I Always Wanted to Write a Book by Sarah Jio

There’s nothing like discovering a fantastic debut author!  And that’s exactly what we’ve found in the fabulous Sarah Jio.  The Violets of March, which was released last month, has skyrocketed, thanks to the incredible reviews and word of mouth.  It’s the perfect book to take with you on your next weekend getaway! And we’re thrilled that Sarah was kind enough to take a minute to tell us why she’s always wanted to write a book.  Thanks Sarah!

Watch the trailer for The Violets of March here.

Excited to read Sarah Jio’s debut novel? Well if you leave a comment on this post and are a resident of the US or Canada, you’ll be entered to win a copy of The Violets of March. We’ll randomly select the winner after 6pm EST on Wednesday, May 18th.


I’m so thrilled to be guest blogging for International Chick Lit Month! I’m Sarah Jio, the author of The Violets of March, my debut novel which was published by Penguin (Plume) on April 27. It’s a story about a heartbroken, recently divorced woman who finds herself at the crossroads of life. When she receives an invitation from her great aunt to spend the month of March on Bainbridge Island, Washington, she accepts and travels West, eager for clarity and to let the waters of the island wash away her pain. While there, she discovers a diary in the guest bedroom, dated 1943, written by an anonymous woman. It is only when she is able to unlock the secrets of the diary that she is able to put her own life back together and ultimately find love again.

Many people have been curious about my path to publication, and I’d love to share a little about that. A magazine writer for the last 11 years (I write regularly for magazines like Glamour, Real Simple, Health, Redbook and American Baby, among others), I had always wanted to write a book, and I toyed around with it for a while before Violets came to me, and when it did, it hit like a freight train. I sat down at my desk and wrote feverishly until I had a decent first draft.

The story was initially inspired by a jazz song called The Waters of March sung by the late Susannah McCorkle (find it on iTunes – you will love it) – in fact, the early version of the book was called The Waters of March before a name change. I set out to write the kind of story that I longed to read – one with history, heart, emotion, a bit of mystery and a sprinkling of romance. I wanted to write a book that left the reader thinking about the characters and their stories long after the book was finished – a feel-good story. So I got to work!

I wrote the first draft very quickly, in just a few months, during the second trimester of my second pregnancy (I’m oddly creative and productive while pregnant – but that’s a story for another post!), and was fortunate to land a great agent who sold the book at auction! Selling the novel was one of the most exciting days of my life. I’ll never forget sitting by the phone (with trembling hands) waiting for the call with the offer details – and then, a week later, getting the email on my Blackberry with the details of the sale of rights in Germany (yes, I nearly fainted on the cereal aisle – right in front of the instant oatmeal!).

As my debut day, April 27, neared, I got even more excited (OK, and a little nervous!). I feel like I’m sending my baby out into the world, and I hope that the story resonates with readers. I’ve just completed my second book, The Bungalow, which will be published by Penguin (Plume) in the summer of 2012. I’m so excited about this new story! I also have a third novel in the works, which I am equally giddy about.

Writers and readers: What types of books/stories are you getting excited about these days? What types of plots/storylines attract you most?

To find out more about the incredibly talented Sarah Jio, visit her website and be sure to follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

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17 Responses to I Always Wanted to Write a Book by Sarah Jio

  1. Gina B. says:

    This sounds like a great story! Thanks for the chance to win a copy!!

  2. Lisa says:

    Sounds like a great book!

  3. Jeannette P says:

    Sounds like an excellent read! Would love to win a copy!

  4. Kristia L says:

    Always looking for a new book and this sounds great!

  5. Jules says:

    I LOVE a story where I find myself thinking about the characters and their lives long after I’ve read the last page. Violets of March sounds like a very promising read … looking forward to it! Thanks for the chance to win a copy! : )

  6. Corinne says:

    Excited to read this book!

  7. Kimberly S says:

    I’ve been wanting to read this one. Thanks for the opportunity.

  8. Susan S says:

    I want to read this book so bad! Thanks for the opportunity for a copy.

  9. Melissa R says:

    Looks like a great read!

  10. D. says:

    A mix of love, history, and mystery! Sounds like my kind of Chick Lit!

  11. Wow this book sounds awesome! Would love to read it

  12. Nina Priddy says:

    I always like a good love story, that’s what attracts me, but I love any good heart warming story. I love reading and would love to read this book!

  13. Mary says:

    Absolutely LOVE the storyline ! I would love to read this book.

  14. Chanpreet says:

    I’m attracted to all sorts of books and stories. Currently I seem to be into mostly women’s fiction and chick lit. I love historically related/based books because I’m always whirled away to a world before my own, where I always wonder how life was. It doesn’t matter the decade or the country, it’s just something that always fascinates me.

    I’m really glad Ms. Jio was on and I got to know a little bit more about her , and that I already had this book on my wishlists! Thank you internationalchicklitmonth! 🙂

  15. Trish says:

    I have this book on my to-read list. I am thrilled to learn more about Sarah through her guest appearance here. Congratulations to her for her debut book release and best wishes for the upcoming books! I am looking forward to reading The Violets of March. =)

  16. Alison says:

    I’m going to read this as soon as I can! This book is just my type and I’m looking forward to a good read. Thanks!!!

  17. Jane Cook says:

    Thanks for the post Sarah! I enjoyed your book trailer, and I’ve read a lot of good things about The Violets of March’; I’ve been excited about reading it in part because of the region, having visited there a few years ago (I have family in Port Ludlow).

    I’ve lately been reading books that revolve around cooking/food, history (WWI/WWII), or regions of the US I’ve visited or want to visit (Pacific NW, Key West, etc)

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