It’s been an incredibly busy week. I also found myself sucked into Divergent by Veronica Roth, which shut me down for an entire night while I raced to the end. Now we’re back, with Sarah Ettritch.
How did you get into writing Sci-Fi/Fantasy?
When I want to start something new, I choose the story idea that interests me the most at the time. My ideas tend to fall under the SF/F umbrella.
Which is the first aspect of a story you usually plan? The plot, the setting, or the characters?
I don’t plan anything. I’m an organic writer (otherwise known as a pantser), so I pretty much wing it. To start a story, I need a solid idea of how it opens, a vague idea of how it will end (and it often doesn’t end that way, when all is said and done), and a couple of key plot points. I also have to know who the main character will be, but I don’t have to know much about her. For me, writing is like putting together a 10,000-piece puzzle, but I don’t have the lid with the picture, and when I start, I only have five puzzle pieces to go on. I discover more pieces as I write the story, and that’s what makes writing so much fun for me.
If you had to say that your stories were Sci-Fi/Fantasy crossed with something, what would it be?
For the Rymellan Series, I’d have to say Sci-Fi/LGBT. That’s also true for most of my work. I didn’t choose it. My characters just happen to be lesbian most of the time.
What, or who, would you say is your greatest influence in your writing?
Everything I’ve read. Everything I’ve experienced. Everyone I’ve crossed paths with in life.
How did you come up with the idea for the book you’ve listed here?
It grew out of daydreams I entertained myself with during boring work meetings.
What was your proudest moment in the creation of this book?
Rymellan 1 was the first book I published, so seeing it available in print and eBook was my proudest moment. It was the book of firsts: the first time I hired an editor, the first time I hired a cover designer, and the first time I formatted an eBook. The publishing process scared the hell out of me, so completing all the steps and ending up with a quality book was a huge achievement.
Have there been any points that had you doubting yourself? How did you get past them?
I’ve doubted myself many, many times. I still do. I just write through the doubt. I think most writers are plagued by doubt, and I’m no exception.
What is your favourite aspect of the Sci-Fi and Fantasy genres?
As a reader, I love how imaginative many of the stories are. As a writer, I love how I can approach common conflicts and situations from a completely different angle by introducing a speculative element.
What is the element you like the least about the Sci-Fi and Fantasy genres?
I don’t like it when too many unnecessary details are included in a story. For example, if I don’t need to know how toilets work on Planet X to understand the story, then don’t tell me. That particular pet peeve can pop up in any genre, but it occurs more often in SF/F due to the nature of the beast.
Discounting ‘because I’d have made a lot of money’ (if that is the case,) which Sci-Fi or Fantasy book/tv series/film do you wish you’d written, and why?
None. I write the stories I’m meant to write. If I were to write someone else’s stories, they wouldn’t be the same. I’ll sometimes read a book or see a movie and think “Wow, what a great idea for a story,” but I leave it at that. I have my own ideas to write.
Sarah Ettritch writes science fiction, fantasy, and mystery stories that feature strong female characters. Her protagonists are usually lesbian. In addition to writing, Sarah enjoys PC gaming (especially role-playing games), reading, and learning. Sarah publishes her books through her publishing company, Norn Publishing. She belongs to several organizations related to writing and publishing, including Broad Universe and The Alliance of Independent Authors.
Lesley and Mo can’t imagine life without each other. If it were up to them, they’d settle down, raise daughters, and lead happy, fulfilled lives. But they live on the planet Rymel, in a strict society that selects life-mates for its citizens and executes those who violate their life-bonds. Girlfriends since their teens, Lesley and Mo dread the day the state summons them to meet their selected mates.
Meet Lesley and Mo when they’re young adults in love and follow them until their time together runs out. Will they do what their society expects of them, or will they sacrifice their lives for their love?