Friends & Fiction
Friends & Fiction

Episode · 1 year ago

Friends and Fiction with Emily Giffin

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Blockbuster bestseller Emily Giffin joins the Friends & Fiction authors to discuss giving up her law career to write, launching The Lies That Bind on the day of a nationwide social media blackout, and staying connected during the pandemic. https://www.emilygiffin.com/

Welcome to friends and fiction. Fivebest selling authors Endless Stories, Friends and Fiction is a podcast withfive bestselling 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, Welcome to everybody. This isfriends and fiction. Five bestselling novelist Endless stories were fivewriters and friends whose common love of reading, writing or independentbookstores binds us together along with our love of a for a few fit. Oh, no,it's impromptu along with my love for a few other things, like kids anddecorating and laughter and drinking and supporting Feather um, guys. Andthis is our weekly friends and fiction show. I'm very quaint through my latestnovel is Hello Summer. I'm Christine Harmel in my latest novel is the bookof last names I'm Christi Woodson Harvey and my latest Novelis feels likefalling. I am Patty Callahan, Henry, and my latest novel is becoming MrsLewis on Hello, I'm Mary Alice Munro, and my latest novel is on OceanBoulevard. And as you probably already have noticed, we have an incredibleguest tonight. We're so thrilled to have New York Times best selling authorEmily given with us to talk about her new book, The Lies That Bind. But first,a little bit of shameless self promotion from a Bridge and Husi thatwould be me Look tonight and no, I am not a pregnant except with book. I'm soexcited. It's not to reveal the couple cover of my new novel coming May 4thfrom ST Martin's Press, the Newcomer. The book is set in a mom and pop motelon the Florida Gulf Coast. The newcomer is the story of Lady Carnahan, whodiscovers the body of her younger sister on the floor of her posh NewYork townhouse, and her sisters, four year old daughter Maya, upstairswhaling for her murdered mother. Let he flees the city with Mayan toe to anuncertain fate at a motel called the murmuring Surf, where she encounters acynical and suspicious local detective whose mother owns the motel. Plus themotels regulars, a tight knit flock of snowbirds and retirees who regard themysterious newcomers in their midst with more than a little hostility.We're gonna have a special offer for you tonight for folks who preorder thenewcomer from our bookstore, which is a cappella books. I'll tell you aboutthat later. Now we're going to switch the spotlight back to our guest, EmilyGiffin, who I met decades ago at a book event in Atlanta with when her firstnovel, every something borrowed I'm so excited I'm just blathering, somethingbothered. Something borrowed was published to huge acclaim and shortlythereafter became a hit movie starring...

Kate Hudson and My Pretend Husband JohnKrasinski E Tell me he's this nice if he seems like Hey was very nice. Okay,he's very intelligent to Shortly after that Emily, you know, in her spare time,managed a birth twin sons and then a daughter, but to proceed to turn out anuninterrupted, uninterrupted string of New York Times bestselling novels. Now,as it happens, our mutual friend Patty Callahan Henry was also with that eventthat night and introduced us, And I Onley know that because Patty told memy memory of that night is pretty cloudy because I'd flown down fromRaleigh, where we briefly lived three days after having some non essentiallady bits removed. So I think I was living at the time on pain meds andapple sauce. Ah, few years later, Emily and I passed like ships in the nightwhen I moved publishing house into ST Martin's Press and Emily packed up andleft. Um, as a rabid fans know, Emily is an Anglophile with an enduring lovefor the British monarchy, as well as the diehard Demon Deacons fan. Ah,Chicago, all sports, right? Am your golf course right? Pretty much. I likecollege basketball the best, but you're doing your your now like you're now ina Chicago native, she graduated summa cum laude from Wake Forest Universityand the University of Virginia Law School. After what schools to practicelitigation for a large Manhattan law firm. And you're in a novel in herspare time, as one does later. The novel that I wrote in my spare time asa lawyer was rejected. Well, the way just have. Let's just be accurate here,though that one was rejected. And then when I wrote full time was okay. God,Ugo. First time we were interrupted someone's bio before, but I feel like Icould do that that way for people to hear that this way. All interrupt eachother. Okay, something borrowed came out in 2000 and four, which promptedher. Is this right to vow to never practice law again? That's prettyaccurate. Went on to Penn. Eight more New York Times Bestsellers includingsomething blue baby proof love the one you're with heart of the matter wherewe belong. The one and only first comes Love and all we ever wanted. I could goon. But if you have a question for Emily, post it during this chat on ourfriends and pit fiction Facebook page, and we'll Post will be pulling a fewquestions shortly. But before we get too deep into this, I want to remindour viewers of the reason we got to start it on this endeavor. Our love forindie bookstores. Each week we highlight in India's bookstore andtonight Emily has chosen a cappella books in Atlanta as our indiebookseller. So they're graciously giving you 10% off all of our books.The link to the bookstore is posted on the Friends and Fiction Facebook page,so we hope you'll go over there and order books. Welcome, Emily. Finally.Thank you. U s so glad to have you so much. Yeah, we're gonna talk aboutstuff in a few minutes. Um, tell me how I have to say something first, I haveto say a few things for thank you. And I'm so glad that my readers and readersin general are joining us. Um, but Mary Alice has the best voice for this way.Come on. They're probably I'm not talking My son George, about myheadphones. There's somewhere in my bedroom. Um, yes, you're a veryprofessional, and we already have one. So we didn't wait. Very happy. E. Emily.Tell us about how Cove it has affected your personal in writing life. Remoteschooling, virtual bookstore. Barnes...

