Sara Starbuck has spent twenty years working in UK trade book publishing and has had experience as a commissioning editor, desk editor, a development editor and also as an author’s agent. Nowadays Sara works as a freelance book editor, proofreader and writer, specialising in fiction, YA and children’s books. She is the author of eight published works so far, including the non-fiction memoir Breakfast Epiphanies (Atlantic Books, 2006); the children’s adventure novels, The Dread Pirate Fleur and the Ruby Heart (Random House, 2009) and its sequel, The Dread Pirate Fleur and The Hangman’s Noose (Random House, 2010); The Fairythorn Tales series under the pseudonym, Lara Faraway (Templar Publishing, 2013); and most recently two non-fiction books for children, Lions (Hachette Publishing Group /Born Free Foundation, 2015) and Leopards (Hachette Publishing Group /Born Free Foundation, 2016).
Sara is a regular on the schools’ and libraries’ circuit, giving talks and running writing workshops, and more than happy to dress up as a fairy or an endangered species, whatever it takes to get the message across.
Sara has been a Writer in Residence at Plaistow and Kirdford Primary School in 2012 and was ‘adopted’ twice by schools in the Brighton Festival ‘Adopt an Author Scheme’ (2011 and 2013). In 2012 she was asked to help launch Reading Force, a shared reading initiative to encourage Service children and families to read and share books when they are apart.
I grew up in a massive Irish family full of boys and we spent most weekends fighting for the comfy chair at my grandparents' tiny flat in Lambeth. In those situations, surrounded by wrestling males, reading was my only escape. I used to tuck myself away in a corner and travel the universe. It was my own secret, private space, that no one could invade. While the boys were busy bundling each other and giving out the super wedgies, I was lost in haunted castles on stormy nights, mysterious orphanages and tropical islands. My secret world was always better than the real one. This is probably why I got into the once upon a time business myself. I love losing myself in books, whether I'm reading them, working on them or writing them myself. I find it fascinating how writers turn their imagination into words then how readers turn the words back into imagination again. Books look like such ordinary things, but they are anything but. Paper or electronic, they are portable magic.
I wrote my first book when I was seven. It was rubbish and I didn’t bother with an ending, but it was the start of something. I’ve written many more since then, most with endings, and I'm lucky enough to have had some of them published. Working with other writers is an honour and a thrill for me and I'm as enthusiastic about their stories as the ones I write myself.
I live in West Sussex with my little boy and a fat cat.