Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Sarah Pekkanen is our first "third timer" and she has a book to give away!
Not only was Sarah Pekkanen the first author to share a review copy of her book with us, she was also our first (and only, so far) videotaped interview and now is the first author to appear at Chick Lit Central THREE times! We love having her here, not only because her books are amazing and insightful, but also because she is really nice both in person and online. It has been a pleasure to get to know her thus far, and we hope to continue to feature her and her books in the years ahead. For fun, check out her first interview from the summer of 2010, when Melissa A. got to chat with her in person. (They live near each other.) Then, take a look at her post about how and where she does her best writing. (And perhaps gets in a game of skee-ball on the side.) Now sit back and enjoy what she had to share with us today. And while you're at it, enter to win a signed copy of her latest novel, "These Girls." (US/Canada residents only.) Amy and Melissa A. recently reviewed "These Girls," and agreed that it was fabulous, so don't miss out!
If you haven't met Sarah Pekkanen yet (what are you waiting for?!?), drop by her website and see when she'll be in a town near you. (She's staying close to home tonight.) You can also get to know her through Facebook and Twitter.
Check out her trailer for "These Girls" and then call your BFF!
What’s the most interesting comment you’ve received about your books?
I'm not sure if it's the most interesting, but the best comment was one I just got from a Library Journal reviewer, who said my books would be "strongly appreciated by fans of Emily Giffin and Jennifer Weiner." I love that comparison!
What do you do when you get writer’s block?
I've learned that if my writing stalls, it's due to the fact that my subconscious is holding me back because something in an earlier section of the book isn't working. So I re-read the entire manuscript from the start and try to find out where I got off-track. I often cut or re-write scenes, and only then can I move ahead. I tend to not get writer's block otherwise, because as a former journalist, I learned to write under all conditions and still meet my deadlines - so I'm really lucky I had that early training.
Did you learn anything from writing "These Girls?" If so, what did you learn?
"These Girls" was the first book I wrote under deadline, and I was really nervous about finishing it in time, so I plotted the entire book very carefully. But I learned that I enjoy being surprised by the direction my books take and I like to have room for spontaneity, and so after finishing "These Girls," I changed my writing process and went from all-out plotting to creating a general outline. I may go back to plotting again in the future; I want to be open to different methods and the chance to experiment until I find out what works best for each novel I write.
In one sentence, please share some advice for future writers.
Treat writing like exercise - do it almost every day to get results!
What do you think the key is to a successful chick lit novel?
A book with humor and heart. It seems like all the women I know are navigating the same issues - love and work and relationships - and good chicklit books tap into those themes and entertain us as well as connect us to one another.
Which of your books would you want to see as a movie and who would you cast in the lead roles?
I just signed with a film agent, and he's going to start shopping around "These Girls," so I hope this might actually come true someday! I'd love to see Emma Stone and Emma Roberts in two of the lead roles. The third actress wouldn't necessarily have to be named Emma, though - how about Jennifer Lawrence?
If you could name your next book character after a city/state/province/country, what would you choose?
Wow, these questions are really on target because I just completed my fourth book and turned in my manuscript to my editor. And one of my main characters is named Savannah!
Favorite ride at an amusement park or carnival?
The ice-cream booth. Oh, wait, you said ride? I love those swings that go high into the air and spin around and around while you look up into the sky.
What is the last restaurant you ate at? Would you recommend it?
I had the best dinner just last night at The Daily Dish, a terrific little place in Silver Spring, Maryland. I went with a group of authors including Eleanor Brown ("The Weird Sisters") and Siobhan Fallen ("You Know When The Men Are Gone") and we all talked shop and laughed and traded stories about our lives. I had the veggie plate, which was good, but regretted not ordering the mac and cheese after Eleanor reported that it was the best she had ever eaten! For dessert, I had lavender creme brulee which was insanely good. I'd highly recommend it!
What is the best party you ever hosted or attended?
Other than my wedding reception, I'd have to say the launch party for my first novel, "The Opposite of Me." It was thrown by a local magazine and so many of my friends and family attended, as did two of my elementary school teachers. I remember standing up to give a little speech, and taking a moment to look into the crowd and see the faces of so many people I love, all sharing the culmination of the dream I'd had ever since I was a little girl - to become an author. It was a magical night.
Special thanks to Sarah for making her third time here as charming as her first two times and for sharing another amazing novel 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. Please tell us: What do you think the key is to a successful chick lit novel?
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.
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5. Add a friend to our Facebook group. (Tell us who you added.) Be sure to remind them to edit their settings.
US/Canada only. Giveaway ends April 15th at midnight EST.
For more chances to win "These Girls," visit Chick Lit is Not Dead by April 15th. (US/Canada only.)