October 4, 2010

Author Interview: Sara Beth Durst

First off I have to give Durst a huge thank you for agreeing to an interview over at Book Whispers.  As everyone knows I’ve been ranting about doing interviews for ages, and finally that dream is reality.  So off to the first ever Author Interview !


Sarah Beth Durst is the author of Ice, an Andre Norton Award Finalist for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy, as well as Into the Wild and its sequel Out of the Wild. Her next novel is Enchanted Ivy, a YA novel about getting into college. You know, taking the campus tour, talking to the gargoyles, flirting with the were-tigers, riding the dragons...


BW:  In your own words introduce yourself. EnchantedIvyCover_LoRes

SBD:  Hi. I'm Sarah. I'm a writer. I have really curly hair. Um... that about sums it up.

BW:  How does Enchanted Ivy break away from other books in its genre?

SBD:  It is a true story about the college application process.

Okay, it's not exactly "true" in the sense of, you know, being true, but it is about that very real (and very
overwhelming) getting-into-college obsession that hits junior year of high school.

Also, gargoyles that talk, boys who turn into tigers, and dragons that hide secrets.

BW:  What are your favorite scenes to write, or even a favorite scene from this book?

SBD:  I love to write scenes with dragons, due to the inherent awesomeness of dragons. And due to the fact
that I secretly want to ride a dragon. (Yes, a large reason I write is wish fulfillment. In fact, my method of
outlining a book is as follows: "Given what happened in the previous scene and what my characters want/
fear, what is the coolest thing that could happen next?")

BW:  Do you have a favorite book out of the ones you've written?

SBD:  Enchanted Ivy is my newest baby so of course I adore it. Ice (my Arctic beauty-and-the-beast story) is close to my heart because I wrote it for my husband, even though he's not a polar bear. And Into the Wild and Out of the Wild were lots of fun to write because I got to have fairy-tale characters infest my hometown. But a favorite? I really can't choose. I love all my babies!

All books linked to goodreads.
Into the Wild Out of the Wild
Ice Enchanted Ivy

BW:  Some authors say that their ideas hit them while dreaming, or even in the shower. Where do most of your ideas occur?

SDB:  I wish I could say something artsy, such as "ideas occur to me whilst I take long walks on the moors."  Or something quirky, like "ideas occur to me only when I balance on one foot and whistle." Except there aren't any moors around me, and I can't whistle. (Also can't blow up balloons. But that's unrelated.)

Honestly, most of my ideas occur to me while writing. There's something about the physical act of typing that unlocks my brain. In fact, sometimes my fingers surprise my brain. I've always liked the E. M. Forster quote: "How can I know what I think till I see what I say?"

BW:  Your site states at age 10 you gave up your dream of being Wonder Woman for the dream of writing. What was it that inspired you to change your mind?

So You Want to Be a Wizard (Young Wizards, #1)SBD:  It was the invisible jet. She's completely visible, soaring through the air in a seated position. Just not cool. Also, at age ten, I read Tamora Pierce's Alanna, Diane Duane's So You Want to Be a Wizard, and Diana Wynne Jones's Witch Week, and I thought to myself, "I want to do this!!!"

BW:  When you're in a writing jam, is there a particular author you look to for inspiration? One that makes you ask, "What would insert author's name here do?" Alanna: The First Adventure (Song of the Lioness, #1)

SBD:  Tamora Pierce. I love how she builds her plots like a snowball on a mountainside that grows and grows
until it comes barreling down in an avalanche of awesome. Plus, she has talking badgers.

BW:  Are there any plans for more books in the Enchanted Ivy universe, or other projects you're
working on?

SBD:  My next book (coming fall 2011 from S&S) is Drink, Slay, Love. It's about a vampire girl who develops a conscience after she is stabbed through the heart by a unicorn's horn. I'm really, really, really excited about it. It's been a phenomenally fun writing experience.

BW:  In the paranormal/fantasy genre what are some of your favorite reads?

Raised by Wolves (Raised by Wolves, #1)

In addition to the authors/books I already mentioned, I also love A Fistful of Sky by Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Jack the Giant-Killer (or Jack of Kinrowen) by Charles de Lint, the Tiffany Aching series by Terry Pratchett, and the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews. Recent reads that I loved include Shade byJeri Smith-Ready, Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, Thief Eyes by Janni Lee Simner, and
Paranormalcy by Kiersten White.

BW:   Between a vampire love interest or a werewolf love interest which do you prefer?

SBD:  I think I'd prefer a werewolf love interest to a vampire love interest because I like sunlight. I'd become depressed if I had to switch to hanging out at night all the time... Oh, wait, are you talking real life or fiction? In fiction, I like them both.

BW:  Go wild! Let us know something funny about you, share something that's on your mind, or anything else that's important about your books.

SBD:  If anyone reading this wants to be a writer… the best advice that I know to give is: write. Write as often as you can, as much as you can. Don't wait for large chunks of time, and don't wait for inspiration. If anyone reading this wants to be Wonder Woman… have you considered writing?

Thanks so much for interviewing me!

Well thank you for stopping in for this interview.  If it’s possible I’m even more eager to get my hands on Enchanted Ivy, which come out October 12th.  So start counting down the days!

To find out more about Sara Beth Durst and her fantastic books head on over to her site.

Or read an Excerpt of Enchanted Ivy, click here.

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