Who or what was your inspiration for Twenty Boy Summer?
I was inspired to write Twenty Boy Summer while working for the National Donor Family Council (www.donorfamily.org), an organization that supports families whose loved ones died and donated organs or tissues. I wanted to share and honor the stories of the teens I met through the Council's programs and events who'd lost a brother, sister, or friend. Their courage and hope remains with me to this day, even years later. They are never far from my heart.
How are you and Anna alike? How are you different?
Anna and I are both extremely introspective and observational. I am also outwardly shy like Anna, and I was never the big loud sparkly one. Oh, she also inherited the blond curly hair from me. :-) But we're different in some ways, too. She carries a sadness with her always, and is much better at keeping her own secrets. I also think she's more tolerant of Frankie than I would be, especially when Frankie tries to dress her and smother her in makeup just to go swimming. I'd probably be like, "Ok, whatever! I'm leaving -- see you on the beach!"
Do you have any writing 'must-haves'?
I like to write with incense burning and hot cup of tea or coffee nearby. But I don't really have any MUST-haves, because sometimes even when I don't have my incense or coffee, I still have a deadline, and I still have to write! As long as I have a laptop or pen and paper, I'm good.
How does it feel like, knowing your books are on a bookshelf in a bookstore?
Surreal. I still get butterflies when I see it on the shelf. It's incredible!
What was the last song you had stuck in your head?
A song called "Sigh" that my husband composed for the characters in my next book. He was just singing it to me. :-)
What is the most interesting thing a reader has ever said to you?
I love hearing from readers in person and online. They're all so different and amazing. It's hard to pick something as the most interesting, though. I've had readers make me cry by sharing their experiences with love and death and loss, relating so much to Anna or Frankie. They've made me laugh with stories about boys and summer. And they've asked really awesome questions about becoming a writer and favorite books and what it was like for me as a teen. So I guess my answer is... I don't know! Readers are so diverse and wonderful... I just can't pick one thing!
What is one word to describe your life right now?
Do you have any upcoming books?
My next book, FIXING DELILAH HANNAFORD, will be published in 2010. Here's the summary:
Stuck in Vermont all summer with her workaholic mother, a Tarot-card-reading aunt, and a childhood friend who thinks he can fix anything, sixteen-year-old Delilah Hannaford confronts her elusive family history to expose the secrets that have defined and divided the Hannafords for three generations.
That's it you guys! I can't wait for Sarah's next book! It sounds as equally amazing as Twenty Boy Summer!
Peace, Love, and Summer Lovin',