|Photo by Stacey Luftig|
Today we welcome Devan Sipher and his debut novel "The Wedding Beat." Devan grew up in Southfield, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. He graduated from the University of Michigan and received a master of fine arts degree at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. For the past five years Devan has been a writer of the "Vows" column at The New York Times.
Courtesy of Penguin we have one copy of "The Wedding Beat" to giveaway to some lucky reader anywhere in the US.
Visit Devan at his website, Facebook and Twitter pages.
Who are three authors who have inspired you?
There are so many authors who have inspired me. From John Irving to Jane Austen. If there was one book I would particularly recommend for readers on this site, it would be "Marjorie Morningstar" by Herman Wouk. That’s already three names, but the three authors who probably had the most influence on "The Wedding Beat" are Helen Fielding, Jonathan Tropper, and Sarah Dunn.
What is your usual writing routine?
Eat. Pray. Sleep.
How did you celebrate your book deal?
A friend took me out for Chinese food and a Woody Allen movie. Which sounds like a punchline in a Woody Allen movie.
If "The Wedding Beat" were made into a movie, who would you cast in the lead roles?
If it were up to me, I’d want Jason Segel or Paul Rudd cast as Gavin. As I wrote the book, I pictured Sarah Jessica Parker as Melinda, but that’s because I had a crush on her since I was about 12. Anne Hathaway (in her curly-haired mode) would be dream casting. And if Emmy Rossum was just a little older, and I was a little younger. Oh, wait, that’s the answer to a different question.
What TV show, book, or movie reminds you most of your own life?
I’d like to say “Sex and the City” or “Entourage,” but I think it’s more “So You Think You Can Dance?” Every day’s a challenge to be met.
Characters really make the story for us. What three words would best describe your hero, and what about him called out to you and made you want to write his story?
Romantic. Enthusiastic. And hopeful. That’s how I would describe Gavin, and that’s what was appealing about telling his story. He’s also pretty funny (even when he doesn’t intend to be).
Who was (or still is) your childhood crush?
SJP now and always. There was a girl in seventh grade who broke my heart and who looked a lot like her.
How did you decide to write chick lit?
I have to confess, I’ve always been a sucker for chick lit and chick flicks. Even before the names existed. As a kid, I read Erica Jong and Judith Krantz right along with J.R.R. Tolkien and Ian Fleming. And Bridget Jones’s Diary is one of my all-time favorite books and movies.
Do you base characters on yourself?
For six years, I was a single guy writing about weddings at The New York Times, so there’s more than a little bit of me in Gavin, the protagonist of "The Wedding Beat." But I’m in all the characters to some degree. That’s the fun of fiction. I get to be a little schizophrenic in a socially acceptable way.
Is there anything you would like to ask our readers?
Yes! I want to know who you would cast in the movie. And what was the best wedding you ever attended?
Special thanks to Devan for his fun answers and to Penguin for sharing "The Wedding Beat" with our readers.
Please comment below with your e-mail address. (Please note: Entries without an e-mail address will NOT be counted. You can use AT and DOT to avoid spam. Or provide a link to your facebook page or blog if you can receive messages there.)
Bonus entries (can be listed all in one post):
1. Answer ONE of Devan's questions (movie casting choice or best wedding). You could answer both, but no extra points given.
2. Follow this blog and post a comment saying you are a follower (if you already follow, that's fine too).
3. Post this contest on Facebook or Twitter or in your blog, and leave a comment saying where you've posted it.
4. Join Chick Lit Central on Facebook. Edit settings if you don't want to receive a lot of messages at your e-mail account. Please read our posting guidelines as well. (If you're already a member, let us know that too.)
5. Add a friend to our Facebook group. (Tell us who you added.) Be sure to remind them to edit their settings.
US only. Giveaway ends April 22nd at midnight EST.