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The City Journals

She’s proper and popular: say that three times fast

Attendees turn out to listen to author Sarah M. Eden at the Viridian Event Center. (Amy Green/City Journals)

By Amy Green [email protected]

One way to get women (and two very supportive men) to fill up an entire conference room, is to invite a proper romance author to bring her newest release. There was no need to put on a corset or traveling gloves to attend—although that sounds downright dashing and proper. Fresh copies of “Ashes on the Moor,” by Sarah M. Eden, were stacked and ready for book-hungry fans at the Viridian Event Center on March 7. 

The award-winning author came in person to speak and lead a questionnaire. She gave away mint print copies to fans who could remember names and recite details from her stories. Eden is a USA Today Bestseller and a Utah local. Her books might be the ones you do choose by the cover. The wraparound pictures show women of Victorian era, in quiet pose and gem-tone dresses. With a soft matte finish, the books even feel good in your hands. The outside covers are elegant and immediately lead a reader into the story-unfolding experience. The books are available at your local library; in each book, one can find out what Eden’s characters are actually like, on the inside. 

What is a proper romance? Ilise Levine, of Shadow Mountain Publishing, explained “It’s clean content. It’s suitable for adults and young adults.” Many followers of this genre also refer to proper romance as Christian romance. These books are not necessarily religion focused but reflect Christian values.

Eden described to fans her obsession with Greek mythology, stemming from childhood. Many of her novels include characters with legendary god and demigod names. As readers are often in awe of how writers create a smooth waltz of words, Eden helped simplify to the audience saying, “A story is taking something you enjoy and twisting it a little.” She started with her adoring heart for mythology and made a successful spin of it. 

Kellie Dickes took a front row seat to hear Eden speak. 

“Sarah does a beautiful job at weaving the characters together from book to book so you feel a part of each of their lives, stories and family,” Dickes said. “I love seeing how the characters in one story progress into another, all the while seeing new love connections arise. Just as with our own families, you want to see every member find their happiness, especially after trials and struggles. With Sarah’s book, you get that and so much more; you get to continue following them and seeing them with each new book.”

During the event, fans posed questions to the author. One asked, “How do you have an idea, then flesh out the story?” 

Eden gave a tip to aspiring writers with her answer. “I have a set of 200 questions I ask (myself) about a main character, to find out who they are,” she said. Then Eden broke it down further to explain how she asks 150 questions about supporting characters and 50 questions about a mentioned character. Who knew numbers could help create a story with depth and interest? Eden recommended a book, “The Plot Thickens – 8 Ways to Bring Fiction to Life,” by Noah Lukeman. “I discovered it at my local library,” she said. “That is a great place to start.” 

Eden gave out a few laughs, in addition to book prizes and her new release. She revealed to fans some elements of her own personality. 

“I am short, red-headed and hyper,” she said. Eden called herself a “fast talker,” and she definitely was. She gave fans a lot of attention and information in a few hours; she’s a writer who is passionate about the work she creates. 

Eden’s books are both proper and popular. If you asked Eden to say that three times fast, she would figure out a way. She could waltz a phrase, twist it, weave it, throw it up to the gods and catch it in a prim reticule—maybe even give it the classical name of a nymph. Then, she might say it even faster.