How stunning is this cover?
I do have a review of Sinking that I will be publishing on the day of the Facebook Launch Party on the 25th of February, but for now I have the pleasure of bringing an interview with the author!
This is Sarah
Nerdish Mum - The story is set in the eighteenth century, is there something about that particular time period that draws you to it?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - I love the magic of not having all the answers. Today we have the internet with endless knowledge, science that has discovered invisible to our eye molecules and almost every living animal has been discovered. Back in the eighteenth century our world was still being mapped out and discoveries were happening daily.
Nerdish Mum - How much research goes into being able to set a story in that time period?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - A lot. I have stacks of history, marine life and folklore books on my bookshelves. I've watched an endless amount of documentaries and shows trying to submerge myself in the past. It's hard because I'm pulling from a time that I never lived in and our culture is completely different.
Nerdish Mum - Ireland is a beautiful and magical place. Other than those reasons, why did you set your story there?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - With book two, Drifting, this question is answered. I don't want to give away the twist before you have a chance to read it.
Nerdish Mum - Oooh that's incredibly exciting and cryptic! Onto the next question though, as a writer, do you put any of yourself into your characters? Is there any of your personality in Jocelyn and if so which part?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - Like children, an author gives birth to a character and raises them. But the characters have their own personality that grows into stubborn people to talk back and tell you how to write the story. I believe there are hints of me in Jocelyn, but she really is her own woman.
Nerdish Mum - Sinking is your first published novel, but have you been writing for a long time?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - I've been writing since I was little, but didn't know I wanted to be a writer until I reached college. I studied screenwriting and fell in love with story. When I was developing Sinking, I wanted to go deeper into the characters than a screenplay would allow, so I began my first novel. It was a learning curve, because with screenwriting less is more and too much description can slow the story down. But with novels, you want the descriptions to create the depth of the world.
Nerdish Mum - Do you have a writing nook or somewhere that you like to sit and write?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - Pretty much I can write anywhere as long as I have mu music and headphones. Most nights I write in bed as my husband sleeps, or when I have a babysitter, I go to my husband's work and sit in a gym and write.
Nerdish Mum - The ocean/sea is a big part of the story. Are you a big fan of the water?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - I have a love-hate relationship with the ocean. I love the surreal beauty of the sea that makes my heart still with each wave, but am terrified by the vastness of its size and the creatures that live below the surface.
Nerdish Mum - The cover is absolutely stunning, did you have a lot of say in its design o did they take your story and run with an idea?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - I was very lucky and was asked how I envisioned the cover before our amazing digital artist, Sara Helwe, began. On the first draft I was blown away, Sara had taken what I had seen in my head and made a beautiful art piece.
Nerdish Mum - What do you like to do when you're not writing?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - When I'm not writing I am playing with my three kids. In fact after I'm done with this interview I'm going to play school with my four year old.
Nerdish Mum - I won't keep you much longer then, one final question. Do you have a favourite book or author?
Sarah Armstrong-Garner - I adore Neil Gaiman and Eva Ibbotson. When I read "Neverwhere" I was hooked into Neil's world of fantasy and Eva's "A Countess Below Stair" stole my heart.
Thank you so much to Sarah for answering my questions! I hope you enjoyed the interview and that this gives an insight into the person behind the book and makes you even more excited about reading Sinking.
Don't forget to check out the Facebook Launch Party where there will be prizes (inlcuding signed copies of Sinking) and lots of other fun. Also check out Janeen Ippolito's review of Sinking which will be up on Monday 22nd February.