...are you know how many of you are? Iknow you're not Mary Kay, but how many of you are introverts on here? Yeah,just in terms of my life or just personality. Like just I guess myanswer is because I'm such an introvert and I prefer to sort of hide out. Um,it hasn't affected my life. Muchas I think it's affected. Some people's likea zoo, Much as I love going on book tour. From the standpoint of, you know,once I'm in the moment like it's a classic introvert, once I get into themoment and I'm like, you know, talking to my readers that I'm out of eventlike I have a blast. But I just it takes so much energy for me to get upto want to, like, get on an airplane and then go into the situations thatthere was a, like, a lot of relief involved when they said, You know youcan't. My book came out on June 2nd e don't know if you remember was blackout Tuesday. Eso Nothing kind of happened that week, which was which waswonderful for the movement. Um, and and I There was a huge part of me that waslike, I don't have Thio. I don't have to leave my house. I don't have Thio.Job is up, okay? Don't worry about it. I know what you mean. No, no, no. Ithink we all so there was worried about it, but of course. I mean, that's justkind of, you know, one angle of it. I think like everyone it's been, um, you know, it's been really challenging.I mean, you go through cycles where you're so you know, you're so worried.And, um then you think you have it under control, and then you think like,OK, things are gonna open back up, and then they're not. And right now I havethree teenagers, my twin sons air 16 and my daughter is 13. She's very she'svery social and really likes to be with her friends. Um, the boys were probablya little bit more like me, but that's a hard thing to manage. I don't know whatAges e No, some of your ages, of your Children. I know Patties, kids. But,you know, I think that Zubin challenging. But I have noticed thatwe've had as a family, we've become. We've had really deep conversations. Ithink that's kind of been a scene throughout many families where you, youknow, you don't have anything but each other, so you might as well dig reallydeep and have really, uh, you know, important conversations that we mightnot have otherwise had, or at least not in the same way with intensity. Sooverall, you know, I feel I feel bad saying this because of course, there'sso much suffering out there, and I wish we could get back to normal andeveryone could be healthy again. But for for us personally, it's been sortof a quiet nice time. Yeah, it's a very long winded answer. Sorry, no, veryimportant because I do feel that now that we're coming to the through it atthe end of summer, that we are actually seeing there were moments that werevaluable and lessons that we learned I think that was a very true answer. Yeah.Yeah, but now the kids are back in school because we live in Georgia. SoAtlanta, you know, Atlanta, Georgia, Red State. Everything's pretty open,you know, we're back five days a week, so knock on wood that everything sortof stays that way. But yeah, it's just it's been the you know, if you thinkabout it like if I said to you right now 2017 tell me about what you did in2017. I don't know about you, but my mind goes like, totally blank. Yeah,it's like you have to really kind of think about 2017. What happened then?Or, like, 2014 or 20? Hell, even 2019. I'm alright, 2020. And it's like, youknow, forever Year has just been full. So crazy, but great. Great year forbooks. I mean, great. You're escaping in literature. E over the rest of you.It's September, and it's semi foll ish. I know we have all been dashing to thefinish line with our upcoming novels. Can everybody give me a progress reportbecause I'm taking names way that yeah,...

...it's on your permanent personal record.Oh, Christine, show the cover. But I have a RCs so excited. Yeah, covercomes down a couple weeks and hopefully you guys will be well, you guys, myfriends on the screen. But also you guys, my friends on Facebook will beable to get some of these and when some of them. So I'm super excited. I feelvery accomplished when it's in my hand. It's like a real thing. At that point,I just gave me a heart palpitation a It's, um, how about you? I think I'm inabout 77,000 words. In my manuscript we have a title, which is a bigdevelopment. It's gonna be called the Forest of Vanishing Stars, So that willbe out next summer on bond. But, well, thank you. But the most important thingis I set a goal for myself that if I wrote 8000 words this weekend, I couldget a new pair of shoes and I did so the shoes around. A important thing ofall your e. Next week I'll wear them and kick my heels up in the show. Noproblem. Thank you. What about you? I got my page proofs for the March book.And so we've been spending Emily that five of us have been doing this thingcalled morning sprints, where we check in with each other every morning tomake sure we're writing or doing whatever our goal is. And so for thiswhole week, it's been my page proofs for surviving Savannah and I'm doingsomething I've never done before. I'm reading them out loud from front toback. Has anybody who else s? I do that and I feel like I catch 10 times more.Thanks. It's crazy. Yeah, Yeah, when you're doing your audio book thatthat's not a good time to get. You know, I read out loud after every chappedlike I read it loud every day. Yeah. Wow. Like a very quiet. I mean, it'snot theatrical or anything. It's just really reading it out loud, but justclose, particularly with, like, dialogue. Having any seen you get outloud again when you get your page proofs, or do you only do it whenyou've written it and then your page proofs you just read it? I don't know. I feel like I'm theslowest writer and I just like edit to death everything. So I feel like I doevery variation of editing that their existing anxious Well, I've never readout before and I am natural lot. You could change a lot when you're reading.And I thought my kids like when they're when they take it like an essay testedschool Thio like obviously you can't say it completely out loud, but youkind of could read in your head like hear the words in your head or evenlike mouth, um, or was for them. And you catch so much crazy. Yeah. So I'mhoping next time I'm going to do it. My goal is next time, if I ever writeanother book is gonna read it out loud during, um, copy edits instead of pagegroups. Because, you know, we get that letter that says you're only allowed xnumber of changing Got chapter four. I'm, like, Mhm. That's what I've beendoing all week. Kathy. About you, Mary Alice. Well, im It's been a long summerLong spring. I actually have had a lot of projects. I had my first middlegrade book, which was finished and edited, and so that's the Islanders andthat's done inviting to come out. And then we did a short story and caddiesinvolved in that project for a book. It's an anthology Beach Re union. Andso writing that novella WAAS of Exercise and that's done and I shovedit off and I'm behind everyone else. My...

