Friends & Fiction
Friends & Fiction

Episode · 1 year ago

WB S1E8: Ron Block & MKA with Jean Hanff Korelitz

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

WRITERS' BLOCK: Ron Block and Mary Kay Andrews talk with Jean Hanff Korelitz about her hugely popular novel, The Plot.

...did you make jake intentionally dislikable to start? I love this question. Welcome to the Friends and fiction writer's Block podcast. Five new york times, bestselling authors, one rock star librarian and endless stories joined mary Kay andrews, Christine Harmel, Christie Woodson, harvey paddy, Callaghan, Henry, Mary Alice Munro and Ron Block as novelists. We are five longtime friends with 85 books between us. I am Ron Block, I am so glad you've joined us for fascinating author interviews along with insider. Talk about publishing and writing. If you love books and are curious about the writing world, you are in the right place. Friends and fiction podcast is sponsored by Mama Geraldine's bodacious foods. Cathy Cunningham was a successful but unfulfilled radio executive in Atlanta one night while sipping wine and snacking on expensive cheese straws, she realized her mama Geraldine's own cheese straw recipe was far superior. The idea of for Cathy's company was born Mama Geraldine's cheese straws now coming six varieties and they are the best selling cheese straw in the US plus the cookies are melt in your mouth, Delish yummy snacks and a woman owned empire. Now that's something we can really get behind and Friends in fiction, Try them. You'll be glad you did get 20% off your online order with the Code Fab Five. Welcome to a new episode of Friends and fiction writer's block on this episode, we're truly honored to welcome jean half correlates her latest book. The plot was out in May to huge acclaim and an instant new york times bestseller. In addition to the plot, Jeanne is the author of the novels you should have known, which actually aired on HBO in October 2020 as the undoing. And I think everybody in America was tuned into that. But that started Nicole Kidman Hugh Grant and Donald Sutherland admission was another of her books and it was adapted as a film in 2013 starring Tina Fey. She's also written The Devil and Webster, The White Rose, the Sabbath Day River and a jury of her peers as well as interference powder, which was a novel for Children. So what doesn't she do? Her company booked the writer, which I'm so interested in hearing about. They host pop up book groups in which small groups of readers discuss new books with their authors. She lives in new york city with her husband, irish poet, paul muldoon, I am Ron block and I am mary Kay andrews and we can't wait to talk about this intricately woven novel that took readers by storm in May of this year. It has been hailed by Kirkus reviews as in the best tradition of Patricia Highsmith and other chroniclers of the human psyches. Darkest depths, gripping and thoroughly unsettling. This one will be flying off the shelves. And of course, Stephen King, you've heard of him that is hailed the plot as insanely readable. Welcome to the podcast, jean, we're so happy to have you. Thank you so many questions. Okay, I'm here. I'm ready. We have really been looking toward this gene. The book is a real nail biter, but it's it's like a literary, psychological suspense and I'm one of those people that I thought I had it figured out, and I'm like, luckily the writing is amazing and I can get into the rest of it. But boy, you had me, I had no idea what was going to happen in this book. So, can you just tell everybody a little bit about what the book is about and actually where the idea came from? Sure, well, the book is about a writer and, you know, there's this conventional wisdom that you shouldn't write about...

