Author/Blogger Interview: Sarah Wendell of SBTB
Posted on 13 April 2017
Today, we have Sarah Wendell of Smart Bitches Trashy Books, a romance novel review blog, podcast and community. Sarah is also the author of two non-fiction books on the romance genre (one of which is taught at university) as well as a fiction author. And if that weren't enough, this amazing woman also runs a podcast, is a speaker and an entrepreneur who has been on TV. So, here is our witty interview with the prolific Sarah.
Personality Type (Myers-Briggs):
I’m an INFP. Sometimes the last two letters change but the “I” part is incontrovertible.
Just one? One book, and one author? Can’t be done! Impossible!
All of them!
City of Your Dreams:
Peel, Isle of Man, UK (not really a city but it does have a photobombing medieval castle!)
Favorite TV Show/ Movie:
Great British Baking Show, Original Recipe (aka the BBC1 version) and the new America’s Test Kitchen with Julia and Bridget hosting.
Most underrated book, in your opinion:
Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore
Morning person or night owl:
I used to be a night owl, but now I’m the opposite! Aging is weird.
Favorite book blogger/ YouTuber:
I can’t have one - it would be very unwise!!
When did you start the SBTB blog? How has the journey been?
SBTB began in 2005, so the site is over 12 years old now. The journey has been wonderful and unexpected, and I’m thankful for it every day.
The non-fiction books you’ve written are unique and have an interesting perspective. What made you want to be an author and get into writing books that take an academic view on the romance genre?
Thank you! I didn’t know I wanted to be an author, or that I could even write a book. I didn’t know what the book would look like or how it would read, either, so it wasn’t my intention to take an academic look. I wanted to examine the genre from the position of an intelligent, devoted reader - which I think all romance readers are!
Many book bloggers aspire to be able to blog full-time. You’ve gone from blogger to writer to speaker to entrepreneur. What business advice would you like to give our readers?
Keep going, and have a target to reach for. I didn’t realize I could make my blog my full-time job until I sat down and come up with a target income that would replace the money I made at my last job. Once I had a goal, I figured out how to make sure I could hit it consistently.
What does your ideal day look like?
My ideal work day is quiet and sunny, because my office faces south, and I’m in the northern hemisphere. I love long, uninterrupted stretches to tackle my to-do list, and spans of time when I don’t need to keep track of what time it is. Then my brain is very happy and very creative, and I have a great time.
For a non-work day, I try to think of my favorite things to do, and make sure I do at least two or three of them, whether it’s cooking, eating, cross stitching, going outside, reading outside, or eating something I just cooked while reading outside.
You’re a writer, blogger, speaker, do a weekly podcast and more. How do you manage to do it all? Which of these roles is your favorite?
I am very organized, or I try to be. I pay attention to what needs to get done when, and try to give myself space to be creative about the tasks I want to enjoy. I love podcasting and writing, and I love speaking and meeting readers, so while all of those things are part of my “work,” I have so much fun doing them that it’s not too arduous if I give myself time and space to prepare for each job.
What sub-genre of romance do you tend to read the most?
I tend to read contemporary comedy and historical the most, but I’m open to anything with a romance in it!
Many book lovers and readers are introverts. Are you? If so, how was the experience of becoming a speaker and being interviewed on TV?
I am so very introverted, it’s ridiculous. Speaking and being interviewed took some getting used to, but what helped was thinking of it as an opportunity to connect with the person who I was speaking with and as a chance to reach a romance reader who might not know how welcoming and friendly the community of romance readers online can be. I still get nervous, but mostly it’s right beforehand. Once I’m on the podium or talking to the interviewer, my mental frame of mind switches to, “Well, I’m already up here... can’t back out now. I might as well do my best at what I came prepared to do.”
Do you have any other projects in the pipeline? When can we expect to hear more from you?
Thank you for asking this question! I love this question! I’m currently building an online course on using Google Calendar to declutter your schedule and organize your life. I wrote a series on SBTB about how I use Google Cal and the response was so terrific I developed an entire online course to help people. You can sign up for a weekly newsletter with organization tips at OrganizationAcademy.com!
Thank you, Sarah, for taking the time to do this interview. We're so excited about your future projects and can't wait to see more from you.
You can find Sarah on her blog: http://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/
And her social media channels: