Friends & Fiction
Friends & Fiction

Episode · 1 month ago

Friends & Fiction with Karin Slaughter & Chris Swann

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

The Fall 2022 season premiere episode with Karin Slaughter and Chris Swann is a rip roaring good time filled with lots of laughs and insightful book talk. Hear from Karin all about her latest GIRL, FORGOTTEN. We talk to her about her research process into cults and the federal marshal service, what drew her to the 1980's time period, her work to raise money for libraries, and what's coming next. Then 2022 Georgia Author of the Year Chris Swann joins the Fab Four to chat about his latest novel NEVER GO HOME. We hear from Chris about blancing his career as English dept chair at a provate Atlanta high school with his career as a thriller writer, and he tells us how he devised his badasss female character Suzie Faulkner and the joys and challenges of setting his fiction in and around his home city of Atlanta. All this plus book recommedations and writing tips!

Welcome to friends and fiction for New York Times bestselling authors endless stories. Novelists Mary Kay Andrews, Kristin Harmel, Christy Woodson Harvey and Patty Callahan Henry are four longtime friends with more than seventy published books between them. Together they host friends and fiction with author interviews and fascinating insider talk about publishing and writing to highlight and support independent bookstores. They discussed the books they'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 the right place. Hey, everybody, it's Wednesday night and after a much needed summer break, school, I mean friends and fiction, is backup session and we are so glad to be back with you. We're rare to kick off an exciting fall season tonight with two amazing guests, so let's get going. I'm Mary Kay Andrews, I'm Patti Callahan Henry, I'm Kristy Woodson Harvey, I'm Kristin Harmel, and this is friends and fiction for New York Times bestselling authors endless stories, to support indie bookstores, authorism librarians. Tonight we have cooked up a sizzling hot show with best selling Authors Karen Slaughter and Chris Swan, whose brand new thrillers girl forgotten for Karen and Chris is never go home, feature a couple of Real Badass Babes. And you know, as though that's not enough, we've got an exciting sneak peek at the cover for somebody's brand new upcoming novel. Who? Who? Who? So exciting? But first, did you know that here we've been talking about it, but you might have forgotten over the break that we at friends and fiction are currently reading this summer place by Jennifer Weiner in our behind the book premium club on fable the APP. We'll dive deep into the themes and characters and I've been leading the discussion and sharing my moments and some thoughts about some of the scenes. But all you have to do to read along with us is download the fable APP and join our premium club. It is full of behind the scenes info you won't get anywhere else and it's just five dollars a month to join. So visit fable dot co CEO, backslash friends and fiction to sign up today. Yeah, and speaking of fable, we recently ran a giveaway encouraging you to sign up for fables. Fable, I can't it's like a tongue twister. Tonight. Tonight we have a winner to announce. So congratulate I should have patty do a drum roll. I've missed the drum rolls. Drum roll please, Patty. Excellent, excellent as usual. Congratulations. Congratulations to Deborah Myers from Randall's town, Maryland. Deborah will receive a friends and fiction tote bag brimming with eight books from the four of us. So thank you so much everyone who entered, and remember to keep signing up for fable. We have lots more surprises in store. It's lots of fun and it's a great immersive reading experience. And don't forget, as you know, we continue to encourage you to support your independent booksellers when and where you can, and one way you can do that is to visit our own friends and fiction bookshop dot org page, where you can find Karen's books and Chris's books and books by the four of us and all of our guests at a discount. So also, each week we're going to be giving you a chance to ask US anything we've been doing that for the past couple of months now. So if you have a question you'd like the four of us to answer or a topic you would like us to discuss, we are all ears. In fact, feel free to drop questions in the comments now for future weeks. We want to hear from you. But as we enter a new season of our show and as many of us are in the midst of back to school excitement, this question from Jennifer Don grabbed our attention. What is your favorite season and why? Uh So, mine is fall, because in Florida it is eleven d billion degrees all summer long and by September you're ready to tear your hair out of your head and your skin off your body. Um, and then something magical happens. The temperatures hurricane season and then you don't have to worry about your hair and your skin because your house is falling down around you. Know, the weather starts to get much nicer, Um, and then falls just magical. You're excited about the holidays coming, you're excited about thanksgiving. I just really like fall in Florida. So That's mine. I you know, I like each season for its reasons, but if I'm being forced to pick a favorite. It's spring and for a couple of reasons. One, my birthday is on the first day of Spring, but also I feel like that when spring comes there it feels so hopeful. It's like everything that you look dead isn't and everything burst forth and here in this the Magnolia and the tulips and the crocus and everything pops...

...out at once and it it feels hopeful. I like it a lot. Well, if you kept up with your parade reading, when we're doing our parade, I wrote a love letter to summer because it is definitely my favorite season. I'm like Patty, though, I do. I love all four seasons. I love living in North Carolina because we really most years get all four seasons, you know we I love those transitions in between, but I just love summer. I love will being him from school and being off schedule and being at the beach and I just love everything about it and I'm so sad for school to start next week, but it's okay. There are good things about fall too, and I love back to school shopping, like, like for school supplies, like very specifically, like the piles and the love that. I love that, even I don't have a kid to go back to school anymore, like, Oh, yeah, you, you have to. I mean it's just like of it. And as writers see, we can get pens and notebooks and notebooks. Yeah, yeah, yeah, so it's easing my um summer's over slump to know that I get to go do school shopping this week. So hope again. Well, my favorite season is not summer and it's not winter because I'm a Florida girl and I don't like the cold. So technically my favorite season is spring, for all the reasons that Patty said. I'll pick winner, but only if I can be in Florida in February. Okay, deal, fair, you can come down. We should be called the four seasons now. I love it, hopeful art to sneak in the rounds of all the sixties bans, the FAB four four season. Okay, without further ADO, now for tonight's guests. Karen Slaughter, first off, is a New York Times best selling author of more than twenty novels, including pretty girls, the good daughter, pieces of her cop town and the grant count and the will camp and the Will Trent books. Her novels have been published in a hundred and twenty countries, with more than thirty five million coffees sold worldwide. I said that slow because it's kind of unbelievable. Karen was nominated for a prestigious Edgar Award for her novel Cop Town, which Chris was telling us off stage as one of his favorites and another of her standalone novels. Pieces of her was made into a number one netflix original series starring one of my favorites, Toni Collette Tom and I finished binging it last night. It was amazing. I can't wait. Karen is also the founder of this save the Library's project, which is a nonprofit organization that works to support libraries and has raised more than three hundred thousand dollars for the Decab County Library Foundation. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia. Her new novel, Girl Forgotten, is a book of the Month Club selection and it will be out this coming Tuesday, August. So we are especially excited to have Karen with US tonight for a special pre pub chat before she heads out on tour. Sean, can you bring Karen in? Welcome Karen. We're so excited. Hi, excited to have you here too. To my to allow us to fan the flames of excitement for grill forgotten grilla. This is one of my favorite. It was so fantastic. Well, I have to say I gobbled down girl forgotten like a slab of prime U S D, a medium rare stick. Now, before we get to the meat of the searing questions, we wait. Wait, wait, I almost forgot my other prop before will we come up with our searing questions? Tell us what girl forgotten this really is about. And then what's it really about? Gilgan, was Actum, I was wondering why you were wearing a chef jacket, but I thought you were just trying like some appropriation. There my name. Oh there it is. Yeah, Um, excellent, nice close up. Glad you're wearing a broad at night. Girl forgotten is about this webber grill boiler alert. It was left out on a deck and, Um, unfortunately there was a small fire and you know how, like all the great get in there. So that just caught on fire and then a baby died. Thank God it wasn't a cat. Thank God, of course not. I'm not a freaking months to her. Okay, what's what's it really girl forgotten about?...

