Thank you Carla Sarratt for joining us today. Black Pearls Magazine and EDC Creations readers, please give our guest author a hand for taking time to visit with us. If you would like for Carla Sarratt to answer more questions about her books, after reading the interview, please leave them in the comments section below. If you have read her books, share your reviews with us too.
Intimate Conversation with Carla Sarratt and Ella Curry of EDC CreationsElla: Carla, have you always been an avid reader? Did you read alot as a child?
I've been reading books for what feels like my entire life. I don't remember the title of the first book I read, but I do remember being in the first grade reading such captivating tales where I was made to see Dick, Jane, Tom, and a bunch of other kids run and hop. I advanced from their perilous adventures to the highly engaging stories of Curious George, Amelia Bedelia, Ramona and Beezus, Pippi Longstocking, and many other popular books from my childhood.
Books have totally shaped my life. Right now I am taking a break from reading a book to write this stimulating bio. By the way, the book I am reading is TTFN by Lauren Myracle, a book written entirely in instant messaging. Yesterday I read TTYL and TTFN is the sequel. Both books involve a trio of best friends in high school who live in Atlanta and months of IM conversations that chronicle their lives.
Okay, so yes books have shaped my life. And I mean that. I remember liking a boy in the fourth grade who told me that I read too much. I tried to stop reading just to please him in hopes that he would like me in return and be my boyfriend, but I missed books too much. So I outgrew that crush. That was the same year I was a library helper at my elementary school during recess. I got to be alone with books and read to my heart's content. In fourth grade, I was introduced to Judy Blume by way of an excerpt of Freckle Juice in my textbook.
Then there were the many, many times that I was placed on punishment. My punishment? I was not allowed to read any books except textbooks. Do you know how hard that was to deal with? I could play with my toys, watch TV, go outside, but I could not read. I read my language arts textbooks like they were the most riveting things ever.
(Read Carla's entire story about reading and her passion for books)
Ella: When did you first start to write?
I first started writing in college outside of the papers that I wrote my English classes. My alma mater’s Black student organization Concerned Black Students had a literary publication called Black Minds that I contributed essays and poems too. After college, I taught a creative writing course for Upward Bound where I wrote a short story and more poems. It wasn’t until 2002 that I tried my hand at writing a book.
Ella: Who are you influenced by?
I was influenced largely by Sharon Draper. Her young adult novel Tears of a Tiger is very popular with students because of the way the story is told through letters, essays, articles, phone calls, etc. I also count Sharon Flake as an influence for my writing.
Ella: What is the best and worst thing about writing?
The best thing is creating a story, exploring your imagination and the thoughts that roam around in your head. I also love researching elements in the story as well as the Black History facts.
The worst thing about writing is actually typing the story out. Sometimes your thoughts are faster than your fingers. I wish I had a voice and thought recorder that could take my words and thoughts and type for me.
Ella: Who are some of your favorite authors?
I love Sharon Draper, Eric Jerome Dickey, Kimberla Lawson Roby, Bebe Moore Campbell, Sophie Kinsella, Meg Cabot, Judy Blume, and so many more authors.
Ella: How do you balance family life and your writing?
It’s pretty easy for me to do since I am single and don’t have any kids. The bigger struggle for me is balancing my love of reading a good book and writing a good book for others.
Ella: What was your major in college?
I majored in psychology and English with a minor in education which allowed me to teach high school English. I wanted to be a child psychologist growing up among many other things. I used my psychology background in the classroom dealing with different personalities and also in my writing with understanding my characters’ personalities.
Readers, what are some of your favorite books? What books do you enjoy? Share with us below.
Carla Sarratt, thank you for sharing with us today. May all your dreams come true! EDC Creations wishes you the best today and for the rest of your life. Peace and many blessings.
You can find out more about Carla at:
Carla Sarratt, author of Freshman Focus and Just Be
Carla on MySpace
The Brown Bookshelf