Friends & Fiction
Friends & Fiction

Episode · 11 months ago

Friends & Fiction with Diane Chamberlain

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

New York Times, USA Today and London Times bestselling author of 27 novels, Diane Chamberlain, joins the Fab Five to talk about her latest novel, BIG LIES IN A SMALL TOWN, just out in paperback. Listen in as they discuss dream first travel destinations for after the pandemic and their latest favorite reads, as well as Diane’s background as a psychoanalyst and passion for social justice issues—and how both inform her writing. https://dianechamberlain.com/

Welcome to Friends and fiction. Fivebest selling authors, Endless Stories, Friends and Fiction is a podcast withfive best selling novelist whose common love of reading, writing an independentbookstores found them together with jets, author interviews and fascinatinginsider talk about publishing and writing. Thes friends discuss the booksthey've written, the books they're reading now and the art of storytelling.If you love books and you're curious about the writing world, you're in theright place. Bestselling novelist Mary Kay Andrews, Christine Harmel, ChristieWoodson, Harvey Patty Callahan, Henry and Mary Alice Munro are five longtimefriends with more than 80 published books. To their credit at the Start of the Pandemic, they gottogether for a virtual happy hour to talk about their books, their favoritebookstores writing, reading and publishing in this new unchartedterritory. They're still talking, and they've added fascinating discussionswith other bestselling novelists, so join them live on their friends andfiction Facebook Group page every Wednesday at 7 p.m. Eastern, or listenand view later at your leisure. Hi, everybody, e probably diet myfriend tonight, E. Just want to take a second to say that we are all prayingfor peace and hope across the aisle across the nation in this great countryof ours, you know, friends and fiction is a place of refuge for us, and wehope that it is for YouTube now. Um, we're just gonna go forward and sayHappy New Year, everybody. Thanks for starting off the year with us onfriends and fiction, where we celebrate books and friendship and independentbookstores. I'm Mary Kay Andrews. I'm your host tonight, and my upcomingnovel is the newcomer out. May 4th. I'm Christi Woodson Harvey, and my nextnovel is Under the Southern Sky, which releases April 20th. Marie Alice Munroand my upcoming novel is the Summer of Lost and Found, and it's coming out onMay 11th and I'm Patty Callahan. Henry and my upcoming novel is calledSurviving Savannah, and it comes out on March 9th, which is nine weeks away.Which is crazy. So exciting. No, we're excited for you.Now you'll notice that we're missing one of the five tonight. ChristineHarmel isn't with us, but I want to assure you that we didn't kick her offthe island. She had a long standing previous commitment, but she will beback with us next week. Now I'm thrilled to tell you that tonightFranklin Fiction has our first official sponsor. We welcome and thank MamaGeraldine's Bodacious Foods. Not only is Mama Geraldine's the maker of theworld's most delicious cheese straws, they're also a woman owned business,and we really like to get behind that. Yes, we are so excited that thisepisode of friends and fiction is sponsored by Mama Geraldine's, and I'mactually sitting here chomping on them right now on the cheese draws. They areso delicious. Mama, Charlie, Geraldine, send us all the big box of goodies overthe holiday, and E kept posting about them, especially. They're known fortheir cheese straws, but I'm obsessed with their cookies. The key line is theonly flavor I have left right now, but the pecan cinnamon ease We'll justchange your life. That's my favorite. Change your life. Well, you know, highmaintenance Patty, I need gluten free. And when we first heard about it,mostly everybody's going to get to eat the cheese straws except me. But hello,Gluten free are They're so good. I'm eating. I've had the regular and thegluten free. And I mean, I can't even tell the difference. Yeah, they'reamazing. Honestly, Confession time. I usually make the powdered sugar almondcookies, some people calling wedding cookies. And then we got a We got themin this collection better than mine. So, like, yeah. Hey, we've got an exclusiveoffer for all of our friends and fiction viewers. You can get 20% offyour online purchase at Mama Geraldine's dot com with the code FabFive. All caps snack on y'all. I love that. I know. I like to say snack onyour snack on on Now let's get on with tonight Show. Yeah, There she is. You know, this is friends and fictionand tonight it's such a pleasure to have my old dear friend New York TimesUse a Today and London Times Best selling author Diane Chamberlain. Inaddition to her latest novel, Big Lies...

