Sarah Webb worked as a children’s bookseller for many years before becoming a full-time writer. Writing is her dream job as she can travel, read magazines and books, watch movies, go shopping, and interrogate friends and relations – all in the name of research. She has written nine adult novels including Always the Bridesmaid and The Loving Kind, plus the Amy Green series about teenage agony aunts, Amy Green: Boy Trouble and Amy Green: Summer Secrets. Amy Green: Bridesmaid Blitz will be published in October. Sarah is also working on her next adult novel, The Shoestring Club which will be published in February 2012. Ask Amy Green 4: Love and Other Drama-ramas (for age 10+) will be out in September.
- Sarah, your recent bestseller, ‘The Loving Kind’ tells the story of struggling author Libby, who leaps at the chance of becoming a ghost writer for high maintenance reality television star ‘Lulabelle Ryan.’ If you were ever to become a ghostwriter for a celebrity, which celebrity would you love to ghostwrite for?
To be honest, I have the most time for celebrities that have actually done something – singers, ballerinas, sports women – so maybe Sarah Webb the Olympic sailor – that way I’d get my name on the book regardless!
- How did you find the writing path?
It found me. I’ve been a huge reader for years – ever since I was about 10 I have eaten books. Most writers are huge readers. And eventually I discovered I had my own stories to tell. The rest is history.
- Where do you get your ideas for your stories?
All kinds of places. The Ask Amy Green series was sparked by my own teenage years and also talking to modern teens and realising that things haven’t really changed – yes, teens now have Facebook and mobiles, but they still have to deal with things like peer pressure and body image.
- Friends have described the style of my writing as sometimes black/dark humor; do you think that you have an overall writing style?
Style? Not really. Inclusive I guess. Story and character are vital to my work. And I love dialogue also.
- What was the first book you read?
I didn’t read until I was 9 1/2 so it was probably a Dr Seuss or an early reader.
- Is your favourite book written by your favourite author?
Yes! I have 2 – Where the Wild Things Are (Maurice Sendak) and Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume. My other favourite authors are Roddy Doyle and Anne Tyler.
- Of all the characters that you have created, which one do you relate to the most?
- When sitting down to write, I like to have a steaming mug of tea beside me. Is there any essentials you need when you are sitting down to write?
Not really. Just my laptop obviously. I find anything else distracting. No internet is also an essential. I’ve disabled it from my work computer.
- What areas do you suggest a budding writer should concentrate on to further their abilities?
Reading and rewriting.
- Has there been books that you have read recently, that you were disappointed in?
Not really – I read mostly children’s books and they rarely disappoint.
- To balance things out, what book have you read recently that you really enjoyed?
Skulduggery Pleasant: Mortal Coil – excellent fantasy adventure!
- Finally Sarah, do you have any new projects or releases on the horizon which you would like to share with the readers of HandwrittenGirl?
I’m currently working on Ask Amy Green 4: Party Dramarama and my 10th adult book, The Shoestring Club.