New York Times Bestselling novelist, screenwriter, editor, namer, critic, movie addict and chocoholic.
Sunday, October 21, 2012
The Next Big Thing
The wonderful Sandra Gulland started this round robin with authors called The Next Big Thing, a series of questions we answer and then we tag five other writers so you get a chance to meet new names or learn more about them. So far, I have tagged:
B. A. Shapiro (The Art Forger is just out and it's one of my favorite books of the year)
Gina Sorell (Her novel, Mothers and Other Strangers was just picked up by one of the best literary agencies in NYC)
So without further fanfare, here are the questions:
What is your working title of your book?
Is This Tomorrow
Where did the idea come from for the book?
I had always wanted to write about being an outsider in a community--and what better era than the super paranoid 50s, the time of the Cold War?
What genre does your book fall under?
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I actually wrote a script for Is This Tomorrow and it made the first round of the Sundance Screenwriting Lab--I'm waiting to hear if I made the finals! I never think of actors or actresses. I have images of the characters firmly in my mind and I don't want to disturb them!
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
When a boy mysteriously vanishes in a paranoid 1950s neighborhood, three lives are forever impacted: a Jewish single mom isolated by the neighborhood, the boy's best friend who grows up blaming himself, and his sister, who refuses to believe he won't be found.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I have a stellar agent and the fabulous Algonquin Books is publishing my novel in May 2013.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I never compare. I think every book should be unique.
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Truthfully, it was The Killing. I was addicted to the first season, and i loved the way the writers made you believe you knew what was happening, and then they spun the story around. I wanted to see if I could do the same.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
It's set in the fifties, which is a period a little too close to what is going on today with women--women were supposed to be in the home, not work, not make waves. The paranoia level also, I think, equals that of 2012.
Stay tuned, THIS OTHER LIFE has sold to Algonquin, my beloved publisher and I am busy writing it now. My 11th novel CRUEL BEAUTIFUL WORLD is an Indie Next Pick. IS THIS TOMORROW was an May Indie Pick. I'm also the New York Times bestselling author of PICTURES OF YOU, a San Francisco Chronicle Lit Pick, a Costco "Pennie's Pick." a NAIBA bestseller and on the Best Books of 2011 List from San Francisco Chronicle, Providence Journal, Kirkus Reviews and Bookmarks Magazine. I'm the recipient of a New York Foundation of the Arts Grant in Fiction. I was a 2013 finalist in the Sundance Screenwriting Lab and a finalist in the Nickelodeon Screenwriting Fellowship, four of my novels were optioned for screen, and I talked my way into writing the script for two of them. My essay, HIgh Infidelity, has been optioned for film. I'm a book critic for The San Francisco Chronicle and People Magazine. I teach novel writing for UCLA Extension Writers' Program, and Stanford online, do private fiction editing, and I am a professional namer! I live with my husband, writer/editor Jeff Tamarkin and we beam with pride about our son, an actor/filmmaker in college. Visit me at http://www.carolineleavitt.com.