Twenty Six letters in England
I’m excited to welcome Sarah England to the blog today. Sarah has written a laugh out loud, hilarious, belly grabber of a book called, Expected. While it’s funny on one level, there is an underlying message to the story, and we can all relate to the main character Sam Sweet, in one way or another. I loved her and hope there’s another book featuring Sam on the way…I just might ask. Another standout to me was the quality of the writing. And I’m green with envy over the metaphors Sarah uses throughout, they’re so clever and fit each scene perfectly. I haven’t laughed so much in ages!
Thanks, Sarah for joining us today, can you share a snippet of Expected with us?
Hi Rebecca! Thanks so much for inviting me! Yes of course – here is where Sam meets Joel for the first time – in a meeting room packed with her work colleagues…..
‘Someone pokes me hard in the side, and I realise I’ve been asked a question and everyone is looking at me, but I have absolutely no idea what Joel said. I mean, excuse me, he speaks as well?
Someone else giggles nervously, and to make matters infinitely worse, Minnie leans in close so her breath is hot on my ear, and whispers, “He dresses to the right.”
Told you she was a demon.
But you know when you just can’t help looking? You really, truly don’t want to, but your gaze travels down there anyway? My face flushes deep and hot and no doubt bright red, searing my cheeks, racing like a bush fire in a hurricane right up to my hairline. Now, oh great, I’m matching—skin and hair and lips all as red as a party balloon.
Joel grins, and I get a flash of great white shark. “I asked if everyone could introduce themselves, please, and could we start with you, ma’am?”
Those eyes of his pierce mine like lasers, and instantly, I’m palpably aware that this man is no fool, he will miss nothing, and he is as deadly and dangerous as a rattlesnake in the golden grass of the Deep South. I urgently command my brain to function, pull back my shoulders, take a deep breath…and— Shriek! The button across my chest gives way, firing as fast as a bullet out of a gun, and hits Toby smack in the cheek.
Joel laughs. Everyone laughs.
When they’ve stopped laughing, Minnie calmly hands me a safety pin, which I fasten on with shaking fingers. I’m tempted to say, “I’m Sam and I’m an alcoholic,” but manage to get a grip and say sensible things, instead. I think. I hope. And when I’m done, Joel just nods and holds my gaze for so long it becomes embarrassing.’
How long did it take you to write Expected?
Well this is difficult because it is based on a lot of um..ya know…experience…so I’d say about 3 months, but maybe it was edited around 8 times altogether – it would add up to a year. A year plus a lifetime…
Can you tell us a bit about Sam, where did the character come from?
Sam is totally fictitious and not a bit based on myself. No. I don’t know why people ask me if this is my life story – how could anyone be so stupid and behind the door as this idiot? Ha!
Sam sweet has a predilection for Chunky Kit Kat’s, do you also pull out the chocolate in times of crisis?
Sam does love chocolate biscuits and especially those chunky Kit-Kats, yes. She particularly likes the peanut flavoured ones at the moment. She feels she is getting a treat and is more than a tad addicted. Myself, however? No of course not – I have wheatgrass and miso soup and do yoga….. and a nose getting longer every day.
What are you working on now? And will be there be a follow up book to Expected?
Well Sam was left in a rather nice place, wasn’t she? She thinks she’s a star now and doesn’t have to do anymore work. Hmm….I think she might have a way to go yet, though. Ha ha – yes I have plans for her and she ain’t going to like it!
If you could choose three writers to have dinner with who would they be?
Well nobody thin that’s for sure! If I’m going out for dinner it’s not going to be sushi and breathing in all night. And most importantly, good conversation required on my favourite topics – the supernatural, thrillers and comedy – hmm…. In that order then – Susan Hill, Stephen King and Sue Townsend.
Without giving anything away, what is your favourite scene in Expected?
When Sam does her va-va voom thing in the red dress at the party! Trying not mind if Joel is there with someone else or not…
Where can we find Expected? And where can we find you?
Expected is published with crooked cat publishing so is in their bookstore, but also on amazon and in smashwords. Here are all the links:
Expected on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00DHKI2GY
My website is : http://www.sarahengland.yolasite.com
And my facebook page is : http://www.facebook.com/sarahenglandauthor
And I have a new fiction hotel for showcasing authors and their latest books , which I hope you will be a guest in soon, Rebecca … http://fictionhotel.blogspot.co.uk
Yes, I’d love to Sarah!
I’m also on linkedin and twitter @sarahengland16 !
Thank you so much for joining us, Sarah. And we wish you every success with your novel.
And I highly recommend this book. If you think you’re having a bad day, Sam’s is infinitely worse, and trust me, she’ll make you forget and have you in hysterics!
Book Blurb for ‘Expected’ by Sarah England
Sam Sweet is a failed psychiatric nurse from a sink estate in Weston Super mare. Her mother, whose husband ran off with another woman 20 years ago – although you’d think it happened only yesterday – has only one ambition and that is to be a grandmother.
But Sam is terrified of giving birth. She is easily traumatised and has no ambition to return to the sink estate and have dozens of children. She just wants a chance to do something with her life first, to fall in love, to see a bit of the world. Alas, in a drunken stupor she meets Simon – the psychopathic surgeon, who promises her a wonderful life and she believes him – because she is a dingbat and has a lot to learn.
Her latest job is injecting facial fillers and clients are suing because it’s going lumpy. And her best friend, also her boss, is sexually jealous to the point of blind rage because her boyfriend fancies Sam and does little to hide it.
Sam is coping – by shopping and over eating chocolate. But soon piles on weight and sinks deeply into debt, at which point Simon the surgeon starts playing serious mind games; and by the time it dawns on Sam just what a horrific mess she’s in – well might as well pass her the JCB because she keeps on digging.
Then as the company spirals downwards and all knives are out for survival – a new MD is brought in from the states – Joel – WOWEE – Madison! Sam and he instantly fall for each other but…her mother is now going bonkers – has booked the wedding….with the psychopathic surgeon….oh it’s getting worse…….fireworks? You bet….but that would be telling……
Sarah England: bio
Sarah originally trained as a nurse in Sheffield (UK) and then went on to work as a medical representative for nearly 20 years, specialising in mental health.
She had always wanted to write fiction, but did not begin until around 8 years ago, prompted by a house move and relocation to the South coast. Since then she has had around 140 short stories published, mostly in national magazines and various anthologies; and most recently a 3 part detective serial in Woman’s Weekly.
‘3am and Wide Awake’ was released in May 2013 by Alife Dog Fiction – a collection of 25 thrillers, many supernatural or medically based – two of her predominant themes.
‘Expected’ is Sarah’s first novel – a comedy launched by Crooked Cat Publishing on 28th June, 2013.
She lives in Dorset with her husband, Don, and spaniel, Harry.