Tuesday, June 18, 2013

An Interview between Nancy Thayer and Samantha Wilde!!

First, Happy book birthday to Nancy on Island Girls!!!!  Everyone get out and get a copy quick, I know I will!!!  Second, Holy Cow, I am a bit excited today having the the amazing talents of the mother/daughter writers power house here today!  They have so kindly written an amazing interview between the two of them!  Enjoy!  

Thanks Nancy and Samantha for being here today!!!!  

Island Girls: A Novel

“Nancy Thayer is one of my favorite writers, and Island Girlsis one of her best. The Randall sisters are like your own family members or your best friends: funny, smart and emotional, infuriating and good-hearted. Here is a book to be savored and passed on to the good women in your life.”—New York Times bestselling author Susan Wiggs

New York Times bestselling author Nancy Thayer returns to her beloved Nantucket in a highly emotional, wholly entertaining tale of three sisters forced to confront the past over one event-filled summer on the island.
Charming ladies’ man Rory Randall dies with one last trick up his sleeve: His will includes a calculating clause mandating a summer-long reunion for his daughters, all from different marriages—that is, if they hope to inherit his posh Nantucket house. Relations among the three sisters are sour thanks to long-festering jealousies, resentments, and misunderstandings. Arden, a successful television host in Boston, hasn’t been back to the island since her teenage years, when accusations of serious misbehavior led to her banishment. College professor Meg hopes to use her summer to finish a literary biography and avoid an amorous colleague. And secretive Jenny, an IT specialist, faces troubling questions about her identity while longing for her sisters’ acceptance.
To their surprise, the three young women find their newfound sisterhood easier to trust than the men who show up to complicate their lives. And if that weren’t problematic enough, their mothers descend on the island. When yet another visitor drops by the house with shocking news, the past comes screaming back with a vengeance. Having all the women from his life under his seaside roof—and overseeing the subsequent drama of that perfect storm—Rory Randall might just be enjoying a hearty laugh from above.
Nancy Thayer’s novel insightfully illustrates how the push and pull of family altercations make us whole. It’s how the Randall sisters come to forgive, and learn to open their hearts to love.

Nancy Thayer is the author of twenty-three novels, including Summer House, The Hot Flash Club, Beachcombers, Heat Wave, Summer Breeze, and Island Girls, due out June 2013.

Her books concern the mysteries and romance of families and relationships: marriage and friendships, divorce and love, custody and step parenting, family secrets and private self-affirmation, the quest for independence and the normal human hunger for personal connections.
Nancy Thayer’s work has been translated into many languages, including German, Finnish, Hebrew, Russian, Turkish, French, Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch, Serbo-Croatian, Swedish, Danish, and Polish. Her novels have been condensed or excerpted in several literary reviews and magazines, including Redbook and Good Housekeeping, England’s Cosmopolitan, Holland’s Viva, and South Africa’s Personality.

Nancy Thayer has a B.A. and M.A. in English literature from the University of Missouri at Kansas City. She was a Fellow at the Breadloaf Writers’ Conference. She has lived on Nantucket Island year-round for twenty-eight years with her husband Charley Walters. Her daughter is the novelist Samantha Wilde.

Perfect for fans of Marisa de los Santos and Allison Winn Scotch, Samantha Wilde’s new novel is a funny and heartfelt look at friendship, marriage, and the dynamics of modern motherhood.
Nora and Annie have been best friends since kindergarten. Nora, a shy English teacher at a quaint New England boarding school, longs to have a baby. Annie, an outspoken stay-at-home mother of two, longs for one day of peace and quiet (not to mention more money and some free time). Despite their very different lives, nothing can come between them—until Cynthia Cypress arrives on campus.
Cynthia has it all: brains, beauty, impeccable style, and a gorgeous husband (who happens to be Nora’s ex). When Cynthia eagerly befriends Nora, Annie’s oldest friendship is tested. Now, each woman must wrestle the green-eyed demon of envy and, in the process, confront imperfect, mixed-up family histories they don’t want to repeat. Amid the hilarious and harried straits of friendship, marriage, and parenthood, the women may discover that the greenest grass is right beneath their feet.

I wrote This Little Mommy Stayed Home, my first novel, while resting in bed with a laptop and a bag of chocolates while my infant son napped. Of course I didn't start writing until he slept through the night because before that, I couldn't think, let alone write. What began as an act of total desperation for reconnection to my creative life turned into a two book contract with Random House. My second novel, I'LL TAKE WHAT SHE HAS,came in fits and starts between the babyhood of my second child and the birth of my third. 

Born in Northampton, Mass and raised in Williamstown and Nantucket, Mass I attended Concord Academy (I'LL TAKE WHAT SHE HAS is set at a suburban Boston boarding school), a school much beloved to me, Smith College (with a brief stint at Wellesley College), Yale Divinity School, The New Seminary, and the Kripalu School of Yoga. Before full-time motherhood, and part-time novel writing, I taught yoga full-time and worked as a minister. I am the daughter of novelist Nancy Thayer whose shoes I can only dream to fill!