...novel isn't done, but it will be done.Her editors offering my sprints and it's a common. It's I'm giving birth.I'm still in labor pains birth here. I finished. I finished my book, Um,Christmas Eve Day E was like Scarlett O'Hara. I was like, I will never as Godas my witness. I will never put myself through that again. I've done that.You're smart to say that It's horrible. It's like it's Christmas E would havetaken a champagne and no, I gotta work. I don't even you know it's a Blore, ER,but anyway, I we started sprinting May 1st, and I finished. Um, I finished thefirst draft Labor Day at noon, so I'm cleaning it up and then I'll send it toGem, Emily's former editor and mutual friend. So I feel I feel somewhat,really, but there's so much work to be done anyway. Now let's ask Emily totell us about the lies that bind. Well, let's see. The lives of mine isabout a young reporter, Cecil E. Gardner, who's living in working in NewYork City. And she meets um, she meets a guy at a bar late one night. It'sactually kind of nursing a break up and going through all those emotions ofBreak Up, but she meets this guy and he's absolutely amazing. He's perfect.Andi In the aftermath of 9 11 she discovers that he's not what he seemsto be. So the story is, is a bit of a mystery, and it's about our own kind ofsearch for authenticity and understanding. You know who we are?Ondas much just we tell each other lies and our relationships. Um, we can wecould we also tell ourselves way tell ourselves lives as well. So it's sortof about Cecil E. Understanding, like who she is in her quest for, you know, and and figuring out who thismystery guy is. So and it's so timely that you're here tomorrow. I mean, dayafter tomorrow is free. Today is today is 99 and two days from now is 11. Youknow, it's it's crazy when you when I was writing and I'm thinking it wasjust a few years ago, a few years ago. But it's like it's historic election. Imean, it's 22 decades passed almost. It's crazy. Uh, time has gone, uh, whatmy book is, really, Even though it's it has a you know, 9 11 component to it.It Z in many ways, like the reason that I chose to set it at that time had moreto do with that, like last summer of innocents, you know, cause a lothappened before 9 11. It's sort of the summer of 01 to me was such a vividtime. It was I was living in New York and practicing Law and ended up puttingthat job and moving to London to right full time. I hoped that was the plan towrite a novel. I wrote something borrowed my first year there, so it'skind of an intense time. I think for a lot of people, when we look back andthink about New York City and how innocently all were, and how could wenot have known what was coming, but also in my own life, it was such apoignant, um, time that it was okay. There was something very satisfyingabout going back to that summer and writing a book at that time. But Ithink 9 11 was a good device, for it was weird how much it was mirrored whenthe book came out with everything that was going on with, you know, the blacklives matter, movement and the coronavirus and everything else. But Ithink these really big events in our in the world can sometimes, um, you know,of course, they impact us in obvious ways. But also, I think there's thiswhole thing that goes on internally. You know, we touched on it a little bitearlier with your first question. But you know, you you ask yourself like, AmI living the life that I'm meant to be living, or is this relationship rightfor me? I mean, I can't tell you the...

...number of, sadly, like four or fivefriends who are either going through really big breakup or divorces. E. Youknow, you know a couple of authors who are going through that, and it's just ethink it's because when these big things happen, it causes you to, youknow, really have this internal. Um, you know, all this reflection of isthis the job I want is just a relationship I want. Like, should I becommuting to work every day when I could be here and spending more timewith my Children? Or maybe it's the reverse. Like, get me out s Oh, yeah,That's the other reason. I kind of said it at that at that crossroads. Patty,you've got a question, right? Emily, It's so good to see you, Patty.No, One of my very dear friends. I mean, I love you all, but we're very, veryclose and were both born on March 20th. Yeah, were both born on the same daywith George. And our first book came out in the same year. And we way had todo these. Kathy, Mary Kay Andrews. Remember when me and you and Emily didthat event? What was it at Neiman Marcus Booth? One where Mary can'tremember meeting me, which you could just get out of your repertoire. Iremember meeting you, but I remember nothing else because I was on pain.meds. I just think I'm just using you. Hilarious. E looks very good. Very Kcan you again? What? Your drink. E drinks. Strawberry A Your, uh, Mary. Oh,where you are in your manuscript, Mary. Alice. I think that's an appropriatebeverage. O E o e. I don't know. You've been writing on Christmas Eve orChristmas Day or thereabouts. So the worst you guys all are impressive tomay, but continue. What were you gonna ask? Okay, so what a year this has been.It's like nothing like it, ever. And you had I love watching your instagrambecause you're been and you're honest and you're vulnerable and your withLondon like I am and with the Royals. But you posted this amazing thing acouple months ago, and I know I wrote to personally about it, but I'm goingto read it because I want you to talk about it a little bit. Um, you say, formyriad reasons, some obvious and universal in some too personal to share,the last few months have been really tough. Like a lot of people, I've beendepressed and scared and unmoored. Been more introspective than I've ever beenbefore. I've done more thinking and reading and soul searching and talkingto trusted friends about life and love and relationships and race and powerand privilege and pain. And it's led to a feeling of humility and calm andpersonal growth, along with a shifting of priorities. So I just want to take amoment and say thank you to those people who were there for me, whochallenged me, who inspired me. I am grateful. I am hopeful and my heart isfull. And now I'm all choked up. And it's just so like when I read it whenyou posted it, I was like, There she is, That's that, Emily I know. Mm. Talk tous a little bit about it. Well, I mean, I think it's just all those cycles ofemotion that we were talking about earlier. When you know it, zits.There's so much pain and you're reading these stories and it's just daily agonyfor, you know, our friends out there on our fellow citizens in America. And, um,there's just so much going on, and I...