...writers. Writers shouldn't write about writers because nobody cares except for other writers. So, I kind of had that hanging over me the whole time, or people really going to care about any of this stuff. And it's about a writer who's pretty much on a downward trajectory in his writing life. He had a moderate success with the first novel. And then I kind of ran out of steam and is pretty lost. So he's teaching in a kind of bottom of the barrel low residency programs and into his class walks just the worst of all possible students. This arrogant, obnoxious, narcissistic guy named Evan Parker. And Evan Parker immediately announces that he doesn't need jake or anybody else because he has this idea for his novel, which is, you know, full proof. And, you know, we writers here that a lot a woman I know who works in publishing, told me that usually when people say I have a great idea for a novel, it translates to about four sentences, but a novel is a lot more than four sentences. So, anyway, Jake is pretty distressed at this state of affairs, especially since he, you know, he gets a kind of snapshot of what this plot is. And he knows that this this kid is absolutely correct. He's going to have a massive success with this book. And then a few years later, when he discovers that this former student has died without writing the book, he does what any of us might at least consider doing. And that is he writes his own novel, he doesn't steal a word, but he writes his own novel with this plot. And he has all of the success that his former student thought would come to him. So unfortunately he can't enjoy it because he's terrified that somebody will accuse him of some nefarious act and eventually somebody does. And that's kind of where the novel begins to become a very twisty and revelatory. One hopes story. This book gave me such anxiety as a writer. I was right beside Jake, curled up in a fetal position, hoping nobody would figure out that I'm an impostor and that there you go. Yeah, I mean, take this all of us. I mean, no matter how successful we may be or we are thought to be our our mind goes to our deepest failure at all times. We never forget the special delight of walking into our local Barnes and noble to give a reading. And the only person there is our mom. So it it never goes away. Tell me about how you decided to construct the book. Or more to the point to write two books to include Jake's book and Jake's novel in the book is called Crib not the crib, which is a very important distinction. I actually jeans saw your interview with Carol Fitzgerald. So I know a little bit about that, but I want you to if you would tell the listeners how you wove these together in such an interesting way and what your initial instinct was to do with this book. Well, I'm glad you mentioned Carol Fitzgerald because in fact that is the person who came up with the factoid about most people that for most people who have a brilliant idea for a novel, it's actually four sentences. They have four sentences worth of the story. So I want to give a lot of credit, Carol Fitzgerald, she's a brilliant woman. So I really can't take credit for the uh for putting those chapters in because I did my best to get out of it. I tried not to write them. I was in the middle of writing the book when I heard an interview with lilly King about her novel writers and lovers, in which she was asked, kind of the opposite question, why did you...

...decide not to put the book within a book in your book? And she said, well, I decided that no matter what I wrote, it could never be good enough to justify the success that this book within the book of writers and lovers experiences. And I thought, great, she's not doing hers, I don't do much either. And I turned in the book without those chapters and my editor said, where are the chapters? And I said, I'm not going to write that, stopped writing her, I'm not writing, but she said, you have to write them. And so, you know, of course she was right and and I went and I kind of wrote them all in order and then I kind of divided them up because they are part of the revelation of what the plot is and what Jake has done and and what the reality may or may not be behind the story that Jake wrote as fiction. So it's all very convoluted. It took a lot of, you know, putting chapters out on the floor and figuring out what goes where, Sorry, That's amazing. Yeah, but it did feel it did almost feel like I was reading to authors work. So it really was very successful. I think it gave us a lot of insight. I really, really appreciated that as a reader. So I'm going to go back just a little bit. So where did the idea for the book come from? What was the spark? It came out of the wild blue Yonder. It really did. I was in the middle of a a very different book, which I was really struggling with and I was literally in my editor's office having a very unhappy conversation about why she was not buying the book when I just started, you know, downloading this idea that I had. And I barely had. I mean, I had two things. I had this failed writer who steals a story from his late student and I had what that story was. And I really kind of, I'm not a seat by seat of my pants cut a person at all. But that day, I don't know, it just really if I believed in anything supernatural, I would I would credit it to that. But I don't, I honestly don't know how I how I even spoke up in that meeting. I'm not that's not really the way I roll. But that day I just said, I have this other idea and I just started telling her the story and I could see her get more and more excited, which was very gratifying because after all, we were having a meeting about why she wasn't buying my book. And by the next day, to my shock and delight, I had a contract for both books, which I've never had that as in my career. So it was it was very reassuring. And then, you know, we decided that I would decide that novel, which is called The Late Comer. And I would write this new idea because clearly I needed some space from that other novel. I I was burned out and I'm sure, you know, you know what that feels like. So, so and then, you know, the entire planet just shut down. And I was in this house in upstate new york and that's all I did for four months. I just wrote this book. So I can't tell you where it came from. But I love it one minute, it wasn't there the next minute it was there we love hearing the story behind it. When you told your editor that you had this idea, did you know that the book within a book was called crib? No, no. I mean, I knew 20% of what ended up being in the plot. I I knew that he does something which is morally dubious. Although, you know, when push comes to shove, I don't think he did anything wrong, but his fear of exposure, his fear of what people who don't happen to be writers of fiction might think of what he did. It's quite valid, quite on target. And, you know, it overwhelms his, kind of, kind of high mindedness about the fact that he really hasn't done anything terribly wrong. So I knew...