What I love above all else—next to God and chocolate—are my children
I’m passionate about mothering, despite its tedious moments, and love to connect with other mothers, as well as non-mothers. I like those people too! My children, 6, 4.5, and 2, are my teachers of patience, love, creativity, endurance, self-preservation, and joy. Though I wear many hats still, as a yoga teacher and a minister and a writer, none is more dear to me or closer to my heart than mothering.

I live with my husband, a professor of chemical engineering in Western Massachussets. We are both lovers of family and feel very blessed to have our own. I use nap times (when they happen) to work on my third novel, and often find myself typing away after bedtime.
My interests and influences are as varied and eclectic(and disparate!) as the Duggars (that enormous family of 19), Unity School of Christianity, fun women’s fiction, Kripalu yoga retreats, Bo Lozoff, Oprah, growing my own veggies, Byron Katie, Joyce Meyer, baking with my children, reading books on gentle parenting, study of world religions, playing the harmonium and chanting, practicing yoga, eating chocolate, praying, laughing, to the very simple, most wonderful times of being with friends and family. I read almost anything, and when I’m not too tired, I love to think!

An Interview between Nancy Thayer and Samantha Wilde!

SW: Mom, your 23rd novel, Island Girls, releases today. Whenever I ask you about your favorite book, you say it’s the one you’re working on at the time. Well, I don’t believe it! If you really look back at your career, all the books you’ve published, doesn’t one speak to you or represent you better than the others? Isn’t one of them your “heart book?”

NT: Excellent question, Sam.  I had to stop and think about it, and honestly, they are all my “heart books.”  My heart and soul are in all my books in different ways, because they are all about family and friends, and family and friends are the center of my heart.

SW: We’ve both written recent books about friendship. In your opinion, what makes a friend?

NT: I think equality, mutual admiration, even a little envy, on both sides, is the key. No pity—although friends help each other through hard times. A similar sense of humor helps. Sometimes you meet a person and a kind of magic happens and you know you’ve met a friend. Sometimes, as in Island Girls, it takes time and a few challenges to build up trust. What do you think makes a friend?

SW: Honesty, presence, humor, forgiveness, and commonality. Not unlike what you need in family! Island Girls is about a mixed-up family—three half-sisters. Which of the characters is most like you? Which is most like me?

NT: Meg, the college instructor, is the most like me.  She’s writing a book about Louisa May Alcott’s younger sister; she’s dreamy, plump, and romantic.  NO ONE is like you in the world, Sam, but if I had to choose, I’d say Arden, who is assertive, sassy, take-charge and gorgeous.  Except, oops, Arden doesn’t want children, so she’s not like you at all!

SW: I’m reading Island Girls right now and I thought I was like Meg! Oh, well. If you could write a novel about anything, not worrying about what might publish or sell well, what would it be?

NT:  I would, and I will someday, write a novel about the death of several young people I loved.  As I write, I begin to understand my own life in ways I can’t comprehend without writing fiction.  Sylvia Plath said: Fiction is a lie that tells the truth. Sam, what would you write about if you didn’t worry about sales?

SW: I’d love to do more non-fiction writing, a spiritual memoir, a book about spirituality and mothering, a book about liberal Christianity. But still funny! I love writing comically. But here’s a serious question: I grew up knowing how much you love writing and hearing the story of being a little girl and wanting to become a writer. Not many people get to fulfill their childhood dreams so completely. Have you ever had a moment or a day when you thought, I wish I’d become something else?

NT:  Not one single day. I wish I had the energy to write all day, but I don’t. I have trouble falling asleep, but when I wake in the morning, I grab my coffee and almost run to my desk.

SW: Somehow, you’ve turned into the Queen of the Beach Read and yet, personally, I’ve never seen you read a book on the beach. How has this happened?

NT:  Ha ha, my darling.  I love walking on the beach, but not sitting in the sand. I like reading curled up in a chair in my own little world. And Beach Reads mean to me a book that is fun, bright, smart, not so serious the reader feels the pain of the world, but intelligent enough that a reader learns something that touches her heart.  What kind of fiction do you believe you write?  Someone once told me—years ago—that I write in the “dirty diaper genre of fiction.”  It was a man who said it, of course.  Have things changed in 30 years?

SW: I’m glad you asked because I am the QUEEN of Dirty Diaper Fiction. I am so happy to write novels about motherhood. Motherhood is where it’s at. Rueful, honest, truthful, entertaining, and full of poop—what more could anyone possibly want? Speaking of queens, what’s your secret fantasy?

NT:  Seriously: I want to live to be 100, writing a book a year, and living about 10 minutes from my grandchildren. I think I know what your fantasy is: 6 children, a farm, and a Laura Ingalls Wilder life.  Or am I wrong?

SW: You’re very close. Lots of children, land, noise, singing, laughter, people, time, wild flowers. I’ll stick with indoor plumbing, though. Laura can keep her outhouse!

Enjoy the Q&A?  Then you should watch this video of the ladies!!!!

Buy the books!!!!



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Emily, AKA Mrs. Mommy Booknerd

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