We had the opportunity to pose some questions to Kate Jacobs for our blog today, so settle down and learn to know the author behind the bestselling Friday Night Knitting series.
KJ: I always write the story I feel compelled to tell, though I do think of readers and their feelings. I really like the people who read my books! But ultimately I follow my instincts. You know, I chat about the ending of FNKC a great deal because I telephone book clubs regularly (readers simply contact me via my website). There are many readers who are upset by the death of a certain character in FNKC, and, by extension, upset with me. There are other readers who, like me, find it cathartic to grieve her loss. But it’s important to note that the plot twists are relevant to the themes of the book, to the ideas of recognizing how important our friendships are and how necessary (for us) it is to forgive and to absorb that sense of “why wait until tomorrow?” I also hope it’s clear how much practical health information I tried to tuck in there and how crucial it is that we all look after ourselves. In my mind, FNKC ends exactly as it should, even though parts of it are tough. As with any book I write, there are also issues I’m working out in the story, and there’s no question that writing FNKC helped me deal with experiences of my own.
But that doesn’t mean I don’t like happy endings. Of course I do! Especially in real life – those happy endings are much more significant. But I do write them into my stories as well. KNIT TWO is a book that picks up five years after the end of the original story and asks questions about how we deal with grief, and how our lives become burdened by legacy. It’s an examination of how life – with its ups and downs, its gifts and its losses – defines who we are. And it has an upbeat ending because otherwise the book is too weighed down, in my opinion, and because I wanted there to be a full circle-ness to each of the stories in the series. Families – and families of friends – learn how to understand and how to grow together. How to accept. The newest and third book in the series, KNIT THE SEASON, smoothes out some of the remaining rough edges from the first two books and answers lingering questions about characters we haven’t seen in a while. It also incorporates memory flashbacks in which I write in the present-tense voice of the character no longer with the group, because to me the holidays are a time when we reflect on good memories of loved ones. We think about where we are going, and reminisce about where we’ve been.
Read more of Kate’s interview by clicking here…