...think there's the pain, and thenthere's also the way that that causes you again to reflect on your own lifeand and kind of put things in perspective. And, you know, you yourealize who you know. Your true friends are whatreally matters. And we let go of some of the small things. I mean, you know,Azaz authors, we get very, you know, we're worried about our launch and thebook doing well and being, you know, selling and being well reviewed. And wewant our readers to be happy and all of that. And when when your launch kind ofit was such a footnote to this year with my book coming out. And of courseI still so appreciated everyone who read it. And, um, you know, my friendsand family were there for me, but it just didn't seem like a very importantthing. I mean, is important. This books became to me, and this time my own kindof career and book launch was like, Oh, like who? You know who really, whoreally cares, like there's so many more important things out there, and I thinkthat's kind of what I mean. And I think relationships that were, you know, I'dlike to think that I got rid of all like toxic relationships in my twenties,which was sort of something Barb was about. But I think we can. We all tendto get caught up into, you know, relationships and friendships andsituations that are really worth the effort we put into them on we, whetherit's because we're trying to be, you know, a perfectionist or project acertain image or because we just want to be a good person so much. I mean,that's of course, very important that those things can be important. But whenyou strip it all away, uh, you know what? What defines us? This is people.You know what it's like, what I write about it. It's our relationships. It'sour friends. It's our, you know, our marriages and our kids and all of that.And I think that that some painful things happened, um, to meet thissummer and again personal things, difficult things to deal with. But ithelped me kind of really focus on e mean. It sounds solike cheesy and like. But focus on that on gratitude, like really focused ongratitude. And as much as I've tried to keep a gratitude journal before and youknow, said that I'm going to do it and like you get those little novels that,like paper, sort like those little little paper source That's a list five,You know, you do it. You're like, I'm gonna do this on, but it kind of justfalls by the wayside and like, you get to it or you're not, it's a chore, butthis was sort of a concentrated effort. The other thing that I did was jigsawpuzzles because that really, like, just use like puzzles. And instead of mykitchen counter, my husband and two boys didn't throw across country totrain their big run a cross country runners. And so my daughter and I,Harriet and I were left kind of home, and we had no schedule, and we kind oflounged around a lot. They're go getters, and we're sort of like Sloughlike a There was a lot of just like jigsaw puzzles, and I'll have anotherglass of wine And what really should we watch? And then that all of that time Ithink I had an emotional few days around July 4th, and I and I wrote thatpost because I wanted I wanted to share that. And I think also remind people of,uh, of that centering that we all need to dio and it's a good time. It was agood time to really think about that and think about in our case, theprivilege we have and what are we doing with it? And, you know, the pain thatother people are going through. And so it was just It was a lot converging atonce, but I I would guess that every single one of you have had moments likethat. Absolutely. You went over poster, though. I post like, five times a day.So, like, I'm inevitably going to share that on instagram with other people.Might not share that. I'm very open.

But Emily and sharing it you made itokay that we were feeling that way, right? So when you posted it, it makesyou say, you know, it is universal. We're all we're all hurting. We're allfiguring this out. It was beautiful. Oh, thank you. Now I do think that there isa tendency. We tend to think that other people have, like, perfect lives. Youknow, we look it's an easy thing to Dio. You know, you look at a marriage fromthe outside or you look a other people's Children or you look at, youknow, in in social media has made this worse And and I think we're all we'reall suffering in our own ways. And I think that Zim Porton sometimes toshare that, particularly when you have something of a voice or a platform. Andyou can kind of say, You know, this is what I'm going through and it's notjust puppies and you know, And so how about the Queen is really important.She's everything you go a lot of book tour. You go on this fabulous trip toeLondon where you were nominated for award and you're getting to do allthese things. And I'm just like coat tailing off Patti's experience and reposting everything like E like another thing from Patty and another thing fromPatty. Oh, my gosh. Look at this, like bird that Patty saw because bird is inLondon and near the queen I know wasn't in the courtyard of Westminster Abbey.Yes, I think it waas, but e look for the meaning for you. I e wait betweenin the backseat of my car and my mother's car. So, like, you know, likethe detail my boys were like, at one point, their car was in the shop. And Isaid, You know, can you just take Mattis car like we're not taking thequeen to school? Come on, E. Come on. E. Well, I should I should tell you that Ihave my picture a picture of me from D. C. When Anna came to the U. S. Thioopen the treasure houses of Great Britain exhibit and I went up and I wasreported for that page a say and I stood on the White House lawn whentheir helicopter land, and I saw them stand by Nancy and Ronnie Reagan. And Isaw Nancy reach out to hold Diane his hand, which apparently she did not getthe memo e have this hysterical picture of me with cardboard cutouts of Charlesand Diana with my arm around them. And I said my family at Christmas, and theyjust they thought Oh, my God, she Z that's amazing. Okay, I have a questionfor Theo. Events of 9 11 are seen through the eyes of journalists. Yourjournalist protagonists Thessaly, and she's even watching the Today show fromher apartment two miles away as the second tower is hit. How difficult wasthat for you researching it and reliving those scenes? Because I knowyou must have gone back and and watch the television footage and all thatkind of stuff was that Did you have? I don't know PTSD from that It was, and it was going back. So Iwatched the today's show and I would pause it after every line of like and Iwas watching the Today show when it unfolded. Let me back up. I lived inNew York and I moved to London on Sept 16 so my flight out of New York toLondon was pre scheduled for Sept 16. So my last day at work was likeSeptember 7th, and like the going away party that I had was on September 9th,and then I moved into the power of Hotel in Midtown on like the 10th. SoI'm in this midtown hotel getting ready to move to London when this happens,and I was actually I have been going...

