Contemporary Fiction Episodes

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Audrey Burges - THE MINUSCULE MANSION OF MYRA MALONE

In this interview, Audrey and I discuss The Minuscule Mansion of Myra Malone, how she came up with the idea for the story, the fascination with miniatures, how her fabulous cover came about, choosing the book's locales, the Thorne Miniature Rooms at The Art Institute of Chicago, her inspiration for connecting the miniature house with the full size house in the story, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction Historical Fiction

Interview with Louise Kennedy - TRESPASSES

In this interview, Louise and I discuss Trespasses, living through The Troubles in the 1970s and setting her book during that time period, how a high level of violence impacts a population, tit-for-tat killings, why she does not use quotation marks, the stunning cover, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Toya Wolfe - LAST SUMMER ON STATE STREET

In this interview, Toya and I discuss Last Summer on State Street, having her book selected by Steph Curry's Literati book club, how she ended up crafting Fifi as an adult reflecting back on the events happening in the book, the way the title and cover came about, what surprised her most when writing this book, preserving Chicago history, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Nora Zelevansky - COMPETITIVE GRIEVING

In this interview, Nora and I discuss Competitive Grieving, her own experience with competitive grieving, how writing the book was cathartic, the format for the book, how the beauty of writing a novel is being able to create an entirely fictional world, the universal experience of what happens in the aftermath of death, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Elyssa Friedland - THE MOST LIKELY CLUB

In this interview, Elyssa and I discuss The Most Likely Club, her inspiration for this book, incorporating 90s nostalgia, how she tackled drafting four distinct women, the highlight of writing this book, which character she identifies with the most, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Angie Cruz - HOW NOT TO DROWN IN A GLASS OF WATER

In this interview, Angie and I discuss How Not to Drown in a Glass of Water, how humor can help a difficult situation, the importance of storytelling, how she decided on the book's unique format, visiting a psychic as part of her research, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Chris Cander - A GRACIOUS NEIGHBOR

In this interview, Chris and I discuss A Gracious Neighbor, the short story that inspired her novel, how we never really know what goes on behind closed doors, why she created her own definition of gracious for the book, her writing process, mean girls and how some never grow out of that phase, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Leigh Newman - NOBODY GETS OUT ALIVE

In this interview, Leigh and I discuss Nobody gets Out Alive, her focus in these short stories on the real Alaska, the isolation and loneliness experienced when living some place so remote, baring her soul in this collection, her personal connection to the title, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Carley Fortune - EVERY SUMMER AFTER

In this interview, Carley and I discuss Every Summer After, setting a book in Canada, choosing Barry's Bay as the book's locale and the response by residents, what surprised her the most writing this book, tackling her sophomore novel, why this book is resonating with so many people, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Jamie Brenner - GILT

In this interview, Jamie and I discuss Gilt, the way guilt permeates the story, the inspiration for this book and for Pavlin and Company, the hardest character for her to write, the relevance of the green cover, how book covers mark a particular moment in time, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Jane Rosen - A SHOE STORY

In this interview, Jane and I discuss A Shoe Story, her writing process, choosing the shoes for each chapter of this novel, how her book was selected by Elin Hilderbrand for her July Literati Book Club selection, getting thrown out of an Upper East Side Mom's group, looking forward versus focusing on the past, leaning into the shoe angle for marketing this book, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Eleanor Brown - ANY OTHER FAMILY

In this interview, Eleanor and I discuss Any Other Family, writing a book centered around adoption and the issues the process raises, crafting character-driven stories focused on why people act the way they do, using the Enneagram types to help flesh out characters, weaving humor into her novels, why she is not on social media, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Margarita Montimore - ACTS OF VIOLET

In this interview, Margarita and I discuss Acts of Violet, melding her love of stories about unresolved disappearances and those set in the showbiz world, exploring why the world of magic is so male-dominated, writing in a multi-media format and helping design the interior of the book, how the title and cover came about, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Ali Brady - THE BEACH TRAP

In this interview, Alison, Bradeigh and I discuss The Beach Trap, how they came up with the name Ali Brady and why they chose to write under a pen name versus their own names, creating their own take on The Parent Trap, the way they approach writing together, their great cover, what's next for them, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Annabel Monaghan - NORA GOES OFF SCRIPT

In this interview, Annabel and I discuss Nora Goes Off Script, how Nora is resonating with so many readers, the great reception the book is getting on Bookstagram, how titles send signals to readers about a book's genre, the difference in writing YA and nonfiction verses adult fiction, and much more.