Girl Forgotten, oh, okay. Um, well, it's about murder. It's about five pages to be honest. Um, you know, it's kind of it's not really a sequel to pieces of her, but it does have some of the same characters. Um, mostly it was me wanting to do an awesome eighties mix tape of music and I build a story around that. You know I love the go goes. Put some blondie in there. Actually met Blondie in a L A. I bet you gals have some stories about meeting some really famous people at different book events and being kind of shocked. Uh. I've got a great picture of me and Josh Jackson with Dr Ruth Who's looking at us both like who the fuck are these girls? But, but that has nothing to do with the book. Um, you can tell I haven't read it in a while. Um, but it starts out with a young girl named Emily von and obviously, since she's in the first chapter one of my books, things don't turn out well for her. But she's been canceled in high school and people think that being canceled is like a new thing with the Internet, but any girl who survived high school knows that girls cancel other girls all the freaking time and it's horrible. And so that's was what I started from, was this question of what happens to this girl who gets canceled and you know, she fights back, but again, first chapter things. So you have to read it to see. Oh, it's so exciting. So you introduced Andrea, the protagonist of this book, in your pieces of her, like you just mentioned. But could you talk about Andrea's character art because she goes from this thirty year old kind of hot mass cooking on the grill and teth her and then she goes to this kind of Badass New Bee Federal Marshal in this new book. Can you talk a little bit? Yeah, well, I mean in the parlance I'd say she goes from rare to well done, say in the grill business. Uh, you know. She so with pieces of her, it was like I always write about really strong women and I wanted to talk about how women get strong and so I thought, hey, a violent murder ought to do that. I mean, that's what happened. I know that's Mary Kay's story, Um, and so I had her go through all this horrible ship and, uh, some of you, her mothers and others who are motherfucker's will understand this. But you know Laura, her mom says, I want you to grow up, I want you to be an adult, and then Andrea finally does it and Laura says, oh no, not that way, I don't want you to do this. Uh. And what Andrew Does is she becomes a U S Marshal, and this was really my way of learning more about the marshals, because what they do is really cool. They're kind of like the Swiss army knives of law, of federal law enforcement, and you know they like they guarded the vaccines when they were being delivered and they investigate a murder if it happens in Antarctica. And one of the stories I heard was really fascinating because they do asset forfeiture. So this marshal had to get on an oil tanker in the port of Savannah and say the captain that, you know, these people didn't pay their tax who on this ship, so I'm going to confiscate it, and the captains like, do you want me to drive it for you? or so they do all kinds of different things and we all know fugitive apprehension is a big part Um and also transportation, because we've all seen con air UM, some of us more than once. I know, I know who you are. Good to yeah, yeah, so, Um, I want to and I talked to a female marshal. This is a really hard thing to become a marshal, because you go through, uh, it's in Brunswick, Georgia, down the street Um from Savannah, and you go through the regular law enforcement training to become an investigator, but they need stay another few weeks and you just beat the hell out of everybody there and it's like it's it's in Brunswick, so it's just horrible and it's tropical and they fight in stand pits with fleas there and there's an ambulance standing by. And this girl was woman who was about my size, but but smaller, which is not hard to do if you stay off cookies. She would like face off a guy who was six three and have to just beat the crap out of him and find a way to take them down. And that to me was really interesting because I don't know about you, but when I talked to women in law enforcement, my first question is, why the hell are you doing this? I'm not because they can't do it. They do it really well, but the ship they get from other people right their parents don't want them to do it, the mail car ups don't want them there. Guys...

...don't want to date a woman who can arrest them, you know. So it's a really difficult job to do, Um and you know most of the time it's either they did it because a man told them not to or because they just love it. And it was really just really fascinating learning so much about the marshals and that's that's a you know, it's a it's a part of the book. It's not the whole part of the book, but you learn more about the marshals than you ever thought you knew. Did you actually go down to Brunswick to the F L etc. They fletsy, Kathy Mary Kay, I keep calling you by your government name. Um. We tried to twice but then covid shut it down, because I would love to have seen it, um, but like from a golf cart, not like actually doing it. I used to have a friend who was who, you know, piece together, living on in Brunswick doing freelance writing, and one of the gigs she did also was she would go um work at fletsy and they would do like scenarios like bomb threats and people would have to pretend to be dead and she would just go be a, you know, a bid actor. They you know, they paid a day rate. But anyway, enough about fletsy. In this novel we never actually meet the art villain, claymorrow, a k Nick, a k a nick, who is Andrea's imprisoned father, but his chilling presence is foreshadowed from the very beginning and I was fascinating. There's a good bit about a plot involving cults, but more interestingly, I thought, was the connection you made between cults and High School Clicks. Yeah, Um, and that's such a timely device. Why? What did you find so fascinating about cults? And you know, I think all of us could. All of us could have our own experience with clicks. And and did you learn anything with your research that was a surprise to you? Well, you know, I'm not really surprised by a lot of things that people do because I just expect the worst. Uh. So it's more like I'm kind of delighted that people are so horrible because I can write about it. But definitely, yeah, I mean you're right, there is a line between the clique and the cult, and the behavior is the same. I mean, everywhere you go you could call anything a cult, like your your readers could be a cult or you know, sometimes they're in positive ways and sometimes they're negative ways. What's really fascinating to me is like when men get cults the primary drivers to have sex with all the women, and when women get cults the primary drivers to have everybody else do chores. Uh. That just tells you, like the what what our focus is, um. But it's true. So Emily is in this group of friends and you know, she's grown up with them, she's felt like she's a part of them and, like a lot of cults, they feel everybody else is stupid and they just don't know how great it is to be in this group, that they're smarter than everybody else, that they know more, that they're they're on the inside and everybody's on the outside. And that's really what cults are about, is thinking that you're right and everybody else is wrong. Uh. And there's a certain arrogance that comes with that. Um and it it. It's really interesting because a lot of people in cults will say, well, we know we're thinking for ourselves and it's like no, you're letting this one person tell you how to think, which I've always been fascinated by that. I think. You know, maybe it's a gen x thing, like we saw a movie of the week about a cult, in the same way like cults are in dest Gen x is totally there and we have vc Andrews to thank for the incest thing. I don't know where I gotta. I gotta do a deep dive on movies of the week, you know, like what makes so terrifying aliens because of the know. So all of that movie of the week influenced us in many ways. MHM, that would be really fascinating to research. Um and Karen, you have penned so many amazing books to wildly successful series, the Grant County series and the wil trend series, but in between you've given US standalone's like last year's false witness, the silent wife, et Cetera. But it seems like you left plenty of room for further installments of us. Marshall Andrea Oliver, are we going to see more of her? You know, we might, and you, you guys, probably feel this. Sometimes a book is more emotionally draining than others, and sometimes comes from the characters and sometimes it comes from the plot, and so this is a nice break from the emotional expenditure for false witness, which was a really heavy book, you know, dark things happening. So this was a little lighter, UM, comparative. So maybe I don't know. I mean I didn't...