...through the phone book to try to figureout where to get my driver's license renewed because I had to go meet afriend downtown and he had said, Well, let's just meet between the towers andI'm like, I don't want to go all the way down like you live in Manhattan.You don't go downtown unless you work down there. But he was like, You know,can you like That's really the only way that I can see you And so I said, Okay,I'm gonna get my and my now husband, then boyfriend. So what? You have toget your driver's license renewed anyway, So why don't you just go to theD. M. V? That's like near the World Trade Center? It's probably like lessof a line than in midtown or whatever. So I'm like, OK, so I looked it up inthe phone book like this in the phone book days like, you know, I didn't lookit up on my BlackBerry or my flip phone. I think it was I was like Okay, like,go through it like getting the address and trying to figure out where it waasand then the guy that I was meeting, who happened to be my ex, um,interestingly was, he said, Hey called me and said, Don't come down here.There's like something. There's like an accident here. So go get towers and youcould hear in the background Kind of like what was happening was very earlyon. And it goes, Turn on the news. It's probably on the news. So I turned onthe news, and from that on I'm watching. You know, I was always watched thetoday's show like So I'm, you know, watching the Today show and sitting inthis hotel room and thinking like Like us, I shouldn't go down and get mydriver's license renewed. You know what? It's like a dawn on everyone. And thenI'm like, Wow, I should call, you know and I won't get into the minutiabecause we all have those stories. But calling my friends, who are lawyers whoworked at the World Trade Center getting the fast busy signal becausethere were phones were like not working because, you know, one reason oranother or my phone wasn't working, it was just the whole, you know. So when Iwent back to write that, it was like for me, like reliving it because I hadbeen watching the Today show and I had been living in New York and I had beenvery close to the site. So it was It was kind of a strange it was it e don'tknow how long it takes you all to write a chapter. I think I'm much slower thanyou have published every other year. And I think you all published everyyear. Eso uh, one What? That scene took me like a month to write, like maybeeven 16. So I would pop after every line of the Today show and write downexactly what happened according to the time that was also on the Today showand then superimposed like her experience and slow realization onto itso that she was talking to her friend on the phone and then watching the newsat the same time s so it was definitely a lot of PTSD. I mean, I think that'sthe case for everyone. Even if you weren't living in New York or, you know,if you were alive at that time, you have your story. You know where youwere. It's like, you know, it's like are the John Kennedy generation like,uh, s. Oh, yeah, it was It was a lot, but again, that's it. That's a smallpart of the book. Yeah, I wasn't I didn't have to Kind of, you know, Ididn't spend a lot of time with that grief I just wrote. The scene sort ofmoved on, but it is coming up, isn't it? Yeah. Wow, that was quite a story yourway when we took off. Like, you know, the plane took off on the 16th. It wasthe first international. I don't know if it was the first internationalflight that they let out, but it was, um it was the first within the firsttwo hours of the first flights. It was that Sunday evening and, you know, wetook off and it was the red eye, but it was still light out because it was, youknow, September mid September. So it wasn't dark at that point yet, and youcould just see still was smoldering. Still the smoke, like, five days later,smoke coming up as you took off. And I remember thinking like that I was like,such a like Like that I was like abandoning on America. And, like, howcould I fly off and go to England? You know, like my dream place, England. Um,instead of like, staying here and like,...

...the grit of it all but s O that wasthere was some parallels there with, you know, I think every book you writehas some autobiographical elements, particularly when you're writing thefirst person. So although especially I don't have that much in common, we did,you know, without giving the plot away. There were some parallels there withher. Her relationship with New York. These at me 9 11. I guess you Yeah.Yeah, that was powerful. That was quite a story. Um, sorry. It was a little bitof a downer. No, but it really kind of leads into my question because you wentright Thio England. And I remember reading your interviews and you weresaying how it was difficult for you to wander around because you weren't inAmerica at that time. But I like you like Patty, Like probably everyone here.I really loved London, and, um, it's my favorite city in the world. And I havethis fantasy which we all probably do of being able to go and right bear orwrite in any foreign country where you're setting the book just and youspent, what, 14 months there? And so I'm just curious having done it. Youhave you done it? Is it a fantasy that we get to go to this country love andright? Or is it actually in reality? Hard? It's a distraction. Doesn't help,E would say. For me is an introvert. It was bliss because my friends andeveryone, I was slow to make friends. I only ended up making a few friendsthere. I don't know if that's like I've heard that that's like very English.It's hard to sort of penetrate those Londoner circles, but, um, but I didn'tmake a lot of friends, and I was kind of liked it that way because my friendsin New York and back in the, you know, my family didn't wake up till, like,one o'clock. So I wrote so much like no distraction whatsoever, like my phonedidn't even work. Like for months after I got there have been the house line,but not the flat line, but not my You know, I didn't have a cell phone thatworked. So it's just like it was and it rains all the time. It's like perfectweather to write in. I wanna know anything like you're living in England,but it's the English legs. So it's like You're not really brave. It's not likeI ventured off to Italy, not knowing the language like eight pray love kindof thing on DSO. But yeah, I think I think it's ideal. Set up too, right?Even if I weren't And at that point, because there were more scenes. E therewere some scenes at the end of something world. But it doesn't evenreally matter if you don't even need to be doing research. I just think it'sstimulating to be somewhere else. Even if you're saying that you're Bahamas,right? Do you all go hotels, right? Yeah, That's why I'm fantasizing. Butwould you go to parents, maybe, or Thio Rome? Or would you go to a city?Another one. If you set the book there, would you do that? Well, it's you know,that was before I had Children. I wasn't even married and I had hadChildren. And so the reason that we moved back, we actually lived there fortwo years and eso Then I got engaged. They're married, married back in theStates. But in that time period got engaged, got married and got pregnantwith twins. And so we moved back because we were having to We were goingto stay with one that when we found out it was way said, Like we have to gethome. It's a high risk pregnancy. We just want to be home. So we moved backon Dso What? I love to do that again. Yes, but like right now, my kids are 1316 16 like it's not in the cards anytime soon. But I fear I know howfast it's going to go the next few years how fast it goes. So you neverknow on the on the back end of that, I don't like Thio. Ever think thatsomething is the last time you'll do it? But that Z, uh, so makes you stillfelling Holly to think like you...

