Talking with author Sarah Norkus


Last week This Common Reader had the good fortune of meeting thrice published author Sarah Norkus.  She took some time away from her writing schedule to have a virtual chat.

Check out Ms. Norkus’ books: The Eleventh Summer (a memoir of her childhood), Until the Wind Changes and The Secret Diary of Sarah Chamberlain.

TCR:   When did you discover you were a writer?

SN:      I’m still discovering that I am a writer. Although, to be honest, I think of myself more as a storyteller.

 TCR:   When did you begin writing and what or who influenced you?

SN:      I didn’t start writing until I was forty-eight! Two people influenced my writing: my father, who was the editor of a horse racing magazine, and Stephen Ambrose, my cousin, who wrote Band of Brothers and other great historic military novels.

TCR:   What kind of writing do you do and why did you choose that topic or genre?

SN:      My first book was a memoir written to help children of alcoholics because I was one. The second one was a literary fiction based on true events of my dysfunctional blended family. Now I am writing a Christian historical-fantasy, fiction trilogy. I chose this topic because I love history and time travel.

TCR:   Who is your favorite author or what is your favorite book?  What are you currently reading?

SN:      My favorite book is the Bible. Just love the author. I am currently reading Keys to the Castle by Donna Ball. 

 TCR:   Explain your writing process?

SN:      I know this won’t be very helpful, but I believe I have been given a true gift from God. I don’t outline or do a storyboard, etc. I sit down at my laptop and my imagination just flows from my brain to my fingers. I do, however, research a lot on the historical settings in my books. I want it as close to the facts as possible.

 TCR:   What is the best thing that has happened in your writing career thus far?

SN:      I just found out from a friend today that my first book, The Eleventh Summer is #2 on Amazon’s Dysfunctional Relationships book category. (I say that with tongue firmly planted in cheek.) The best thing to happen in my writing career is the people who read my books. I get so much gratification when my readers tell me how much they enjoyed my story.

 TCR:   Do you have any parting words of wisdom for other aspiring authors?

SN:      Try not to be discouraged with all the negativity you encounter. At my first writer’s conference, a hundred or more of us “hopeful” new writers were told that we would not get a contract with a traditional publisher without a platform. That would have been just about all of us. But I am proof that that statement is wrong. Writers have a dream and dreams do come true.

 Keep dreaming, Ms. Norkus.  This Common Reader hopes to see more stories written by you.




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