...in a Small Town, which is just out inpaperback this week, Diane is the author of 27 novels published in adozen languages, including necessary Lies, The Silent Sister, The StolenMarriage and the Dream Doc. Doctor doctor dot Yeah, um, and are indeedbookstore tonight is Quail Ridge Books, and I think we have all had amazingsigning with our Friends at Quail Ridge Books. Each week, we ask our guestauthor to choose a favorite local indie bookstore for you to support, and Dianewisely chose Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh, North Carolina, where shelives. Now Q. R B, as we call it, was founded in 1984 by the late belovedNancy Ulcer Olsen, who was a friend to so many authors like Diane and like medot Nancy was a true author matchmaker, and actually, she introduced us yearsago when I was living in Raleigh. We hope you'll browse their speciallycurated page on the store's website featuring Diet featuring Diane's tomost recent books, the Fab Five's forthcoming 2021 titles, which are allavailable for preorder, and one highlighted backlist title from each ofus. And you can get a discount on these and other titles, plus a lot more perks.If you join the stores. Quail Ridge readers cool. And even though I live inAtlanta, I'm still a member of key RVs Readers Club. I know all of us arehoping the pandemic will soon be behind us. So we can all go back to signingsand events at Quail Ridge books. Right now, ladies, the new Year's theholidays air over. Even being optimistic, it looks like we're Dr.Fauci says we're still a few months down the road from Universal vaccines.All E thanks for coming, Diane. I was just saying that all of us are used tobeing on the go and traveling for work or for pleasure, So I thought I wouldget the ball rolling tonight. Toe, ask everybody. Where is your first dreamdestination? Once we're safely out of lock down now. Diane, are you gonna goanywhere? I mean, I know where you like to go. I would. I am dying to go to Californiato see my granddaughters. That's really frustrating. Thing is, they can't comehere. I can't go there. I'm sure some of you are in the same boat on itsReally? That's really tough. So that's where I would go. Yeah. Uh, grandchildren. Yes. 100% Maryarea. Where you gonna go? I was supposed to go back to London this year,and I'm really miss it. So I go to London But if they're still underlocked out next year, I think I go to the Grand Canyon and take mygrandchildren there. I have never seen the Grand Canyon. I really I mean,Christie. We go and are smooth wineries in the Grand Canyon. Just ask e askingfor a friend. Yeah, Christine, with Christine. A dream destination. Well,we were supposed to be in the British Virgin Islands from the day afterChristmas till, like, january 3rd or fourth. And of course, we changed ourtrip, so I'm really looking forward. We rescheduled it for next Christmas, soI'm just really excited. I'm already like, Okay, next year, it's going to bebetter things. They're going to be better. So I really hope they are.Because we were so excited about going. What about you, Patty? You know, whenDiane mentioned grandkids? Yes. I mean, I just spent Diane, I just got to spendthree weeks with my grand baby, but I hadn't seen a really long time. And sothe first thing you're right, the first thing I would dio is fly out there.They live in Hawaii, and I have not gone in over a year and a year and ahalf, and I would I would go out there and spend time with them because thisis just too much not moving and not seeing people. And that's the firstthing I would dio. Yeah. Yeah. And where? I guess I'm, uh I amdying. I'm dying to go to France. We had to postpone our planned trip toFrance last Memorial Day to attend my friend and And Diane knows my friendBeth from Raleigh. Her daughter was supposed to get married over MemorialDay weekend, and, of course, we had to cancel and they had to postpone thewedding. But we kept the flight credits, and we're crossing our fingers thatwe'll get to France soon to drink wine...