...wouldn't do it again. But I don't knowwhat fingers crossed. We can I am. Right. Right? Yeah, I know, Chris. Andyou've got a question for her. Yeah. Emily, uh, Mary Kay mentioned howthe two of you met, but I wanted to tell a story quickly of my own that youmay not remember. I e in 2009 way were like, totally e had a navy blue like,um, dress that was, like hot, remember, was hot e o from the night. Are youkidding me? Do you think I remember e crazy e? I wanted thio e feel like,Well, you know what I wish I was doing in touch with you, But I was so shy andlike so I wasn't such an early point in my career. And it seemed like you wereYou were like, Oh, my gosh, like you were just had the life I dreamed of.And you think Oh, my God. I was, like, sort of a little star struck. So that'swhy I didn't stay in touch because I was like, early. She wouldn't want tohear from May E for a little while, but you really did take off a e. But I waslike, Gosh, I was nothing done, but but I But I wanted Thio tell a story thathas meant so much to me over the years. You were so kind and gracious than anda year so later is when I kind of decided to take my career in adifferent director. Um, I wanted to be writing bigger historical women'sfiction, and I left my agent. I left my publisher. I was very much a drift, andI reached out to you for help and without reading my you know, likewithout I didn't have a but still yet, But you offered me the sweetest, mostgenerous blurb on Guy was able to bring that to the new publisher as part ofthe package. And I think that was one of the things that really helped withthe sweetness of forgetting, which is the book that were in my life. I'vealways e don't think I've ever had a tell you that. But that has always withme just how kind that was. Especially your kids must have been young and youhave a million things on your plate and you took the time to do that. So Iwanted to say you're very welcome, but you're my My blurb had nothing to dowith that wonderful book that you had written like you were You were You weretaking off. You were taking off. And, you know, that's the thing. Likemeeting you. It's like whether whatever, wherever you are in your career, youcan kind of remember in the beginning. You remember that first, you know, youremember where and you seem so beautiful and young. I do remember thatbecause I was in the throes, like three Children under the is 2009. So I had atwo year old and too four year olds. Yeah, that was not a pretty It was nota pretty time for me, but you were born. I'm always so happy to do that for, forfor other authors, especially ones who have met and really like we were likepals that night. We kind of went around to the different tables and gave ourlittle analysis e that. But yeah, e was fun, e. In any case, And Mary elsedidn't we meet in Winston Salem? Did we never meet in Winston Salem? I'm makingthat up. Have you been to Winston Salem? I have, but I would have rememberedmeeting you. I mean, Patty talked about you all the talk, So maybe it was.Maybe it was like early, maybe like I was the Christian in this story, Emaybe like to think I would have remembered a pretty young well, e hadbrown hair of the time. Maybe I would like to, as I like to tell my Childrenwhen I say, like I got so tired of dying my hair brown eso It costs somuch money. It was so time, really,...

That I just went back to my naturalblonde e Maybe you're on painkillers to at the time area E, I'll refresh. I'llthink about it tonight. Okay. E Christians will move on to yourquestion. We're running out of time. All these people were asking thosequestions and is very e blowing up. We're never even gonna get to it. Okay?Mine's actually kind of a quick question then. So that's good. I thinkI e my I think my computer since your back will sleep soon unless plugged ine disappeared for a minute. E baby, we're so proud of our announcements,don't you? I mean, I want to get to your cover, reveal that most importante Oh, my kids. Kathy, why don't you do your coverright now. Waiting. That's perfect. See if Sean can put it up. Sean, can youput it up? E love it, e. That's the newcomer. Next summer. Summer 2021.That's, um I love the pink shark fins. So on. And it's the first timeanybody's ever seen it. Yeah, it's so great. Made for a shooting on it upthere, baby. Fresh look, all different love. It has for humor in it, but Ilove. Yeah. So if you order tonight through pre order tonight throughSunday from a cappella, um, you're gonna get 10% off. You won't get thebook until May 4th. But we'll send you, Ah, one of our friends and fictioncozies. And that's enough about that because we're going thio questionChristie's person. Yes. My God. Are you got Emily? Are you plug done? Well, ifwe die but he's coming in charge now. E before on friends infection. But I gotthe idea for my debut novel when my son was like, three days old, which was notprobably the best time, but as we all know, when you get an idea for a story,you just sort of have to write it. It kind of takes over your life. But I hadso many excuses in so many reasons that this wasn't the right time for me totry to get an agent. It wasn't the right time for me to submit. It justwasn't the right time. And my mom sent me an article about you and about howyou signed your first book deal and then found out about a minute laterthat you were pregnant with twins, no less. And I thought, Okay, well, if shecould do it with two babies, then I could do it with one babies, certainly.Uh, right, I hope, but really mean spent an entire career being thisincredibly successful author, wife, mother or philanthropist. All of thesethings. And I'm not going to ask you the balance question. I'm not going toask you that. Um, but do you have any advice for people who are, you know,just kind of getting started? We have a lot of writers on the show who feellike they're in the throes of all these things. And, like, maybe they don'thave time. Um, yeah. Oh, I think you're muted. Your muted Emily family. Did you?Emily? What am somebody muted? Um, you mutedyourself, I think. Accidentally, Sean, can you? Right there on thebottom. Seo bottom left. Damn.

Okay. Hurt that so loud. It's kind while she's tryingto Owen Mute What? Oh, I'm looking. She says it won't onmute show you It's doing the scrolling rainbow. Whydon't we talk about the bookstore while we're waiting for this Christian? Areyou going? They just made a secondly, but order, I can One thing I do want toremind everyone while Emily squirreling Riendeau is swirling that as all ourwatchers know, that Kristin's book The Book of Last names waas such a huge hitthat it sold out on I think, what dig our one way have a huge announcementand it is finally back in stuff so Sean could use a little flash of the booth.And so if you've been spending time, you know that this has happened. Nowit's in stock. Everywhere it's been out of stocks is that we could came out andwe're excited to know and to share that is back in stock. So tell everyone, youknow, it's almost like public all over again. Thank you. E. Are you back? Youtext. Emily and Pluto. Go out. Come back in. Oh, she can hear us. You canhear us right in. Um, go out and come back back in. Okay, E. It is yourfriends and fiction. If something wasn't going wrong, right? I mean, Ithink a wide exactly. They're really on and then come back. You can likeKristin. Do you talk about bookmarks? What? Marx. Yeah, Really? O e um Youknow, I just wanted to say super quickly over the weekend, we postedabout bookmarks from North Carolina. Um, they're an independent bookstore. Alsoa literacy nonprofit. They had something terrible happened to them.They flooded Andi when we told you about it. More than 150 of youimmediately stepped up to donate. We were floored. We were so touched. Andtheir operations director, Jamie Rodgers Southern came on and said itreally must true that reading fiction develops empathy. I'm so encouraged.This bleep leap year hasn't made people hate. It's made people bond together inlove, trust that our staff is deeply grateful. We will recover and continueto serve our community. So to say thank you. We are giving away find booktomorrow. Books and book plates, Um, to a random winner. One of you who donated.And the winner is Diane Maguire. So she was randomly drawn. Diane, I will. Iwill email you tomorrow to get your address. That prize packs. Also goingto include a book plate signed by Sarah McCoy, who is on the bookstore board.She's another author. She's on the bookmarks board. But all of you. So,Diane, thank you. But to all of you. Thank you so much from the bottom ofour all five of us friends and fiction authors are so proud to be part of thiswonderful, bighearted giving community. And we were so honored toe walk amongall of you. You. So we love you guys so much. Thank you for stepping. Waitingfor Emily to come back in. Um, everybody wanna give a shout out towhatever it is you're reading and enjoying right now. I know. Mary. Alice,you've got a book you want to mention? Sure. I'd love to. My gosh, Emily can'tget back in. She says, E, I'm really...

