Friday, September 23, 2011

FRIDAY FIRSTS with Sarah Grimm

The first five sentences of... AFTER MIDNIGHT

Isabeau Montgomery sat in the dimly lit bar and shook like an amateur before her first recital. Her gaze, blurred by the sudden threat of tears, settled on the keys before her. Her stomach cramped painfully, yet the need was too great to ignore.

With ability as natural to her as the color of her skin, she began to play. The waterfall of music filled the air, washed over her, completed her in a way nothing or no one else ever had.


1. Tell me about the first book you ever wrote. What ever happened to it?

I always say that Not Without Risk was the first story I wrote from start to finish, but after being asked recently to put something together about my road to publication, I realize that it wasn’t. My first book wasn’t even a romance, it was the true story of my best friend: My cat. I don’t recall whether I was in third or fourth grade when I wrote My Cat Sneaker, but I can still recite the poem I wrote to go along with it. I still have that story, packed away with a few momentos from my youth. One memento being the Young Authors Award the book earned.

2. What’s the first thing you do when you start writing a new story?

Brainstorm a title. Odd, but true. I can’t get very far into a story without it having a title. The title doesn’t always stay, I may change it when I get a little deeper into the story, but I can’t do much more than scribble notes without one. ‘That book I’m writing’ doesn’t work for me. Honestly, neither does my WIP, or my work in progress.

The second thing I do—you’re going to find this one even nuttier—is write the back cover blurb. There’s never any question about whether the blurb will change before the book is finished, as I’m a pantser, which means I never know what’s going to happen until my characters tell me. But again, it’s something I need to do before I can really get my head into a story and write.

3. What’s the first thing you notice on an attractive member of the opposite sex?

Their smile. I’m a sucker for a great smile. To me a great smile is more than just a curving of the lips. It’s an expression that uses all of the face—especially the eyes. If I can’t see that spark of joy in his eyes, then the attraction just isn’t there for me. A man doesn’t even have to be that overtly attractive for me to be drawn to him. Not if he has an incredible smile.



  1. Rebecca-

    Excited to be kicking off my blog tour on your blog! I have big, big things planned for the next month of touring, including a BIG contest announcement (with 3 prize packages) on my blog later today. I hope you'll check it out and join in the fun. :-)

    Thanks for letting me visit with you.

  2. Great post, Sarah!! I have to admit that sometimes I hear a potential title and think, "Mmm...what kind of book would I write for that?" Talk about picking out the shoes before the outfit! LOL Have a fabulous blog tour, my friend! :) OO, I almost forgot--After Midnight is fabulous--easily one of the best books of the year!!!

  3. Thanks for being here, Sarah. :)

    I must have a title before I start writing, too. And very rarely does that title change. I've been lucky so far (knock on wood) that my publishers have let me keep those titles, too.

  4. Great first five lines! I'm hooked.

    And I agree about a man's smile. It doesn't matter if he has whitter than white, perfectly straight teeth if that smile doesn't reach his eyes. And if those eyes don't look into mine when we speak, it makes me doubt his sincerity. And trust me, I do not have a chest that will draw a man's eyes from mine. lol!

  5. Ames - I'm speechless. Thank you! <3

    Rebecca- so much fun! So far I've been able to keep my titles, too.

    Lilly - ROFL!! According to my husband my chest will draw attention away, but I'm with ya. They better be looking at my EYES if we're speaking. Thanks for visiting with me!

  6. I love the opening of After Midnight. Beautiful. I must have a title as well for a WIP or no go.

  7. Seeee! You're not so weird because you have the title and back of book blurb first. Others do it and so do I. You're weird for other reasons, but it's one of the reasons I love ya! PMB!!!!!

    Gratz on the kick-off for your tour! Great post!

    Arial ;)

  8. Hi Sarah, you have a lovely smile yourself and I enjoyed your first page. I always have a title and a hook long before I start typing a page. The title changes sometimes. The hook always changes, at least tywenty times!

  9. Yay! Huge Congrats my friend on this your FIRST day of the After Midnight Blog Tour! I am sooo excited to see what happens with this book, Sarah! Please try to remember all the little people when you're rich and famous! I gotta go with the eyes for the first thing I notice in a man, as well. Windows to the soul and all that. And yes, they must sparkle, or the attraction just isn't there!

  10. Sarah, beautiful cover. Sounds like an amazing book. Great interview.

  11. Beth - Thanks. In all honestly, I've always worried the opening to After Midnight wasn't strong enough. But there was no other place for it to happen. It had to be right there. :-)

    So happy to discover I'm not the only one who needs a title before I can write!

  12. Arial -

    I love you, too, my sexy beyotch!

  13. Mona - thanks for the compliment on my smile! It's actually very crooked, you just can't tell in that picture. Probably why I like that photo and don't like most other photos. ;-)

  14. AJ-

    You'll be rich and famous right there by my side, girlfriend!

  15. Jill - Thank you. I have loved my cover since the day it arrived in my inbox. Just beautiful!

  16. Awesome interview! I'm reading After Midnight now and am loving it!!!

  17. Kathleen-

    Thanks for stopping in for a visit. So glad you're enjoying After Midnight!

  18. Fun post. I love to think back on those special times in life. We might only get one 1st but we can relive it in memories forever.

  19. Cherie-

    This was a fun post. I'm so glad Rebecca invited me to join her for it.