...and to see the beautiful countryside.My husband is planning on visiting some wineries, and Beth has promised to takeme to her favorite broke Hans. So that's that's what I'm yearning to dio.Can I ask answer to yours? Can I just Yes, come to France? Yeah, friends. Andwhat? We should live from France. Very live from our live from our villa inProvence. Yeah. Hoping an interpreter who speaks French. No, we're gonna haveto have a French interpreters. Okay, Well, they were wearing that. Herdaughter speaks French. Okay, we're gonna talk about Diane now, becausethis is Diane. Tonight, Diane, we publish this weekly set a big lives ina small town. Chamberlain's depictions of creative beauty and perseveranceacross time and in the face of inevitable obstacles will keep readersturning the pages. And I wholeheartedly agree with this assessment. And, youknow, I finally I've got behind with stuff, but I finally read the dualtimeline stories of Annandale in 1940 Morgan Christopher set in 2018. And Icouldn't help but be drawn into their world and into the world of an artist.And I know that you are not that you are a lot of things, but you're not avisual artist. And I knew a little bit about the back story of big liesbecause you and I brainstormed in a couple years ago, right when we did ourwriter recreate at Ebb tide. Well, could you give everybody the elevatorpitch that I already know? Yeah, um, as you mentioned it said inthe past. And in the recent present 2018 and its two women, one who in um1940 learns about a contest to create one of the W P. A. Murals. You see themin offices, usually government buildings, those old murals just to me,kind of fascinating. She wins a contest to paint one of those girls. Anythingis. She is New Jersey, She's a northerner, and the mural is inEdmonton, North Carolina, and she finds that she is not very welcome in town.And then we have a young woman, Morgan in 2018, who's in prison for somethingshe didn't do. And she is told that she can get out of prison if she willrestore this old mural that has been found. Um, the only thing is she has noidea how to do restoration. So I have to characters who are kind of up a treewho have to deal with their circumstances. And Anna disappearsduring the painting of the mural. And Morgan during the restoration toe,begins to uncover clues to Ana's disappearance. So that's kind of it. Ina very tiny nutshell. So good Patty, you got a question. I dio Diane,it's so good to see you. It's so good to see you. So I often say that theywant to see you to e Can't wait till we're all face to face in real life inreal time. I mean, this is a good as we can get, but it's not good enough. So Ioften say that being a novelist is a little bit like being a pretendpsychoanalyst. But you really were a psychotherapist, and I just play one onthe page and you had you were psychotherapist with a specialty andadolescent counseling. And it seems like in all of your novels, butespecially in this one that we're talking about, you have this reallyprofound understanding of emotional issues. You don't just you don't justdelve into their feelings. You actually dive down into the true issues wherethey came from, how they got there, and a dales. Mom is manic depressive. BothMorgan's parents are, Can we say, functional ing alcoholics? So do theseissues choose you? Or do you deliberately say I'm going to addressthis or I'm going to address that with the deep knowledge you have is apsychotherapist? That's a really question. Um, you know,when I think about writing a book. I think about this situation first. Inother words, I wanted Thio Have somebody paint this mural. I knewthat's what I wanted to do. And then I try to think of a character who isgoing to have the most difficult time doing what I want her to do. Eso that'swhere the character of came from. And...

...by making her a northern earth thatgave her one obstacle by making her, um, from raised by a depressive mother thatgave her another obstacle. And, of course, throughout the story is thingsstart happening to her. The town townspeople, like birthdays, werehappening to her. She begins to wonder if she has, um, inherited her mother'smanic, uh, depression and then with Morgan. You know, I knew that I wantedsomebody who didn't know how to restore a mural. But what else could I throw it?Her I gave her. I gave her prison. I gave her, um, a NALC a hall problemthat she pretty much has picked up inherited whatever from her parents. Soit's not that I set out to create thes screwed up characters. It's that as I'mwriting, I'm just trying to figure out how more difficult for them so thatthey have to really work harder to succeed. Because we all want ourcharacters toe to succeed. I always want. I want them to have a happyending. Happy endings air Pretty important in my books. But they really,really have to work hard for those endings, like most of us. And I have tosay that Diane has on more than one occasion, um, psychoanalyzed mycharacters when we were at writers retreats. Right? Diane, She's great at that. I had a characterso fun I had a character. When I was writing summer rental, we were alltogether. We had a group of wonderful group of North Carolina writers and wewould go go away together and brainstorm. And right. And I had thischaracter. She was an outsider, and I couldn't figure out what why shecouldn't connect with these women. She comes into a house of women and shecan't connect with them. And Diane what? Like that? She knew exactly what is soawesome. I know you should hire yourself out as like, a book. Dina, Abook e u. Okay, Christine, you've got a question. Yes, s o I just have to say,and Diana No, I've told you this, but just so everyone else knows this bookis so amazing. I have recommended it to everyone on every list I've written. Ijust love this book so much, Actually was lucky enough to get an advance copyof it. Remember? I finished reading it, and I was like, I wish that I hadwritten this book. This book is so great. So I just wanted everyone toknow how much I love. And if you have not read it, you need to because it'sso fantastic. But this book and almost all of your book seemed to hinge onissues of social justice. Can you talk about the importance of those issues toyou and to the sort of emotional core of your stories? Yeah, I think it goes back. Thio, Whereand when I was brought up, which was New Jersey and in a small, well mediumsized town that was racially and religiously diverse, something I'vealways gonna be thankful for. And it was during the civil rights error era.So So I had an exposure to social justice issues from an early age. Itwasn't my family. Um, family was not particularly on the same side as me,but I felt it very strongly. I felt it in the kids around me in my high schooland what they're going through and what they were dealing with. And I felt it,Um, you know, out on the street that in the town I was in, there were riots andthere were peace marches, and I was influenced by all of that. So it's notthat I set out once again. It's not that I got to intentionally, um, rightabout social issues. It's just that that's sort of where my where my mindgoes. And unfortunately, we still have plenty of them to deal with. So, um, soI do find that that I go there and even, you know, when people say to me aboutbig lies in a small town, how there's a lot of racial issues I'm like there isbecause to me, is just so much a part of life and a part of Anna and Morgan'slives in the story that I don't really...

