Heya, everyone. I'm back. This August has been a rollercoaster ride for me. There was a wedding at my house, I was busy in self-editing my novel and working on one story too. I postponed all the articles to September just kept the Author Interview in the queue for this month. So...
This girl. I saw her names many times in fav author lists. Her characters and plots are one of the most talked topics and on top of that her Instagram feed looks so beautiful!!! One of the most outstanding thing I felt about her works is that she mixed her mother tongue with English and the impact those dialogues make😍😍😍😍. Arghh!
Without wasting any time, I'm introducing today's featured author...
She is a gem. Her books do wonders, her readers love her, and her tweets will surely bring a smile on your face.
Getting praises from her readers is an everyday thing for her ;)
Also her beautiful Instagram posts...
Some glimpses of Pinterest.
1. Firstly tell us a little about yourself. What are you doing? What are your goals?
Sarrah: I'm Sarrah, a 26-year-old trying to balance the post-graduation adult life. Half of my heart in Pakistan and the other half is in Los Angeles. Recently, I went back to work full time so that's taking most of my time these days so reading, writing, and all other activities took backseat. At this point, I think I just want to create a balance between work and personal life.
2. From when you started writing? Your first book and what pushed you to write it?
Sarrah: When I moved to LA, I couldn't connect to anything so writing became a coping mechanism. I was a shy person at the time so I'd just put all my emotions and energy into writing. My first book... uhhhhh.... lol bit embarrassed here. My first book was Stained Faith. I wrote it when I was in high school. Somehow, I stumbled upon Wattpad and decided to put my writing into a proper storyline. I'm still litttttttle bit embarrassed, but It's still close to my heart because that book started my journey on Wattpad and of proper writing.
3. What has influenced you the most as a writer? How did you get the idea of adding Urdu dialogues in the story?
Sarrah: Everything around me, but mostly people. I'm always fascinated by people, their stories, and that we are all same yet we are all different. So, I take whatever I see around me and translate it in my own way. Usually, it starts with a small emotion or action and then that gives a way to a scene or a character. I have always been in love with Urdu and Urdu poetry. So, It's a way to keep my connection with Urdu alive. Unfortunately, I don't get the chance to speak Urdu often anymore, so I use any opportunity I get to include it in my stories.
4. I have seen a crazy craze for your characters like for Professor Khan or Layla, Rabail, Shehryar and many more. How do you design your characters? What work undergoes in designing in these masterpieces?
Sarrah: I'm not going to say they are the most realistic characters out there, but I think they all have just a part of us in one way or the other. They are flawed, at times judgemental, struggling with their pasts and faith, all while trying to find their happiness and peace. I take people around me and exaggerate their experiences and emotions. I take a specific characteristic or flaw of the character, work around it and then go with the flow. Also, I'd like to thank everyone for accepting and loving these crazy characters.
5. Who are your favorite authors and why?
Sarrah: I usually just have favorite books rather than authors. Honestly, I don't even check for authors most of the times. If the story is good, I'll read it. It doesn't matter who wrote.
6. How do you develop your books? Is there any prior outlining? How do you decide what topic/subject to write on?
Sarrah: I'm the biggest panster alive on this earth. I go with the flow and It has worked so far. I have no patience to sit down and outline. I do have certain scenes in particular with each story that I want to add, but everything in between comes with the flow. Honestly, I look around and pick on small issues or topics around me. Some topics are inspired by personal experiences, and some I hear or read about.
7. How do you balance writing with your personal and work life?
Sarrah: Quarantine gave me a lot of time to write. Hence, I was able to update Ishq easily and often, but I now I went back to work full time so I don't even get time until the weekend. I'm trying to figure out how to balance the two extremes now.
8. Does the seriousness of a particular scene affect you while writing it? Any scene in which you cried while writing?
Sarrah: It does. I try to have as realistic reaction to serious situation as I can which leads me to do research on the related topic or find real stories about it. So, I guess that does leave an imprint on me. Mostly Laila's journey through Ishq made me cry. I have been accused of writing sad and tragic pasts lol!!!!! So there were always some scenes of each character that made me cry when I was writing it at the time.
9. What does literary success look like to you? Have you thought of writing as your future career?
Sarrah: It's always little things. Like if someone decides to read my stories on Wattpad, or if they take out time and leave a message. I think for most part it was receiving those beautiful messages from the readers especially those ones where they said they were able relate to Rabail and her journey also helped them as well in some ways. I'd love to have writing as my career because it's literally the only thing I love LOLL!! But it's so risky so I'm not sure if I'll ever professionally pursue it.
10. Fav time and season to write.
Sarrah: At night during winter or fall while it's raining outside.
11. Does writing helps you or exhaust you as a person? How many incomplete drafts do you have?
Sarrah: It definitely helps me. I always express my emotions through the characters so it's a way to let out everything that's within me. It does becoming exhausting when that writer's block hits you square in the face, then it becomes stressful. Too many incomplete drafts to even remember now LOLLL.
12. Your Wattpad experience. One of the memorable experiences?
Sarrah: It was a rollercoaster. I started reading on Wattpad during high school and that's when I wrote Stained Faith. I didn't really enjoy it at that time so I left it and kind of forgot about it. Couple years ago, somehow I stumbled upon it again because I wanted to share the story, Professor Khan, with everyone. I didn't really expect it to be liked by so many people, and I'm soooooo grateful for it. Recently, my story was add into a list on official Wattpad account so I guess that was exciting.
13. What is your favorite genre to read, and why? What is the first book that made you hooked to reading?
Sarrah: Definitely Romance. Surprisingly, It was a children's fantasy series about a magician in Urdu when I was in elementary school.
14. What life experiences have shaped your writing most?
Sarrah: A lot of it was shaped by moving from one country to another and the journey that followed. It was a pretty hard move so I used all my emotions and experiences to create all these characters. I have went through some really harsh times emotionally so writing helped me through it and those moments influenced my writing a lot.
15. The hardest scene for you to write?
Sarrah: Ayla's past in Without You. Her entire journey was hard to write due to the sensitivity of the subject. Her journey was hardest to write because I was scared I wouldn't be able to do justice to it, but Alhumdulliah it all went well.
16. Shout out to your writing buddies or fellow authors.
Sarrah: You! Thank you for having such a nice platform and doing all this for us Baby authors LOL!! dreamstellation (Thank you for always being there for me), Lil JoJo (ilysmm) aka Javeria, Aimmy, Rameesha, Zeynep, and to each and every one of you who wants to write. Please don't let anyone or anything stop you.
I'm so happy Sarrah that you gave us your precious time. I wish you all the best for everything you do in the future.
That's all for today. I hope you enjoyed it. Let me know. Until next time, Keep Writing :D