Sarah Holman is a homeschool graduate and author of many books, one of which is a collection of stories about her family. There Was Always Laughter in Our House should be on every homeschooler’s reading list!
She has also written some Christmas stories including Molly and Anna, Kate’s Christmas, Distorted Glass: A Snow Queen Story, and A Very Bookish Christmas, which she co-wrote with Kelsey Bryant and several others.
Sarah is the founder of Homeschool Authors, a blog dedicated to homeschooled authors and their books. When not busy writing, she can usually be found reading, hanging out with her six siblings, or taking long walks near her home in central Texas.
We had the pleasure of interviewing Sarah Holman for this month’s issue of Homeschooling Teen. Enjoy!
- When did you know that you wanted to be a writer?
I always had a vivid imagination as a child. However, when I was 11 I couldn’t find the kind of stories that I wanted to read, so I started writing them. I loved the feeling of putting my stories on paper. Due to health issues, I knew that when I graduated from high school, I wouldn’t be able to pursue the career I had originally wanted to. So, I started taking my writing seriously. Even though God has healed a lot of my health issues, I still love being a writer.
- How did homeschooling benefit or influence you as an aspiring writer?
My parents always encouraged each of their children to pursue their interests and gave us both the time and resources to develop the skills. Our homeschool was also book based. I read all the time both for school and for fun. Reading all kinds of books is the best way to start training as a writer.
- Who are some of your favorite authors?
Among my favorites are Grace Livingston Hill, Sarah Sundin, Elizabeth George (the one who writes Christian living books), Nicole Sager, Rachel Starr Thomson, Kelsey Bryant, Susie Larson, and Tracy L. Higley. I could go on. I read at least 100 books a year and I’m always finding new authors to love.
- What genres or types of books do you like to write?
I love to experiment with new genres. I like non-magical fantasy, contemporary, sci-fi, and non-fiction. No matter what genre I’m writing, I like stories that have adventure, faith, and often a dash of romance. I love stories with characters that are flawed, but seeking God’s best for their life and growing and maturing in that faith.
- What was your very first published book about, and how did you come up with the idea?
My first published book was The Destiny of One – a science fiction story about a girl trying to figure out what God wants her to do with her life. I was inspired by my introduction to the science fiction genre at age sixteen. I fell in love with the possibilities this genre offered and wished there were more Christian books written that used it. The Destiny Trilogy still has a special place in my heart, even though it has a lot of flaws. Actually, an updated version to fix some of those flaws is in the works for this coming summer.
- Do any of your fiction books feature homeschoolers as characters?
I love featuring homeschoolers in my work. While since I haven’t written a lot about children, you will find homeschoolers in just about every one of my stories. From my most recent story in A Very Bookish Thanksgiving, to one of the FBI agents in my Kate’s Case Files series, to Maria Morris in my first book. After all, they say to write what you know. I love writing about homeschoolers and what they can accomplish.
- Are there any tools or resources that you find most helpful when writing?
On a daily basis, I use Microsoft Word which is a huge blessing as a writer. It has a lot of functions that I use daily in my work. As I’m not gifted at spelling, grammar, or cover design, two of my most valuable resources are Kelsey Bryant and Jessica Greyson. Kelsey has been my editor for a while now and makes my book more readable. She’s slowly helping me go back through the few books I published before her. Jessica does most of the covers for my stories including A Very Bookish Thanksgiving and A Very Bookish Christmas. People who can help improve your writing are the greatest resources. The greatest tool I’ve found is my love of reading. Continuing to read often when writing is important and pushes me forward.
- What other hobbies or activities do you like to pursue besides reading and writing?
Sewing is my favorite hobby aside from those two. I love making quilts or sewing garments. I’m in the middle of making a pretty big quilt, mostly by hand. It’s been a huge project but a lot of fun. I walk a lot around our property and the country lanes. I can spend hours walking when time permits, especially if I have a friend or family member with me talk with.
- Any closing thoughts or advice that you want to share with our homeschooling teen readers?
Being a teen can be a tough time in life. You are learning a lot about how the world works and who you are. Sometimes, the choices of what to do with your life are overwhelming and pressing. Reading good books can help you explore possibilities and find answers, especially if the book you’re reading is the Bible. Make sure to take the time to cultivate your faith and boldly follow Jesus wherever He leads. Also, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.
Thank you so much, Sarah, for taking the time out of your busy schedule to do this interview! 🙂
Sarah Holman’s books are available on Amazon.
P.S. A Very Bookish Thanksgiving and A Very Bookish Christmas will go away at the end of the year! You can grab your copies before they go away HERE.