Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Melissa Francis takes the stage...plus a book giveaway
As you know by now, any opportunity to feature an author named Melissa on Chick Lit Central is pure gold to us, and this time the one we're featuring is also a TV personality!
Melissa Francis, anchor on the FOX Business Network of the just-launched MONEY with Melissa Francis, may look familiar to you. At the age of eight, she landed the role of a lifetime: Playing Cassandra Cooper Ingalls on the world’s most famous prime-time soap opera, Little House on the Prairie, working alongside 1980s icons Michael Landon and Jason Bateman.
Melissa is also the author of DIARY OF A STAGE MOTHER’S DAUGHTER, a dazzlingly honest and provocative family memoir that can best be described as The Glass Castle meets Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. Basically, Honey Boo Boo's mother can take a backseat to Melissa Francis' mother when it comes to stage parenting.
After graduating from Harvard University with a degree in economics, finding love, and marrying, Melissa resolved to end the manic, abusive cycle and live life on her terms. As a mother, Melissa knows that the key to raising happy, confident and successful children is to respect each child for who they are, and avoid the one size fits all, pressure packed "Tiger Mother" approach.
Melissa currently lives in New York City with her husband and children. You can find her on Twitter, as well as check out this recently published article.
Thanks to Sarah Hall Productions, we have one copy of Diary of a Stage Mother's Daughter for a lucky reader in the US or Canada.
In one sentence, what was road to publishing like?
Shockingly quick and easy! I pitched an idea to my agent, Mel Berger, he sold it, and then I was committed! The team at Weinstein Books has been a dream. I couldn’t have asked for more!
What are your biggest motivations to write? What keeps you going?
I have always had a passion for writing and when I’m inspired and in sync with my topic, the words flow freely and easily. When I’m struggling, I know I’m not writing about the right topic.
How do you approach your writing? Do you plot or go with the flow?
I was blessed with Amanda Murray, a gifted Editor to keep me on track. We made an outline and I just plugged away. Amanda would give me tips, like reminding me which characters we hadn’t heard from in a while, and I would think about stories from my past that would work that character back into the action. I also found it helped for me to think about the next chunk of writing as I was falling asleep at night. I mulled over the stories I wanted to share next as I drifted off to sleep. By the next morning, the text had gelled in my mind and the words could just flow.
Are you worried about what your family will think of DIARY OF A STAGE MOTHER’S DAUGHTER?
Sure, but that’s just the risk I’m taking. I love my father dearly. We are very close and email or talk every day. So far he hasn’t read the book. He lived it. He doesn’t necessarily need to relive it.
If they made a movie of DIARY OF A STAGE MOTHER’S DAUGHTER, which actress would you want to portray you?
I wish Dakota Fanning were young enough! I’m a huge fan of hers. I guess she could still do the later stuff. I would love to help cast the child actor for the early parts of the book. It seems only right for Elizabeth Banks to do the adult stuff, since she plays a character on 30 Rock that may or may not be based on me (depending whom you ask!)
What is one item you can't live without?
Sadly, my Blackberry. Oh yeah, and my sons.
Aside from yourself, who is your favorite celebrity named Melissa?
That’s easy. Melissa Gorga. I’m the biggest Real Housewives Super Fan that has ever lived.
With Thanksgiving approaching, do you have a go-to menu plan or recipe?
I host Thanksgiving every year at my home. It’s my favorite holiday, because it’s about family and food and not gifts. I love Fall, when the temperature drops, and we always go to the Macy’s parade here in NYC. I’m great with the turkey, but my mother-in-law makes gravy to die for. I fill up on low-fat sausage stuffing. Wait. I mean high fat.
Special thanks to Melissa for entertaining us and Sarah Hall Productions for sharing her book with our readers.
How to win Diary of a Stage Mother's Daughter:
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: Have you ever performed on a stage and what was that experience like for you? (If you never have, what kind of performance would you do if you had the opportunity?)
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. Follow us on Twitter and/or Pinterest.
6. 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 November 18th at midnight EST.