Interview with author Sarah A. Hoyt

Hey all, Jack Wylder here. With Larry still out on book tour, I thought this a good time for another exciting writer interview. (We did this one a few months back, but I’ve been waiting for the right time.) This time we’re talking with Larry’s Co-Author on the upcoming Monster Hunter Guardian (Julie Shackleford’s book) and author of everything from Shakespearean Fantasy to Space Opera. Questions in bold, her responses in italics.

  • How did you get involved in the MHI universe?
    Well, there were several reasons to read Larry. The most important part was that I was hanging out in Toni’s Forum when I noticed someone with the name Correia. Being not at all chauvinistic about my origins, I asked “Portuguese?” Larry said, “My dad is.” I said. “Oh, cool, there’s two of us now, we’ve got them surrounded.” I think we’ve been friends ever since. (Toni is fond of saying she THOUGHT we were joking. Ah.) Later, when the Baen MHI edition came out, my kids got to it before me. (No, I don’t remember why.) I got tired of being told I REALLY had to read this writer who was the best thing ever. (Yes, I do have two boys. Yes, they were teens at the time. Shut up.) So I read it on the plane on the way to Liberty con that year. And by the end of the flight I knew that my openings and actions scenes were severely lacking. As luck would have it, I was scheduled to teach a writing workshop at the con that year, so I started talking how to catch the reader’s attention, and I used MHI as an example. There were about 20 very well behaved people at the workshop. But there was this goon at the back who kept laughing. It wasn’t till the end of the class, when he introduced himself as Larry Correia, that I thought “oh, wow. No wonder he laughed.” Still I was very shocked and flattered that Larry asked me to write Julie’s book. I was even more shocked I found myself writing MHI fanfic. (Dark Fate, aka how many ways can I get Grant beat up in Portugal.) The fanfic is totally non cannon, but Larry has promised not to rip my head off and beat me to death with it, so I guess I’m okay.

  • What is the most challenging part of writing a book in someone else’s universe?
    In this case? I’m writing in the head of one of his main characters. I’m terrified of doing something that makes him go “AH, you’re completely wrong. How dare you do that?” It’s not happened yet (but I’ve only done a small portion so far, and a short story) but it COULD totally happen, and I’m terrified of it. (I think that’s why Grant. You know, he’s not Larry’s baby.)

  • Working with friends can be difficult; did you and Larry have any problems working together and if so, how did you handle them?
    Well, so far we’ve only done a short story and the first chapter of Guardian (yeah, I know, but there were some health crisis and I’m going to resume work on it next week) and we’ve not had any problems. If there are problems, it’s very simple, it’s his WORLD and I’m a guest there. He gets to resolve any conflicts of vision with his vision. (I’m just Jazzed to be in the show.)

  • What part are you most proud of?
    So far? The fact that when I sent him the first chapter, which was really tricky (our outline kind of required us to contradict something Julie told Owen. So I had to find a way to walk that line) Larry said I was in his mind. That is one of those things that make me walk around giving myself high fives all day. (Well, they would do, except the boys say it looks dorky and if I do it any more they’ll have to put me away.

  • Who is you favorite MHI character and why?
    I like Grant. Look, it’s a disease, okay? Part of it is that his background is a lot like my husband’s (Patrician New England families, etc,) so I understand some of the unspoken stuff. (Except in our case all the money had disappeared before our generation. Sigh.) Also, well, I always like the redeemable *ssholes. When I wrote Jane Austen fanfic, I was known as “the girl who has a crush on Whickam.” It wasn’t exactly true, but I loved writing stories in which he redeemed himself. (See, I told you it was a sickness.) For “which character would you like to hang out with?” Well, Trip. I mean, doesn’t every geek chick?

  • If they made a movie of this, who would you cast?
    Er… you understand that I have a condition, right? Actors don’t exist. They come to life for the movie, and then vanish when the movie is done. I don’t recognize them when they show up again. (Hangs head.) It drives my poor husband nuts.
    Husband: “Who was that person in that movie about—”
    Me: “Character’s name.”
    Him: “The ACTOR!”
    Me: “I don’t understand why you people insist on caring about people who don’t exist.” Eh.

  • What’s something most people don’t know about Larry?
    That he mispronounces his own name. No, seriously. It’s supposed to be Cur-Reyha. I’ve told him. He doesn’t care. (Sniffle.) On the serious side, that he’s one of the nicest, least stuck up bestsellers I have ever met, always ready to give anyone a hand as long as the person isn’t an ass. And that he’s incredibly smart (he’ll argue. Ignore him. Like he knows!) Though I guess anyone who reads his complex plots knows that.