...excited. This is a nonfiction So it'sthe first time I've done this. It's called Becoming Wild by the Carl Safina.I read a lot of books about nature, but this is so eloquently done. It's aboutunderstanding the, um, you know, for so long people say, Don't anthropomorphize,don't put human emotions into animals. He is a naturalist, a scientist, hesays. Yes, they do have these emotions. And he tells beautiful stories thatparallel human emotions, animal emotions, human emotions. Obviously Ilove that, but he does it so well. He's such an eloquent writer, and also hehas. It's been so successful. There are two middle grade or young adultversions workbooks for kids. So if you want to get in touch, you wanna havethat connection with nature, especially if you're stuck indoors. It's calledBecoming Wild, and the author is Carl Safina. He's probably my very favoritenature writer. And Christine, you had a couple of books you wanted to talkabout, right? Yeah, well, in since Emily isn't here, I do just want to say,because I really didn't say this tonight, But if you have not read thelies that bind, I know we all loved this book. so much. It was incredible.It was one of those books that I was reading it over Labor Day weekend and,like I couldn't do anything else, you know, like friends would be like. I'msorry, I'm reading and I stayed up all night finishing the spot come. It wasjust absolutely wonderful. And then to hear their stories about 9 11 and justhow that tight end. And it was so interesting to me to be back in 2001and to think about we don't feel like it's that long ago. But just all of thecultural references. And you know what? They were listening to what they werewearing their self. It was where they were eating. I mean, it was just reallyinteresting. Thio, go back to that time and be like, Wow, that really was along time ago. But it's just it's a great book on all accounts, Um, ahistory in there, too. Yes, yes, I am reading the Age of Innocents, which Isomehow I mean, I have a masters in literature, but I never read this bookbefore. I don't know how that happened, but it is so wonderful and we weretalking about earlier. How sometimes the classics are not as exciting or,you know, but this'll book just it's really it really holds up. It's justsuch a great book. I'm like, I'm flying through it like I'm flipping the pages.So, um, not our normal contemporary read, but Beijing. But it's it's a truehistorical. Yeah, Okay, talking about how awesome. Okay, s So here's whathappened. I'm going to stay with this really quickly. My computer, My JoeBiden sticker here, this'll computer do not have chrome. So I got this computerand then when I hit mute when I was trying to plug myself in, it froze, andit kept doing that little wheelie thing that was E. O s. Now my family isyelling at me. Why did you use that ancient computer like? That's nothelping. It's not my mute, but well, it. But I told you, I'm terrible at thisstuff. We all are way. Always dio a little aftershow eso in it in it, um,it airs. So if you guys will since we Emily you know, we lost her in theethernet, hang out and we can you hang out with us too. We'll ask you somemore questions. We'll drink some or stuff. I didn't even finish, did you?Christie, did you finish your question? Actually, my question works really wellfor her writing tip to because E that is. You know, when you have all ofthese things in your life, how do you prioritize your writing? And what doesyour schedule look like? And I know...

...what I was trying to answer before Irealized I was commuted. Just I think you have to let go of the quest for forperfection. Like, I think that your mother probably sent you that article.That clipping because you have been really struggling at that time andprobably feeling, you know, terrible about your output and probably feelinglike you weren't doing a good job in any one category in your life. And shesent that article and said, Look, everyone's going through this likepeople you know, young mothers like go through this. And I think that's justto kind of again go back to this sense of Don't be so hard on yourself. Justdo do what you can. And some days we're gonna be terrible and some days or youknow you're gonna right, And it's going to feel so easy and effortless andeverything will flow. And you just on that's the same in relationships arerelationships. Sometimes they come together. And if they feel effortlessand sometimes like if you could have heard us fighting just now arguing howdid you use that old computer? That zeal to me right now when I'm likedoing this, you know, So that's like and I think I'm gonna put filmed himsort of yelling at me because I'm gonna put it on my instagram story becausethat's really dammit. People have been asking questions and so we're gonna Wepulled some off the Facebook page, and then we're gonna ask some that havebeen coming in live. So, uh, Dorsey hates buttocks, and we are just gonnago over. So if you can't stay, you guys go away. But we hope you will be goingover, you know, a second hour of the today. A calories? Yeah, Dorian YatesButtocks wants to know Emily. There's an idea for a book that you just can'twrite about yet. A story that's just waiting for the right time. Well, Istarted a book, so, you know, I didn't go on the book tour, so I thought, Okay,I could really get started early and get cranking on this one. And I startedone, and it was a little It was just too. It was too heavy. It was, too. Itwas too heavy for my my soul, my heart to manage. And so I just put it asideand I decided that I would revisit it. And once there's a vaccine, you know,once we're a little bit on even footing. I've started another book in the lastfew, like the last week. And I think if you follow me on instagram I've beenasking about have narrated the names that the baby named choices for thischaracter. I'm kind of getting into that. But eh? So, yeah, I thinkdefinitely There are books that stories we want to tell, but the moment doesn'tfeel right toe us. You know, we just don't feel ready, so I'm That's a greatquestion. Is it, Doris? Doris. Thank you, Doris. Yes, And reality has aquestion from somebody to right here. This is from Crystal Harden, and itsays and this is appropriate that I asked you this. Will your next bookfinally include a dog? All your readers Heart Dolly, Hank and Darcy. Oh, that'sso sweet. Um, you know, I have I really never included a dog. I think there'sbeen dogs. Maybe not like a like a key, integral like dog character. Like thedog is like center stage dog plot. Yeah, maybe I'll have to do that. What? Whois the lady who? Just ask that crystal crystal hartal. Okay, Crystal, I'mgonna put a dog in for a crystal. What a d 00 e. Oh, that's awesome. Dogs areawesome. Okay, Who wants to ask another question that we pulled e okay. Yeah.Sean, do you want to run us alive or I've taken the liberty of pulling a few.Also, Okay, Brendan Gaskell wants to...