...separate it out in my own mind, it'sjust part of the territory. It's part of the story. It's really, really welldone to. It really is. And I think that's why it works. Is that thank youyour mind. It's actually sort of a segue right into my question. So Cathy,I'll just jump right in itself. The story is set in a ed into NorthCarolina. So then the Deep South and we've talked about this with otherguests in different ways. It's a challenge to right of sense it withsensitivity and even with without fear of repercussions about black lives,matter issues. And in this book, you have, um, this character monitoring agifted young black art artist. So you get into those issues. Did you worryabout that? And if if so, how did you deal with that challenge? Because Ithink it is a challenge, that book to come out at the time when everyone isvery sensitive and very aware of that sensitivity. Mhm, Yeah. Um, I'll tellyou. Don't worry about it, as I am now with the book that I just writinginteresting. But what? Yeah, yeah, and that's I'll get to that because that'sa whole different issues. But what I did was I really? There is a characteris a young boy in 1940 who and a kind of takes under her wing because shesees artistic talent she wants to nurture for it. So I know that I needed Thio do a lotof research in Eatonton. It's eaten in North Carolina to find out you knowwhat life would have been like in 18 40 specifically what life would have beenlike for, ah, young black boy in 1940. So I had discovered a racialreconciliation group in Eden. And this is Ah, very. It was a very movingexperience to me, too. Visit this group that was out 30 or 40 people, black andwhite, to have been meeting together for a number of years and who, who havereally gotten past the hard questions to real friendships. So I was invitedto visit that group, and I met two older gentlemen. I no longer use theword elderly, um, two older gentlemen, African American who were willing tomeet me for lunch. I met with them separately and let me pick their brainsabout what it was like for them growing up in the forties in Eadington. So theygave me an awful lot of material toe work with. And I hope that I was trueto, um, too much assed faras what I represented. But the book that I amjust that I've just turned in, which is called right now it's called The DarkEnd of the Street is has a lot to do with racial issues because it is aboutthe Voter Rights Act. In 1965 and young white people came into the South toregister black voters. So right off the bat were in scary territory for a whitewoman to be writing about, um, e serve white and editor. And I have workedthrough some of the sticky things, things that we think are sticky. But weare going to sensitivity reader. She's actually reading it right now for me,and this is a black woman and editor who well, hopefully let me know where Iam on a straight where I'm being offensive where I'm not being strongenough. Um, my one concern with with this movement toward being reallysensitive, it is very important. I won't concern is creating a revisionisthistory. Yeah, do we? You know, we do. We not use the n word in that wholebook. There's not the n word. And that's not really riel, so I have a lotof concerns about it. I'm very much looking forward. To what? This Um whatthis sense, It either has to say mhm. I think it's very interesting to think ofwhat I mean. A za white woman writing about white people in that period inhistory, you have the voice for it in the history, but it's just such asensitive time. And I know a lot of authors have been concerned about that.But bravo for you, Thio. I think if...

