How to Get Started in Fiction Writing

As an author and a writing instructor, I often get emails from those who are interested in getting started with writing fiction as a passion, and possible income. Fiction can include novels all the way down to micro stories, with novellas, short stories, and flash fiction in between. Here are some resources to get you started, but don't feel overwhelmed. It's a journey.

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Two Easy Options for Reading Kindle eBooks

People often ask how they can read my books as an ebook. There are two options on how to read Kindle ebooks:

  1. Buy an e-reader
  2. Download the Kindle app to read books from any device

If you want a dedicated e-reader, I suggest this one: Kindle E-reader (I have an older model)

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New Novel Set in the Old Choctaw Nation

“Someone’s going to be king in this territory. No reason it can’t be me. It sure won’t be you.” 


Traitors, (Choctaw Tribune Series, Book 2) picks up a storyline started in the well-received novel, The Executions (Book 1). Set in 1890s Choctaw Nation, the Choctaw Tribune Series follows the journey of a fictional mixed-blood Choctaw family as they encounter the real events and real history in Indian Territory before Oklahoma became a state. A historical fiction series with a Western flare, these Native stories explore racial, political, spiritual, and social issues in the old Choctaw Nation—and beyond.

From the back cover of Traitors:

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Book Release: "Touch My Tears: Tales from the Trail of Tears"

In 2012, I was honored as one of four artists in the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian Artist Leadership Program for my literary work in preserving Choctaw Trail of Tears stories. As a Choctaw, this historic event has always been close to my heart. Every spring, my mom and I make a special trip to Oklahoma to join our tribe in a commemorative walk to honor our ancestors. Now we have a new way to honor them, and help other people of all cultures understand this piece of American history so few know of.


Touch My Tears: Tales from the Trail of Tears

Touch My Tears


Whether or not you enjoy history or reading fiction in general, I believe these stories will reach out from the pages and touch your heart. And maybe a tear or two of your own.


From the back cover of my new book, Touch My Tears:

“In 1830, a treaty was signed. In 1830, hearts broke. Tears fell on the long journey for twenty thousand. The Choctaw Nation was forced to leave their homelands to preserve their people. But they could not save them all.

“For this collection of short stories, Choctaw authors from five U.S. states come together to present a part of their ancestors’ journey, a way to honor those who walked the trail for their future. These stories not only capture a history and a culture, but the spirit, faith, and resilience of the Choctaw people.

“From a little girl who begins her journey in a wood box to a man willing to die for the sake of honor, these extraordinary tales of the Choctaw Removal from their homelands delve into raw emotions and come out with the glimmer of hope necessary for the human soul.

“Tears of sadness. Tears of joy. Touch and experience each one.”


Editorial Reviews:

“Touch My Tears is a significant and moving addition to the record of Choctaw heritage; accessible and entertaining. This fine collection of tales is invaluable for the insights it provides into the heart of a unique Native American culture.” —Brock Thoene, co-author of The Jerusalem Chronicles.


"Touch My Tears is a milestone of fictional and historical Choctaw storytelling that exemplifies the value of Native knowledge through literary arts. This deeply moving and significant collection will hopefully generate a paradigm shift in written expression of the Native American experience." —Keevin Lewis, Museum Programs Outreach Coordinator, National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian


“This book reflects the joining of courage and endurance that defines a great nation. I cried in many places, sometimes it seemed more than they cried for themselves.” —Lisa Reed, editor of the Biskinik, the Official Publication of the Choctaw Nation.


Get your copy

You can purchase a copy online at Amazon or Barnes and Noble in print and ebook formats:


Barnes and Noble

You can also email me for details about receiving a signed copy of the book: or write to: Sarah Elisabeth Sawyer, P.O. Box 1103, Canton, TX 75103



If you're a blogger and are interested in featuring Touch My Tears, please email me or leave a comment.


Yakoke. Thank you.


5 Reasons I Still Love My Kindle Touch

I don’t use my Kindle Touch every day. I still try to keep the number of books I’m reading at any given time down to three or less. Sometimes that includes all paperback. But the novel I’m reading now, The Restorer's Son- Expanded Edition (The Sword of Lyric) was an ARC in digital form. (ARC=Advance Reader Copy. Loving the story, I’m in the hands of a master author).

That brings me to newly discovered benefits about my Kindle Touch.

1. Treadmill reading. Man. Can I say how good it feels to watch the minutes ticking away, wishing they would slow down instead of speed up? More than once, I’ve gone over my exercise time because I needed to finish the chapter. And how the chapter ends is usually torture and I have to read a few more pages. No wonder my weight is decent right now.

2. Battery life. If I turn off the wi-fi when I’m not using it, the battery lasts on and on. I’ve only charged it a handful of times since purchase. I love being able to grab it for a road trip and not have to panic that I forgot the charger.

3. No backlight. Sure, there are times I wish for an option to light up the screen. (Though have you ever thought of lighting up the pages of a paper book?) But honestly, I’m glad there isn’t. I work on the computer eight to tens hours a day. I want my reading time to be a different experience.

4. Easy organization. After my recent marathon of editing my forty flash fiction stories in prep for release as an ebook—and print—my Kindle home was a mess. I had sent the docs to it for final review and everything looked scrambled afterwards.

I spent a few minutes separating books I’d gotten from Amazon recently and deleting the edited docs. In just a few minutes, dozens of titles were sorted in their categories and the home screen now looks clean and simple. I like clean and simple.

5. Unexpected updates. I don’t love everything about the Kindle Touch, as I said before, but it was still great. I’d heard updates were few and never, so I wasn’t expecting improvements. But then Kindle released some nice additions.

My favorite was what should have been in the first place—the ability to turn the reader horizontal. It doesn’t do it automatically, which I like. It’s nice to hold it sideways sometimes, depending on my reading position. Also in the updates, I noticed my Touch is even faster than before.

Missed my 8 Cool Things About the Kindle Touch? Read it here.

Question: Have you stepped into the world of e-readers yet? What do you love/hate about the digital revolution?