...that, and I knew what the plot was, and that was pretty much it. You know, this book is full of literary easter eggs, most notably the inspiration of Patricia Highsmith and of course, the illusion to the talented Mr Ripley. Could you talk a little bit about? I can see definitely see some comparisons or some inspiration from Patricia Highsmith to your work. Do you do you think that's an apt description or would you just say no, you're wrong? No, you're not wrong if you're not wrong. I mean, I've read a couple of at least one biography of Highsmith, so I can tell you that we were extremely different people. I mean, I I have a overactive morality meter going on inside me. I think she had frolicked through life without much of one. I'm not a massive Highsmith fan. I mean, I certainly have enjoyed the Ripley novels. I've read a few of her other novels. I read The Price of Salt, which I thought was terrific, but I mean she's not my, my guiding star. It was a bit of fun to call the the college Ripley and to sort of play with that later. Um, I worried it might give too much away actually, but it was too fun to leave out, frankly, that was perfect. So I want to I want to know a little bit more about how you develop jake. One of the things that I just thought was amazing was how complex he was, but one of my favorite parts was hearing his inner voice in his head, he would say something out loud and then we'd hear him in the back, it just rang so cinematically, can you tell us how you developed him and put and wove that in, you know, he's really, all of us were all jake someone I just met you, but I I would imagine there's something in Jake that you identified with as well. I mean, a part of our great conflict as writers is that we're readers as well and we've been at it for years, we've been at it since we've discovered books. I don't know when that was For you, but for me it was when I learned to read 5, 6 years old. So there's decades and decades of hundreds and hundreds of stories, books, characters, language all knocking around in my head. And when we write, you know, we can't ever be sure where that line came from, where that character came from. Have we heard about this situation before? Have we read this combination of words before? It's weird. It's like we're walking on thin ice at all times. And if you're of a moral bent as I tend to be, you're worried that you're appropriating always and you know, add to that, that there are very few stories at their in their essence. So we're, you know, we're in a river that's been flowing long before we got there and we'll continue one hopes long after we leave. And philosophically that's not a problem. But I am always kind of haunted by concern that I am appropriating. I'm not talking about cultural appropriation, that's a whole new thing. But you know, if a sentence sounds familiar to me, I'll even if I have no idea where it came from, I'll err on the side of caution and cut it out. But the fear is always there and that is that that is the fear that jake really embodies for a lot of us I think. So. True. So true. I once heard our other host mary Kay Andrews say that she doesn't read in her genre when she's writing because she's so afraid she's gonna steal something without thinking about it. There you go. Yeah. I'm always terrified. I was interested about how did you make jake...