...think I would do a sequel the pieces of her and I did girl forgotten, which is like sort of a sequel. So who knows that there might be more stories for Andrea. Just depends. Yeah, that makes sense. So this is your version of flatter light, yes, but it's all full interesting. I think that sometimes books that are the most draining for us aren't as much for her. Right like, like somebody might read witness and not think it's as heavy as what takes a lot out of us. That's always equal, but right. Yeah, that no, that's such a good point. Um. So Karen's switch tracks a little bit. You found it to save the LIBRARI's project, which, of course, was established to support libraries and library programs, library programming. So I know we touched on this last time you were on the show, but supporting libraries is a big part of our mission here too, so I would love to ask you about it again. Can you tell us a little bit about save the libraries, why it's so important to you to do something like this and what you see is the current challenges facing libraries? Well, I'll answer that backward because I'm kind of a backward person. Um, the biggest challenge right now is censorship. I mean, I've right as someone who doesn't have children and doesn't like children. Um, I find them very sticky and selfish. UH, but it's true. Yeah, that's the truth, man, sticky and selfish Hashtag. So, you know, libraries are so important, especially for weird kids, which, believe it or not, I was a weird kid and I found myself in the library. And I think if you're a parent who doesn't want your kid to have access to all these books, don't do it. Don't try to parent other people's kids. It's not your business, you know. And if you want to be there when your kid checks out books to make sure you know what they're doing, go for it, but don't tell other people how to be parents. I mean that's just like basic parenting. Even I know that. You know, I could probably make a long list of things I have wrong with with the kids I've seen, but the parents don't want to know it and I know better than to say it, and I think there you go. I think you should be the same way with libraries. Just hands off, you know. And and the people who want to ban books throughout history, I mean maybe they don't know this because they're not reading history, are never the good guys. So I feel really strongly about that and I'm great for our librarians are, First Amendment, badasses. I mean we saw this back with the Patriot Act. They're willing to go to jail to protect your kids and you should appreciate that and stop running them down. So say the libraries. Part of our mission is to just give money to libraries and if they fix the toilet or they paint the walls or they have a children reading circle, whatever they need to do, you know, we don't really put any kind of Um. I mean, obviously they can't spend it on hookers in Tequila, but you know, we just want them to do whatever they need to do to keep that place open so that kids will be there and I don't have to see them in public. And so far donated about half a million dollars and we continue to do that and it's a it's it's sort of a private foundation. We don't really ask people to send US money. If you want to send money, look at your local library. If your local library is doing really, really well, looking the one in the next county over, because it's probably not. And just that's how you help people. And I would say, you know, people want to support their own communities, but you don't want to have a no pissing section in your pool. All the other communities feed into that and you need to support them as well, because reading is so important. Honestly, it's kept a lot of us out of prison. Yeah, I know that that makes sense. So so what? What would you recommend to our own communities? I mean like call up your like local library and say what do you need? or I mean can you search for ways to donate to libraries? But you can't be you can't donate directly, but they'll have a friends of the library or Library Foundation that you can donate to. You know, a lot of people are like, Oh, I give them am I use books. Well, they got a lot of use books and it's sort of like everybody wants to give them beats. You know, no one could give them cream corn. Just give them money. That's what they need, is money. I mean to get a library science degree is so intensive. It's a master's level course, and these men and women go into libraries and they're making ship for for for the amount of education they have to have, and they do it out of love. Any we are beating them up. I mean we already have run a lot of teachers out of teaching. Uh. You know, why are we doing that to libraries? Ye, yeah, absolutely, I'm so glad you do that. Yeah, you know, every time the friends at the library a for something, you immediately want to say yes,...

...no matter what it is. Yeah, yeah, so I'm going to switch back a little bit to the books. So with the dual timelines and at our Webber Grill there's like a there's like a past part of the Webber Grill and then there's there's a future. And you know, we get to get huge. What it is? Chicken and Dake? Yeah, or want to put on the veggies. So there is a timeline and you have to you have to pre preheat the grill too. You can't skip that stuff. Exactly exactly. So in the epilogue you take us back to a dark time, prom night. MM HMM. We've got a pregnant seventeen year old. It's the Reagan administration. There's a lot to unpack in that. was that time and place a conscious decision? Were you thinking? Did you just reimagine a prompt? What? What made you pick that year that night? Well, it was. It had a lot to do with Reagan and what was going on and and the promotion of it. Like this was around the year of the woman right, which turned out right for us. Um, that's why we're in charge of half the things in the world now. Um. But you know, it was, it was. There's very much, and this is like before intersectional feminism. You know, there was very much the messages for the right kind of woman, and you see that theme over and over again. You know, emily is the right kind of woman, our girl, but then she gets knocked up and she's no longer the good girl right, and she's ostracized for that. And you know, it's funny because in high school everybody's either having sex or wanting to have sex, and the girl who gets caught is the one who gets punished. Right, and they don't really. They don't go after the yeah, but they don't go after the boy because they don't want to ruin his life. So, you know, they got all of that has changed. Um. I know there was a girl who was pregnant and she just disappeared. She disappeared for a year and we were going set her name and then she came back and she had a baby and, you know, which is unusual, because she she was allowed to keep it. Um, she went off to the Jerry for Farwell home actually for unwed teenagers. Um, and uh, you know, she it was a hard life for her, really hard, and she was ostracized at school. And you know, I was friends with her because when she was a nice girl, but also I was kind of weird, so I didn't have a lot of friends. So I'm like yeah, be friends with the the mother. Um. But you know, it was something I thought I should write about. And you know, this was before everybody's always thought, oh well, most women have thought, Oh funk, we're gonna lose Roe v Wade right eventually, and men were like, Oh, I don't never happen, Um. But I wrote that before it happened and it made it seem really different, like it was more political than I intended it to be, uh, that this young girl wasn't given a choice, right, she was just told by her parents, this is what you're gonna do, Um, and you know, we're going to kind of exploit this for the political game that's there, uh, and you're gonna disappear for a little while and then maybe, if you're good and if you're polite and you're nice, will allow you back into society. Yeah, yeah, so much to talk about, how with this book, Um, but we have we've been told we have to let you go. Um. So we want to point out a few things. First of all, grill forgotten will be in stores everywhere this coming Tuesday, August. It's available for pre order right now, though, so go ahead and order your copies of girl forgotten tonight. You could even get signed copies through our friends at four different accounts. That's foxtail bookshop in Atlanta, the poison pen and Scots Dale Arizona, Um, Barnes and noble and books a million. So bat now, grab those autograph copies while they last. And News Flash, if you don't already follow friends and fiction on Instagram, do that right now, because you can um be one of the people to win one of five copies of girl forgotten. So we will be posting a five copy give boy just for friends and fiction, Um, and you'll have to follow us and you'll have to follow, God forbid, Karen on there's a lot hellowbuster pros. Yes, my own, my own cats. Often it's the whole point of maybe, isn't it? Yeah, well, Karen, before we let you go, we just wanted to know really quickly. I don't know that this question applies to you maybe as much as some of our other guests, because we usually ask what we might be surprised to find on your nightstand. I don't know that anything would. I don't...

