Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
My name is Sara, although I write under S. Massery. I grew up in western Massachusetts, and I think everyone knew I was going to be an author before I did because I was always writing stories. I went to Emmanuel College in Boston, and I cycled through ten different majors until I ended on English Writing and Literature—emphasis on writing. I moved out to Wyoming and worked on a guest ranch for a few summers. I moved back to Massachusetts, had a brief stint in hospitality, and now I work for a flooring company in my home town. I write in my spare time. Eventually, I hope to be a full-time author.
How do you make time to write?
Sometimes I can get away with writing a little at work (shh, don’t tell). I usually write at night—that’s when I get most of my words on the page.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
I believe it’s a real thing, but I also don’t think that should stop someone from trying to write. My own writing career started after I bought a notebook and vowed to write a passage a day—about my thoughts and feelings, the weather, existential stuff—and strengthening that “writing muscle” helped me transition to writing a full-length novel. Whenever I got stuck in the story, I went back to the journal.
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
I’m a bit all over the place in terms of genre. I originally intended my first book to be a romance, but it took a darker turn and ended up in women’s fiction. I also intended the second book to be a romance, and it is, but there’s a stronger focus on the main character’s journey of self-discovery and action and adventure. My third book, I promise, is an actual romance!
Anyway, back to the question—I think women’s fiction is my favorite to write. I love that it’s a bit more complicated than romance, although there is usually a love story in mine, and that readers aren’t promised a neat or happy ending. Life can be a bit messy, and I quite enjoy pulling on those emotions in my books, too.
How are you publishing your recent book and why? (*e.g. Indie or traditional)
I’m publishing indie! I really wanted creative control over every single aspect. Sometimes that’s scary (okay, a lot of times it’s scary) because if something goes wrong, it’s on my shoulders. My success or failure all depends on me. I’ve learned so many things since publishing Something Special, and I keep learning more every day. That’s the exciting part. I’m also a pretty impatient person, so knowing that getting traditionally published could take a year, or could never happen, played a factor into my decision.
Are you an Introvert or Extrovert? How does this affect your work?
Oh goodness. I’m an introvert to the extreme. It works out well for the actual writing part—sit down by myself and bang out a book, sure—but the marketing aspect tires me out. I love talking to new people, discussing my books, doing takeovers and whatnot. It just takes a little more energy than writing does. I’m conscious of that, so I try to spread out everything when I can. Release week is exhausting, though!
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
“You gotta risk it to get the biscuit.” Pretty sure that’s from the movie Fired Up. It’s true, though! And it’s more fun to say that instead of, “No risk equals no reward.”
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Writing should be fun. It’s not fun all the time, but remember why you started writing in the first place. And above all, don’t give up. Just get words written, and you can edit it later.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
Facebook reader group: www.facebook.com/groups/smasserysquad
Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?
This is an excerpt from Something Sacred, which just released on March 14! It’s free to read in Kindle Unlimited, and it’s book 2 in the Something Special duet, although they’re both standalone novels.
I slip my water bottle back into its pouch, zipping it closed. Cora does the same, swiping at the sweat trickling down her temples. She follows me down a trail for about a half hour, and then I make a sharp turn into the brush.
“Where are you going?” she yells.
“Come on, not every fire has a path leading to it,” I call back. It’s a steeper descent than I thought, and I slide on some rocks, throwing my hands wide to keep my balance. “Careful,” I say. “Take it slow if you need—”
She slips and falls into me. We roll down the hill until I can dig in and stop us. She lands on top of me, her hair in my mouth and her knee dangerously close to my groin.
I grunt as she starts moving, picking herself up off of me. I spit out her hair and start laughing, eyeing her red face. I can’t tell if she’s blushing or if she’s redder from the exercise, but after a second she starts laughing, too.
“You were just telling me to watch my step and then—”
I tip my head back and laugh louder. “You just took me out, Fletcher. That was like a sliding tackle.”
“Oh my god,” she gasps. “Don’t tell anyone.”
“Are you kidding? I’m telling everyone.”
We grin at each other for a minute before I pick myself up and brush off the dirt. And then she says, “God doesn’t hate you, Jared.”
I shake my head and turn away from her. “It sure feels like he does.”
She exhales and stands, too. “So, do you want to talk about it?”
“Talk about what?”
“The shit hitting the fan with your family, or whatever you said before.”
I start down the hill again. “You used to enjoy silence.”
She snorts. Rocks roll past me as she slides again. In time, she’ll get more graceful on different types of terrain, just like I did. “Yeah, but you’re a bottle of secrets.”
My relationship with my dad fractured right after my fight with Colby. It’s easy to connect the dots: because I got in a fight, I discovered my dad wasn’t the good guy I always thought he was. And my mom is living with a liar.
“Let’s just head back,” I say as we get to the bottom of the hill.
Get it here: https://amzn.to/2VXkJWJ