...intentionally? Um dislikable to start. I love this question because I I don't know about you but in the past, I don't know 25 years the cult of the likable heroine or hero seems to have arisen among us and people back in the forties and fifties and sixties, 19th century nobody worried about the likability of a hero. I maybe because I I used to study 18th century fiction and I loved 19th century fiction. I arrived in my own writing life without any compulsion to make a likable hero or her. In fact, I'm not all that interested in super nice people. I mean, take Elizabeth Bennett, one of the greatest heroines of all time. I mean, she's she's a bit nasty, she's a bit judgmental and hostile, She's still awesome, you know, and I read many, many reviews of my work which incorporated some element of, well I just didn't like her or I just didn't like him. And I and I always want to say, well I'm sure she wouldn't like you either. But what was the point that you're making? Are you looking for a friend in the pages of a book? Because they're not they're you know, they're at the grocery store there in the spin class, go find them there. Um So no, he's not a particularly likeable guy. I don't want to get a beer with him, but he is interesting to me, very interesting. Yeah, no doubt. You know, maybe it's because, you know, my background, I started writing category mystery, but it wasn't really for me, it wasn't until Jake took matters into his own hands when he, you know, unfurled himself from that fetal position on and when he actually went out and started tracking down Evans past that I actually begrudgingly thought, okay, I I'm in I mean I was of course fascinated with this guy, like you're fascinated with, with a sociopath um which he is not as it turns out there's someone else who is and of course I had, I was, as I was mentioning before we started recording, I had to laugh when jake traveled to Athens and you G. A. Which was my alma mater. I thought you kind of really nailed Bulldog Nation there. Thank you. That means a lot to me because I was quite concerned about it. That the strange thing is that in this house in upstate new york during the pandemic, I was I was writing this novel and my husband was downstairs sitting at that table writing a musical based on Aristotelian is the frogs, which is also set in Athens Georgia and in fact it's called Athens Georgia. And so it's just hilarious that we were both writing about Athens Georgia at the same time. Well you're going to ask if I've been to Athens Georgia. I've been there once, I've been there once, but I have a friend who lives down there and she, she talked to me a little bit about, I was fascinated by these kind of housing units, these kind of little self contained country club style things where the students all live. That's definitely, yeah, that's definitely not a feature of, I would say the northeast, basically. Yes, I think location is a big part of your book too. So why? And you mentioned that you're in upstate new york, but why would you set it there? Because it really seems a perfect spot for a lot of what you write. Well, that's good to know. I've never written about this area before and we've had this house for about five years, but we were living here full time during the pandemic. And it just, you know, the first thing I did was I put jake here in this little town, which is a very interesting little town, which is kind of going up and going down at the same time called Sharon springs new york. We...

...got a big jolt of excitement a few years ago. I think one of you mentioned the Beekman boys and their brand Beekman 18 oh two is kind of put this place on the mouth and that's how I heard about this town. We just came through one night and went for a walk and saw this house and you know the rest is history. But I think those two guys and the business that they started have brought in, a lot of people like me and that's been great. On the other hand, the town is like falling down around us. Literally one of the old hotels collapsed about a year ago just overnight just fell down. So you know, it's such a cute All of the overlook hotels. I mean they're all empty, you can buy them for $10,000. Somebody just did you know, this town could it could be a really fascinating, brilliant, amazing place. But right now it's super cool but it could do even more. But I'm sorry. Just to answer your question, Having foot jake here basically in this town, it made sense that when he started to write his story he would be looking at towns in the area where he was and that brought me to Earlville and Hamilton. I wanted a small town that was close to a town with a college which would represent the wider world for a young local, smart, ambitious person. Hamilton is also such a beautiful area, the colleges. Something else. Let's talk about the themes of the book a little bit. Or at least some specific themes you talk about who owns ideas and what are the lines in intellectual property. And I'm gonna actually ask mary Kay the same question. I wanna ask you both what is your, what are your thoughts on that And and how did you feel that jake skated the line? Right. Well I don't know how you feel mary. Kay, but I do not feel it is my right to tell anybody what they're allowed. I'm not allowed to write and I certainly don't want anybody telling me what I'm allowed to. Right? I think we have, I'm sure you've been following this kind of recent dust up about the short story Cap Person, which is fascinating to all of us. That this is a short story that you know, was hugely successful and widely read, published in the new yorker. And then literally last week somebody published an essay in which they said I've always suspected the story is about me and I was right and she did confirm this, but there was a connection between herself and the author. So then the question becomes, are you entitled to take my story that you just heard about and weave a narrative out of it when the answer is yeah, she she wasn't. The author was entitled to do that. You want to take care not to harm. You don't want to leave identifiable details in your story. And I think in that particular case, the author could have used more care. But, you know, we're magpies, we pick up shiny things off the ground. Things we've bred things, we've heard things we've experienced, things are worst enemy experience, things are best friend experience. That is how we make fiction. And I would argue other kinds of art as well. But I'm mainly concerned with fiction. What do you think? I think, you know, we are out in the world and the world, things happen in the world and we, you know, I've I've written I wrote a novel where the woman in the in the book is obsessed with all the divorce going on around her. And she's so she's mapping it on a map and she's afraid it's coming to her house and she's so obsessed with other people's divorce that their marriage is crumbling. She doesn't notice her own is crumbling. So I wrote part of this book is something that happens and something similar happened to a neighbor. And and and they and my neighbor said, well you wrote about my life and I said, no, I wrote about my reaction to what happened in your life.

