Tell the readers a little bit about yourself.
Well, I'm thirdborn in a family of thirteen children and was homeschooled through high school, so my life has been somewhat outside the cultural norm. My first novel was published when I was twenty (about two and a half years ago). Since then, I have been working to establish myself as a writer, while helping in my family and working for my parents' magazine as a writer/editor/researcher.
What is your earliest memory of homeschooling?
Watching my older brother learn how to read. Our father was teaching him, and I remember asking when I would learn to read. The answer was three years. My earliest memory of my own homeschooling is learning how to read. As I recall, it was a frustrating experience.
What inspired you to start writing?
My mother used to give my siblings and I creative writing assignments. This is how she discovered what grammar and spelling errors we were prone to, and marked out a better way for us with red ink. It started me writing, and I have never stopped.
What was the inspiration for "The Last Heir"?
I don't know. I was looking for something to write and, as they say, it seemed like a good idea at the time.
Once I began work on it, a guiding idea did emerge – that of slow corruption. In so much fiction, the turn to evil is very sudden, the fall of a character very abrupt. A fairly decent person experiences some sort of horrible tragedy, flips, and becomes criminally psychopathic. I never thought this was a very interesting or accurate idea of corruption. I wanted a path to evil that was more complex, more gradual – a path that began with good, as evil always does. I wanted it to recall the truth that we are more likely to be led into evil by our desires than by our suffering. I attempted to portray this slow descent in one of my characters.
People talk about character arcs, usually meaning the journey of the man who became a hero. I wrote a downward arc, the journey of the man who became the villain.
Where can people buy "The Last Heir"?
Are you planning on writing any more books?
I have another manuscript completed – The Valley of Decision, a fantasy novel with Trow and Fay and hobgoblins (oh, my). I hope to see it published this year. In the meantime, I'm working on a novel based on the idea of time dimensions. The basic concept is that time has dimensions, just as space does, and so its own geography. This works out to time-travel, with the discrepancy that time is not here a straight line.
As the theory goes, the dimensions of time are these: Time (the first dimension, on which we live); Eternity; and Hyparxis (Totality or Ableness-to-be or the “summit of summits” – and no, I don't really know what, exactly, that's supposed to mean).
What has been the most rewarding moment in your writing career?
Hard to say, though the moment I first held a published copy of The Last Heir would be a good pick.
Do you have any final thoughts?When I first looked at this site I was surprised by how many authors and books were already listed. It's encouraging and I hope to see the numbers grow steadily. Congratulations, Sarah—you've got a good thing going.