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Award-winning author Sarah M. Anderson may live east of the Mississippi River, but her heart lies out west on the Great Plains. With a lifelong love of horses and two history teachers for parents, she had plenty of encouragement to learn everything she could about the tribes of the Great Plains.
When she started writing, it wasn’t long before her characters found themselves out in South Dakota among the Lakota Sioux. She loves to put people from two different worlds into new situations and to see how their backgrounds and cultures take them someplace they never thought they’d go. Sarah writes for both Harlequin Desire and Samhain Publishing.
Sarah won the RT Reviewer’s Choice Best Desire of 2012 for A Man of Privilege and accepted the award in person in Kansas City at the RT Convention on May 3, 2013.
Combining snarky humor with shirtless cowboys on horseback, Sarah strives to raise awareness of the realities of life on Lakota Indian reservations. She uses proper Lakota translations when her characters speak their native language.
Sarah lives in Illinois with her husband, son, and rescue dogs. She is a writer and editor at Mark Twain Media, Inc., an educational publishing company. When not chasing her son around or writing, she attempts to read, knit, and complete home improvement projects on her historical 1895 Queen Anne house.
Awards and Recognition
The Nanny Plan won the Romance Writers of America (RWA) 2016 RITA® Award for Short Contemporary Romance!
Mystic Cowboy was named a finalist in the 2014 Booksellers Best Award contest!
Mystic Cowboy was named a finalist in the 2014 Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence contest!
Straddling the Line was named 2013 CataRomance Reviewers’ Choice Award for Best Desire!
Bringing Home the Bachelor was named one of 2013’s Top Ten Reads of Reviewer Nikki at Ramblings of a Chaotic Mind!
Bringing Home the Bachelor’s hero Billy Bolton was named one of 2013’s Top Ten Boyfriends by Scorching Book Reviews!
Mystic Cowboy was named one of 2013’s Best Covers by Scorching Book Reviews!
A Man of Privilege was named RT Reviewer’s Choice Best Book Awards: Outstanding Series: Desire for 2012!
A Man of Privilege was named to the Harlequin Junkie’s Top 10 Harlequins of 2012!
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Frequently Asked Questions
How did you get started writing?
Like every author, I got my start writing by reading. Getting lost in other times and places was one of my favorite things to do as a kid. I always knew I wanted to be a writer, and throughout the years, I took various cracks at it. Those attempts were all pretty terrible. The trick to writing is to keep writing. It’s both that simple and that hard.
How long does it take you to write a book?
I can finish a book in three to four months, depending on what’s going on with my family. Then the book has to make a few rounds between my readers before it gets passed up to my agent and then my editor. It’s not unusual for me to be writing one book, doing revisions on a second book, and proofreading a third one at the same time.
How many books are in this series? When will the next one be out?
A Man of His Word, A Man of Privilege and A Man of Distinction were a loosely related series I call Lawyers in Love. A Real Cowboy was a stand-alone book. The Bolton Brothers include the books Straddling the Line, Bringing Home a Bachelor and Expecting a Bolton Baby. Mystic Cowboy, Masked Cowboy and Nobody are a different series called Men of the White Sandy. Then I’ll be starting a new series with Rodeo Dreams for Superromance. Finally, I’ll round out 2014 with the first three books in a brand-new series called The Beaumont Heirs.
Did you sell the first book you wrote?
No. A Man of His Word was--wait, let me count--the tenth book I wrote. I’ve written nineteen total. The first three books I wrote were how I learned to write. If I hadn’t written them, I wouldn’t have figured out how to build a book. But that doesn’t mean anyone else should ever read them!
Where do you get your ideas? Are your characters based on real-life people?
I have what has been described as ‘an over-active imagination.’ While that wasn’t always a benefit in the classroom, now I appreciate it. I don’t base any of my characters on real people, but I do try to put my characters in real places. Most of the American Indian reservations I use are real places in and near South Dakota.
Some of the reservations you describe are not much more than third-world countries. Are you creating those places or are they real?
Sadly, no. Many American Indian reservations are places of extreme poverty. The Pine Ridge Lakota reservation is the poorest county in the United States. Many of the homes there have no running water or electricity. There are no stores on the rez, as its known, and few schools. Students have to be bussed several hours away, and most drop out before they finish eight grade. Drug and alcoholism is rampant.
Do you support any charities to help the Lakota?
Through blogging, social media, and donations, I support Lakota Pine Ridge Children's Enrichment Project. They collect school supplies and clothing for Lakota children on Pine Ridge and other reservations. I encourage people to stuff a backpack and support their efforts. You can make a difference, one child at a time!
What language do your Lakota Indian characters speak? Is that really Lakota?
My Lakota Indian characters do speak Lakota. Most of the translations were provided by Lakota Language Consortium (www.lakhota.org), an organization at the forefront of Lakota language revitalization. Other members of the Lakota tribe have generously provided me with translations.
Can you introduce me to your agent and/or editor?
I wish I could, but it’s just not possible. If you’re just getting started with your writing journey, I recommend starting with Editors and Preditors, Query Tracker, and Writers Beware, as well as looking into a trade organization, such as Romance Writers of America. There’s a wealth of information out there. The best thing to do is write, write, write!
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