And I filtered it through the imagination of my protagonist. But she sounds good with that. They still think I stole their life. But that's I mean, we're still I'm still friends with the husband. Not so much the ex, but I mean I'm you know, when you're out in the world, people will say be careful what you say around here because you'll use it in a novel. I'm like yeah, I got my got my notebook right here. Yeah. Yeah. But I think if you everything comes filtered through our imagination, our and you know, it comes I hope comes out in our in the voice, our voice which you hope is this distinctive or and it comes out and the very you hope unique voices of your characters who are generally speaking nothing like the very most mostly boring people who tell you these stories. I'm like always like I always tell people, you know, don't worry about it because you're really not interesting enough for me to steal your story. I mean, also it is very possible to describe things in ways that make it sound like our story. And even in that woman's essay, she said something like, well this part of the story, cat person wasn't like my life and then she just glosses over that and goes to the next thing that is like her life. So I mean we're all focusing on the three or four things or the shiny little bits that resonate with us and then we ignore everything else that isn't from us at all. That's a human thing. I guess maybe it's all about connection. Who knows? Maybe maybe hysterical Gene, you said you wrote the plot in only four months now. It's bad, doesn't it? No, actually I wrote I wrote a novel an extra novel this year because there wasn't anything to do during the pandemic. How but how was the plot different from your other from your previous work? Is it very different? Uh Yes and no, I mean part of the reason I've been somewhat obscure until novel number seven is that I I wasn't comfortable in a genre, I don't I don't know about you, but I don't have $10 going at one time, 10 ideas. I have one idea at a time and sometimes that idea is more plot driven, sometimes it's more character driven. You know, this genre thing has been the one of the most annoying things that I've ever dealt with. Publishers quite understandably want you to be in a predictable group. They want, you know, they want Gillian Flynn to write a Gillian Flynn novel. They want Jonathan franzen try to Jonathan franzen novel, they're not happy when people start jumping around and that is what I have done from the beginning. So this one was clearly uh intensely flock driven. But I still think of myself as a literary writer and I try to write every sentence as well as I can. If a sentence is ugly or clunky, I can't go on, I have to go back and fix it. These are the things that have been true from the beginning of my right in life. So how is it different? You know, it's like if my career is a scatter graham with plot here and language here, it's clearly closer to the plot and but they're all, you know, they were all propulsive to me at the time and written very carefully. That's all I could say. I think that's wonderful because all of the care that you give really does shine through. And as readers, we truly appreciate that super literary and just everything somebody wants suspense, They want to read a thriller, they want to read a mystery, they want to read a literary novel.