...anyone could do it, Diane, you could Oh,thank you, Mary. Alice. Okay, so we know that you write about, you know,people say well, right about what? You know, but most of the time were writingabout stuff we don't know anything about. Okay, So, Diane, I know you're agifted guitar player on writer, but, you know, in big lies in a small town,you're a non artist, and you're writing from the viewpoint of artists like Annaand Morgan is. And how do you do that especially, they asked the fairlytechnical aspect of fine art restoration. Tell me a little bit aboutTell our Tell all of us about resource. You're right. I'm not an artist. Youknow the game. Pictionary. I can if I have to say, dog, if I have to get thatacross, I can't even draw a dog. So I'm not a good artist. Good at Scrabble,though I'm a good researcher. I am good at Scrabble, but she'strapped me in trouble before E do a ton of research. Andi, I love it. I lovereading about artists, and there are many books on the W P a murals and howthey were created and who the artists were and how few women there were.That's one of the problems that Anna is up against in 19 forties, that she is awoman which is really not considered. How could a woman be a good artists? SoSo, with regard to creating the mural, they learned a lot through research andwith regard to restoring it. I had an acquaintance in this area in Raleighwho has a restoration company, and she came over and she showed you the toolsof her trade, and we talked about what Morgan would have to do. Thio restorethat mural on what I was most concerned about in both cases was boring. Thereader You get so carried away with your research and how cool it is toecreate these things or restore this thing. So I had toe kind of walk a fineline to get enough of it across to the reader out having them go. Yeah, so Idon't think they Hopefully I succeeded. Yeah, anything to do with our mural. Sofascinating you could get that going s so great. So we had a chance to ask ourquestions. And now we are gonna let our viewers who posted questions on theFacebook page and and a lot, Diane. A lot of your fans posted questions. So,Patty, you've got a question that somebody left, right? I dio DianeVictor. First, I want to say, before I asked Victoria Brawley's question thatI'm thinking we're gonna hire you friends and fiction book therapist andyou are going to come in and analyze all of our characters, and then ourbooks will be deeper and richer for it. for that. I just need you to say yes onthe show. I think you You do just fine, Patty. Okay, so your question is Icouldn't I couldn't make her say Yes, you guys. Okay, then this next questionis from Victoria Brawley, and she says, Hello, Diane. I loved reading the DreamDaughter. In fact, I've loved reading all of your novels that have crossed mypath. How do you ever come up with the twists in the story? You can answerwithout spoilers? You are always so original and so creative with yourtwists. Uh, thank you so much. That's a great compliment. I don't know. E sitaround, e say about every what can happen next. You know, I really don't.I mean, it's that there's no secret to it. It's just imagining What What rocks?I brought this character next. And what will that rock lead Thio? And what ifthere's a rock underneath that rock that nobody knows about on DWhite Ibased, tell people you know, I I create an outline and what I always say isthat my characters never saw the outline because you want your allwriters. They as soon as you start, um, creating those characters on the page,they're doing things and saying things that you never anticipated. So what Ialways say is that when I when a reader is surprised by something in the book,usually I was surprised by it, too. Yeah, it's usually something that'scome organically from my characters and...

...their story. Diane. I remember when you were tellingus about, um, the vision you had for the dream daughter and you said, Youguys e u I'm doing time travel. We went No, no time and only you could havepulled it off. Thank you, Christian. Okay, who's got a quick Oh, ChrisChristie had one yet Christians not here. It's just me. Eso Judah HelmStone wants to know where do your story lines come from And are your charactersloosely based on people you have met? They are absolutely not based on peopleI've met, not ever that I based a character on somebody that I know whereI've met. And the reason for that is, um, it's never crossed my mind, and Ithink it would be vory living on. I was writing my first novel, which I don'trecommend anybody read. I based the character really? On myself. At firstshe had my color e she had the same job had, which was at that time, a socialworker in the hospital. Um, and then I discovered I just couldn't make her doanything that I wouldn't it. So I completely changed her. I changed whatshe looked like. I changed her job. I thought, What is that? What kind ofcharacter would be the least like me? And I mean athlete, which is those ofyou who know me, You know, that is not me. And so then she really took off. Soit was my little lesson in not facing a character, a real person, because thenit frees me up to make them do whatever I want to dio on getting sued. Gettingsued is a problem. Oh, okay. But I have to tell you, too, that someone actuallysent me a message on Instagram today telling me how much they that they wentback and read your debut novel and how much they loved it. So maybe you shouldrecommend it. E Well, it has, um it's just not like my later novels. Its's astory, you know, kind of story with the beginning and and know deep surprises.Eso I'm proud of it because it was my first novel and it actually won a bigaward from romance Writers of America. Um, that's when I met you. It was thatvery first e. Then we go back girlfriend and I met you. And we werebaby right babies. And but there was this aura around you that behind hershe won the gold. What is the Golden heart? What was Is that the word? Butit's the big board, Dorita. Big read. It was like, Oh, my God, I want to talkto her. She won the Rita. It was like it was like the Oscar. It is a big deal.Eso you walked in the door and I don't know how you felt about it, but we werein all my darling. So that was and I loved the book. Oh, my God, I was I wasso thrilled. However, it's sort of pigeonholed me as a romance writer,which, as you know, I'm really not a romance writer. So it took a while toget out of that label. E was incredibly thrilled Thio have my first novel, EYou know back then. But I think it's because our w we talked about this toYou know, you want a wonderful Ward for a category that would have been women'sfiction later in a few years later. And it was recognized just such a wonderfulnovel, and it was share it. It was a great book. Is a great book still is.And Mary Alice, I always think of you as, um you know, that we just knew eachother when we were baby writers. You know, such a long time, E No, it's sonice to see you would still be friends after all these years. My God, you lookpretty good there. E always think we should You know, at some point, wedon't want to get too girly, But at some point, we might want to say, Diane,what do you do to your skin? How do you not have any wrinkles? She Why do youthink? A little skin in person. She does your very sweet And I have seenher. I have seen her in the middle of...

