Who are you, and what did you write?
My name is Sonja Thomas and I’m a silly introvert who runs on coffee and hugs. I love to dance and sing along with music blasting in the living room. Every time I travel somewhere new (from the Oregon Coast to Iceland), I buy a magnet before leaving. The ocean is my happy place and I squeal every time I see an adorable animal (Squirrel!).
I write stories for kids of all ages in all genres, but middle grade contemporaries are my sweet spot. My debut middle grade novel, Sir Fig Newton and the Science of Persistence, comes out March 15, 2022 from Aladdin / Simon & Schuster.
What hardware and software do you write with?
My required hardware includes notebooks, pens, and my ThinkPad laptop. As for software, I use Scrivener and Microsoft Word. Scrivener has a pretty steep learning curve, but the more I understand it, the better I can set it up for my needs. What I love most is that it houses EVERYTHING! Brainstorming notes, research, character sketches, outlines, photos, pdf files, website links, sound files… everything in one place for easy reference and access. And since I’m not a linear writer, I can easily move scenes around with the drag of my mouse.
I just started using the subscription resource website One Stop for Writers from the authors of the book, The Emotion Thesaurus (which I refer to regularly). I’m loving the fifteen thesaurus collections and plot timeline tool. I look forward to playing around with the other features.
When and where do you write?
For some reason 10 AM is my magic time, so that’s when you’ll find me at my desk (or a coffee shop or library pre-2020). If I don’t get sucked into social media or administrative tasks, I set a timer for an hour and write without distractions. Then I give myself a break to stretch, get coffee, or take a peek at my phone. Then I repeat, hoping to get at least a solid 4 hours of writing. It doesn’t always work out like that, because life. But I do the best I can with the time that I have.
What's your dream writing setup?
My dream writing setup would be a space outside of the home, with a sit-stand desk that faces a window with views of the ocean. There would be a comfy chair and bookcases filled with books. An editorial cat nearby doling out emotional support with head-bumps and purrs. A barista that would appear whenever I have my oat latte fix. And a never-empty bowl of my favorite snacks (blackberries, raspberries, vegan chocolate chip cookies, and Haribo gummy bears).