Category

Fiction

Fiction, Women's Issues, Writers on Writing

Jan 25: Wendy Willis Baldwin with Debut Novel The Sisters We Were

Book cover The Sisters We Were, Wndy WIllis Baldwin, talking about this on Conversations LIve with Vicki St. ClairWhat brings two estranged sisters back together? How does their healing begin? What sets them free?

Inspired by the real-life experiences of author Wendy Willis Baldwin and her sister Tiffany, The Sisters We Were explores themes from sisterhood, to obesity, sexual abuse, buried rage, and how we cope differently with adversity. Most of all, the story is about how truth will set you free.

Wendy shares the journey of writing her debut novel, as well as the healing journey she shared with Tiffany.

About Wendy Willis Baldwin

Wendy Willis Baldwin is a freelance writer and author. She spent most of her professional life in the communications’ field. She currently cohosts The Life After Fat Pants podcast with sister, Tiffany.

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Fiction, Writers on Writing

Dec 14: Wendy Sand Eckel with Mystery at Windswept Farm

A Rosalie Hart Mystery

A love of organic farm-to-table food, Italian cuisine, and murder and mayhem in an intimate community … what’s not to love?

Today we discuss the third novel in the Rosalie Hart Mystery Series with author Wendy Sand Eckel. She shares how a minor incident in her teens led to a background in criminology. How she approaches her writing, develops her characters, and how she chose the antagonist for Mystery at Windswept Farm. We also discuss thoughts on the important Italian practice of “Il dolce far niente”.

About Wendy Sand Eckel

With degrees in criminology and social work, followed by years of clinical practice, Wendy Sand Eckel combines her passion for words, relationships, and meaning, through her stories.The award-winning author of the Rosalie Hart Mystery Series, Wendy is an active member of the Mystery Writers of America and the International Association of Crime Writers.

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Fiction, Suspense, Thriller, Writers on Writing

Nov 16: A Ghost of Caribou with Alice Henderson

Author’s love of wildlife inspired her Alex Carter suspense series

Alice Henderson created a strong, female protagonist whose career as a wildlife biologist gets her into all kinds of hairy situations, including murder. In A Ghost of Caribou Alex Carter arrives in the Selkirk mountains of northeastern Washington, and what begins as a search for an elusive caribou leads into mystery, suspense, and mayhem.

In addition to sharing snippets from her book and writing adventures, Alice shares insight into the plight of caribou and how climate change impacts them. We also discuss why we should reframe the way we look at climate change, and how we can  help create a better future.

About Alice Henderson

A Ghost of Caribou is the 3rd book in the Alex Carter series. In addition to being a prolific writer, Alice Henderson is a sanctuary monitor for the Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust, where she checks remote cameras, documents mapping, and delivers wildlife surveys to determine what species are present and that there’s no evidence of poaching. She’s surveyed for the presence of grizzlies, wolves, wolverines, jaguars, endangered bats, and more. Alice has also written media tie-in novels, including official novels for the TV shows Supernatural and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. While working at LucasArts, Alice wrote content for Star Wars video games.

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Fiction, Non Fiction, Short Stories, Writers on Writing

Oct 19: Gary Lippman One Sentence Stories

Book jacket - We Loved the World But Could Not StayStories for People with Short Attention Spans

Why one-sentence stories? Because author Gary Lippman wanted to rise to the challenge, and “…because imperfection is easier to tolerate in small doses.”

He’s kidding about that last part, of course, and ended up writing more than 300 one-sentence stories. Some true, some partially true, some total fiction—all are well told, and full of wit and wisdom. So, what went into writing We Loved the World But Could Not Stay, and which stories are true? Listen up!

About Gary Lippman

We Loved the World But Could Not Stay is Gary Lippmans second book.  His first, a novel, Set the Controls for the Heart of Sharon Tate was published in 2019. Lippman’s play Paradox Lust ran off-Broadway in 2001, and his journalism has appeared in The Paris Review, Literary Hub, VICE, The New York Times, and Fodor’s Travel Guides. Gary Lippman has a law degree from Northwestern University, and has worked with New York City’s Innocence Project.

 

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Arts, Children's Fiction, Fiction, Writers on Writing, Young Adult Fiction

Aug 17: Sometimes I Grumblesquinch with Rachel Vail

A Big Feelings Book Teaching Kids it’s OK to be You

Rachel Vail is the award-winning author of more than 40 books. Today we  discuss SOMETIMES I GRUMBSQUINCH, and why Rachel chose to write for children and young adults.

She shares some of the considerations that go into her storytelling. How she develops the characters in her books (hint, by getting into character herself). Why we need to teach kids they don’t need to be perfect. And the 5 Big Questions Rachel asks at the start of every book she writes … and continues to ask as the story develops.

About Rachel Vail

Rachel Vail‘s novels for middle-schoolers, teens, and tweens include BAD BEST FRIEND, UNFRIENDED, THE AVERY SISTERS TRILOGY, and the Friendship Ring series.

