Friday, December 23, 2005

And so the year turns a full circle...

Happy Holidays, gentle readers

I hope you all have a stress-free Crimbo, get tons of wonderful gifts and eat as much as you like without feeling bilious.

I'm going to my Dad, who lives about six miles away, and will be cooking Christmas dinner for him and my sister, nieces, maybe my brother and anyone else who's around. Note to self: Remember to pick up the turkey you ordered from M & S.

It's been a very exciting end of year for me as I signed with an agent on Monday. I've never had one, though most writers do, but I seemed to spend so much time doing boring business things and not enough time writing. I now have a film and TV agent too so hopefully this time next year I'll be in Hollywood asking Jake Gyllenhaal if he wouldn't mind just whipping off his top before he auditions. I wish!

I thought it would be sweet to do a little round-up of all my favourite things of the year for your reading pleasure...

Favourite tunes

Milk Bottle Symphony - Saint Etienne

I'm Glad I Hitched My Apple Wagon To Your Star - The Boy Least Likely To

I Never - Rilo Kiley

Hung Up - Madonna

The Only One - Ready Made FC

Travellin' Song - Bright Eyes

Another Sunny Day - Belle And Sebastian

Favourite Books

The Shadow Of The Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

The Time Traveller's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

Here Kitty Kitty by Jardine Libaire

Twins by Marcy Dermansky

Hairstyles Of The Damned by Joe Meno

Eleanor Rigby by Douglas Coupland

Favourite TV shows

Veronica Mars


The O.C (Seth + Summer 4 Eva!)

Gilmore Girls


Little Britain


(God, I love my US TV!)

Favourite films


Me, You And Everyone We Know


Sin City

I haven't seen a lot of films this year, mostly DVDs but there are a ton coming out in the UK soon that I want to seel I Walk The Line, Capote, Brokeback Mountain, The Producers, Memoirs Of A Geisha and March Of The Penguins, aw!

So, as I draw to a close, I wanted to do something a little special to finish my last post of the year. I always make a mix CD that I send out with my Christmas cards that has my favourite songs from the year. All the tunes I mentioned above are on the 2005 one, plus some others and you could win a copy of it. Yes, you! All I want you to do is leave a comment but it has to be a haiku about one of your favourite things of the year. Don't know what a haiku is? Look it up in a dictionary. And don't forget to include your email address. (There could be more than one winner too!)

So, happy holidays once again and see you in the New Year.



Saturday, December 10, 2005

Well, it must be Saturday...

I'm actually remembering to update in a timely, every seven days fashion this week. I could be looking at tiles in a big bathroom shop on the Holloway Road (my shower cubicle is on the verge of imminent collapse) but instead I'm munching toast and staying indoors where it's warm and I can rip some tunes (currently Snow Patrol) on to my iPod. Actually I've just come back from the gym and I have that annoying, post-swim closed up ear thing going on. I know when I least expect it a warm trickle of water will suddenly run out of my ear, which usually feels quite pleasant.

I'm gearing up for the end of the year, in that I'm thinking about all the great songs and books and films I've seen so I can do a great, big list for my last post of 2005. But when I'm not doing that, I'm very hard at work. I've just had the outline for my next book approved and I'm going to start on that this week. I don't want to give too much away but it's going to be a little lighter than Let's Get Lost and I'm going to write it from the boy's POV. Except it's not so much boy meets girl as boy is related to girl and she's driving him to an early grave. There probably won't be as much dry humping in this book as my other ones but I hope that won't put you off.

And now my sofa and the evil crack this is Sudoku is calling to me...


Sarra x

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Stop, look and listen...

Obviously my vow to be more diligent about posting here went horribly wrong. But it's late Saturday afternoon, the central heating's toasty, I'm in my Old Navy micro-fleece PJ bottoms and the most wild thing I'm going to do this evening is order a Chinese even though I didn't go to the gym today. It's like emo never happened!

If that sounds terribly unglam, I did go to LA a couple of weeks ago to write a piece for British ELLE. It took almost a day to get threre door to door, I stayed in Hollywood for 48 hours, then took another day to get home. And woah, the jetlag!

At the moment I'm working on an outline for my next book. I know a lot of you are interested in being writers so you might find this useful but when I want my publishers to approve my next idea I give them a chapter by chapter synopsis of what the book will be about and also use that as my outline for when I write the book. I start off with the title, then the basic premise (which is a paragraph summing up the entire book in a couple of lines) and then do a really detailed breakdown of what happens in each chapter. This is a really good way of getting your idea right and thinking about how you want to layer the plot and build the suspense. When I'm doing my outlines, I usually find myself coming up with actual bits of dialogue and stuff (why, yes that would be the technical term!) that usually end up in the book too.

The basic premise for Let's Get Lost was this:

This is a poignant but snarky story about losing your mother, when you’ve just started the necessary process of pushing her away in order to discover who you are. It’s not page after page of weepy moping and whining. Isabel is queen bee of a posse of teen divas, in embroiled in a dirtybadwrong love affair with an older boy and has a bratty little brother to deal with. But her biggest stumbling block is a father who can’t handle a teenage daughter and always observes a six inch personal space bubble every time they’re in the same room but at the heart of it all, is a story about a girl trying to find sense in something that is completely senseless.

Talking of Let's Get Lost, the cover is now my user pic. And the book is available for pre-order on And that's about all the news that's fit to print...


Sarra x