Straight Talk on Writing: 20 Conversations with Authors about the Craft

By Scott Francis | Go to book overview

Sarah Dornet

“If you sit around waiting
for inspiration to hit, you’ll
likely be sitting around
forever.”

Sarah Domet’s work has appeared in New Delta Review, Cincinnati Review, Beloit Fiction Journal, and Potomac Review, among others. She is the author of 90 Days to Your Novel: A Day-By-Day Plan for Outlining & Writing Your Book.

I had the pleasure of being Domet’s editor for 90 Days —a book that takes a tough love stance and provides a great motivational plan for finishing your novel. In the following interview she discusses inspiration, motivation, and the importance of a writing routine.

—SF


When did you first know
that you wanted to be a
writer?

I think I’ve always known I wanted to be a writer. I just didn’t know I knew. As a girl, I’d check out collections of poetry from the school library. I didn’t understand what I was reading, but I knew I liked the feel of checking out those books and reading them, even if they didn’t always make sense to me. When we were assigned book reports in elementary school, I’d read books like War and Peace, and hand-write thirty page synopses. (My ever-patient mother would then type these for me, asking me if I could, perhaps, shorten my summaries.)

As a kid, I struggled with shyness —big time. (My school nurse sent me to a speech therapist who asked me why I didn’t like to talk. I shrugged my shoulders in response.) Writing was my outlet. It should come as no surprise that my earliest stories featured me as an outgoing protagonist, accomplishing all of these amazing feats—saving lives, conquering outer space, traveling in time, and meeting world leaders.


What was the first thing you
ever wrote?

Something exceedingly embarrassing. I think it was a science-fiction story about traveling forward in time, only to coincidentally meet my family in the future who, of course, sent me home with messages and warnings for everyone. However, the logistics of the story didn’t make complete sense. For example, when I leapt forward in time, my brother and sisters, well into their 30s/40s by then, were all still living at home with my parents. In the illustrations, the “future” family all wore matching one piece jump suits that looked right out of Mork and Mindy.


Your book 90 Days to Your
Novel offers a very
structured approach to
writing… what do you hope
readers will gain from it?

90 Days to Your Novel is a line in the sand with a challenge to cross it. It’s the kick in the pants, or the deadline, or the schedule, or the

-25-

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Straight Talk on Writing: 20 Conversations with Authors about the Craft
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Acknowledgments i
  • Table of Contents ii
  • Introduction 1
  • Laurie Alberts 2
  • Barbara Baig 6
  • William Cane 9
  • Orson Scott Card 13
  • Sage Cohen 21
  • Sarah Dornet 25
  • Jeff Gerke 29
  • April Hamilton 32
  • Becky Levine 37
  • Donald Maass 41
  • Dinty W. Moore 43
  • Jessica Page Morrell 46
  • Steven Harper Piziks 49
  • Peter Seigin 53
  • George Singleton 57
  • James Alexander Thom 60
  • Fred White 62
  • Karen S. Wiesner 64
  • You’Ve Read the Interviews… Now Read the Books! 68
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