...know. Yes, books, books, okay, well, lately that you like, other than the home fuckers, which is Cathy's book that I love. Um, this I got. This is not Jennifer Hille er. She's amazing. She's a she's a lovely person, but she's a really terrific writer. She wrote jar of hearts. And this is me stretching. This isn't actually where I sleep. Um, this is something I had to do for research for this book, because there's a lot of art references and I didn't have like a way to talk about art, like the language of it. Um. So, uh, I had. This was sixty freaking dollars. Can you believe that? UH, yeah, I look at freaking big get away from him. Um, but yeah, so I because I mentioned him a hawk in in the book who was part of the data group. Um, so that that's what I have on my nightstand. That is in the way of reading material. Of course. You know I don't keep my grilling implements far from me. We would be disappointed if you did. Yeah, we wouldn't. We want wouldn't want that to happen. Um, do you want to give us a writing tip? Just a tip? Yeah, Um, well, right, that's my tip. And I know it seems like a really glib thing to say, but the hardest part of being a writer is to sit down and write. Um. And the other thing is, I think the difference between being uh, this goes back to art, but they say the difference between being a painter and an artist is an an artist knows when to stop painting, and I think that need to stop writing and how to how to bring something to it in uh, because it feels like a lot of people when they write a book, they work really hard on the beginning and they don't know quite how to end it and so it just drops off. So you should spend much time on that ending and getting it right as you do on the beginning. Perfect. That's the water that was and that was a great tip. And, Karen, thank you so much for being with US tonight. Um, as always, you're full of surprises. You're awesome cogs on everything. Don't forget, everybody, go preorder those books. Yes, or Webber Grill or yes, we should do a chefs well do. Webber Grill is not our sponsor, but yes, yeah, yeah, alright, but okay. So we're gonna let Karen go because I promised. Apparently she goes to sleep Um, as soon as comes on. I don't know. Yeah, it's for her. Yeah, Karen, and I Karen. Thanks. So, switching from chef's hat gears, Um, before we bring our next guest on, Patty has a big tree for us tonight. I do. I am so thrilled to share the cover for the secret book of Flora Lea with you here first, but before we show you, I want to tell you this because I want you to try and imagine in your mind what you think it looks like, because I had so many ideas for what the cover should look like for a novel about two sisters who are sent away from London to the countryside during Operation Pipe Piper. Here's the scoop. To soothe the little sister, Flora, the big sister, Hazel, makes up a fairy tale world for just the two of them, a land called whisper would that. A year later, when the younger sister goes missing and is assumed to have drowned in the River Thames, Hazel assumes that flora has gone off to find whisper would and disappeared and she is consumed with guilt. Then, twenty years later, a book appears in the London bookshop where Hazel Works and the book is called Christie. Oh, I thought, like like Stereo Drum roll, that was awesome. The book that appears is called Whisper would. Hazel had never told a soul about their private story world, and yet now it exists in a novel from an American author. How could this be and what does it mean? So a missing sister, a mysterious fairy tale, the River Thames and als love all set in nineteen forty...

...and nineteen sixty England. What do you imagine the cover to look like, Sean? Pop it up, Laura. Oh, it's so pretty. It's beautiful. It looks like such a big book, like such a big importance, like moving, which is exactly what it is. I mean, I've read it. It's amazing. The cover just does it such great justice. I love it and you know, as you all know, I was just in England and went to where the book is set and, Y'all, it looks like that. So thank you so much. I hope that you will. Of course, you can run off right now and pre order it right this very second or after the show, because we get to talk to Chris Swan and you can either do it through our friends and Fiction Summer First Edition Club offered by Book Town, or any Indie book story you love, and I am so excited it. You got to see it first. Yeah, a big night, big night. Okay, that's awesome, of course, so gorgeous. I cannot wait. Yeah, speaking of Big Nights, now we've got Christopher Swuan and Um, we're gonna welcome him. Sean. Can You bring him in? Is it time? To bring him in? No, I have to talk back first. We don't care. So. But I've got to say, though, since she said speaking of Big Nights, I'm waiting for him to come in wearing like a knight's helmet or something. It's like hat night, Christ you have thirty seconds to a team of Christian thinks a lot. He's like, great, I have knowing hats, or none of them are of a night. So let me talk about Chris. Chris is a friend. I met him before he even published his first book. Um I was friends with his dear wife, Kat the, and he is both a novelist and a high school English teacher. For his work, he has been a townsend prize finalist, long listed for the Southern Book Prize and this summer he was named the two Georgia author of the year in the detective and mystery category. Chris earned created sorry from Georgia State University. He lives with his wife and two sons in Atlanta, where he is the English Department Chair at Holy Innocence Episcopal School. His utterly propulsive new novel, never go home, was released this month. So now it's time, Sean, bring Chris M please. Indiana Harrison Ford. Yeah, I'll take yeah, I've always loved you. I knew there was a reason why. I thank you. Sure. All Right, Chris, we are so glad to have a second helping of awesome thriller writers with US Tonight. First off, can you tell us what never go home is about, and then what it's really about? Sure, well, it's really about my childhood. No, uh, never go home is a story of Susanna Faulkner. Uh Susie is the survivor of a home invasion which schedually left her an orphan, along with her older brother, Ethan. Um and Ethan and susie reacted to this trauma in very different ways. Her older brother sort of walled himself off emotionally. He has friendships with their kind of casual, but on the outside everything's good with him. He's got a career, he has a house, he has a dog. Uh susie's reaction to this trauma is too as a teenager, decide she's going to find the person who came into her house and killed her parents and she's going to do into them what they did. Unto her, that sort of her operational mandate for herself. Um and she's just she is a glorious hot mess of a character and she is so fun and I'm gonna take this hot off because it's gonna get hot Um, but I can't compete with Karen Slaughter's pink cat. That was kind of awesome. But no, Susie, she is a character who is ah, what does this spook really about? Susie is pretty much the opposite of me, aside from the age and gender personalities. Um, I tend to be diplomatic and avoid conflict. Susie has very little filter and has no problem with conflict or violence that she feels like it's justified and so everything that I wouldn't do in real life. But maybe a small part of me thinks God to feel good to do this,...

