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Crystalship Interview

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From: Melissa E. []
Wednesday, November 10, 2004 12:34AM
Subject: [crystalship] Author Interview from your Cruise Journalist.

Hello from your cruise journalist!

For our History theme, I interviewed Sara Bowen, a.k.a. Sara B, a.k.a. sabo727. You probably know her as a regular on this newsgroup and have read the stories she has posted here.  I really like her stories, and the story that really caught my attention as fitting in with the History theme is "While My Pretty One Sleeps". It is set in the episode "En Ami" and is CGB Spender's recollection of how Scully was picked to be Mulder's partner and how the partnership developed.
You can find it on Gossamer ( under the 'Episode Spoilers' for the episode.

I asked Sara a lot of questions, and I appreciate her patience with me. Thank you, Sara! I kept my editing to a minimum. Please, everyone, feel free to comment on anything you see that piques your
interest. Enjoy!

About Sara:

1. Where do you live?
The lovely state of Florida, home to Orange Groves, Disney World, Busch Gardens, Lightening (not just the hockey team) and Hurricanes.

2. How old are you?

3. Do you work?
I'm retired I guess. I took an early buy out from the very large computer company I worked at. I started out as one of the first women on the Large Systems Test floor and ended my career in Quality Engineering. Now I spend a lot of time (and energy) on volunteer work for my community. I never worked so hard in my life until I stopped getting a pay check!

4. Is there anything else you would like to tell about yourself?
I'm a cancer survivor, five years remission and very grateful. I've been married for 23 years to Dennis (he's the one I always give thanks to in my stories), he's my rock. I love words and a smart turn of a phrase.

About the show:

5. When did you start watching X-Files?
Pilot episode, I had to video tape it because my sister had the temerity to book a flight arriving at the time the show first aired. I seriously thought of making her take the Airporter.

6. Why did you start watching?
I had always had an interest in the paranormal and the write ups said 'The
X-Files' would be about "true paranormal stories" (I rather think they strayed from that premise early on).

7. How long did it take you to fall in love with the series?
They had me from "no one here but the FBI's most unwanted." Any show that could provide witty sarcasm like that deserved a chance.

8. Was there any particular episode(s) that got you hooked on the series?
Like I said I liked it right from the beginning. I cannot really name one episode but right from the beginning there was a spark between the lead characters that grabbed me.

9. Who was your favorite character when you started watching?
I guess I have to go with the cliché and say Mulder and Scully. It was more Scully than Mulder. Scully's strength and intelligence was refreshing.

10. Who was your favorite character when the series ended?
I still loved Mulder and Scully but the character I like best at the end was Gibson Praise. I know I should have some reason, but I don't, he just touched me.

11. Did you watch the series until it ended or did you stop at a certain point?
I watched through the bitter end. Unlike many fans whose comments I've read I didn't hate the last two seasons. I didn't care for them, but mostly they angered me because they were a missed opportunity, particularly season eight. They had a great opportunity in season eight to expand the premise of the show. Mulder and Scully would always be the soul of the show but if handled right the franchise could have continued for at least one more season with a much more satisfying result. During the first part of season eight it seemed that the writers thought "we need to just hold on until Duchovny comes back." Then when he returned it was "he's back, what do we do with him?" Next they give us season nine, or as I think of it as, 'My
depressing year.' I think even more damaging than the loss of David Duchovny was that the production forgot how to smile. Ok, I'll just jump off my soapbox now.

12. What's your favorite episode and why?
I wouldn't call it my favorite but I have an obsession with 'One Son.' I don't know how to explain it. It hurts me to watch it, but
whenever I do I see so many openings for answers. Carter and Co. never bothered to provide those answers, so luckily the talented fanfic authors take over and fill in those gaps - thank you all!

13. If you could tell or ask Chris Carter one thing what would it be?
To fall back on the old joke 'only one?' Beyond 'get Scully a desk and door plaque' I suppose it would be stop answering questions with
more questions. It just irritates me.

About your writing:

14. When did you start writing
X-Files fanfic?
I think I wrote my first pathetic attempt in 2002.

15. Why did you start?
This is going to sound really conceited but I started writing to answer questions the show left open.

16. How many stories have you written?
Dozens but luckily for the readers most just have homes on several CD's. I have quite a few that I have to 'clean up' that will be posted in the (hopefully soon) future.


