Contemporary Fiction Episodes

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Marie Myung-Ok Lee - THE EVENING HERO

In this interview, Marie and I discuss The Evening Hero, humanizing her main character, her trip to North Korea that rounded out details for the book, what surprised her the most when writing this book, the complicated process of finding a title,, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Amy Tector - THE HONEYBEE EMERALDS

In this interview, Amy and I discuss The Honeybee Emeralds, the inspiration for the fictional necklace in the book, avoiding information dumps, the unique situation of living as an expat in a foreign country, her favorite and least favorite characters to write, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Michelle Huneven - SEARCH

In this interview, Michelle and I discuss Search, her inspiration for the story, the format for telling the tale, the characters that were the easiest and hardest to write, how her cover came about, the way her characters developed as she wrote them, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Christine Simon - THE PATRON SAINT OF SECOND CHANCES

In this interview, Christine and I discuss The Patron Saint of Second Chances, her inspiration for this story, when she knew she wanted to be a writer, her unusual publishing journey, creating a tremendous sense of community in her book and why that is so important, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Ashley Winstead - FOOL ME ONCE

Ashley and I discuss Fool Me Once, how second-chance romance is her favorite trope, writing books in several genres, her fabulous cover, setting a book in the world of politics, weaving pop culture and humor into this novel, rom-com character expectations, how much more latitude there is when writing thrillers versus rom-coms, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Kathleen West - HOME OR AWAY

For this special episode, Carol Ann Tack of Top Shelf at Merrick Library and I interview Kathleen West together. We talk about her new book Home or Away, the intensity of youth sports, the book's title, writing about #metoo, and so much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Rosie Walsh - THE LOVE OF MY LIFE

Rosie and I discuss The Love of My Life, having her book selected as a GMA Book Club pick, the obituary writing business, the tortuous process she went through when writing this book, how book covers are selected and the way covers vary by country, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Rebecca Serle - ONE ITALIAN SUMMER

Rebecca and I discuss One Italian Summer, exploring the dialogue between fate and free will, including a bit of magical realism in her stories, how the inspiration for her stories comes from what she is personally working through at the time, the hardest character for her to write in One Italian Summer, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Jennifer E. Smith - THE UNSINKABLE GRETA JAMES

Jennifer and I discuss The Unsinkable Greta James, writing a love story about Greta and her music, exploring what it is like to live a creative life, the effects of living in such a connected and public world, how working in the publishing industry impacts her work, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Lyn Liao Butler - RED THREAD OF FATE

Lyn and I discuss Red Thread of Fate, how this book is a more personal story for her, wanting to make sure she had the adoption details exactly right, the difficulty of writing a shy/reserved character, found families, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Interview with Elena Armas- THE SPANISH LOVE DECEPTION

Elena and I discuss The Spanish Love Deception, her unusual and very cool publishing journey, winning the Goodreads Choice Best Debut Novel Award and what the selection process was like, her favorite romance trope, how being a romance blogger and bookstagrammer prepared her to write rom-coms, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Lizzie Damilola Blackburn - YINKA, WHERE IS YOUR HUZBAND?

Lizzie and I discuss Yinka, Where Is Your Huzband?, her personal inspiration for this book, her belief that self love is the most important kind of love, creating an immersive story format, the television show that inspired her, the process for finding her book's title, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Wiley Cash - WHEN GHOSTS COME HOME

Wiley and I chat about When Ghosts Come Home, why he chose to set the book in 1984, how good stories come from tension, why he is comfortable writing female characters, how the title came about, and much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Kimmery Martin - DOCTORS AND FRIENDS

For this special episode, Carol Ann Tack of Top Shelf at Merrick Library and I interview Kimmery Martin together. We talk about her new book Doctors and Friends, writing the book pre-pandemic, how it changed post-pandemic, her wonderful website, and so much more.

Contemporary Fiction

Tabitha Forney - PAPER AIRPLANES

Tabitha and I discuss Paper Airplanes, telling this very personal story, how 9/11 transformed the United States, the chapter she found the most difficult to write, participating in Pitch Wars, her publishing journey, and much more.