Susie does. So I guess the books really my personal therapy, your shadow, shadow side. I like that. Which leads me to this question, and I know you get it a lot and we've even talked about it before, but how does this seemingly mild mannered, although hilarious and Witty Prep School English teacher transformed himself into the creator of hard boiled thrillers? Because I think it was a bit of a gradual transition from shadow of the Lions, that was your first book, right, yes, because, and to where we are now. So I want you to talk a bit about about that. Um. Yeah, show the Lions is my first book. It's, UH, coming of age, boarding school mystery. I went to boarding school, so that's the that's the book that's probably closest to my own life experience, although my roommate didn't go missing, uh, in boarding school, like it isn't that foot. Um, my second book, which is actually the first book that Susie appears in, it was a bit darker and Grittier Crime Thriller set here in Atlanta, and I just didn't want to do the same thing I've done before and I've told the story before. But susie, AH, that's sort of like my books. Susie is a character who refused to do what I wanted her to do. I don't know if you've had that experience before writing, like Oh, I got the scene, this is going to happen, and it was a silly scene. There she's a girl and they're having dinner and she's eating and in my head she said No. I'm like yeah, yeah, you are. On the author. I created you. She's like fine, so I made her eat the PAS right the scene died. It just died, like when it nothing worked. I'm like, what are words? And then so when I said fine, you can and and people think I'm insane when I say this. I'm not. I'm not envisioning her sitting here in the couch. I'm not actively hallucinating her. It's all in my head. But she said I said fine, you can refuse to eat and she said thank you, and the scene went. I'm like, I got something. I gotta follow this character around. So whenever I'm stuck in these kinds of books where Susie is, I just stopped. Okay, what would what would I do? And what's the opposite of that? And that's probably what susie would do. It's just a lot. It's a lot. It's a lot of fun. It's not any kind of sort of mystical. I'm not, you know, woo woo stuff. I'm not, uh, it's not. It's just fun. It's IT'S A it's a different it's a different way to have a story and a different character who is just completely outside of my comfort zone, and so it's a little bit of a high ware, because I want to get her right. I didn't want to make her I didn't want to make her a boy who happens to be a girl. You know what I mean, like she's a guy, but I just say she. You know, her named Susie. I wanted to make her a woman in a world where a lot of bad things happen to women and she knows that and it Pisces her off, and so that's sort of what she does. Know. That attitude gets her in trouble. Yeah, but that's the fun part. That's great. That's just such an excellent like segue into my question, because you know, Susie is just this like awesome character and she rides a triumph thrust in twelve and is armed and dangerous with a boot knife and a collapse while baton and a Smith and Western or a SE's. He's so many five pistol critic. I love how naturally that comes to you, Christie. I know well, I seems like you're just describing yourself. I love it. Well, we didn't want to say anything, but Suzie is actually based on me. I was just going to say, who do you think? I've based this on? People? Yea Um. But who did you base this on? I mean not not literally, but where did Susie come from? Like where you know what? What is her origin? Like? How did you get my agent was reading an early draft and said, do you really want to writing a motorcycle because she's gonna come, because that's sort of close to the girl with a Dragon Tattoo, which I had read. But Elizabeth Salander was character that book. That was she wasn't anywhere near my mind when I was writing. Susie was really more I got to you were taught at the eighties earlier. To go back to the eighties, I was thinking more like Sigourney Weaver, aliens or Um Linda Hamilton's and the terminator movies. I mean these were they were women who were caught and really, really bad situations and we're like okay, and they kind of did what the boys did and I know that was sort of a back then. That was sort of a unique I didn't know they could do that. UH, and we're a little beyond that now, but I just I didn't want...

...to write the same kind of I told Ethan's story, her older brother's story and never turned back and I left that open for a sequel and as I was writing it I thought I'm not going to do it with him, I'm gonna do it with Susie, because I want to try from this point of view. And she's just she's just Badass and she kicks ass and takes names and takes no prisoners. And so I think I did that. And I've got a lot of strong women in my life, my wife, Kathy, my mother Um, not that they're jumping on motorcycles and, you know, busting heads, but they totally, they totally could. I Know Kathy good. I don't know your mom, but I know Kathy. So, yeah, they both totally could. Um, but no, this is that's so, it's it's those, those movies and just trying to you know, I read. I read a whole lot of books, a lot of great crime fiction, and most of its men and the stories of men. And what I like about doing this h this is stereotypical, but Ethan, her older brother, he's the one who's the teacher and has the house and the dog, and it's his little sister who's, you know, getting on the motorcycle and go yeah, instead of what you would maybe stereotypically think of it sort of the opposite. So I like playing with that, love it. Yeah, yeah, we really want to know if you test drove that motorcycle. I I hate that. I hate to admit it, but no, I wish that this yet. Yeah, you know, who knows? It's maybe, maybe somebody from triumph is watching this right now and be like well, you know, if you want to come test drive and do a photo shoot, sure where that hat? I was gonna say next time were the Indiana shows. All right, next time we have you on, Christopher, will will expect the motorcycle helmet from that, from that motorcycle. Right. I know I thought about the motorcycle helmet this afternoon, but I don't actually know anybody who rides a motorbike, so I couldn't get one. Death traps. I think I have like an astronaut helmet lying around here somewhere, which is somewhat cloth, not the same thing. So, Christ the Atlanta Metro area is so vividly portrayed in this novel, almost like a character into itself, and I love it when novelists do that, use a setting as a character. I'm always just such a big fan of that in writing. So you take your readers everywhere, from Hartsfield Jackson International Airport to a suburban office park to a Sen Mexican gang hideout to a precarious climb up stone mountain, and you craft those details so well that we feel like we're writing shotgun alongside susie. So I would love to hear why you decided to set the book in Atlanta, which I know you live in that area, but you know, I actually have a problem writing books that were I live. What I'd love to hear about that Um and and what did you do to bring those locations so vividly alive that Atlanta really felt like a character in the novel? Atlanta's and you know Mary Kay lives here and Patty, you've lived here before. It's it's a big, massive city that's really a whole bunch of different communities and neighborhoods that are all jumbled together. You know, downtown is a nice sort of a very small part of downtown is this nice grid of streets and then if you're looking at a roadmap of Atlanta becomes spaghetti. The road just go everywhere in the neighborhoods and they all have different characters in different histories and different past Um. I mean I'm in I'm in Sandy Springs Right now, in northern suburbs of Atlanta, just inside the perimeter. If you go nine miles straight south of here, which is not all that far, you'll end up in the bluff and English Avenue and Vine City, which is better now than it was when ten fifteen years ago, which is when Susie had her first encounter, their first horrible experiences there. But I mean back then that was basically sort of an open air heroin market, and that's an extreme I mean I'm in a nice tree lined neighborhood here by chastain Park Um, but you've got all these rich places in the city that are just sort of crying out to be used. And you get somebody like Karen Slaughter, who you had on earlier, who writes stories set here, uh, and captures Atlanta really well. I know she writes about things everywhere else too, but it's also that I haven't seen that many stories compared to someplace like, you know, Los Angeles or New York or even Miami. So I'm like, you know, this is we kind of deserve. So and yeah, there are a lot of great writers who write and stories set in Atlanta, but everybody seems to sort of gravitate to New York or L A. and I thought now, let's see what I can add here and stone mountain scene at the end. That was we when a family hike. We'd never I'd never climbed...