...the night. I have seen her early in themorning. She just has beautiful skin. Mary Alice, you gotta read your e. Justalso have to say I remember Diane back in those days had this wildly thick,gorgeous way different back that alright. Way around. Oh, dear. So sorryabout that. It will take too long to drop the phone thistles from MichelleCockburn. And she says, I have a question for Diane. Have you consideredokay? Good. I have a question for Diane. Have you considered extending theKeeper trilogy into a saga? I'd love to read a novel based on Annie'supbringing, from her point of view and through her marriage toe. Alec, I'vejust read the first two and have started her mother's shadow and cannotget enough. Oh, thank you, Her mother shadowed. My opinion is the best of thethree, so enjoy it. Um, you know, it's really funny because I wrote Keep Her.The Light was my fourth book, so I wrote it a long time ago, and peoplekept asking for a sequel. So 11 years later, I wrote the second book and thena year that I wrote third book and what was so much fun about? It was I aged,everybody 11 years, and I thought about what might have happened to them duringthese 11 years. And what would their lives be like now that I work with? Andthat was just tremendous fun. So it's been e don't know. It's kind of closeto 11 years, So I will think about that fun to visit those that family again.You should every 11 years, all right, about you're gonna pull a question offthe Facebook page. Yes. First, I wanted to read you a comment. Eso ShantelGraddy, who is Ah, good friend of mine and a great friend of the show. Forsure. She's amazing, wonderful reader in person. And she said books alwayshandle tough subject matter. Like all art, it holds a mirror up to society.Some can't handle looking at themselves. So kudos to you for trying to do justthat. Diane E. That was a really, um she said that a few questions ago whenyou were answering and you were talking about, you know, diving into writingyour next book. Ethel Murchison. Econ. Stein wants to know why you chose toset the book and Eden to North Carolina. Mm well a number of years ago when itcame to signing and she said, I'm from Edmonton and you really have to come.Thio, Eadington. I know you're going to find a story there. And so mysignificant other John and I went Thio Eadington, and she and her husband wereso lovely and they took us around. We went out to dinner. We took the trolleythrough Eadington. We explored we looked at the history. It's a reallyhistorical little town. And, um, I had nothing. Yeah, so I thank her forintroducing me to this lovely town, and I just kind of put it aside. But when Istarted thinking about big lives in a small town and the girls the W. P. A.Murals the contest that that Anna enters waas a mural for each state in avery small town. So I thought, and this was a real contest, so that made methink of Edington and Edington turned out to be absolutely perfect for thisbook because of the history and the industry and things that I could buildinto Anna's mural Andi. It's just it's a lovely little town, so So I got to goback and research it with a new I when you're picturing your characters in aplace than you see it in a very different way. So that's how it came tobe eaten now, Christie, how far are you from Eatonton E? I was gonna say I'mpretty close. So I'm in Beaufort, so I don't know exactly. But 90 minutes tohours, not not far, but, I mean, it's it's a similar area. It's weird howsome of these places air close together, but they're difficult to access fromeach other. So sometimes you can look on a map and think, Oh, it's rightthere. But it's it's really not. But Eadington is absolutely beautiful, andI loved reading about it, and you captured it really, really well. So itwas. So is both for your wonderful That is a great little town. Do you everfind yourself in the position of...

