Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Showcase: Love and Miss Communication by Elyssa Friedland


This unforgettable debut novel asks us to look up from our screens and out at the world...and to imagine what life would be like with no searches, no status updates, no texts, no Tweets, no pins, and no posts

Evie Rosen has had enough. She's tired of the partners at her law firm e-mailing her at all hours of the night. The thought of another online date makes her break out in a cold sweat. She's over the clever hashtags and the endless selfies. So when her career hits a surprising roadblock and her heart is crushed by Facebook, Evie decides it's time to put down her smartphone for good. (Beats stowing it in her underwear--she's done that too!)

And that's when she discovers a fresh start for real conversations, fewer distractions, and living in the moment, even if the moments are heartbreakingly difficult. Babies are born; marriages teeter; friendships are tested. Evie just may find love and a new direction when she least expects it, but she also learns that just because you unplug your phone doesn't mean you can unplug from life.

Elyssa.Friedland.HeadshotElyssa Friedland attended Yale University, where she served as managing editor of the Yale Daily News. She is a graduate of Columbia Law School and subsequently worked as an associate at a major firm. Prior to law school, Elyssa wrote for several publications, including Modern Bride, New York magazine, Columbia Journalism Review, CBS MarketWatch.com, Yale Alumni Magazine, and Your Prom. She grew up in New Jersey and currently lives in New York City with her husband and young children.


    Q.  What inspires your writing?

    A. I'm inspired by great books. I love getting lost in a book and feeling at the end that I have to find other readers to discuss it with. We have so much stress in our daily lives that having a good book in which to hide is pretty great. That, in turn, inspires me to create that same feeling for others. I also love the English language. I'm a total word nerd. When I hit upon just the right word, I feel like throwing a party.

    Q.  What is your favorite thing about being an writer?

     A. That I get to step into another universe whenever I want. When I sit down to write, I literally feel like I'm opening a door to an alternate world. The real world around me ceases to exist when I'm working.

     Q.  What is the toughest part of being an writer?

     A. The discipline. There are so many distractions, especially because I'm a mother of three young children. If I'm not in the right head space, I can't put the stream of errands I have to take care of out of my mind. And writing is also very solitary at times. Now that my book is done, I'm out in the world promoting it. But before that, it was a pretty lonely endeavor and I missed the camaraderie of my previous law firm job.

     Q.  If you could not be writer, what would you do/be?

     A. I'd work in advertising. I can't tell you the number of times I cringe watching bad commercials and think -- who agreed to that? I also think in puns which would be very useful for creating ads!

     Q.  What would the story of your life be entitled?

     A. Overachiever Gone Wild

     Q.  What is your favorite book of all time?

     A. The Sun Also Rises

     Q.  Which character from ANY book are you most like?

     A. So terrible to admit this, but probably Bridget Jones. I actually haven't read the book in ages, but from I what I remember she and I had a lot in common.

     Q.  What character from all of your book are you most like?

     A. Evie, my main character, hands down. She's basically a slightly more neurotic version of me. She's a hard worker, a good friend and an optimist in spite of herself. She's also very blunt, which I've been accused of on more than one occasion.

     Q.  Which book would you love to take a weekend vacation inside of?

     A. Like Water for Chocolate

     Q.  What do you want to be remembered for 100 years from now?

     A. Being funny

     Q.  What is your favorite season?

     A. Spring (two of my three children have birthdays in spring and the weather feels like a gift after winter).

     Q.  What inspired your book cover(s)?  Or what is your favorite book cover and why?

     A. My book cover is inspired by a smartphone. It has the three dots that show up when you're waiting for a text to appear. I love that because it represents so many things -- curiosity, impatience, and possibility, just to name a few.

     Q.  Tell me something funny that happened while on a book tour or while promoting your book.

     A. I've started a blog on my website called #askelyssa where people can write in their questions about social media. I've received some pretty funny entries to date, like "Can I post a birthing photo?" No, you cannot.

     Q.  Are you working on something new?

     A. Yes, my second novel about a failing marriage. Or is it failing? Maybe marriage is about compromise and it's okay not to be happy 100 percent of the time. You'll have to read it to find out what happens to my bride and groom when they take some time to reconsider what it means to be married.

     Q.  Anything you want to say to followers of this blog or those that are just stopping by?

     A. If you've ever held your smartphone in your hand and wondered what is happening to our world, you will love reading Love and Miss Communication.

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