Sarah J. Hoodlet


Growing up in central New Hampshire, USA, I spent much of my childhood outside. My parents’ 10.5 acres of forested land was my playground. I was fascinated by what existed underneath logs, waded through wetlands to find frogs and salamanders, befriended the snakes my father found while mowing the grass. My first worlds were created in those woods. The words were never written, but they existed all the same.

After college and graduate school, I landed a job in public relations. That was my first real experience writing something for others, and I enjoyed that aspect of the job the most. There, I honed my craft for telling stories – not ones of fantasy worlds with magic systems, but of complex engineering projects. It was a different kind of storytelling, but it taught me how to take something complex and make it understandable.

In 2020, I started writing what would later become The Way of the Wielder. I’d never attempted creative writing before, and I let myself have fun. I experimented with styles, went on tangents, and explored worlds using the knowledge and experiences I’d gathered in my own life.

To say I found a hidden passion is an understatement. Over the following two years, writing quickly became an integral part of my being, and I needed to explore it. I needed to turn over that log, to wade through that wetland, to befriend the characters hiding in the depths of my mind. So in the summer of 2022, with lots of love and support, I left my public relations career to pursue writing full time. And I haven’t looked back since.

Popular Queries and Answers

How did you get into writing?

I started playing Dungeons & Dragons with my husband and our friends in 2019. When the pandemic began in 2020, we started a new campaign, and I created a human variant sorceress. I loved playing her, and realized I needed to know more about her.

So, the day after our sessions, I started writing out what happened from her perspective. From there, I explored her backstory – her upbringing, her magical abilities, her love interests, and the experiences that made her who she was.

I quickly realized the world of Dungeons & Dragons wasn’t where she belonged, so I made my own fantasy world, with a unique magic system and history. That world – the kingdom of Vastrenar – is the setting for The Way of the Wielder, and I hope Jaslan’s story is as captivating to you as it was to me.

What are you working on now?

Currently, I’m drafting book three of The Way of the Wielder series. If all goes according to plan, I expect to have this book fully drafted by the end of May 2024.

What did you study in school?

For my undergraduate studies, I went to Keene State College (in Keene, New Hampshire), where I received two bachelor’s degrees in Geography and Economics.

For my graduate studies, I went to Antioch University New England (also in Keene, New Hampshire), and received a master’s degree in Environmental Studies.

What’s your favorite book?

It is impossible for me to name just one favorite book! I have so many, and for different reasons. But in the spirit of offering something, here’s a partial list of books I have enjoyed over the years.

  • Stardust, by Neil Gaiman
  • Warbreaker, by Brandon Sanderson
  • The Name of the Wind, by Patrick Rothfuss
  • Project Hail Mary, by Andy Weir
  • The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, by V.E. Schwab
  • In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex, by Nathaniel Philbrick

I hear you have cats…

I do have cats! Two of them, in fact. Kona is our sweet middle-aged cat, who is the patron saint of patience. Jasnah (Jazzy for short – and yes, she’s named after a character from Sanderson’s Stormlight Archive) is our pint-sized, one-year-old chatty cat. They get along fine, most of the time…