Saturday, 19 November 2011

AUTHOR INTERVIEW - SARAH ALDERSON




 What is your name, where were you born and where do you live now?

 Sarah Alderson. I was born in London but I live in Bali now.


Did it take a long time to get your first book published?
I wrote Hunting Lila in about four months, and I had an agent within six weeks. We edited it for two months and then I had a publishing deal within another two months. From there to publication took about a year.


 Do you work another job as well as your writing work?

No! But only because I live in Bali and living costs are lower!


 What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarise it in less than 20 words what would you say?

Fated. Buffy crossed with Heroes.


 Who is your publisher? or do you self publish?

In the UK, Australia and Canada it's Simon & Schuster.


 How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?

On average three months, although my quickest was just 30 days. But I always end up tinkering with it right up to the point where my editor is sending it off to the printer. I drive her mad.


 Which of your books were easier/harder to write than the others?

They've all been easy. I've been very lucky! The Fated series was more tricky because of the continuity I had to work out across three books.


 What can we expect from you in the future?  ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?

Well I love writing young adult fiction and I can't see that ever changing. It's too much fun and I absolutely adore the amazing bloggers out there who invest so much time and passion into reading and reviewing books as well as the enthusiasm with which younger readers respond. I can't imagine that happens so much if you write solely for adults. 

I've written two books in the Hunting Lila series. The next one, Losing Lila is out in August 2012. I'm not sure yet whether there will be a third, although I've written a short story from Suki's point of view which will be out as an ebook in January (it's to raise money for charity). Fated is out this January too. And I've just finished another book - a completely new story - this one slightly more of a dystopia. I'm hoping that that will hit bookstores sometime in 2013. Fingers crossed!


 Do you have a favourite character from your books? and why are they your favourite?

Such a great question. I love all my characters, even the baddies. I really do like Lila and Alex. They're just so sweet together - and their back story is very heart-warming. And I really like Demos, the bad guy from Hunting Lila. He's complicated and there's so much more to him than meets the eye. Jack, Lila's brother, is another favourite of mine because he reminds me a little of my own brother.

I have also really enjoyed getting to know the character  in my new book - she's called Hala, and she's amazing.


 Where do you get your book plot ideas from?

They come generally when I'm swimming. And they come from nowhere, but then again, I do feed my imagination daily with books, movies and TV shows and I think that helps mix it up and inspire my thought processes.


 Do you have anybody read your books and give you reviews before you officially release them?

Oh yes! My two best friends read every single chapter as I write them. They're the reason I write so fast and they give me so much support and encouragement. My dad always reads my books too before they're published but the only people who gives me critical feedback is my agent and then my editor.


 Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?

Haha! I used to. And Hunting Lila has had so many amazing reviews I'm thrilled but then you get 99 five star reviews and one 2 star review and all you remember is the 2 star review, so now I try not to go there. It's too destructive and distracting.

I actually really like the reviews which give constructive feedback as I do listen! What isn't helpful are the reviews that are just plain destructive and nasty. I haven't had any myself but I've seen them about other books and I really feel for the author. You put your whole life and soul into what you are writing and then someone writes something completely horrible. I wish people would be more thoughtful and actually realise that us authors are quite sensitive and we do read the reviews that are written. Then again, I do also believe in karma!


How do you come up with the Title and Cover Designs for your book/books?Who designed the Cover of your books?

I don't. My publisher does.


 How do you market/promote your books?

Again the publisher organises things like advance copies and blog tours and signings. I am constantly on Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads. I blog a lot on various sites and try to do as much as I can to engage with readers. I respond to every email and comment for example and really enjoy the dialogue with fans and bloggers. It's one of my favourite parts of being an author!


 Have you ever suffered from a "writer's block"? What did you do to get past the "block"?

I go for a swim or listen to music. Travel is essential too - it broadens the mind and feeds the imagination.


Have you ever based characters on people you know or based events on things that have happened to you?

The events aren't based on anything that's happened to me but the places are all real and places that I've been to. 
Character wise I have drawn inspiration from people I know as well as actors (Alex Skarsgard influenced the character of Alex in Hunting Lila and Chiwetel Ejiofer influenced the character of Victor in Fated ). Jack was loosely based on my brother. Sara looks like my best friend. Lobo the dog in Fated is real! 


 What are you currently reading? Are you enjoying it? What format is it?(ebook, hardback or paperback)

I'm actually reading Losing Lila on my Kindle as I'm trying to edit it (again!). And yes I'm enjoying it a lot. It's kind of a relief as I really want the fans of Hunting Lila to feel it does the first book justice.


 Do you think ebooks will ever totally replace printed books?

I hope not. I love my Kindle. It's so handy because I live somewhere with no bookshops and the instantaneous nature of it is wonderful. I can have any book I want within three seconds. But I'm also bankrupt as a result of that. I also miss having a bookshelf in my living room and being able to pick a book up from the shelf and rifle through it for a specific quote or scene I feel like re-reading. It's harder on a Kindle. So I really hope that printed and e-books can live alongside each other in the future. Plus I love going into people's houses and scanning their book shelves - they're so revealing of people's passions and characters. You can tell so much from a person's bookshelf. I can't imagine asking someone if I can browse their Kindle so I can get an idea of what sort of person they are.


Are there any New Authors you are interested in for us to watch out for? and Why should we watch out for them?

I loved Morgan Matson's book Amy & Roger's Epic Detour. I can't wait for her second book, out next year


 What piece of advice would you give to a new writer?

Write every day. And read obsessively.


 Where can readers follow you?



Your blog details? http://www.sarahalderson.com
Your web site ? http://www.sarahalderson.com
Your facebook page? http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001801889118


Your Twitter details? @sarahalderson

And any other information you wish to supply? 



Sarah Alderson

Hunting Lila is out now!




Blurb taken from Goodreads
17-year-old Lila has two secrets she's prepared to take to the grave. The first is that she can move things just by looking at them. The second is that she's been in love with her brother's best friend, Alex, since forever. Or thereabouts.After a mugging on the streets of South London goes horribly wrong and exposes her unique ability, Lila decides to run to the only people she can trust - her brother and Alex. They live in Southern California where they work for a secret organisation called The Unit, and Lila discovers that the two of them are hunting down the men who murdered her mother five years before. And that they've found them. Trying to uncover the truth of why her mother was killed, and the real remit of The Unit, Lila becomes a pawn in a dangerous game. Struggling to keep her secrets in a world where nothing and no one is quite as they seem, Lila quickly realises that she is not alone - there are others out there just like her - people with special powers -and her mother's killer is one of them.......

Available Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk £4.59 paperback £4.99 on kindle


Blurb taken from Goodreads
What happens when you discover you aren't who you thought you were? And that the person you love is the person who will betray you? If your fate is already determined, can you fight it? 

When Evie Tremain discovers that she’s the last in a long line of Demon slayers and that she’s being hunted by an elite band of assassins –Shapeshifters, Vampires and Mixen demons amongst them – she knows she can’t run. They’ll find her wherever she goes. Instead she must learn to stand and fight. 

But when the half-human, half-Shadow Warrior Lucas Gray - is sent to spy on Evie and then ordered to kill her before she can fulfil a dangerous prophecy, their fates become inextricably linked. The war that has raged for one thousand years between humans and demons is about to reach a devastating and inevitable conclusion. Either one or both of them will die before this war ends. 

If your life becomes bound to another’s, what will it take to sever it?

Available from Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk £5.24 paperback.

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