Saturday, September 16, 2017

0 Sarah Porter, author of WHEN I CAST YOUR SHADOW, on scenes appearing out of the blue

We are pleased to have Sarah Porter swing by to share more about her latest novel, WHEN I CAST YOUR SHADOW.

Sarah, what book or books would most resonate with readers who love your book--or vice versa?

Two that come to mind are other recent YA twists on haunting, Nova Ren Suma's marvelous THE WALLS AROUND US and E. Lockhart's WE WERE LIARS. They're both very different from WHEN I CAST YOUR SHADOW, but what they all have in common is that they treat haunting as something connected to the characters' emotions and histories; that is, they aren't about ghosts who just happen to be there, terrorizing anyone they can, but about ghosts who are intimately connected to the protagonists and their actions.
How long did you work on WHEN I CAST YOUR SHADOW?

It came pretty quickly, maybe over nine or ten months. WICYS was one of those glorious, overwhelming writing experiences that come along too rarely; scenes would appear to me out of the blue and I would sit down stunned and watch them unfold in my mind. It isn't always like that! Writing this book was so emotionally intense for me that, when I finished, I felt for the first time like I was at risk of burning out, and it took me a while to recover.

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?

For the most part, everyone has to follow their own vision and discover their own process; advice can hurt more than it helps, since it encourages beginning writers follow to rules that aren't right for them. I think the one piece of advice that applies to everyone is to read as much as you can, and as widely as you can, including genres that aren't your usual thing, books by people from very different backgrounds than your own, and books that seem too strange or too difficult. Immersion in the wild and exuberant and diverse whirlwind of voices that compose world literature is the surest way to find your own voice and refine your skills.

What are you working on now?

I've just finished another YA novel for Tor Teen, NEVER-CONTENTED THINGS, about two foster siblings who make a deal with some very bad faeries to avoid being separated. And then I'm hoping to finish another novel, one for adults, before the end of 2017; I've been working on it off and on for a few years now! It's called THE SEAS OF BOHEMIA and it's a science-and-sorcery novel, set in Prague in 1816, about a young woman whose lover is dying; she uses magic to make him a replacement body out of living animals, and transfers his consciousness into the new body without his consent, in order to save his life. But then, of course, everything goes terribly wrong.


When I Cast Your Shadow
by Sarah Porter
Tor Teen
Released 9/12/2017

A teenage girl calls her beloved older brother back from the grave with disastrous consequences.

Dashiell Bohnacker was hell on his family while he was alive. But it's even worse now that he's dead....

After her troubled older brother, Dashiell, dies of an overdose, sixteen-year-old Ruby is overcome by grief and longing. What she doesn't know is that Dashiell's ghost is using her nightly dreams of him as a way to possess her body and to persuade her twin brother, Everett, to submit to possession as well.

Dashiell tells Everett that he's returned from the Land of the Dead to tie up loose ends, but he's actually on the run from forces crueler and more powerful than anything the Bohnacker twins have ever imagined....

Purchase When I Cast Your Shadow at Amazon
Purchase When I Cast Your Shadow at IndieBound
View When I Cast Your Shadow on Goodreads


Sarah Porter Author Photowrite stories that seem to me to be quite true enough for all practical purposes. Among them are VASSA IN THE NIGHT, THE LOST VOICES TRILOGY, and the forthcoming WHEN I CAST YOUR SHADOW and TENTACLE AND WING. Realism makes little sense to me and I experience more truth in the fantastic. I always have new novels underway, both Young Adult and Grownup/ Literary/ Speculative. When not writing my own weird stuff, I can often be found leading creative writing workshops with amazing young NYC public-school writers via Teachers & Writers Collaborative. Or I might be drawing, or gardening, or wandering wraithlike through the streets. I live in Brooklyn, land of mystery, with my awesome husband Todd and our two cats, Jub Jub and Delphine.


Have you had a chance to read WHEN I CAST YOUR SHADOW yet? Have you gotten writing advice that wasn't as helpful as you thought it was? Have you written a story that was emotionally draining? How did you recover? Share your thoughts about the interview in the comments!

Happy reading,

Emily, Jocelyn, Anisaa, Sam, Martina, Erin, Susan, Shelly, Kelly, Laura, and Lori Ann

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