Contemporary Fiction Episodes

Contemporary Fiction

Kathleen West - ARE WE THERE YET?

Kathleen and I discuss Are We There Yet?, how social media and cell phones play such major roles in teens’ lives today, parents who believe their self-worth and social standing are tied to their children’s, parenting in 2021, balancing oversight and privacy as a parent, and more.

Contemporary Fiction

Bianca Marais - IF YOU WANT TO MAKE GOD LAUGH

Bianca and I discuss If You Want to Make God Laugh, creating cultural context and awareness in her writing, her podcast and why she launched it, how to become a more responsible traveler, the importance of Own Voices stories, the advent of writing partnerships, and more.

Contemporary Fiction

Kim Neville - THE MEMORY COLLECTORS

Kim and I discuss The Memory Collectors, the way inanimate objects hold power over us because of the memories tied to them, her favorite character to create in this book, her fascination with witches and magic, connecting with readers, and more.

Contemporary Fiction

Jill Santopolo - EVERYTHING AFTER

Jill and I discuss Everything After, how a Counting Crows song helped spark the title of this book, encouraging open conversations about miscarriage, maintaining individuality and identity after getting married, the one thing that Jill wanted for her recent birthday and more.

Contemporary Fiction

Hala Alyan - THE ARSONISTS' CITY

Hala and I discuss The Arsonists’ City, the character she enjoyed writing the most, wanting to provide a deeper understanding of Lebanon to her readers, how and why intergenerational conflict and secrets provide great fodder for writers, and more.

Contemporary Fiction

Jennifer Dupee - THE LITTLE FRENCH BRIDAL SHOP

Jennifer and I discuss her debut The Little French Bridal Shop, the inspiration for both her story and the bridal shop in the book, how small falsehoods can easily turn into a web of lies, how she balances her day job and writing, reading recommendations, and more.

Contemporary Fiction

Madeleine Henry - THE LOVE PROOF

Madeleine and I discuss her latest novel The Love Proof, what inspired her to write this book, her love of yoga, her writing process, what she likes to do in her free time, and more.The Love Proof can be purchased at Murder by the Book.Madeleine’s 2 re...

Contemporary Fiction

Te-Ping Chen - LAND OF BIG NUMBERS

Te-Ping and I discuss her short story collection Land of Big Numbers, how the people she met as a journalist in Beijing inspired some of these stories, what it is like for people who live in a society where many circumstances are outside their control, the universality of intergenerational family stories, and more.

Contemporary Fiction

Nancy Johnson - THE KINDEST LIE

Nancy and I discuss her debut novel The Kindest Lie, the issue of identity in the United States today, her title’s dual meaning, how important it is for aspiring authors to write the story they want to write versus following publishing trends, her own publishing journey and more.

Contemporary Fiction

Liese O'Halloran Schwarz - WHAT COULD BE SAVED

Liese discusses her new book What Could Be Saved, writing about Bangkok in both the 1970s and present day, pulling from her experiences as an expat, how her writing process has evolved over time, pandemic reading recommendations, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Mateo Askaripour - BLACK BUCK

Mateo discusses Black Buck, using a creative format to tell the story, fiction’s incredible power to teach empathy and understanding, his unique (and very cool) cover and the story behind it, having his novel chosen for the Read with Jenna book club.

Contemporary Fiction

Julie Carrick Dalton - WAITING FOR THE NIGHT SONG

Julie discusses her debut Waiting for the Night Song, why she loosely based the plot line on a cherished children’s book, choosing New Hampshire for the book’s setting, the importance and urgency of climate fiction, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Lainey Cameron - THE EXIT STRATEGY

Lainey discusses her debut novel The Exit Strategy, working in the tech industry as a one of the only women in the boardroom, her desire to inspire and empower women with this story, the importance of titles and covers, and publishing during the pandemic.

Contemporary Fiction

Sharon Harrigan - HALF

Sharon speaks about her debut novel Half, writing about twin sisters who speak in one voice, publishing during the pandemic, the inspiration for her story, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Denise Williams - HOW TO FAIL AT FLIRTING

Denise discusses her debut novel How to Fail at Flirting, tackling a tough subject matter in her novel, how comparing oneself to others is a “thief of joy”, the struggle to find the perfect title for her book, serving as a mentor in Pitch Wars, and more.