Thursday, January 5, 2012

Author Interview: Sarah Ballance of Familiar Light

I am delighted to share with you an author that I am really interested in - Sarah Ballance, author of the novel Familiar Light.  She stopped by the blog today to answer a few questions and show you her novel - Enjoy!

Big thanks to Marissa at Sizzling PR for hosting this tour and allowing me a spot :)

About the Book:

Seven years of longing comes down to just one night.

Laney Kent returns to Barrier Shoals hoping to reunite with her first love, Bridger. She anticipates his reception might be chilly, but what she doesn’t expect is to become the victim of a deadly obsession . . . or that this night with Bridger could be her last.

Bridger Jansen tangled a lot of sheets trying to forget about Laney, but his heart knew what the rest of him refused to admit: he could love no one else. He’s determined not to forgive her for leaving him without explanation, but when he fails to protect her from a viscous attack, the person he can’t forgive just might be himself.

Sarah lives a charmed life as the mother of six incredible homeschooled children, all of whom are completely adorable when they're asleep. Her husband of many years (long, long years, he calls them) is the kind of guy who could teach those heroes from the books a thing or two about romance, not that he'd readily admit it. Completely supportive of her love for writing fiction, he's generously offered to help with any necessary research for "the good parts." She's never had to ask twice.

Although the idea of writing initially intimidated Sarah, it has morphed into a favorite pastime since her characters, unlike her kids, actually listen to her. (Er, sometimes.)




About the Author:

Sarah lives a charmed life as the mother of six incredible homeschooled children, all of whom are completely adorable when they're asleep. Her husband of many years (long, long years, he calls them) is the kind of guy who could teach those heroes from the books a thing or two about romance, not that he'd readily admit it. Completely supportive of her love for writing fiction, he's generously offered to help with any necessary research for "the good parts." She's never had to ask twice.

Although the idea of writing romance and romantic suspense initially intimidated Sarah, it has morphed into a favorite pastime since her characters, unlike her kids, actually listen to her. Er, sometimes.

You can find Sarah's books on Amazon or with publishers Noble Romance and Astraea Press.

Check out Sarah on the WEB
Sarah on FACEBOOK
Sarah on TWITTER
Sarah's BLOG

Author Interview:

1. Describe what it’s like to be an author in three words.

Growth. Accomplishment. Headdesk.

2. What is your favorite genre of literature?

My favorite genre of anything is romantic suspense. I adore it. The only thing better than sexy romantic tension is adding danger to make it really sizzle! 

3. At what point in your life did you realize you wanted to be a writer?


Writing came as a total accident. I used to write ad copy for kicks (and income, lol) and in 2008 a friend of mine told me I should write a novel. I said no way. Once it hit me I'd actually said I couldn't do it, I figured I'd give it a shot. My first book was accepted on the first query by the first publisher I contacted, and the rest is history! I was 31 when I started writing (34 now), and my husband and I welcomed our sixth baby just a couple of weeks before my first book was published.

4. What would you consider to be the best book you have ever read?


RUFFIAN: BURNING FROM THE START (Jane Schwartz) is probably the one that had the greatest impact on me. Never before had I connected so strongly with a book. I sobbed for days at its conclusion, and I already knew the true story upon which the book is based so it's not like I didn't see it coming, LOL.

5. How do you react to a bad review of your book?

When I read it the first time, I beat myself up a little. But I always go back a couple of hours later and read it again, this time to see what I can learn from it. Often readers will make great points in their criticism, and those I value. After I go back and read the review a second time, taking notes if necessary, the ickiness melts away.

6. Are the names of the characters in your novels important?  How and why?

My names have to fit my characters, and sometimes that's easier to accomplish than others. It's also so totally subjective I'm pretty sure no one will notice but me, LOL, but I have spent days coming up with the right name for a certain personality, whereas others have been named on a whim. (A well-fitting whim, mind you!)

7. Do you enjoy giving interviews?

Yes, from both sides! I've met some incredible folks both as a guest and as a host, and you really never know who you're going to run into or which direction the comments will go. It's pretty special when a mere exchange of information can turn into a 60 comment thread largely about wearing pants! (True story, LOL).

8. How much impact does your childhood have on your writing?

Other than the potential effect of hours spent reading Nancy Drew Case Files leading to my love of suspense, I don't think there's a specific impact. I grew up on a farm and spent lots of hours on tractors and horseback—a postcard perfect rural upbringing—never wanting to be an author. Of course, all of life's experiences culminate into who we are, so in that sense it's a part of everything I write.

9. What was the greatest thing you learned in school?

To be myself. In that cutthroat world of "fitting in," I never bothered to worry about the crowd. I'm sure someone had something to say about it behind my back, but in spite of all the pressure to do what everyone else did (and being painfully shy without any self-confidence of which to speak) I didn't cave. I was ME, and I've never once regretted that.

10. Do you admire your own work?

Until I started participating in Six Sentence Sunday, I wouldn't even READ my own work, LOL. I learn so much with each new book I write, which makes looking back tough at times—I always see what I'd like to do differently and it makes me crazy I can't change it. However, I will admit to occasionally reading something I've written and being surprised *I* wrote it. That feeling, however rare, totally rocks!

11. Who else’s work do you admire?

I would SO love to write for Harlequin Intrigue when I grow up (yeah, I did say I was 34 … quit looking at me like that, LOL!) and those authors amaze me. I LOVE them. (At some point, there might be restraining orders.)

If I may, I'd like to offer readers here the scoop on my weekly giveaways. Each week, with the help of random.org, one of my blog email subscribers wins their choice of gift certificates ($10 to Noble Romance or $5 to Amazon). If you'd like a chance to win, simply go to my blog sarahballance.wordpress.com and sign up to receive posts by email—the box is at the top of the left column. You'll be automatically entered into each weekly giveaway so long as you remain a subscriber!

Thanks so much for having me here today. I've had a blast and I don't think I broke any furniture . . . let's do it again sometime, LOL! :c) Happy New Year, everyone!

 

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