Author Interview with Sarah Painter


Today I am so happy to welcome fellow Scottish author Sarah Painter. Like me, Sarah is not technically Scottish, but we won’t dwell on that. Her debut novel came out this month and it is getting great reviews. I have it ready to read on my flight to California. I am actually looking forward to 11 hours of uninterrupted reading time.

What does your writing day look like?

Officially, my writing day is contained within school hours. In theory, I focus on fiction in the morning and do journalism and admin in the afternoon. It’s not as organised as this in practice, though, partly due to my outstanding powers of procrastination.

What is the most you have written in a day?

For fiction? I’m not sure. I’m pretty slow and 1000 words is a good day for me during the first draft.  When revising (which involves adding lots as I tend to underwrite), I’m quicker because I know the story and the characters. 

Do you listen to music when you write?

Yes. I make a playlist for the book and listen to it every time I work on it.

Who gets to read your work before it is published?

My critique partners, my agent and my editor.


If your child told you they wanted to be a writer, what advice would you give them?

Read lots, write lots, and marry someone rich.

Describe your heroine in five words.

Sarcastic, kind, stronger than she realises. Oops, that’s six…

In what way is she most like you?

Probably the sarcasm.  

In what way is she different?

More confident, less anxious.

Did you research this book? Discover anything interesting.

I’ve always been interested in folklore so already had a fair few ideas, but I did do specific research on herbalism and superstitions.

 If your book was made into a movie, who would you cast in the starring roles?

Maggie Gyllenhaal and Robert Downey Jr.

What would is your favourite meal? Calories don’t count.

In my universe, calories never count! I love pretty much all food and can’t pick one favourite… Here are three meals I never get bored of eating: Roast chicken with roast potatoes, broccoli and my mum’s gravy, fajitas with refried beans and lots of guacamole, pasta with a good, garlicky tomato sauce.

What is the most romantic thing someone has done for you?

I’m lucky to be married to a very romantic man, but he’s also quite shy and wouldn’t thank me for answering that question!

What accent do you find the sexiest?


Who is your celebrity crush?

David Tennant (see above). I also have character-specific crushes i.e. I only fancy the actor when they’re playing the specific role (Sherlock, Aragon, Spike, Loki, Eric Northman, to a name a few).

Name the sexiest redheaded man.

I’m quite partial to Damian Lewis.

Language of spells is out now. Check it out!

Amazon US


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