...know Emily. What led you to become alawyer? Oh, Brenda, uh, you know, actually, I don't regret going to lawschool. I loved I love school. I loved the actual law school. I just didn'tlike the practice of law. But I think that law, when you meet a doctor, youhardly ever, ever meet a doctor. who will say like, Oh, I just went tomedical because I wasn't sure what else to do where I was pregnant. Chase. Mylike, really dreams. I just went to med school. But I feel like a lot of peoplego to law school because they were really good at sort of something in theliberal arts and they had good grades and they liked school and they werekind of on the nerdy side and like, I'll just go. I'll just take the elsethat I go to law school. So I think kind of I fell into that. I was ahistory major with English minor, and I was just I knew I wanted to be a writer,but I wanted to write fiction. I didn't wanna go to journalism, so I'm like, OK,I'll just go to law school and and go from there So it's It's Yeah, a za Muchas I did not like practicing in a big firm, though, I mean, I really do useit all the time, and it enabled me to live in New York City. I guess I couldhave lived in New York City if I had been like a struggling writer, But, um,it's a lot easier to move there. But you know what? The big firm job and so,yeah, my rambling answer There a question, E o way. Everybody, if wewant to do one more way, this is really have time. Okay, um, Melanie Falconerwants to know all of us. What is the one thing you're looking forward todoing once everything is opened back up. So, Emily weekend since you're ourguest, you You guys go first. Okay. Hostess pre k G o. Uh, somebody else gofirst. I was travel. I want to go. I want you to hold on, Judge. I want togo to London with Mary. Alice. Uh, PCH. And you, uh, can I come and just hopacross to Paris from there? Michael. All right. A little research done.Exactly. We're supposed to go to a wedding in France, um, in a MemorialDay weekend, actually. And we had a plan that I would get off book tour. Wewould jump on a plane, take the train to a friend's daughter's wedding. Um,do that and then, you know, run around the French countryside drinking wine.So dio warning the wedding happened But they're gonna have the party Whenthings you know, hopefully pray to God when things get better than well,hopefully go. So that's what I wanna dio You know what I want to dio I wantto see all of y'all in real life and e o e o part of the tribe So you guyswere sweet. Yeah, I want to go hang out I wanna go right with some of you Oh,come on, I'm talking about that forever Go to a little do a little writer'sretreat. But who Who said that they wrote 8000 words this weekend was thatI did. But that's what Christine you Well, no, I mean let's talk aboutChristie Christie. How many words do you write like sitting in the car? Thepickup line? Christine's our work girl J B that good. They just know thatmatter and you know it doesn't like it doesn't. It's just a word that'samazing. E a weekend. But part of that was because I had been Patty and I did.A writer's retreat in captures North Carolina Nice, and she basically putthe gun in my head and said because I kept saying I can't do it, I can't doit. I can't do it. I have to You know, I've got to write this big, You know,um, sort of cinematic day. Numa and I...

...couldn't get there and she kept tellingme I was self sabotaging and e wasn't writing a word so her to, you know, to,you know, nag me. But it really did help me over the hump because we sortof sat down and talked about all the points plot points that I had to coverby the end of the book. And so I had, you know, my little handy dandy blackand white composition notebook that I wrote down. This is what I have to dio.And then once I got home, um, it was like, I have got to do this. So Icouldn't have done it if I hadn't had been with Patty and her really kind ofputting a gun to my head. You cranked it out. E did. I did. It was I won'tsay it with a new land speed record, but e But I do think for you, CathyAmerica, you know it Z. The fact that we didn't have to go on book touractually made a difference, you know, because otherwise we're on the road ofthem. Be hell afterwards. So you got that was you got that gift of time?Yeah. There's one more thing we have to dio um newsflash. Breaking news. Um,Beth Woodson has turned 35 way. Love you for giving us Christie. And, umwhat else do we want to do, Guys? I mean, we're just, like, rolling alonghere. We should probably let Emily get back to her family. I think you guysshould all be special guests on my book club Zoom that I'm doing at 8. 30. 0,no. Yeah. No, no. Well, it's at 8. 30. So we have plenty of time, But I'm notgoing to do my hair twice. No, like, you know, because it's usually in abaseball cap, and it's like, Well, we all do that. I'm gonna stock thesethings, so I e think you guys should come on the zoom and surprised everyonedirty. Why waste this makeup Seo put on a listen, I'm going to send it Thio.I'm going to send it to patty and she can share with you. If anyone wants tocome on and say hi to this book. Club would be. Oh, really? Oh, we're gonnaall made Period. Thank you, Emily. So much A technical difficulty. But youjust got a little window into, you know? You know, I don't drive on highways,for example. You know, that e a family would not be friends and fiction if youdidn't have technical. Oh, yeah. Okay. Okay. You're going back again havingyou, because thank you to all of our readers out there. Thank you. Thank you.You're awesome. You 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. Yeah,.

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