Thursday, June 2, 2016

Author Interview: Sarah Beard

Sarah Beard
author, Beyond the Rising Tide

Give us a bit of your background (where are you from, your family, traveling adventures)

I was born and raised in Salt Lake City and have lived in suburbs within the valley my whole life. I love it here, though I always tell my husband that someday we’re going to move to California or Oregon so I can live by the ocean. Even though I’ve lived in one place my whole life, I love traveling and have been to many different places, including the U.K., Mexico, and many states throughout the U.S.

Most writers are readers. What are some of the books you have on your nightstand and/or on your "must read" list?

My nightstand typically has three towering stacks of library books, all YA. Some of the books I have on my nightstand right now are I Was Here by Gayle Forman, Not After Everything by Michelle Levy, Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon, and On the Fence by Kasie West.

Say your publisher has offered to fly you anywhere in the world to do research on an upcoming book, where would you most likely want to go?

I’m writing a story set in the English countryside, so I would happily board a plane for London and then ride the British Rail around England.

What got you started on your writing journey?

I’ve enjoyed writing since I was a teenager, but back then I mostly wrote poetry and short stories. I was on the literary magazine staff in high school, and in college I was a volunteer writer and editor for a campus magazine. However, it wasn’t until I was 30 that I finally discovered a story that I loved enough to finish as a novel, and it took me years to write because, well, I had to learn how to write. I’m still learning. In fact, I don’t think writers ever stop learning about the craft because there is so much to it. I still read books on writing, study novels like textbooks, attend writing conferences, and I’m even starting a writing MFA program at VCFA this summer!

Why do you choose to write clean/sweet romance? Do you write steamy romance as well?

I write clean/sweet romance because I enjoy exploring human emotion and relationships and examining what true love really is. I don’t think true love is about the “steam,” but instead sacrifice, unconditional love, patience, and service. Of course chemistry is crucial for any relationship to work and steam is great between two people who truly love each other, but I don’t write about the steam because that’s more of a simple physiological response, and not something that necessarily makes a good love story.

What other things do you have planned with your writing for the next year or so?

I’m actually working on a couple different writing projects right now because I can’t decide which one I like more, so I keep going back and forth between them. They’re both YA romance. One is contemporary, and the other is a time-travel. I’ll also be busy for the next couple years with my MFA program, so I’m not sure if that will expedite the completion of my next novel or delay it. I’m hoping for the former though!

Do you have a favorite comment or question from a reader?

I love it when readers tell me that my story made them cry, because that means they connected emotionally with my characters. And that means I’ve done something right!

How many books have you written, and how many of those have been published?

I’ve written two books, and both have been published.

Please share about your book

Beyond the Rising Tide is a love story about a boy named Kai (who just happens to be dead) and the girl he died saving, Avery. Avery’s life is turned upside down by his death, so in order to help her, Kai steals a ring that gives him atemporary body. He intends on helping her heal, but in the process realizes that he too needs healing, and she’s the only one who can help him.

Use no more than two sentences. Why should we read your book?

Maybe because you like to have your heart ripped open and then sewn neatly back up again? Because that’s what this story will do to you. :)

Do you have a favorite character you have written so far? 

Kai Turner in Beyond the Rising Tide has been my favorite character so far. He was really fascinating to write because he’s such a flawed and yet genuinely good person. He’s also loyal and a bit sarcastic and feels emotion so deeply. I love his impulsiveness, how he reacts to things in the extreme, and how much he’s willing to sacrifice for the people he loves.

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