Sara Palacios is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin with a major in Advertising and a minor in English Literature. It was during her time in college that she really fell in love with the written word and ventured into writing her own stories. In addition to writing, Sara spends a majority of her time reading the works of other authors. She reads most genres – but thoroughly enjoys chick-lit, women’s and historical fiction. When she isn’t busy reading or writing, Sara enjoys spending time with family and friends. She is happily married, the owner of two precious doggies and a new mom to a handsome baby boy. Sara is also an avid animal-lover, runner, yoga enthusiast, wannabe vegan, USA soccer fan, foodie and fashion blog-lover and Christian.
Balancing Motherhood and Writing
Let me start by saying that I am completely smitten with the topic for this guest post.
In May, I gave birth to the most beautiful baby boy and spent my first few weeks basking in the moment and snuggling with the baby that I had dreamt about for many years. While I was busy attempting to learn the ropes of first time motherhood, I really struggled balancing anything else on top of it. When a new mom tells you that her first weeks are beautiful yet overwhelming, you should believe her, because there really are no better words to describe it. At first I had this idea that things would be exactly the same, yet different as well with the addition of Ethan. And yes, while that is true in some aspects, I don’t think I ever realized exactly what those words meant.
My life has changed so much in the past 9 months and I will be the first to admit that I always put my son and my husband first, before anything else in life. A close second would be sleep. And, with a new baby, and especially as a nursing mom, there just isn’t much time for anything else. So, in the beginning, I struggled. Many nights I would plan on writing, just like I had in the years before Ethan came along but exhaustion would kick in and I would crawl into bed and hope that Ethan would get a full night’s sleep so that I could rest too.
Am I scaring you yet? I definitely don’t mean to. The point I am getting at is that early on, right after Ethan was born, my whole life became about him and there really wasn’t much room for anything else. But slowly, as he has grown and become more consistent about sleeping, I am beginning to regain my former identity and one of those things has been writing. I have been busy brainstorming my next novel idea and I know that I am ready to tell my next story. So, the timing couldn’t have worked out any better.
I guess what I am trying to say is that being a mom and a writer is a juggling act and it took me a while to truly understand that. Being a mom is the best kind of work, but being a writer is a close second. My family will always be my priority but writing is my dream, so I will continue to work hard to balance the two worlds.
I think some of the inspiration came from the relationship that I have with my husband. He spoke Spanish before he spoke English (although you wouldn’t know any different now) but over the years, I’ve become more and more versed in the language and thought, “wouldn’t it be fun to write a love story where the two main characters meet yet don’t speak the same language?” I think the idea was born right then and there.
Q. Do you have a writing ritual?
This is definitely a work in progress since my son was born. I will be the first to admit that I haven’t been the best about writing since he was born but I do try. And right now, I squeeze it in pretty much whenever I can.
Q. At what age did you know that writing was something you wanted to pursue?
I’ve always loved to read and write but I didn’t really start to pursue it until my first year in college.
Q. What is your favorite thing to munch on while writing?
You know, I am actually not much of a snacker while writing. I feel like it gets my fingers dirty and I spend more time trying to keep my keyboard clean than I do writing. I do however LOVE to drink a nice glass of red wine. So, I would definitely list that as my favorite thing.
Q. What are your writing goals for 2013?
To get a draft finished of the novel I just started.
Q. What book(s) are you currently reading?
I just started reading The Hobbit. I am a huge fan of the Lord of the Rings trilogy but have yet to read The Hobbit. So, I’m giving it a go.
Q. If you can read one book over and over again, which book would it be? Why?
Oh goodness, I have a few that I revisit every few years, starting with the LOTR trilogy mentioned above. I also love Pillars of the Earth by Ken Folliet.
Q. Where is your most favorite place to write?
On my back porch.
Q. If Love In Translation is a movie, who would play the main characters?
I must admit that I have quite a soft spot for Taylor Kitsch, but unfortunately he doesn’t speak Spanish (can we teach him?), so that might prohibit his casting. So, I am not sure who I would pick to play Andres given the Spanish speaking aspect but I will have to think about it. As far as Emily goes, I will go with Jennifer Lawrence. Love her! And for Steven, I would definitely go with Joshua Jackson. Unfortunately for him, he will always be Pacey to me.
Q. I read on your website that you're a runner and a yoga enthusiast. Which comes easiest for you; writing, running, or doing yoga?
I would have to say that they might all be equal. I love each of them separately and some days they might come incredibly easy, but then there are those days when I have to do a “gut check” to continue over that next hill. I’ve sat at my computer for days before waiting for the words to pour out and I’ve also gone for a run and felt like I was carrying another person on my back … so each presents its own challenges and rewards.
Q. What can your fans expect next? Possibly another novel?
Q. What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Read and write as much as you possibly can. I think they are both incredibly important facets in a writer’s toolbox.