Monday, 26 August 2013

Introducing Sarah England

Please welcome author Sarah England, who’s busy, busy, busy ... 

So, Sarah. Great to have you on the blog. Can you tell us a little something about yourself?
Well I’m from Sheffield in God’s own Country – Yorkshire! Trained as a nurse and then worked for nearly 20 years as a medical rep, specialising in mental health. None of that was really me, though, as I always had my head in a book and secretly harboured the desire to write fiction. I had to wait a long time for the opportunity, because bills needed to be paid and my life was stormy to say the least. Then finally, about eight years ago I began to write short stories for magazines, and that’s what I’ve been doing ever since – with around 150 published in various magazines and newspapers to date. This year has been especially busy with the publication of my first ever serial – a three-part murder mystery for Woman’s Weekly; the launch of ‘3am and Wide Awake’ – a collection of 25 thrillers with Alfie Dog Fiction; and hot on its heels, ‘Expected’ –  a novel in the genre of women’s fiction/comedy, with Crooked Cat Publishing. Oh and I now live in Dorset!  

Fiction Hotel is a great concept. Where did you get the idea?

Well publishing has exploded onto the internet, and so many new writers are finding it difficult to compete with the deluge of free ebooks, not to mention bestsellers from established authors! So I thought I’d try and offer a way of showcasing my fellow writers’ work in an interesting way that would catch people’s imaginations, so that all genres could be accommodated… hmm.. accommodated… and so the idea came from there!  

Short stories, magazines, novels. My head’s spinning. Which is your favourite genre?

I think a story falls as it falls… I got into the groove of short story writing for magazines and various competitions; but Sam Sweet in ‘Expected’ for example – well, she had a lot going on (!) and no way would that be a short story. I loved writing ‘Expected’ and am really enjoying doing the sequel too – I’m loving developing the character and making her leap out of the pages. However, I’m also writing another serial – another murder – and in an altogether different way, because this is heavier on plot, I find the discipline of writing this really helps me move on further as a writer. Favourite genre – comedy or supernatural – I veer wildly from one to the other! 

How much do you like exploring the darker side?

I’ve done a lot of research and have an unhealthy obsession with the darker side – the bipolar opposite to my comedy persona! I love it! At the same time as writing a sequel to Expected – I am also in the process of publishing a paranormal article and plotting a supernatural thriller.

How many hours a day do you spend NOT writing? Joking apart, do you have a writing regime? How do you keep up with it all?

The only time I am not writing is when I have to promote my work. I wish someone else would do that bit for me so I could spend more time writing. Oh and when I’m sleeping or home-shopping – another unhealthy obsession! Shopping… sigh!   There is no regime – I am totally chaotic!

When you go on holiday, what do you read?

I haven’t had a holiday in 10 years. Serious! However, I try to read a few chapters a night of top class work – I’d developed a liking for Mo Hayder’s crime series, but recently I’ve been reading a lot of fellow writers’ books to help them with reviews and support. So that means I’ve read less of Stephen King and Susan Hill, and more ‘outside my genre’ titles.

Personally,I love the Crooked Cat author group – which came as a surprise, as I’m quite solitary, as a rule. How much has it helped you?

Yes, it’s brilliant to have support from the cats, and I’ve made some truly wonderful friends as well! Great bunch of people!

In the brave new world of self-promotion, what aspect do you find the toughest?

All of it! I’ve been told off a few times for doing it too – cringe! Squirm!

(Pam: It’s tough, isn’t it? I quite agree. I have to pretend I’m promoting someone else’s title.)

How involved with your characters do you get? I still love the scene at the beginning of Romancing the Stone when writer Joan Wilder weeps as writes the final chapters of her book.

Very! I get upset if someone doesn’t like Sam Sweet or doesn’t understand her in Expected. She’s doing her best, bless her! There is quite a bit of the young me in her! It can really hurt!

Can you tell us what you’re working on now?

Yes, I’m just tying up a serial for Woman’s Weekly – a three-part murder mystery. I am also drafting out a sequel to ‘Expected’, sorting out the self-publication of a supernatural article, and plotting a supernatural thriller. Oh, and also interviewing authors for Fiction Hotel and continuing the promotional work! Sometimes I clean the house and occasionally the husband has a meal….

I’m impressed. Other plans?

I’d really like to go shopping….

Let me get my purse! 

Thanks, Sarah. Super to hear about you and your work. All the best in your many endeavours.
Pam

Author links:

Expected

3am and Wide Awake
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00CLFRFHS

Interview by Pamela Kelt



4 comments:

  1. Thank you so much, Pam, for inviting me over to chat! Kindest wishes, fellow cat - Sarah x

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  2. Hello ladies! Enjoyed this, and sympathise so well with the 'cringeworthy' self-promotions. Not my favourite part of writing either. ;-)

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  3. Hellp Pam and Sarah, great interview with interesting questions :)
    I'm glad I'm not the only one who gets involved with her characters, and I'm also with you on the self promoting stuff - urgh!

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  4. That obviously should say hello, not hellp, lol.

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