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Thursday, May 15, 2014

Interview & Giveaway with Sarah Alderson, author of The Sound

Sarah Alderson stops by The Hiding Spot today to chat about her writing and her newest novel, The Sound, which is out now from Simon & Schuster. Don't miss my review of The Sound, here!

About the author:

Having spent most of her life in London, Sarah quit her job in the non profit sector in 2009 and took off on a round the world trip with her husband and princess-obsessed daughter on a mission to find a new place to call home. After several months in India, Singapore, Australia and the US, they settled in Bali where Sarah now spends her days writing by the pool and trying to machete open coconuts without severing a limb. You can find Sarah on facebook and at or follow her blog at 

Did you have trouble writing any of your characters or specific scenes within the novel? Alternately, were any characters or scenes particularly easy to write?

No! On the contrary, this was one of the easiest books I’ve ever written. It really flowed. I think because it was my first contemporary and I was so used to being in paranormal worlds that by comparison it was easy. I mean, I wasn’t having to think about what a telepath would be doing in a specific scene or what kinds of weaponry a special military unit might be carrying or what a doorway to another dimension would look like!

Also, Ren was my first 100% British character and there was something wonderfully liberating with that. I loved being able to fill her with Britishisms and play out my sarcasm through her.

Ren is a music blogger and book fiend so that aspect of her personality was enjoyable to write too.

In The Sound, Ren is attracted to the local bad boy. Do you find you tend to write bad boys? What do you think it is that makes bad boys so appealing?
No, not at all. I don’t like cliche, so I tend to avoid the bad boy thing. And also I find that a lot of bad boys in books are just plain assholes - controlling, aggressive, stalkery. That’s not attractive! I write characters, sometimes those characters might have a little bit of a dark history (Jesse has just got out of Juvie but when you find out the reason he was in there you fall a little bit in love with him) but they’re not bad boys.

Alex from Hunting Lila who is easily my most popular male character is anything but a bad boy!

Tell me a little bit about your writing process: Do you outline? Start at the beginning? The middle? The end?

I usually know who the main characters are and how it is going to start. I also know how it’s going to end, but I never really know what’s going to happen on the journey to get there. That for me is the fun part of writing. Although The Sound is my first US release, I’ve already published about seven titles in the UK, so I’ve learned to trust myself and I don’t need to plan so much these days.

Has the title changed or stayed relatively the same as your novel journeyed towards publication?

No, the title came to me about halfway through writing the book and has stayed.

What jobs did you have on your way to becoming a published author? Is there a certain work experience that has shaped your writing or provided inspiration?

I never planned to be an author or even dreamed of it. I feel like such a fraud sometimes. I worked for 9 years for a non-profit in London and the only things I wrote that were fictional were funding reports.

Then in 2009 my husband and I quit our jobs and decided to take our toddler daughter off on a round the world trip to find a new place to live (somewhere sunny) and I needed to find a way to earn money. I was swimming one day and panicking over what I would do and I thought of Stephenie Meyer and the idea popped into my head to write a book.

I was so naive (I should have googled how much authors earn!). But then I started writing Hunting Lila and before I knew it I had finished it and then I got an agent and she sold it to Simon & Schuster and now I’m on my 7th book with them (in the UK).

Just goes to show you don’t need to have studied creative writing!

If you had to pick a favorite word, what would it be and why?
Thank you. Because it’s a really important word that can make all the difference to you and those around you. You know gratitude is linked to happiness levels? 
My blog is dedicated to my personal hiding spot, books. Who, what, or where can be credited as your personal escape from reality?
Definitely books. They’re my go-to escape. Other than that I have just planned a trip to India with my friend. It holds a special place in my heart. I wrote Losing Lila on the beach there. :)
Don't miss my review of The Sound HERE.

Win It!
 Giveaway will end June 5th, 2014.


  1. I always like reading about how authors write their books. If they have it all planned or the opposite. Also, how they became an author, if it was a dream they had as a kid or something they stumbled into later in life. This interview gives great insight on the things I've already mentioned and other things about The Sound. Great post and interview. Thank you for the chance.

  2. Christina R. in the rafflecopter

    I LOVE how she's written so many books she doesn't need to plan as much and that she was in Nantucket when she was younger too!

    Great interview!!

    Thank you :)

  3. I'm new to all of this, but it's great to know so much about the authors with these interviews
    and sarah is an amazing author i've almost all her books.and they are great!


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