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Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Hunting Lila Blog Tour: Five Things You Didn't Know About Sarah Alderson

Welcome to the final stop of the Hunting Lila Blog Tour. If you remember back in April, I reviewed Sarah's book as part of my Simon and Schuster British author focus.
If you missed my review, you can find it HERE.

Today, the lovely Sarah is going to share with us five (well actually ten because I couldn't decide which things to pick) fascinating things about herself. So without further ado, here they are:

Ten things you never knew about me...

by Sarah Alderson


1. I grew up in south London and worked for a charity for nine years doing something really bossy. Then one day I got bored and my husband and I decided to quit our jobs, pack our bags and take our tutu-wearing, princess obsessed toddler on a round the world trip to find a new place to live. On my list of things to do that year were the following items:  1. Resign 2. Find a new home somewhere hot where I can lie by the pool all day 3. Write a book 4. Get published.

I managed all four! And every day still, that blows my mind.

2. I thought up the idea for Hunting Lila whilst swimming. I had never written anything creative before (other than lots of funding proposals and a lot of fake sick notes when I was at school which I'd then forge my mum's signature on) but I was trying to figure out what to do when travelling and then I thought 'I know! I'll write a book' and the idea for Lila literally just popped into my head... well, it took about ten lengths.

Every time I got stuck I just started saying 'what if...', what if her mother was murdered, and what if her brother is chasing the killers and what if... and then four months later I had finished Hunting Lila. Even now I swim almost every day (though in a slightly nicer setting overlooking rice paddies), it's where all my plotting takes place. Whole conversations and scenes play out in my head as I'm doing laps. When I'm daydreaming up Alex scenes I can swim for hours...I got quite fit writing that book.

3. I am a really fast writer. I wrote Hunting Lila in four and a half months at night, after work, when my daughter was asleep. I wrote the sequel on the beach in India, finishing it in just under three and a half months. I then started another book Fated, whilst we were in the States on a road trip around California. It took me just two and a half months to write it. That story, about a teenage demon slayer, is out in January.  I wrote the sequel to Fated in two months and the third book in that series in just under a month. I'm hoping to beat my personal best and write a book in one week at some point. Though that might require amphetamine.

4. I can write anywhere; on the beach, in bed, in cars, on planes, on buses, but usually I write at my desk in our house in Bali overlooking the rice paddies. I just need my headphones and my spotify playlists and I'm there, in the story.

5. There's 35,000 words of edited scenes on my hard drive. My first draft was so ridiculously long. Only three people have read those deleted scenes but maybe one day I'll include them on my website, a bit like they do on DVDS with the extras. That could be fun.
6. I spent a year in Italy when I was 21, ostensibly studying. I didn't go to a single class. Instead I spent my time eating pizza, drinking wine and lazing around the tiny artists' garrett I shared with my boyfriend. That was a great time. I've always been a ridiculous romantic.

7. Lila's school is based on the school I went to in south London. It was an all girls' school. I did a lot of acting, so that I could get to hang out with the boys from the boys' school around the corner. I think my love of drama and theatre is obvious when I write. People have said my books are just like films...and in my head they really are.

8. My claim to fame is that I've been in a film with Harrison Ford and Sean Bean. When I was ten I was in Patriot Games (you might need to look that up if it was before your time). Ok, I was only an extra but still. Before that I was also an Elf in the Hobbit somewhere in Croydon.

9. The character Suki's name was originally Kuni but my editor made me change it because she thought it sounded too rude. If you've read Chaucer you might be able to figure out why.

10. There's an error with the book cover for Hunting Lila. Lila would never wear heels to run in! She hates heels. Part way through the book she discovers something - something awful and that's when the hunt begins.  She actually runs away barefoot. Planning's not her strong point.
Hunting Lila is available now in all great book shops.
Sarah's second book Fade is out in January. I, for one, can't wait!

4 comments:

Clover said...

What a really interesting post! I would definitely be interesting in reading deleted scenes, especially if they involve Alex!

When I was reading Hunting Lila, it really did feel cinematic, especially the actiony scenes and the opening bit. Which I really liked!

Would love to live somewhere hot and sit by the pool all day.. Sigh.

Christina / Book Addict said...

Thanks for sharing this, Becky! It's so interesting to learn more about the author. I can't get over how quickly she writes her books....impressive! Her year in Italy sounds divine....sign me up!

boublog said...

One of the things I learnt from my trip around the world is that if you want something enough you can make it happen!

And yes my year in Italy was incredible! Sigh...didn't learn much Italian but I definitely furnished my imagination with enough details to write a dozen romance novels!
Thanks for having me on the blog!
Sarah

Nomes said...

oh my gosh #1 ~ can't believe she managed all four O.o she sounds so awesome. thanks so much for sharing this.

i really cannot wait to read it :D