About Me

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I live on the ocean, write women's fiction, love to read so much that it's an addiction rather than a hobby (I read an average of a book a day). I live on the wet west coast so it's a good thing that I like to walk in the rain.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Interview with Sarah Ballance

1. I live in a city - Vancouver - but I often set stories in small towns for the sense of community which echoes what I find in my downtown neighborhood. What about you? Where do you live and where do you set your stories? And why?

My husband and I live near the beach, and it's definitely a favorite setting for my books with three of the six taking place there. I think it's because I feel it so vibrantly, and that atmosphere is something about which I'm often complimented. It's also fun, as a suspense writer, to twist what most people see as a bright, sunny location into a stage for murder. *evil grin*

2. What's your favorite book ever and why? I have 2 or 3 books that I read over and over again - including Jane Austen's Persuasion. I love it because the characters are older and their relationship isn't easy, but you know, when they do finally get together, they're grown-ups and they know exactly who they are.

Great question, and I love your take on the relationships in PERSUASION. I might have to give that a read! (Oh, why aren't there more hours in a day?) I don't think I have a single favorite, but the one with the most profound impact on me was RUFFIAN: BURNING FROM THE START. It tells the true story of a thoroughbred filly who stole the heart of a nation and the match race that cost her everything. The story is beautiful and heartbreaking. Even though I knew the whole story before I read the book, the novel is incomparable in its power. It tells Ruffian's story in such a way the reader can taste the dirt of the track, the suppleness of the horseflesh, and the thrill—and agony—of the race. I think of it so often, even though I last read it nearly 20 years ago.

3. What's the story you've always wanted to write but somehow can't? For me, it's a story about World War I. I'm fascinated by the stories I've read about it but I'm pretty sure I'm never going to write a real war story. I've just finished a book that is set partly during World War I but a very long way away from the battles. I think that's as close as I'm going to get.

I recently read a WWII romance and found it enthralling—I had no idea how interested I was in the era until I was submersed in the book. My "lost genre" is also historical, although it's not long lost, LOL. I only recently fell in love-at-first-sight with a pre-made book cover. It screams historical romance, but that's not a genre I thought I'd touch with a ten-foot keyboard so I tried so hard to back away. It didn't work. I grabbed the cover and have been plotting ever since. I think it'll take me a while to gather the nerve to put myself out there with a historical romance, but I'm also excited with the prospect. (If you'd like to see the cover that stole my heart it's here: http://sarahballance.wordpress.com/my-novels/upcoming-releases-coming-soon/captive-historical-romance/) 

4.  Finally, do you have a routine? If so, what is it and how easy/hard is it to stick to it? I try to have one, but because I work as a freelance paralegal and teach paralegals occasionally, my schedule tends to change from week to week, if not actually day to day. I'm always buying lottery tickets, hoping to win just enough money not to have to work and write to a regular schedule though I'm pretty sure that even if I did have the money to write nine to five, I wouldn't, as I've been scrambling like this forever :)

Boy, do I ever understand that. In theory (LOL) I work on my blog, guest appearances, and other promotional activities in the morning until about 10:00. Then the kids and I do their homeschooling. Sometimes I get a little more work in between 4:00 and dinner, and I do try to check in throughout the day to monitor blog comments and respond to readers. As for the "real" writing, that doesn't normally start until after dinner when my husband takes over so I can focus on my WIP. Naturally things don't always go as planned, and more often than not the morning work spills into the evening. It's almost impossible to remove all distractions (my kids are young—23 months, 4, 6, 8, 11, and 13) but I am determined to one day make my schedule … and in the meantime, to be grateful for my little "distractions" because I wouldn't trade 'em. *grin*

Thank you so much for having me today. I like to invite readers to join me on my blog, where I give away a gift certificate every single week to one of my subscribers. The only way to win is to subscribe by email, and in doing so you'll be among the first to learn of new guests and giveaways, of which I host several a week. To sign up or see full details, head over to my blog at http://sarahballance.wordpress.com. The subscription box is at the top of the left sidebar, while full details are under the "Weekly Giveaways" tab at the top.

Sarah Ballance | bio & links

Sarah and her husband of almost fifteen what he calls "long, long" years live on the mid-Atlantic coast with their six young children, all of whom are perfectly adorable when they're asleep.  She often jokes that she writes to be around people who will listen to her, but her characters aren't much better than her kids.  Fortunately, her husband is quite supportive of her writing career, having generously offered to help her research "the good parts" . . .  and she's never had to ask twice.

TIDE OF LIES | contemporary romantic suspense
A devastating secret. A shocking betrayal. A deadly obsession.

Haunted by three unsolved murders, Detective Holden Whitlow is stunned when his cold case takes a heated turn. Julia Cohen, his ex-lover, is back in town, and in the face of a brutal attack she's ready to run. No matter how tightly she holds her secrets, for Holden, turning away from the woman he's spent a decade trying to forget isn't any more an option than walking away from his job . . .even when it threatens to cost Julia her life.

Julia is still reeling from a past she can't bear to face. When she becomes the target of a killer, fate throws her back into Holden's arms, but she's yet to recover from a truth that has stripped her of everything—and everyone—she loves. Will she tell him the secret that will destroy him, or will her lie destroy them both?



Sarah Ballance said...

Thank you so much for having me today!

Kate Austin said...

Sarah, thanks so much for dropping by and telling us about your writing and your life. I LOVE the cover and I can see why you were captivated by it.