Today I’m conducting a session with…Sarah Ettritch!
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Me: Tell me about an experience that had a profound impact on your life.
Sarah: Being laid off from my job. I’d been unhappy for a while, but the money was good. I was comfortable. I didn’t have the courage to make a change. When the decision was made for me, I resisted the safe route of finding another job (I even turned down a lucrative job offer). I’m building a different sort of life for myself.
Me: What personality trait of yours helps you most as an author?
Sarah: In addition to a vivid imagination, I’d say persistence and determination. Writing can be a difficult road. Sometimes you just have to grit your teeth and keep going.Writing can be a difficult road. Sometimes you just have to grit your teeth and keep going. @SarahEttritch #AOTC #AmWriting Click To Tweet
Me: What personality trait of yours hinders you most as an author?
Sarah: My tendency towards perfectionism. I’m getting better at this one, but I still fret about things that don’t really matter, or that readers don’t care about. It can make me procrastinate.
Me: What was your high point as a writer?
Sarah: I’m happiest when I’m writing the stories I want to write. When I’m in “the zone,” nothing can touch me and life is glorious. I’m energized. Time flies.
Me: What was your low point as a writer—a time when you questioned your path?
Sarah: I tried to write to market a few times. Doing so made me question what I was doing, and I didn’t enjoy writing. I stick to writing *my* stories now. My joy comes from writing what resonates with me. Of course, I want to sell books, but sales don’t feed my soul. Writing what I love does.
Me: How many books have you written? How long does it typically take you to write a book? What’s the most painful part of the writing process for you?
Sarah: I’ve written more than fifteen novels and several shorter pieces. It typically takes me about six months to write the first draft of a novel. The most painful part is when I’m struggling with a story issue. Fortunately that doesn’t happen too often, but when it does, it can keep me up at night.
Me: What’s the worst piece of writing advice you were ever given? How did you get beyond it?
Sarah: Any advice that starts with “writers should” is usually bad advice (exception: writers should read and write). We’re all different. What works for one writer might not work for another. I got past what I “should” be doing by figuring out what works for me (and from flailing about when I tried to do it someone else’s way).
Me: Name a writing pet peeve of yours. Something that hits you like fingernails-on-a-chalkboard every time you see it. Why does it bug you?
Sarah: I notice when names are used too often in dialogue. “Hi, Mary, how are you?” “I’m fine, Bob. What about you?” “I just got a new job, Mary.” “That’s great, Bob!” “Thanks, Mary. I got a raise, too.” “Good for you, Bob. Where will you be working now?” “Great question, Mary.” It bugs me because people don’t talk like that.
Me: Me too! I hate that! Tell me about your time travel romance, Threaded Through Time.
“For those who were born before or after their time…”
That described Pam. She’d always felt that she’d been born too late—there was no chivalry in the world anymore.
She’d only wanted to commune with the universe while reading a “moon rhyme” in the antique book she’d purchased from the local New Age shop. She had not expected guests—especially not Jasper and Margaret, summoned one hundred years into the future by the rhyme just as Jasper was proposing to Margaret.
Now the displaced visitors insist that they be returned to 1910, and Pam and her roommate Robin agree. But the rhyme won’t work until the next moon cycle, and in the intervening month, forbidden love blooms between Pam and Jasper, and Robin and Margaret.
Me: Share with us a favorite paragraph or two from your newest release, Threaded Through Time.
I like the excerpt below because it’s the first time Pam is admitting to herself that she’s interested in Jasper, even though he’s engaged and from another time:
Pam’s phone rang. She lifted it from her purse and glanced at the display. “I should take this. Hi,” she said to Brenda, a co-worker and drinking buddy. “What’s up? Did something happen at the office today?”
“No, I’m calling about my party. I need to know how many are coming. You said you’d let me know by today.”
“Oh, right.” Damn, she’d forgotten about the party. Jasper and Margaret would still be here; it was on October 16th, the weekend before she’d be trying to send them back. If she didn’t attend, she’d miss too much gossip and appear antisocial, especially since she’d skipped Sue’s party last month. “Yeah, I’ll be there.”
“Great! Will you be bringing someone?”
She eyed Jasper, and ignored the rational voice that always insisted on butting in at times like this. “Yes,” she said, “I probably will.”
You can find Sarah here:
Abbie Roads writes dark emotional novels featuring damaged characters, but always gives her hero and heroine a happy ending… after torturing them for three hundred pages. RACE THE DARKNESS and HUNT THE DAWN are available now! SAVING MERCY Book 1 in the Fatal Truth Series is now available for pre-order.