Sometimes I think, Oh, I know thisstory can be set on Lee in this place, and then sometimes I think I have astory and it's looking for a setting. Do you ever find yourself doing that,Diane? A lot of times I have the setting first.Obviously not with Eadington, but I really want to do God. I'm blanking onthe name of the town. What's the little town? Um, on a river in North Carolina.Course New Bern. Don't. There's New Bern, New Bern. Very good. Very good. Iknew I wanted to set a book. And new because to go to New Bern. So, um,sometimes I will pick, you know, like, Oh, let's set a book and the OuterBanks so that I could go to the Outer Banks. So sometimes the setting is thething that first for me just do burns a great setting. Newburns. A really good town. I lived there for a lot of his books. Books,isn't it? Well, he lives in New Bern. A Hey, there was where was stolenmarriage set? Um, where? Waas marriage. That was in areal town in Hickory Polio Hospital, right? Yes.Yeah. And that was inspired because I was reading about North Carolinahistory, which is something I like to do in my spare time. And I read aboutthe polio hospital that the town built themselves in 54 hours because of ah,pandemic. I mean, an epidemic of polio in the town and the rial hospitals werefull. So I was e did that during World War Two when the able bodied men werenot even there in the town that the townspeople pulled together to createthis hospital. So that inspired before E. But then, if you've read the book,you it goes often all these directions that I never expected. Yeah, but it'sreally time. And the book we're talking about y'all is is a soul in marriage,and we'll put it, we'll put it in the links. It really is timely for thistime period because people there was such a stigma attached to polio at thetime, right? Oh, yeah. People were terrified of it. Yeah, there reallywasn't. There was no vaccine at that time, right way, just like older. Andpeople didn't really understand eso just so the people who worked in thathospital magically work to your kids. Yeah, and the people who worked in thathospital were considered, you know, nuts, right? Because they were gonna bethat brave e don't think that there was much ofthat because at that time it was mostly Children, right? who were impacted. SoI don't think the adults were terribly fearful. Um, my character is a nurse,and she her family does not want her working there because it's beneath her.But of course. Okay, it's time for a writing tip, and we already know thatDiane is an expert at psychoanalyzing characters. But Diane, do you have, Ah,even our even our readers and listeners who don't write love to hear writers.Tip. Can you share one? I mean, you've done more than two dozen novels. Well,not some secret. It's so funny that you should ask thatquestion because whenever I'm asked that question, here's how I answer it.Well, my friend Mary Kay Andrews gave me the best tip that that I've evergotten, which is you can't revise what you have any rain on. And honestly,that drives me because it's so hard to face that blank page. All of you outthere who want to write, I understand feels, and it doesn't feel any better28 than it doesn't book one. But it doesn't matter what you right, becausethen you're going to go over it and fix it, and eventually it's gonna besomething fabulous. But I got that from you. You have all heard that, Diane.We've all heard that from her. And when you have a lot, you have a lot morewisdom than Ideo. Ah, lot more wisdom...

...than I dio. Okay, let's talk about whatwe're reading, you know, tonight I think especially Ah, lot of us need aplace a safe place to escape to And I think books give us that. So, MaryAlice what I am reading. Let me make sure I'mpretty. Can you all see this? This tender land? I listened to this book,um, the audio book. And by the way, it's one of the best audio books I'veever heard. And by William Kent Krueger. And he is our guest next Wednesday. SoI thought I'd start reading the actual pages because because it's a differentexperience and it's so beautiful. It's John Steinbeck meets Mark Twain Thatsays a lot, and I hope you all read it. You have time to read it before the13th when he joins us, but it's a tremendous audiobook and a tremendousread, and I highly recommend it. I'm listening to the audiobook right now,and I only have an hour left and I keep not wanting Thio because I don't wantit to end. The narrator's extraordinarily good. Yeah, I agree.I'm starting it tonight, so I'm excited. Diane, have you got your first read of2021? Actually, um, I'm about 15 hours intoBarack Obama's promised land. It is a law book, and it's zip wonderful, andI'm getting an education. That's great. I'm looking forward to it. Anybody elsehave a 1st 1st read of 2021? Yeah, I want to tell you all about two booksthat came out yesterday. Um, you know, it's been there's been so much going on.I think sometimes it's hard to notice what's happening in the New Year. ButMichael Farris Smith has a new book out that came out yesterday. I think Imentioned it a few months ago, but it's called Nick, and it is about Nick fromThe Great Gatsby, and it is a prequel about his life. Great Gatsby, and it'sIt's extraordinary, just it's really good and atmospheric and reallywonderful. And then our friend, who will be on the show later this year,Jennifer Robson's new book is out yesterday and it is called our darkestnight. And what a great week for reading. So mhm. Right. Um, everybody All right,you guys. Ladies, how did you end your reading year? Naughty or nice? Ooh, very nice, because I'm listening. ToeWilliam Kent Krueger is tender land O My last read of 2020 was the CloverGirls by our good friend violist Shipman, who was show It was not a niceI'll tell you what I watched. I watched Bridgeton, which was both nice, but alittle naughty. Spicy e I was telling Mag who is our when we call Meg aremanaging director, Director, Director. I was telling her after all of thisexplosion about Bridgeton, we need to have a Regency romance writer on theshow. He Oh, yeah, she has time. Okay, um, Patty, do you want to remindeverybody on our podcast? Absolutely. So, as you all know, Or if you don'tknow one of the many ways to listen to our show, if you didn't make it forWednesday night or you just want to re listen because guests like Diane hadsuch amazing tips and insight is that We have a podcast and all of our showsare on the podcast, and we also are starting to do extra episodes. And MaryKay Andrews and Christine Harmel interviewed two of our indiebooksellers, and that is our first bonus episode, and we have loads morecoming for you. So keep your ears and eyes open for those that's right. AndMary Alice, I mean, you already kind of gave us a little period week, but tellus about William Kent Krueger. Well, this is again. This tender land isWilliam Kent Krueger are we'll call him Kent, by the way that he goes by.Little name will be here next week, and I have to say that this tender land isif I was selecting the best book 2020 for the Read. It would be this book,the best moment and then on the coming...

