Picture drawn by Maggie Stiefvater, 2009. Header made by S.F. Robertson, 2010.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Author Interview- Sarah Beth Durst

1) How did you get the idea for Vessel?

I knew I wanted to write about a desert -- I'd written about the Arctic in my novel ICE, and this time, I wanted the sun and the sand. So I researched real deserts (the Gobi, the Sahara, etc.) and then I set about filling my desert with magic: sky serpents made of unbreakable glass, wolves made of sand, monstrous worms, gods and goddesses who inhabit human bodies... During this, I had a dream about a girl who was dancing barefoot on the desert sand. She knew at the end of the dance, she'd die. And that's the moment VESSEL was born: when that girl danced onto my magic desert.

2) You've gotten blurbs from the amazing Tamora Pierce for Vessel and other novels of yours. What was your reaction upon hearing about these blurbs?


Seriously, I was that articulate. When I was ten years old, I read ALANNA by Tamora Pierce, and I remember very clearly thinking, "I want to do this. I want to write books like this." So knowing that she has read and enjoyed my books is both an honor and a thrill.

3) What are you working on now? Can you tell us anything about it?

I am working on two new projects:

SWEET NOTHINGS (coming fall 2013 from Bloomsbury/Walker) is about a girl in the paranormal witness protection program, who, haunted by dreams of carnival tents and tarot cards, must remember her past and why she has strange abilities before a magic-wielding serial killer hunts her down.

THE LOST (coming fall 2013 from Harlequin/Luna) is the first in a trilogy about a woman running from her bleak life who finds herself trapped in a small town where all things lost -- luggage, keys, people -- are mysteriously deposited.

4) You own an "ill-mannered cat", according to your bio. That sounds like there might be some funny anecdotes. Any you can share?

Just the usual hiss-at-strangers and plot-to-kill-everyone feline behavior. Once, she attacked a child who was pretending to be a tiger, but I prefer to think she believed she was defending me against a fierce predator.

5) What book(s) are you reading now, or are about to start?

My to-read pile is a massive tower, but one book that I've been eyeing is THE SWEETEST SPELL by Suzanne Selfors. It involves chocolate magic, and it looks deliciously delightful.

6) Did you always want to be a writer? What made you decide to start looking into publication?

I have always wanted to be a writer (except for when I was five, I wanted to be Wonder Woman). I think books are magic -- they're these little rectangles that have the power to transport you into other worlds and other lives, to touch your heart, to make you laugh and cry, to make you feel not alone -- and I've always wanted to be part of that magic.

7) What's your favorite Jelly Belly jelly bean flavor (or flavors, if you're so inclined)? Or if you don't like those, what's your favorite snack?

Cherry. Also watermelon. And I loathe buttered popcorn flavored jelly beans.

Thanks so much for interviewing me!

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