Her picture books include PIGGY BUNNY, and The BIG FEELINGS series, where Rachel  explores key social and emotional learning skills. Those books include SOMETIMES I’M BOMBALOO. And the picture story book we’re talking about today, SOMETIMES I GRUMBLESQUINCH.

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Fiction, Writers on Writing

Jul 27: #1 NYT Bestselling Novelist Susan Wiggs with Sugar and Salt

Everyone has a past. It’s who you are now that matters.

A long-time listener favorite joins us with a great new story just in time for summer. Sugar and Spice takes us back to Perdita Street (introduced in The Lost and Found Bookshop) with a tale of family, friendship, redemption, and love.

Susan Wiggs is known for weaving women’s issues into her storylines, and Sugar and Spice is no exception — including abortion, sexual abuse, and racism. Today we find out how Susan gets in the right headspace to write those challenging scenes. How she approaches writing multiple timelines. And how has she learned to draw readers into her books from page one.

About Susan Wiggs

Susan Wiggs is a #1 New York Times bestselling author. She’s authored more than 50 novels including the Lakeshore Chronicles series and the New York Times bestsellers The Lost and Found Bookshop, The Oysterville Sewing Circle, and Family Tree. Her award-winning books have been translated into two dozen languages.  Susan lives with her family on an island in Washington State’s Puget Sound.

 

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Fiction, History, Suspense, Thriller, Writers on Writing

JUN 29: The Omega Factor with NYT Bestselling Author Steve Berry

#1 International Thriller Bestseller Introduces New Character – Nicholas Lee

It’s been a decade since Steve Berry wrote a stand-alone novel and that’s what we talk about today with The Omega Factor. Why write a stand-alone now? Who is Nick Lee? How did Steve Berry learn about the legendary Ghent Altarpiece, a highly-violated work of art that’s been stolen, vandalized, or dismantled 13 times? Do the Maidens of Saint-Michael (think ninja nuns) really exist? Are they really at odds with the Vatican and Catholic Church? And, how and where did Steve take creative license and tweak historical truth to make a new thrill ride.

About Steve Berry

Steve Berry is the New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling author of 16 Cotton Malone novels, five stand-alone thrillers, and several works of short fiction. Steve serves as an emeritus member of the Smithsonian Libraries Advisory Board and was a founding member of International Thriller Writers (ITW). With his wife, Elizabeth, Berry is the founder of History matters, dedicated to historical preservation. The Omega Factor is Steve’s latest novel.

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Fiction, Humor

May 11: Unlikely Animals with Annie Hartnett

Spirits narrate. Animals talk. Humor, heartache,  love, & a missing girl … a magical tragicom filled with the messiness of family life and death.

Author Annie Hartnett‘s second novel wasn’t going too well. She wasn’t enjoying authoring it and wondered if all second novels were this difficult to write. But as she took a drive through New Hampshire, Annie spotted something that changed the direction of her story and brought Unlikely Animals to life … or raised it from the dead … because the folks in the cemetery narrate the story.

About Annie Hartnett

Annie Hartnett‘s first book, Rabbit Cake, was listed as one of Kirkus Review’s Best Books of 2017 and was a New England Book Award finalist. Annie was awarded fellowships and residencies from the MacDowell Colony, Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and the Associates of the Boston Public Library. She holds degrees from the MFA program at the University of Alabama. Information for Book Clubs.

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Fiction, History, Writers on Writing

May 05: NYT Bestselling Author Jenny Lecoat

Based on a true story of a courageous young Jewish woman trapped under Nazi occupation on the Isle of Jersey in WWII

Considering her background, fate may have decreed Jenny Lecoat’s first novel would spark a bidding war between two major publishers and become a New York Times Bestseller.

The Girl From the Channel Islands is based on the true story of Hedy Bercu. We discuss why Jenny told Bercu’s story via fiction versus nonfiction; where she took creative license and why. How Jenny’s background informed those decisions and shaped the story.  Jenny also shares some of the true anecdotes she encountered during her research. And what it took to go from successful screenplay writer to successful novelist.

About Jenny Lecoat

Born in the Channel Islands, Jenny Lecoat was raised among family who passed down their own stories of life in German occupied Jersey. Jenny dove into screenwriting following early career turns as a stand-up comic and writing features for periodicals.  Her feature film, Another Mother’s Son, was released in 2017.

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Fiction, Writers on Writing

APR 20: Sylvain Neuvel’s Take Them to the Stars Trilogy

Until the Last of Me

Author Sylvain Neuvel sold the movie rights to his first book before it was even a book. How did that happen? We share that and much more about Sylvain’s road to literary success in today’s conversation.

We discuss the origins of his Take Them to the Stars Trilogy and how his ideas developed.  We look at book one A History of What Comes Next. And the latest in the trilogy, book two, Until the Last of Me. Sylvain shares how he plots. How he writes from female points of view. And some of the intense research he did to build a believable, yet speculative, world for his characters.

About Sylvain Neuvel

Sylvain Neuvel taught linguistics in India and worked as a software engineer in Montreal. His debut novel Sleeping Giants was described BY NPR as one of the most promising series kickoffs in recent memory. Until the Last of Me is the second and latest book in his Take Them to the Stars trilogy.

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