Interview with Susan Sage
Why did you become a writer…was it a dream of yours since you were younger or did the desire to write happen later in your life?
I began writing during high school. The creative side of imagination always fascinated me. I could make up stories while walking to school and then draw little imaginary characters to make the story come to life. I wrote prose to express my feelings and to help discern how I felt. During high school, one of my extra classes was creative writing. I knew I had found a home.
What was the inspiration for your latest work of fiction?
I write a lot of flash fiction. It moves quickly and it seems now, people are so busy that they don’t have time for long books. I tell stories quickly. Lately though, I have been working on a story dealing with the lies we believe and the impact they have on real life.
Do you tend to base your characters on real people or are they totally from your imagination?
Most of my characters are based on pictures I see and the images and stories I create while looking at pictures. In my current work-in-progress (WIP), the main character is a compilation of the life stories of four different women who have experienced similar issues in life.
Are you currently working on any new book projects?
I am working on this first fiction book but along side it, I am working on a nonfiction book with the same basis since I know there are people who will not read fiction and others who prefer only fiction. I also have several other works in the wings. One is for new writers and will hopefully help them navigate the new world and language of writers, authors, agents, and publishers. I am also working on a spoof short story of a conversation between parts of speech and how they often feel abused. A bit of fun in the midst of seriousness.
Who is your favorite contemporary author? Are you currently reading any contemporary novels?
I have several favorite contemporary authors. Sarah Sundin writes historical fiction based around the World Wars. Good writing, clean stories, and grabs her readers and doesn’t let go until the end. I am also a new fan of Irene Hannon. She and Dee Henderson write in similar styles. Both are romantic suspense writers.
What’s your writing schedule like? When do you find time to write?
My writing schedule is—to the best of my ability, since life happens even to writers—pretty consistent. I write from 9:00 AM to noon and then if time is available, I will edit and work on different projects in the afternoon. All in all, I generally spend anywhere from three to five hours at my computer per day. But, and this is a big one, I am retired. When I worked full time, my writing time was generally spent on weekends and the moments I could steal away in the evenings. I have a home office and can close the door and at least somewhat seclude myself.
Do you have any writing idiosyncrasies?
I believe my greatest challenge in writing is overuse of favorite words. I might use metaphors too many times, too close. I may use the word “as” repeatedly. I also need to remember that though it may be costly to me emotionally, my readers need transparency in order to connect to a story. I can’t just tell them my character was scared and so started perspiring. I need to let them experience what the character does as tingles creep up her spine and the hair on the base of her neck stand up. They need to sense what’s happening when her heart beats faster, her hands tremble, and sweat breaks out across her lip while she turns her head scanning her surroundings. That’s what will grab the reader’s attention and not let them go.
Meet Susan Sage
My name is Susan Sage. I am a new north Idahoan and my husband and I are enjoying the new exploration of this beautiful area. We have been married 33 years and have one married son. I am passionate about my walk with God, my family, and helping others grow in their faith in God. I use my writing as the venue for this.
You can read Susan's flash fiction column here at Pandora's Box Gazette on the 2nd Thursday each month. Her "Sunday Inspiration" column is published on the 4th Sunday.