Tuesday, June 14, 2022

So happy to meet Celia Laskey....plus a book giveaway

Photo by Leonora Anzaldua
We're halfway through Pride Month and are pleased to welcome Celia Laskey to CLC today to talk about her latest LGBTQ-themed novel, So Happy for You. Thanks to Hanover Square Press, we have TWO copies for some lucky readers!

Celia Laskey is the author of Under the Rainbow, a finalist for 2020 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize. Her work has appeared in Guernica, The Minnesota Review, and more. She has an MFA from the University of New Mexico and was a finalist in Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award for New Writers. Celia lives with her wife in Los Angeles, where she writes for ad agencies.

Visit Celia online:


A wedding weekend spirals out of control in this bold, electrifying, hilarious novel about the complexities of female friendship 

Robin and Ellie have been best friends since childhood. When Robin came out, Ellie was there for her. When Ellie's father died, Robin had her back. But when Ellie asks Robin to be her maid of honor, she is reluctant. A queer academic, Robin is dubious of the elaborate wedding rituals now sweeping the nation, which go far beyond champagne toasts and a bouquet toss. But loyalty wins out, and Robin accepts. 

Yet, as the wedding weekend approaches, a series of ominous occurrences lead Robin to second-guess her decision. It seems that everyone in the bridal party is out to get her. Perhaps even Ellie herself. 

Manically entertaining, viciously funny and eerily campy, So Happy for You is the ultimate send-up to our collective obsession with the wedding industrial complex and a riveting, unexpectedly poignant depiction of friendship in all its messy glory. (Courtesy of Amazon.)

"Hilarious and wise, So Happy for You reveals the deeper and more sinister truths behind one of society’s most commonplace institutions—marriage, and does so with a pitch-perfect, relentlessly inquisitive narrator at the helm. At its core, this is an investigation of friendship and just how much we will sacrifice of our true selves in the name of tradition. This novel made me laugh, made me think, and spun its way to a wholly surprising and thrilling conclusion, where ‘together forever’ takes on a much more terrifying connotation than most of us can imagine. Laskey is a magician, combining the important social commentary this genre needs with a knock-out page-turning narrative that will leave you guessing to the last page."
—Chelsea Bieker, author of Godshot and Heartbroke

What is a favorite compliment you have received on your writing?
Probably when the New York Times called Under the Rainbow "fresh" and "essential!" Pretty hard to top that. 

What were the biggest rewards and challenges with writing So Happy For You?
The biggest challenge was when all the editors we initially pitched the book to said no—but I got really helpful feedback from two editors who encouraged me to turn the book into more of a thriller, which I did, and when we sent it out again, one of those editors ended up saying yes and I decided to work with him! I really believe that most writers who get published are just the ones who refuse to give up. 
One of the biggest rewards happened recently, when I read from the book at a reading series for the very first time. I kind of hate reading my work, because I hate being the center of attention, but as soon as I started reading, the crowd started laughing, and they didn't stop! It felt incredible to hear people connecting with the book and it made me feel hopeful about its reception by the larger public. 

If So Happy For You were made into a movie, who would you cast in the leading roles?
I've actually been thinking about this for a while! Since Robin, my main character, is a redhead, I've always pictured Emma Stone in the role. I feel like she'd really be able to pull off the abrasive and vulnerable sides of Robin's character. And for Ellie, I feel like Anne Hathaway or Elizabeth Olson could really nail that comedic basic bitch vibe. 

Since it is Pride month, what is your favorite LGBTQ movie or TV series? 
One of my favorite LGBTQ movies is The Handmaiden, a South Korean film based on the book Fingersmith by my queen Sarah Waters. It has such idiosyncratic characters, a propulsive plot with twists and turns, and a lot of unexpected humor.

What is something you had a good laugh about recently?
Recently my wife and I were talking about the type of signs you find in a store like Hobby Lobby or HomeGoods that say stuff like "family is everything" or "but first, coffee" or "love never fails" and how they're just so hilariously straightforward and corny. We were riffing on them and came up with ones that said "I love my son" or "to be absolutely clear, I'm married with children." We were like, rolling around on the floor laughing. I think so much of my writing is about the tension between people who would put those signs up in their house and people (like me and my wife) who would mock them. 

What is the oldest piece of clothing you own?
I have this ratty purple tank top with red triangles on it that I wear around the house or to bed and my wife constantly rags on me for not throwing it away, because I got it over ten years ago at a clothing swap with friends, so it wasn't even new when I got it! To be honest, I'm wearing it right now lol. I'll probably throw it away when it literally starts falling apart! 

Thanks to Celia for chatting with us and to Hanover Square Press for sharing her book with our readers.

How to win: Use Rafflecopter to enter the giveaway. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. If you have trouble using Rafflecopter on our blog, enter the giveaway here

Giveaway ends June 19th at midnight EST.

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Mary C said...

All Through The Night by Suzanne Brockmann

Mary Preston said...

Nothing comes to mind.

Mary Patricia Bird said...

I don't know that I have ever watched one.

bn100 said...

no fav

Nancy P said...

Have not