Hi, my name is Sarah Ashwood, and I write a blend of fairy tale/portal/epic fantasy. I don’t blog, but you can find me on my website, Twitter, and Facebook.
2. Tell us a little about your life outside of the world of writing.
Well, I’m a homeschooling mom of three boys. I’m also a runner. I’m planning to do the Tulsa Run 15k this fall. I’ve done 15ks before, but not this particular one. I’m married to an asphalt plant operator and I literally never know from one day to the next what time he’ll be home, because there are no set hours in a job like his. Especially this time of year, in the summer. I’m a writer, of course. So far my published works include a fantasy novella, Amana, my Sunset Lands Beyond trilogy, several short stories in various anthologies, and now my brand new Beyond the Sunset Lands series.
3. How long have you been writing? What genres have you written? They don’t have to be published.
I’ve been writing for around fifteen years. Mainly I write fantasy, and that’s what I’m published in. I’ve also written two historical fiction novels, and they’re with an agent right now. Crossing my fingers on that!
4. What has been the greatest influence to your writing? Other authors, life experiences, etc…
I would say reading, music, movies, and watching people in the world around me. Fairy tales and Disney movies, as well. As for authors, C. Greenwood is a favorite.
I’m working on a fun YA Fantasy/Fairy tale novel, Knight’s Rebirth, which is set to debut before Christmas 2018. It’s the story of a famous knight, Sir Buckhunter Dornley, who is content to live alone until he meets the charming and outrageous Princess Mercy. When he discovers Mercy is threatened by a deadly curse, how far will he go to break it?
6. How do you typically begin your projects? Do you create outlines and character profiles or jump in head first with the initial idea? And do you focus on just one at a time?
I am very much a pantser. Usually I have an idea, a vague plot in my head, and I run with it, letting it unfold as I write. In the past I would work on more than one project at once, but now I find I do better focusing on only one book at a time.
7. What aspect of your writing do you consider your strength? Your weakness?
Hmmm. I’ve gotten compliments on my descriptive skills and world building. As for weaknesses, being repetitive. Also overuse of colons.
8. After publishing, the next trouble facing writers is marketing. What do you typically do when marketing your novel? Do you have tips you’d like to share?
Ugh, this is such a huge learning curve! I started out buying promos from promotional sites. Then I switched more toward newsletter and newsletter swaps. Right now, I’m trying a combination of those things. If I find the elusive pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, I’ll let you know!
9. What advice would you give a writer who is starting out?
I’d tell them the best advice I’ve ever seen, and that is to write. Just write. You can polish it later, but you can’t polish what isn’t written.