...up after that in the 20th, we have afabulous just US episode, and I know a lot of our viewers enjoy those. Andit's a very special one because we are going to tell you about our debut books.So stay tuned for that and to join in. We've invited two of our favoritedebuts of the year, Sarah Penner and Nancy Johnson. So it's gonna be a funshow. Oh, and also Pamela Terry, there's three days. Thank you. Wait.Even more to come. More reasons to come. Okay, We can't get enough of Diane. SoChristie has one more question for you, Diane. I do. Diane, we have thisquestion that we love to ask every guest on the show. And we'respecifically interested in your answer, since your brother is an author as well.So why were the values around reading and writing in your family growing up?And how do they How do you think they shaped you as a writer? Okay, yeah. Books were big. My fatherwas a school principal and every a he would come Hominy with boss Ah, bookand a candy bar or two on our bed. So I always say we grew up with way grow bigreaders with bad teeth. S o E. Yeah, I think I think we just grew up lovingreading for me, though, you know, most of the books that I was able to read asa kid were like the little golden books, but in the first grade. Our teacherread us Charlotte's Web, and that was me that I had to be a writer who could make people laughand cry like that book. It never occurred to me a human being couldcreate something like that. S o that was it 20. Did he continue giving you candy as yougot older and books? Yeah. My parents really knew nothing about nutrition E Oreading. It's kind of genius, though, because you associate that You in yourmind like if your kid doesn't like reading, throwing my candy bar everytime, it could create some problems later. But, you know, e love hearingthat Diana and my brother one of the best answers we've ever had. Tell usabout your brother. My brother was actually a writer before I waas andhe's younger, so he beat me to it. I'm here and tell us his name. Oh, his new brothers, Presti. And hewrites mostly. Yeah. Did you get it? There's a lapsehere. Yeah, right. Presidency. And he writes mostly short stories, mysteriesfor, like, uh, Alfred Hitchcock magazine, that sort of thing. And he'swritten a few novels and some scholarly books. Yeah. Okay. Well, I think that'sgoing to wrap it up for us tonight. Thank you. Everybody, especially Diane,for joining us tonight. Um, thank you, Mama Way Loved having you next time inperson. Thank you, Mama Geraldine's for becoming friends and fictions. Firstsnack tastic sponsor. And for all of you in the f n f universe, Remember touse a code that five at Mama Geraldine's dot com to get 20% off onall online orders. Stock up and snack on. Y'all on. We cannot wait to moveinto the new year with all these gorgeous new books. That air coming up,an amazing authors and hopefully happier times and fascinatingdiscussions. Still to come. Good night. Good night. I am Thanks for having me.Thanks for coming right out. You've been listening to the friendsand fiction podcast. Be sure to subscribe to the friends and fictionpodcast wherever you listen. And if you're enjoying it, leave a review. Youcan find the friends and fiction authors at w w w dot friends andfiction dot com a swell. As on the Facebook group page. Friends andfiction come back soon. Okay? There are still lots of books, writing tips,interviews, publishing use and bookstores to chat about Goodbye.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (132)