Last Updated on February 12, 2023 by BiblioLifestyle
What was the last book that you read that you’d now recommend?
I really enjoyed Good Eggs by Rebecca Hardiman. If you love messy families, wonderful characters, and satisfying endings, this book is for you!
Have you read any classics lately that you were reading for the first time?
Jane Eyre has always been a favorite, so I recently read Charlotte Brontë’s first novel The Professor. .
Do you re-read books? And if yes, what was your last re-read?
When I taught high school English, I would re-read the books I was assigning to students. For example, I’ve read Toni Morrison’s Beloved and Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? multiple times.
What are your go-to genres?
I read a lot of historical and contemporary fiction, and I love a good memoir. I recently listened to The World According to Fannie Davis by Bridgett Davis, narrated by the author, and it was fabulous.
What is your favorite childhood book?
I loved the Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder.
What books are on your bedside table right now?
Elinor Lipman’s Ms. Demeanor and Laura Warrell’s Sweet, Soft, Plenty Rhythm.
Do you bookmark or dogear your page in a book?
I always use a bookmark, even if it’s just a receipt from the bookstore.
What is your ideal reading setting?
A screened-in porch under a fan, preferably with my dog Tucker nearby. My porch is my happy place!
Tell us about your favorite indie bookstore?
House of Books in Kent, Connecticut is my local indie. It has wonderful staff, a fabulous collection, and it’s just plain gorgeous.
What was an early experience where you learned that language had power?
I remember reading Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls when I was pretty young. I cried so hard at the end of the book, and I realized that the author had managed to make me feel just as grief-stricken as his main character. I think that’s when I realized how powerful words could be.
What literary pilgrimages have you gone on?
I took a walking trip in England with my sisters. We went to the Cotswolds and Bath, land of Jane Austen and her novels Persuasion and Northanger Abbey. It is so beautiful there!
Where do you get most of your writing and editing done?
I’m embarrassed to say that I do a lot of writing in bed. It’s probably terrible for my back, but for some reason, I am very focused when I sit up against the headboard with my laptop.
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
Can I say that it does both? Writing brand new pages energizes me, but editing—specifically reworking and rearranging passages and chapters—is exhausting.
How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?
The first book I wrote was never published. As a novel, it was very flawed, but I still love the story. Sometimes I imagine rewriting it as a screenplay.
Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
I understand that not every book is for every reader. I sometimes read my reviews, but I don’t let them upset me. Sometimes I even learn something.
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
I came to this career in writing pretty late in life, publishing my first book when I was fifty. I would remind myself to be patient!
When you’re not reading or writing, what are you doing?
I love walking my dog, going to plays, movies, and museums, traveling, and spending time with my amazing friends and family.
What are your three favorite things right now?
LAMY pens, Jones Road makeup (by Bobbi Brown), and Peloton (#CodyRigsby).
Your favorite travel destination and why?
Any city in Europe! I love walking through cities I don’t know, going to museums, and eating food I don’t have any idea how to cook.
What’s your favorite meal and go-to drink order?
I’m from Dallas, Texas, so my favorite meal would be Tex-Mex (nachos, enchiladas, limitless chips and guacamole) and a big margarita.
What six people, living or dead, would you invite to a dinner party?
I would love to have a party with a few of my favorite living writers, some of whom I already know and some I would LOVE to meet: Stephen McCauley, Elinor Lipman, Julie Schumacher, Kaye Gibbons, Terry McMillan, and Steve Martin.
If a movie was made of your life, what genre would it be, and who would play you?
It would definitely be a comedy, and I’d like Amy Poehler to play me.
What’s the last TV show or movie you watched that was really good?
I loved The White Lotus!
You have to sing karaoke; what song do you pick?
Oh, you do not want to hear me sing. But if there’s no choice, I would sing O-o-h Child by The Five Stairsteps.
If you were being taken to a deserted island and could only bring one book, what would it be?
I would bring Katherine by Anya Seton. I love an epic work of historical fiction.