...up Stone Mountin. I've been to the park several times. We climbed up, Um, I want to say well over a year ago, a year and a half, and it was foggy and people coming in and out of the fog and I was like, I'm setting something here, I don't know what yet, Um, and pretty soon I was like, yeah, we're gonna have that. It's gonna have to be in Susan's book, and it was. It's a lot of fun and it's a real good sheet for writers. If you don't want to get in your car and drive even five miles, Google maps. It's awesome. You just you zoom in, you get paid and everyone takes pictures and it's all but it's like, oh, it's like being there. So I do that to make sure you get the details right. So if people are there they're like, yeah, you could turn right here, you could do I like that. Yeah, that's the kind of stuff I always mess up because I have no sense of direction. I wrote a series set in Atlanta on my first eight books and Um, one time I had Um, Georgia, four hundred, coming off of five or something, and my husband reading later and he goes, uh, you know that? No, that isn't how that works. Thanks for telling me now. That's okay. In I think, in an ARC, and uncorrected arc of never go home, there's a scene, there's there's a backstory having to do with Iraq and the characters are talking about I e D S and at one point, and a reader who got an arc message means said why do you have them talking about I U D S? Oh, Oh, and then I panicked and I went to go find the hard copy and I'm like, Nope, I got it right. It got corrected. Thank God. It's slightly different, slightly, just a little, you know, and I'm trying to you know, I wanna if you're right. You want to do research, you want to fake like you know enough of what you know. Like I am not Susie Faulkner, I am not an FBI agent, I am not really a criminal mastermind or anything like that. But I've read enough and done enough research and I've got a pretty vivid imagination where I can make it. So yeah, you can still create a world like that and the reader can fill in the gaps and feel like they're right there. That what I do have control over. To go back to what you're asking, a while ago, Christen is okay, the setting. I know that I live here. I can go to the place or look it up online, and those are the details I want to get right. So you do feel like you're there. So thank you for that. I work hard on that part. You do it well. Thank you. Um, like like susie's fictional brother, Evan Chris, you teach high school literature and there's a funny exchange between the siblings in the book about is it paradise lost they're talking about? Yes, am I'm wondering if you have a favorite book that you teach and if what you have learned from that as a writer. I mean it must be. I mean so it's been such a long time ago since I read the stuff. I took a lot of English classes, um accelerated English classes in high school and read stuff I read. Um, lady Chatterley's lover as a high school senior. But I'm wondering. I'm wondering if there's a favorite book that you teach. Um, I've taught paradise lost, I've taught Moby Dick, I've taught h I like both of those. But I love I love Shakespeare and I teach hamlet every year because I teach ap English and hamlet just fits with that curriculum. Um. And they talk about hamlet in the book too, don't they? Or they talk about Shakespeare right, about Shakespeare, and it comes up and I because what a little shakespeare. You know that. Any time you have those questions, like if you could have dinner with any three, you know, any three people from history. Um, who? Who would you or you could talk to anybody from and for me it's always him, because the man created words and the English language and phrases that we used today. We don't even realize they came from him. Um, he made English, the modern languages. Now my students like, isn't this old English? And like no, no, old English sounds like German. It's Wattaway, garden and Gartic Him. That's that's not Shakespeare. But but he was also like us. Uh, I'll take down, I'll put my the like us, we're trying to tell stories and get people to read them. He was writing plays. He wanted to get people's butts and seats to watch them, and he did. He wrote MELODRAMAS and they are excited. People like there is anything happening here? I like, I don't know. It's opened up, Hamlet, and it opens up with a ghost and there's a war going on around Denmark and the arts are all freaking out in...

...their fund of ratio. What do you think this means? I don't know. We'll go find hamlet. Meanwhile, hamlet is Prince Emo over here and is, you know, a step as stepfather is like, let's step uncle, King Father, which is one of my students referred to him as, and I said, from forever on, that is how I'm going to describe him. Step uncle, think father. He's his uncle and now he's his stepfather. No, by the way, he's King Dad. died two months ago. I've married your mom, took care all that can. Everything's fine, Hamlet. Why so sad? Cheer Up. His mom's to cheer up. He's like, don't even I hate you and you're like, how can you not? I mean he's a complete mess and the whole play is him trying to kind of come to grips with that. And Oh, by the way, when his dad's ghosts like you have to avenge my murder, um right. And so that's Shakespeare. Always love and hamlet is a fun play to teach and have students go through. Did you read Hamlett, Maggie o'farrell? Yes, I love that. That was gorgeous. Gorgeous that was and I was I'd heard wonderful things and I was worried. That was right about like, how is she going to pull this off? And my it was one of those things. You know, hey, Dak, and I'm like it was that. Chris Um, we love a good writing tip, especially from somebody who teaches literature for a living. Would you share a writing tip with our viewers tonight? The last, the last time I said don't quit, which is still, I think, the most important thing. But uh, it's read. Yeah, read widely, read and read the kind of books that you want to write. Read other books, read books outside of your you know, whatever genre you want to write and if you want to if you're trying to write the specific genre, but just read widely. A lot of people write a book and think, Um, this is amazing, and it may be, but then when they're trying to, you know, if they want to get it published, I feel like they've got to know. Okay, who, who? Whose book is this? Like, what are other people doing? Aside from that, I think if you want to take the salesmanship out of it, in the marketing out of it, just fine, see what other writers do. You know, there are a lot of times you read other books you're like, I could write better than this. All right, then go do it. Or that's amazing. How did you? How did how did she write hamlet? How did she get that? I don't know. Right, right, and so maybe maybe I have to add her and I'd have her and Shakespeare, for she probably die. Um, this is like you transported. But no, that's you just gotta read. Read widely, read what other people are doing. You will soak up what other authors do. You will see things you're like, okay, I don't want to do that. That's a great trick. That's an interesting way to tell the story. I'm not suggesting copy people, but just you learn. All right. I mean I did. I read Pat Conroy stuff. Is like, I want to be a writer. I knew I wanted to be a writer. I read pet conroy. I'm like that that's what I want to do. I'm chasing that and you know, I'm ain't there. Yeah, but I'm working on it. Okay. So we have a live question from a viewer named Kathy Farrell. Swan might know her. So he's wondering, and so are we. Two things, what you're working on next and what's up with your tiktok personality? Uh, I had a former a former coworker, who stumbled across UH tiktok video made and said how she posted in. She's like, how is it that this very nice guy I know, who is my boss and cares about teaching kids in equitable grading, how is he all caps on Tiktok? Um? And I have two teenage boys who were like. They're like yeah, that video, it doesn't slap. That's not which which, by the way, means that's not good. I found out. Okay, what are you working on? But what am I working on? Um, last week I turned in draft to my editor for a sequel to never go on. The third in the family starring Susie. So, yeah, so she. Yeah, I'm not done with her, not by long shot. Yeah, you kind of locked it open when she sort of gets on that motorbike and rides off into the sunset. Yeah,...