17. How many have you posted on the internet?
Nine (eight solo efforts and one collaboration with Kim Knight)

18. Where can we find your stories?
They have all been posted on Crystalship and six of them are on Gossamer, 'FPS - First Person Scully' is with KimK and 'Where's Scully' was posted under B., Scully (not my doing) but my name is on the story itself so who cares. I have the privilege of having several stories on a couple of different sites but I would rather not name them because I will inevitably miss one (or more) and I would hate
myself for it. I am very grateful that anyone thinks something I wrote is worth reading let alone archiving.

19. What is your favorite genre to write?
I'm an angsty kind of gal. But not too much angst, and I love it when it leads to MSR.

20. Have you gotten much feedback on your stories?
I have gotten some wonderful feedback. The readers are so insightful, generous and helpful.

21. Has the feedback encouraged you to write any more?
Very much so. I am working on a follow up to 'She Hides Behind Her Face' because several people asked for it. I only hope my muse doesn't freeze up on me, she can be so unreliable.

22. Has the feedback discouraged you from writing?
Never! The few times that someone has criticized something they did it in an effort to help me.

23. Which of your stories is your favorite?
My favorite story is one only my Beta Bud, Kim Knight, has read, it should be posted soon. It is called 'Trusting.' It started out as a single story, but Kim told me I couldn't leave it hanging so now there are four parts. Of the stories that have been posted I think 'Introducing Dana Scully' is my favorite. I like it because I feel I really captured Spender's character. I'm usually really
insecure about what I write but this one just felt so right.

24. Do you read other authors'
X-Files stories?
I read and read and read. To name them all would take too much space. It still amazes me to see the level of talent we have to enjoy. The imagination and professionalism is beyond belief.

25. Which author or story would you recommend to others?
Without hesitation Donna Honeycutt, she is one of the best of so many great writers.

26. Do you like any
X-Files websites?
Too many to name. I admire anyone with the talent to create and maintain a website. It saddens me when a site goes away.

27. Do you write or have you written fanfic based on any other TV series?
No, I don't even read fanfic from other shows.

28. Is there anything else you would like to tell about your writing in general?
I love dialogue and my stories are usually filled with it. I am working on being more descriptive. I have an offbeat way of looking at things and it is reflected in what I write (several people have commented on this quirk).

Sara's story "While My Pretty One Sleeps"

29. Why did you feel compelled to write this story?
The whole premise behind that episode (En Ami) never made sense to me. A man in Spender's position wouldn't need Scully to get that information so I assumed there was a different reason. At first I assumed it was to cause a rift between Mulder and Scully. When Scully ended up pregnant it just seemed to fall into place.

30. How long did it take you to write it?
This one actually took weeks although it had about three earlier versions that I scrapped.

31. What was the easiest part about writing it?
I hate to have to admit it but Spender's attitude and character were easy for me.

32. What was the hardest part about writing it?
The interaction between Spender and Teena Mulder. Teena was always a mystery to me. It felt like she wanted to be closer to her son but didn't know how or was afraid. She was a puzzle.

33. How did you get the idea to write it?
I needed to give some reason behind that episode.

34. Why did you choose to use Spender as a main character?
Like I said before Spender came easy for me to write. Also I agreed with Scully that there was and honesty in him during that episode. He knew she despised him yet he acted gently toward her, almost fatherly.

35. Why did you choose to explain the history of Mulder and Scully's partnership?
If I said 'it fit the story' would that be too flippant? I had to provide the background to explain the reason they were taking the action of restoring her fertility.

36. What do you want the readers to feel as they read it?
I think Kim summed it up the best when she did the beta for me. She asked "is it possible for a story to be sweet and creepy at the same time?" I like that description.

37. What do you feel when you re-read it?
When I read it I think it looks like a follow up on my other story "Introducing Dana Scully", which was actually written after.

38. Looking back, is there anything you would have done differently writing it?
There are some points that seem very clumsy to me now, but I wouldn't rewrite them.

39. What else would you like to tell me about this story?
I like to think this story filled in some blanks and maybe got some people thinking.

40. Is there anything I missed that you want to add?
Just to say I have a couple new stories that should be posted soon and I hope the readers will let me know what they think. Thanks.

Okay, shipmates, any comments or feedback would be fantastic!

Thank you again, Sara.

comment me!

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