Author Interview (#6): Sarah Beth Durst on Chasing Power

Sarah Beth Durst author photoSarah Beth Durst is here today to talk about her latest novel Chasing Power and answer some questions about it. Chasing Power is Sarah’s latest novel for young adults and features a master thief with telekinesis, romance and adventure!

Miss Print (MP): What was the inspiration for Chasing Power?

Sarah Beth Durst (SBD): Telekinesis.

Really, the whole novel started from just that little seed.  I’ve loved telekinesis ever since I was a kid and read The Girl With the Silver Eyes and watched Escape to Witch Mountain.  And the X-Men cartoon on Saturday mornings.  So I wanted to write a story about a girl who could move things with her mind.

My idea for Kayla was that her power would be very, very limited.  She’d only be able to move things as heavy as a piece of paper.  So she’d have to be clever.

MP: How did you decide which places to include in the story?

SBD: I chose places that captured my imagination.  One of the best things about being a writer is that you get to be the ultimate armchair traveler.  I got to explore catacombs and visit the rainforest without ever being far from my refrigerator.

A lot of the places were inspired by National Geographic articles that I’ve read over the years, thus justifying the towering stack of those magazines in the basement.  (They’re just too pretty to throw away!  Okay, yes, I’m a bit of a pack rat…)

MP: You mentioned that the story started with Kayla and her telekinesis. When did you know the story would also include a teleporting boy?

SBD: Pretty early.  Just glanced at my brainstorming notes from when I started working on the novel, and at the end of my first day of brainstorming, there’s a single line: “He’s a teleporter!!!!!!!!!”

Apparently, I brainstorm with lots of punctuation.

MP: Which scene are you especially excited for readers to get to in Chasing Power?

SBD: The whole plot is designed to ramp up.  It starts with a small heist to introduce Kayla and her powers, and then it builds and builds and builds…  Personally, I’m excited for readers to get to Spain.  Had a lot of fun writing that scene.

MP: Can you tell us anything about your next project?

SBD: Yes!  I’m working on a middle-grade novel called THE GIRL WHO COULD NOT DREAM.  It’s about a girl whose family owns a secret store where they buy, bottle, and sell dreams, but who can’t have any of her own, and the adventure that she and her pet monster go on when someone starts kidnapping dreamers.

It’s coming out from HMH/Clarion Books in fall 2015, and I’m really, really excited about it!

Thanks so much for interviewing me!

Thanks to Sarah for taking the time to answer my questions!

For more information about Sarah and her books you can also visit her website.

You can also check out our previous interviews discussing Sarah’s other novels Enchanted Ivy and Drink, Slay, Love, Vessel and Conjured and The Lost.

If you want to know more about Chasing Power be sure to check out my  review.