6 Things with Sarah Tinsley, author of "The Shadows We Cast"
What if you couldn’t recognise the violence in others? Or in yourself?
Nina refuses to accept the role of passive victim after being sexually assaulted. She becomes obsessed with an online vendetta that risks her job, her friendships, and her sanity.
Eric thinks, if anything, he’s too nice. But when he takes advantage of a stranger he is forced to confront the kind of man he really is.
The Shadows We Cast is a dark novel about consent and control that unsettles ideas about victims and villains.
Sarah is a British writer living in France. She explores gender issues in her writing and helps others explore their creative selves through workshops and courses. She loves traveling, and in 2018 she went on a global adventure with her partner and three-month-old baby for six months.
Her first novel, The Shadows We Cast, won the Spread the Word/Bookouture competition in 2020 and was published by SRL Publishing in January 2022. Her short fiction has been published widely, including in Mslexia and Litro, and she came third in the Bristol Short Story Prize in 2021. She loves music and has played in a local brass band in Cornwall and a samba drumming band in London.
She also coordinates Write By You, a writing project for underrepresented young female writers in the UK. Coming from a working-class background, she’s worked as a waitress, an envelope stuffer, a factory worker, a shop assistant and supply teacher. In between all of this she tried to keep up with her writing. For more visit her website and follow her @sarahtinsleyuk
What a pleasure to have you with us this fine, french winter morning! Congratulations on the publication of "The Shadows We Cast!" Could you tell us a little more about the book and how it came about? For example, what were six things that went into the writing of this book.
Rambling plot conversations, excessive amounts of index cards, depressing research into sexual assault, hopeful tales of survivors, multicoloured pens for annotating, giant bars of Dairy Milk caramel.
Five things you need for a good writing day?
An early enough start that my mind is still sleep-blurred (but not too early, obviously), a walk outside, colourful things around me and on my desk, quiet and no distractions, hair out of my face.
Four types of readers who will enjoy this book?
Men and women who are interested in how gender affects our perception of the world, people who like gritty and tense books, fans of challenging literature, people who like books about societal expectations.
Three challenges you faced in the writing of this book?
Finding time and energy to write with a small child, keeping momentum up after lots of rejections, dealing with writing from the POV of somoene who does a terrible thing.
Two writers that have influenced your work?
Kerry Hudson who made me realise that books written by and about ‘normal’ people are worthwhile, Ali Smith for producing books about challenging things that are always gorgeously written.
One word to describe this collection OR One thing you hope readers will get from this book.
The Shadows We Cast is available for preorder here. You can connect with Sarah on Twitter or Facebook.
Disclaimer: "EMC's 6 things" interview series seeks to promote the artist and their featured writing and is in no way an endorsement of any of said artist's services, opinions or other work outside of this feature.