading. I usually end up rewriting the beginning, but it helps me focus. After that I bullet point the major events in the book.

Did you have an editor edit your books?

I prefer to work with an editor, but I have edited my own books. One thing I never do is publish a novel without someone other than me reading and reviewing it. If I edit the book myself, it’s only with the help of beta readers.

Are you a self- published (Indie) Author?

Yep! *Shines Indie-author badge*

What books would you like to read again?

Part of me wants to read the fun books I read as a teenager. I loved the Worst Witch, and The Little Vampire. There were tons of Point Horror books as well. But then, I wonder whether reading them as an adult would take away the magic.

Do you find yourself intrigued by the cover of a book enough to buy it? 

Yes! Totally. Especially young adult books. Oh my, the covers for teen fiction are just beautiful. They are works of art all by themselves. I love covers. I’m a cover-aholic. I’m always making covers for books before I even start writing them.

Do you have any advice for other writers starting out?

Keep going. It’s all about getting words down. Your work needs to be honed. In the beginning it’ll be bad. It’ll be so bad. But that doesn’t matter. You’ll learn as you go, so keep on going.

What are your pet peeves? 

I’m not a big fan of snark. It just seems negative to me. There’s a big snark trend right now. I had no idea what it meant until about six months ago!

Pick one - Wine, Chocolate or shoes?

Okay, so, I’m going with shoes, even though I’m NOT a heel lover. I love chocolate, but it hates me. It makes me fat. I also love wine, but hangovers are the worst. Shoes, however, are pretty darn practical. Imagine stepping in dog poo without shoes on? No, I don’t want to either!

Cats or dogs?

Cats. Of course it’s cats. They are the best animal ever.

How many hours per day do you try to devote to research and writing?

I’m a full time writer, so I try to think of it as a full time job. 9-5 Mon-Fri. Office hours. The problem is, writing is not an office job. It inhabits your mind, which means I can end up with the ‘writing woozies’ where I’m a bit disconnected from things. Trying to keep writing contained in those hours is at least some attempt to have a life outside writing.

Your thoughts on receiving book reviews - the good and the bad – 

It’s probably the hardest part, and it’s not like you can grow a thick skin overnight. But it’s something you have to deal with well if you want to be a professional writer. When I get a bad review (I try not to read them, but when you’ve first published your book you have to in order to check there’s nothing very wrong with the book) I allow myself a few minutes of annoyance (sorry people who don’t like my book, but I do swear at my computer screen, and there may be a few finger gestures thrown out there!) then I accept that it’s their opinion and they are entitled to it, and then I move on. No matter what I ignore the urge to reply, even if the review mentions something strange or wrong. I don’t want to invade the reviewer’s space like that.

Reviewers are awesome. They took the time to talk about your book and that’s really cool. It doesn’t matter if they didn’t like the book, not everyone will like it. I make myself feel better by reading the one star reviews on classic books. Mark Twain on Jane Austen is always a good one: “I haven't any right to criticise books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticise Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Everytime I read 'Pride and Prejudice' I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone.”

What is a movie or TV show that you watched just recently and really enjoyed?

Ooh, the last series of True Blood has been awesome. I’m in the UK, so we are up to episode 9. So far it has been hilarious, touching, weird and violent, exactly what we want from that programme. It’s just a shame it hasn’t been like that all the way through.

Where can your readers stalk you?

Is your book in Print, ebook or both?

Both. And I’m working on getting my books into audio as well.

Book links:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sarah grew up in the middle of nowhere in the countryside of Derbyshire and as a result has an over-active imagination. She has been an avid reader for most of her life, taking inspiration from the stories she read as a child, and the novels she devoured as an adult.

Sarah mainly writes speculative fiction for a Young Adult audience and has had pieces of short fiction published in the Medulla Literary Review, PANK magazine and the British Fantasy Society publication Dark Horizons. Her short story 'Vampires Wear Chanel' is featured in the Wyvern Publication Fangtales available here:

Sarah's debut novel The Blemished is a fast paced young adult dystopia set in a fractured Britain. It follows the events of Mina Hart, a young Blemished girl who has a dangerous secret, as she tries to escape the dreaded Operation and get out of Area 14.

Thank you Sarah for taking the time to do this interview and allowing us a glimpse into your writing world.  I hope you share this interview with your friends so we can all get to know you a little better. 

Please share this post and help support indie authors!

Patti Roberts

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