  • You write a lot of different things. Of all the series you’ve written, which is your favorite and why?
    I like Darkship Thieves, mostly because it allows me to play with my future history. It’s a really big canvas, and it gives me a chance to flex my “big drama” muscles, while still writing intensely personal and human stories, which is what I like.

  • When Guardian is finished, what’s next for you?
    Well, I’m actually doing a chapter a day and sending it to Larry, because I don’t want to get too far ahead without his supervision, since I am in the head of one of his main characters. I don’t want to get say ten chapters ahead, and have Larry go, “You know that point where she took the bad guy in the trunk of her car? Yeah, that’s where you went wrong. So, let’s erase those five chapters…” So, I’ll be doing one chapter in the morning, and one chapter of Hacking The Storm, the next Earth revolution book, in the afternoon. For those who read the series, that’s Fuse’s book.

+ + + + +

For those of you who’ve finished Monster Hunter Siege and want to know what happens with the ending, Monster Hunter Guardian will answer that question (soon-ish).The ‘Grant Fan-Fic’ she mentioned is available on her blog: Do a search for ‘Dark Fate’- it will help fill the time until Guardian drops! At Larry’s signing in Austin, he mentioned that the reason he chose Sarah to write the voice of Julie is that her character Athena Hera Sinistra from the Darkship series sounded just like her. To see for yourself, check out the first book in the Darkship series, Darkship Thieves.
-Jack Wylder, signing off…

Look At All Those People Having Fun Wrong. The Still Not a Real Writer Book Tour 2017 Recap.
The Siege Book Tour starts this week. Full Schedule here.

22 thoughts on “Interview with author Sarah A. Hoyt”

  1. Hi, Mrs. Hoyt! I love the story about Larry laughing in the back of the writing workshop and I look forward to reading Guardian.

  2. Now I’m concerned. Maybe it was the voice actor, but I truly loathed Athena Hera Sinestra.

    Guardians will tell, I guess. Might just have to read this one and pretended Darkship Thieves didn’t happen.

  3. The ILOH’s own crackfict Tom Stranger, the alternative Larry Correia bought both North and South Korea just to rename them to something else to avoid the confusion.

  4. I was also a bit confused on Larry’s pronunciation of his last name. My ancestors also hail from the non-Spanish part of the Iberian peninsula and where I grew up (Southeastern Massachusetts) it would be pronounced cor-rey-a. On the other hand, the guy owns his own mountain, so he can pronounce it anyway he wants.

  5. Nice interview. Now I need to go read that Grant fic.

    I can relate to the ‘people mispronouncing their own names’ thing. Most of my family does. In our case, I think it’s the result of too many generations in America.

    1. Sometimes not that many generations — I once encountered a man of Vietnamese descent with the family name “Nguyen” (the Vietnamese equivalent of “Smith”).

      He pronounced it “Nugent”.

      Perhaps in a few generations the family will change the spelling as well.

  6. One of my ambitions (apart from being a D-List author) is to one day be the same con as Larry and Sarah.

    1. Not exactly a con, but I’m involved with the Life, the Universe and Everything Symposium in Provo, Utah — and I’m *really* hoping that Sarah will make it there in 2018. Since this is one of Larry’s favorite events to attend, it would mean that they’ll be in the same con together.

      Having said that, I aspire to going to Liberty Con someday; it’s my understanding that they show up together there too….

      1. Yup. Everyone should come to LibertyCon. Oh wait, the attendance is capped at 750, to keep it small and family-friendly. Let me revise: after I successfully register for LibertyCon, everybody else should try to come!

    2. You’ve got to come down to LibertyCon sometime, Chris. Sarah is there pretty much every time, and Larry as often as possible. Of course, you’ll have to contend with all the rest of us too. It’s not that bad, hardly any of us bite much anymore.

  7. Actors don’t exist for you, too?

    Well, for me, there are a few exceptions — namely about half a dozen original Star Wars actors, and about half a dozen actors I always see the names of in the headlines of tabloids and hear about in the news, but never really see in movies….but, yeah, movies are stories. What more do I need to know?

    1. We should nominate you for DUFF Shadow. Down Under Fan Fund It’s an award to enable a fan from Down Under, Australia, New Zealand and other places in your hemisphere to attend North American conventions.

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