It's all here in the plant. Were no huge fans, huge fans. That's great. Thank you. Yeah. Well yeah. And then at the end with the green soup. Yeah. Yeah. But I will say that when a certain soup enters, that's when my daughter said she screamed out lag. So that was very gratifying. I want to make my daughter scream out loud. That's good. You know, we good barometer. When of course when I read about the plot I thought oh my God this is the woman who wrote the novel that the undoing was based upon loosely. It turns out I loved I love what you told carol about. You didn't know who did it either. I didn't think everybody was, you know, who did it. He did not like, I don't know, don't ask me. I mean, it's already gone so far from my book. But um, I was I was reassured by the end. I I thought it was very interesting how David e kelly, you know, kind of brought it back to the novel in a way. He took us on a tour and he brought us home. You know, I'm interested, you said that you you had this meeting with your editor and they were like, I'm not going to buy your next book. How does that happen after they make an incredible blockbuster, like, the undoing from your previous book? You should have known. I mean, I think I'm doing has been shown yet. So nobody knew it was going to be what it was. But I mean, my by the way, just as we started this conversation, an email came in from my editor following her reading the novel. I turned in last week that I turned my phone over and I don't know what it says. I've got this incredible suspense all through this interview, but I'm freaking out. I don't know what she says. But she wanted that book this book to be as good as it could be. I mean she did not want to buy it until it was it was as good as it could be. And I respect that and I am grateful for it because I want the same. I think a lot of I think a lot of readers have this idea that once you have a best seller or a hit book or a movie made from a book that now you have the golden ticket and your life is harmed. Talk about that a little bit. Well, you know, it certainly was not true for me. I doubt it's true for other people. But if it is true, it shouldn't be true because you want you want the same care for that post HBO book as you should want for every book that you right. I mean, I remember when my first two novels were not published, they were rejected everywhere. And when my next novel was published, I said to my agent at that time, great, now, we can, you know, now we can go back and get those first two books published. And she said, no, she said, you're a better writer. Now put this away and forget about them. And, you know, that was pretty disappointing at the time. But of course, it was the right thing to say and the right thing to do. And I also feel that if those early novels have been published, I probably would not be in the position that I am today because I would be they would kind of be a weight on my writing history. And you know, if you turn off a reader with one novel, they're not coming back, no matter if your next book is a best seller, if other readers are like me, they'll say, oh, you know, I read one of his books and it wasn't that good. So I'm not going to I'll read something else. So it's it's probably for the best. Do you think that the plot, the movie they make or the series, streaming series, they'll make from the plot? Um now that's from this this going to be made by the same team. Is that my understanding? No, no, no, I actually can't say too much about it. I...

...think there might be an announcement soon about it. But the only thing I can say is that this time I get to be in the writer's room, which I'm very, very thrilled about something I really wanted to learn to try. I'll be like the most inexperienced person in there, like, underneath the recent film school graduate. But that's okay, because, you know, when you get to my age, it's the great thing is to keep learning stuff, and I'm really looking forward to learning how to do this. I think it's going to be amazing and probably better for your involvement because it will keep it on track, because it was just such a tightly woven story, let's change gears just a little bit, and I want to talk about books, the writer, how did it come out? How did how tell me some of the highlights, anything you want to share about it? Yeah, Okay, so book the writers started as a fundraiser when I lived in Princeton New Jersey for 25 years. My husband teaches at Princeton and somebody said to me, you know, all these writers, why don't you do something with the writers? And I said, okay, so I started this thing, we call it the meet the author book group. And everybody in the book group made a donation to this charity that I was on the border of the local charity. And we went on for about eight years and it was great. We had about 100 writers come to Princeton. A lot of them lived in Princeton. I didn't pay the authors, although I paid for their Travel. And then I said, Well, sell 20 copies of your book, which you know, for most of us is a big deal. And but still, I was amazed at some of the authors who said yes, I mean authors who did not need to get on the train and come to Princeton, New Jersey and sit in the living room with 20 people to sell 20 bucks. They enjoyed it because I think for many writers to have a really intelligent conversation with people who have read your work, not just you know, I love I love your work and I'm looking forward to reading this new book. That's great too. But to actually have a conversation with 20 intelligent people who have just read the same book, your book. That's pretty cool. So when I moved back to New York in 2013, I thought maybe this can be a business. You know, there are a lot of writers in new york for a lot of readers in new york. The first thing I attempted was to send authors to local book groups, but that did not work. I was running into a lot of, well, I think this is a great idea, but I can't get my book group to agree. And so I sort of flipped the concept and I started setting up the events and then, you know, that one person from each book group who thought it was a good idea would register, we would all gather in a, in an apartment in new york city, you know, 20 people and Elizabeth stroud 20 people and Adriana Trigiani. It just really that started to work when the pandemic happened. I really resisted the idea of going online. I'm very committed to be in the room experience, but some of my regulars asked me to please do it. And I started doing the events online. It's been about a year and a half. And it's been very gratifying in its own way because of course, we could have people from Athens Georgia and all over the world. We had we had people from all over the world, especially david cacophony, David company talking about his novel for some reason, only women, I don't know why, but all over the world, but Argentina from South Africa, but not really not just dated to company. Um people found out about us from Australia, europe, South America all over America and it's been great. So, we're going to be online through the summer. We've got 44 books to go. One of them is tomorrow night, actually. And and then in the fall will go back to in room in person, in new york city. But I'm going to try to figure out what I that I am some way to maintain and online element. So because we I don't want to lose those fantastic readers that started to come to us from all over the world. Yeah, yeah. It's a...