...that's what I was going for. So and and they, they and her like to publisher liked it and I said sure, let's go for it. So that's awesome. Yeah, I should come out. Hopefully, fingers crossed, we get that next July. Thank God, a summer book, because when the books come out now, and I'm not complaining because I'm lucky, it's hell to have anything published, but when you teach high school and school starts from August and your book comes out now, I have to leave to go on, it's yeah, so if I go, I'm free in the summer. So fingers crossed in that. It's a better a better time. It's yeah, quickly, Chris, and she mentioned reading widely. Is there anything on your nightstand? We would be surprised any book on your night stand. We would be surprised to find there you had any book. I know I'm talking to Karen. You're like, now, it's current's letter, PTSD. Exactly. I actually I'm reading her first World Trent Book Right now. I just I finished reading recently I finished reading five Decembers by James Kestrel. It's a it's a noir crime story. Setting starts then in Honolulu, and everybody knew, knows what happened at the end of in Hawaii, but and they know something is going to happen but they don't know what. And so you have this crime noir thriller that suddenly becomes a war story and it's also a love story and it's beautiful writing. Um and the characters. Uh mankatter still haunts me in a good way. We thinking about that book for a long time. So and tell us. Tell us the name of the book again. Five Decembers, James, James Kestrel. Okay, great, great recommendation. Thank you. Okay. So, Chris, if you wouldn't mind sticking around for a few more minutes, we have more to talk about, but first a few reminders from us. Yeah, just a quick remin under of our writer's block podcasts. We will always post links under announcements each time a new one drops. As Mary Kay Andrews likes to say, a new episode launches each Friday so on the last episode Ron and Mary Kay talked to Ellen Meister, author of take my husband, about writing with humor. So this week Ron and again Mary Kay. She's been doing so many of these it's awesome. We'll talk to author Claire Pooley about her touching and hilarious novel Iona Iverson's rules for commuting. I've heard so many good things about that. It's really and Ron said the interview was just so Oh, I can't wonderful. It's awesome. Can't wait to hear it. Um So I want to remind you all about the friends and fiction official book club and they're having a blast and if you're not there, keep telling you you're missing out. The group, which is a separate facebook page run by our friends Lisa Harrison and Brenna Gardner, is now thirteen point eight thousand strong. It's amazing. Thirteen point eight thousand members. So Brendan Lisa, otherwise known as P B and J, choose the books and host the authors for monthly chats. Next month they chose the lost book of eleanor dare by Kimberly Brock, and they have happy hours with our writer's podcast host Ron Block, and they keep everyone in the loop about suggested reads. But tomorrow, tomorrow, Thursday August Eighteenth, at seven pm, we are all joining them for their two year book club anniversary. To The book club page. Join US at seven o'clock. We're all going to be there with our cocktails and our mock tails and stories. Um. So we'll see you tomorrow night. And also, Kimberly Brock. She's great, she's a friend and so many good things about that book. That's my that's my short Kebr yeah, she's awesome. And in case you haven't heard, pattage kind of mentioned it earlier, but our new friends and fiction first edition box is available now from books booktown in Manasqua, New Jersey, and it features signed hardback first editions of all four of our new books, plus an adorable friends and fiction te towel that we were having to show you all tonight, but we'll definitely show you next week. Don't Miss It, Um, it's so cute. That is awesome. And so, speaking of three and our books, we will be doing at least four friends and fiction live events next year, one during during each of our book tours. We are so excited about this. So stay tuned. For News about those four events so that you can mark your calendars and make your travel plans to join us as we take our show on the actual physical, live and in person road in April, May, June and then again once in the fall two exotic locales such as Ohio and South Carolina. All right, let's...

...go. Let's bounce back to Chris. Chris, would you talk a little bit about the values around reading and writing in your family while you were growing up and how that shaped you as a writer? Oh yeah, my h my mom says I learned how to read before I learned how to walk, which is not true, but she's my mom, so she can say that. And my grandfather was an English teacher before he went off to fight World War Two. I didn't know that until much, much later. Um, before after I already decided to become an English teacher. I didn't really realize that. Um, I grew up around books. I always had my nose in a book as a kid, Um, and that was a really big thing when I had kids. The funny thing about having is then my mom gave me all of my old kids books, my children's books, mine that she still had. So I was reading them to my children and then you realize how some of them are kind of not appropriate, like bad bar. You're like, Oh, was the only term to the page of what happened to his Mommy Daddy. I'm like nothing, his mom's fine. She just heard up a lot of MOMS that are okay, that we just misunderstood exactly. It's basically it's like Disney right. It's like dead parents everywhere all the stories. But reading has always been a big I read the Harry Potter books to my kids, my oldest son, I read all of them aloud and had to come up with voices and I am not a trained voice actor. And then my youngest son was like now when you're gonna read? Like I literally had just finished reading the last one, sobbing through parts of it because J K Rowling killed off people, and my younger sons like so are we going to read it to me now? Like okay, yes, my older son's like, you're not doing you're not doing Ron's voice right. I'm like look, I'm trying my best, your kid, but he's listening while I'm reading to younger son, Sullivan, and it was like that's not how ron sounds like. Boy Shop. Um, so I just defended everybody in England right now with that terrible action. So books to me have always been important reading for my family. Kathy reads like a book a day, almost, it seems. She reads. She is faster than I do. So yeah, all right. Well, Chris, we are out of time, but thanks so much for being on with US tonight and talking about never go home so quickly. Tell folks where they can get never go home and where they can get signed because there are signed copies at some stores, right. We get signed copies at foxtail bookshop. Yes, and I'm going to be going. I'm doing a few events out on the road and I'm hoping to get you mentioned South Carolina. I'm working on a reschedule for event down Litchfield. But where can folks find your your tour schedule and where? And they find you on the socials. Christopher Swan Dot com is my website. My twitter handle is at swanny author. I wasn't sure if I wanted to keep and everyone's like no, you can't, you can't lose that, you have to keep that. Um, and I'm on Instagram and yes, I'm on Tiktok, where I make silly videos about what it's like to be a writer and have all these different voices talking in your head. You can't wait to go follow. So thank you again. Thank you all so much for what you do and for having me on. I appreciate it. We have fun so much. Good to see you. Good seeing y'all. Bye. Okay, everybody. Now you know, you can find all of our back episodes on Youtube. We're live there every week, just like we are on facebook, and if you subscribe you won't miss a thing. Be Sure to come back right next right here next week, when we welcome broadcast journalists and Emmy Award winning talk show host turn novelists, Tamarin Hall. Don't forget. See you next Wednesday night. Hey, hang around, we're gonna have a little bit of an after show tonight. Join us. Yeah, it's in a second. That was fun. I like him. I like him so much. He's just a nice yeah, he just exudes like decency, don't you think? Right? Characters, it's yeah, yeah, this book is. This book is very has a lot of cinematic um possibilities to it, I thought. I mean it really read like a like a you know, a book that should be made immediately into a movie, after they make all of ours into movies after that. Yes, it's okay, I mean, but just, yeah, yeah, during so you got. Chris, are you still hanging around? Join us for the hour still? You can come around. Yea, are so nice. Thank you. I don't you know I'm Spielberg...