...whole new realm. We're going into a combination of the two is going to be the future. Yeah. And if somebody has a grandchild, who knows how to do this, please get into us. Because I really would like to figure out how to do it without shoving a camera in the face of the author because that's very, you know, very out putting, right. We have an unbelievable lineup this fall. We have chang Rae lee and juliana Margulies the actress and, and uh, so we have the new plaque biography. We're going to do one with my husband. I mean, it's we've got uh Edmund Devil who wrote the heroin, Amber eyes has a new book. We're doing him. I mean it's going to be great. So fascinating. And I saw your interview with Adriana Trigiani where you talked about this and I said, oh, I need to know more about that. That must have been a great event with her though. She's a party in a box. She is amazing. And her level of generosity towards other authors is just unparalleled. I don't know how she doesn't I mean, I've been in her home, her home is stunning and you know, she's got this many books piled up next to her and she's reading them all and she's a powerhouse. She should be running the country. She really should. Should definitely. Okay, so what is next for you, jeanne? What are we going to be eagerly anticipating? I'm gonna read my email and find out my book has been accepted. Oh, well, don't ask me to do it. Well, I know I'm not that's that's immediately next. I'm sure I have more, a little more work to do this book, but technically it's coming out in april it's called The Late Comer. It is a very different animal from, from the plot, but I'm I really love this book and you know, I kind of think of it as my meg Wolitzer novel. It's about a really crazy family uh with triplets who all hate one another and they hate their parents. And almost 20 years after these triplets are born, the parents have another child from a leftover embryo from the triplets. And it's really about how this family kind of solves the problem of itself, which is not possible without the arrival of this late child. So that's what it's about. That's amazing. I want it now. You'll have to wait a little bit. It's kind of a book end. I wrote the newcomer this year. Next year, you've got the late comer. What's the newcomer about? Oh, the newcomer is uh, it's a beach. It's a summer beach book. It's about a woman who her sister's murdered and her sister before she was murdered has always told my protagonist, if anything ever happens to me, grabbed my a my little girl and go because it's my my partner, he did it. And so she grabs this four year old kid and runs and she runs to a mom and pop motel on florida's west coast called the murmuring surf. She doesn't know why and she doesn't really know why she's there. Anyway, that's that's the whole thing. I just thought it was funny. We should come together. I would love it. I'll moderate. Ronald. I'll take care of that, gene, thank you so much for joining us here today. It has been such a thrill as you know, We love the book and everybody who's listening If you haven't read the plot yet, all two or three of you run run, run and get a it's really it's everything you want in a book and especially this summer it's such a great book to take to the beach or take to your country home wherever. But it's it's really amazing and we are so thrilled for you and I can't wait to...

...see whatever treatment it might get in the in the celluloid world. Yeah, I can't wait to see if we've got Donald Sutherland and a helicopter zooming into couldn't write that in. I love the book, jean. Thank you so much so much. I really really appreciate you read my email now so I buy everyone and thank you all for tuning into the Friends and fiction Writer's block podcast on behalf of mary Kay and the rest of the Friends and fiction team. We so appreciate you joining us. Please consider leaving a review on your favorite podcast platform and be sure to share with a friend As always we'll be back each friday with a new episode that you are sure to love. Thanks everybody. Thank you for tuning in to Friends and Fiction Writer's Block podcast. Please be sure to subscribe, rate and review on your favorite podcast platform, tune in every friday for another episode. And you can also join us every week on facebook or Youtube where you can see our live Friends and fiction show that airs at seven p.m. Eastern Standard time. We are so glad you're here.

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