...or Scorsesey, I'm not. I'm not picking either either one. Would be fine if you have any of you all over the break and then I want to hear what everybody read for summer reading. But did anybody watch that TV show the offer about the making of the guys? I want to go? When you said scores like it's the behind the scenes of making these monster movies is so interesting, is it is? So maybe they'll make a TV series about making movies out of our books. Yeah, I assume. I assume it's kind of double death. I think could be the book, the movie and the TV show about making the movie about the book, and then there should probably be some sort of like, you know, movie about the creation of Friends of fiction to I was just thinking. I'm casting in my head. Yeah, you, I'm not sharing non anger somebody. I know who I want. Do you want? People always tell good and I look kind of like Stockard channing and says like we've been talking a lot about Greece, grease after yeah, Olivia, John, Um, we lost her recently. So, yeah, yeah, Um. And of course Patty's got to be played. Well, no, I don't think. I don't think. Stevie Nicks is actually an actress and she's too old now to play that would have been a good one, though, like that. That that would have been I choose Diane Lane. Okay, perfect, Gwyneth Paltrow, but you're a yeah, Diane Lane's I like that one too. I just saw Chris Martin in concert. Oh, yeah, I saw you post about yeah, and he used to be married to her. And y'all, I don't know if you're coldplay fans or if ever see he is nuclear energy. I've never seen anyone and at Wembley stadium on their own thrown turf. Yeah, okay, Christi. Yeah, what's up? WHO's gonna play Kristen? I'll take can I take a reese witherspoon? Oh, I like that. Okay, Christie, what do you got? You know, I asked the questions, so I should have had an answer. I think it would be good. Um, I'M gonna say Blake lively. I would like her to play yeah, that works, that works. Yeah, okay, Chris Daughter. It's crazy. Who's gonna play me? One of my students wants they were sure. They were laughing. UH, they were laughing on their computer and I'm like, what's going on? You know, walked over and turned around. They had a photo of me from the yearbook and had a photo of Nicholas Cage right next to my head and they're like looking at my okay, might be crazy, but sure, why not? Sean? Yeah, Megan, Sean. Well, Shohn's already said he wants Elijah wood to play him. That's fair. That's good, Sean, Sean. Do you see dead people? Didn't. Elijah would play the little boy in that moving thing. No, that was yeah, yeah, never mind. She just wanted to know. Do you? You Question? You think? Yeah, man, who's gonna play? You Play Mag you know what? Megel played Meg. Meg will play meg. That's too great. Yeah, yeah, all right. WHO's everybody excited about having on this? I mean we're excited about everybody we're gonna have on the show this fall. Oh, it's gonna be so great. Um, I'm really excited about Tamberon Hall next week. I think, Um, yeah, I mean it's you know, I think we spent so much time talking to authors whose primary job is to write books or do things related to writing. Right I think it's just going to be a different ball game to talk to someone who's so accustomed to being in front of the camera and and that's her primary job. But just digging, digging into a little bit of the research about her and about this book. It's about these murders and it's coming from this really personal place like her sister, her sister was murdered Um, which is so interesting, and she used to be journalists covering murders. I mean, there's just so much to talk to her about. So I'm actually super psyched about next week and I feel like I'm excited about everything, because the two weeks off had to be like okay, I want to...

...read everything now, y'all. We have stuck. The books. Books are coming, you know, two a day. Sometimes it doesn't believable, like I can't even like open my mail, like I'm like you need to sit down tomorrow, and like it's it's the exciting where I was packing up copies of my books to send to you guys before the show and a couple of weeks ago and I'm like, Oh, this will be not you know, it was. And I thought, how many books do they get? You know what? Okay, it's funny that you said so excited every time, every time. But also I was so excited when I opened yours because you had signed it. Yeah, nobody ever signs them, we just get them from like a public yeah, so I had the same thought. I was like, Oh my God, he signed it. It's actually for me. I was like, yeah, excited about every single book, no matter how man that door meg has has trying din that she wants to be played by Lauren Graham, Ding Ding, Ding Ding. I love her so much that like they're just aren't even words. So I'd be really exciting. We should have. Yeah, we've got so many big authors coming in and authors who, Um, are hitting the best seller lists and Um, that there's a lot of buzz around and awesome. I don't know enough about that one. I want to go. I want to go watch and learn. I know it's like every I read in bed at night and then every night it's like, Um, okay, what am I? What am I going to start now? And so Um and we all, I don't know everybody out there knows, we take turns hosting the show. We can't all read every book or we'd never write our own books. So whoever's hosting definitely reads that, you know, the guests books, and then the rest of us scam or do whatever we can. But there's so many it's like maybe I just won't write next year's book, maybe I'll just just just I have to say, you know, I've got to say they're talking about our fall schedule. It's it's interesting because I feel like we all just kind of throw out these this wish list of people we would love to have on and people we would love to talk to. And then it's meg, Meg Walker, who who takes all of them? Lauren Graham, Lauren Graham, played played by Meg Walker in this version, who just takes she's just she's magic like. She not only reaches out to the people, but she finds a way to make it all fit at exactly the right time and then like wells her schedule. I mean she's I don't even know. Meg is incredible and looking to have her a work of art this fall schedule and it's all meg, honestly. All right, speaking of writing, I have to get off and I have a September drop dead deadline. So I gotta get off because I haven't finished all my words for today. Oh you guys, really I just need to say one more thing. If Lauren Graham is going to play meg, then I would like to change my answer because I would like for Lauren and Alexis Flidel to be reunited. So maybe she could dye her hair and play me. Now I just gotta figure out WHO's go play Susie in the film version of well, the NETFLIX series. Right. Who Do you think? Do you have anyone in mind? Somebody asked me that earlier and I completely blanked. I'm I never, I never rights. She's too old. Meg's gotta facetime the New College Freshman. So all right, you guys. Love you madly. Thank you for tuning in. You can join us every week on facebook or Youtube, where our live show airs on Wednesday nights at seven PM eastern time. Also, subscribe to our podcast and follow us on instagram. We're so glad you're here.

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