Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Anna David | Fiction Vs. Reality
Uncategorized / June 19, 2009

When you’re a writer, there’s a tricky line you have to balance between having experiences with people and using those experiences as material. As a writer who spends time with a lot of writers, I’ve been on all sides of this equation. I’ve been the girl who found herself summarized, not so kindly, in an ex’s article in a magazine. I’ve counseled a friend through a fight with another writer who was making my friend into a regular “character” in her columns and didn’t understand why my friend had an issue with it since her name had been changed. And I’ve been the one who’s lifted scenarios, situations, names and characteristics of the people she knows. Obviously, I try to be as careful as I possibly can. While we can’t copyright what we say and do among friends and lovers, everyone should feel comfortable behaving exactly as they want to without fear of ending up as a tragic or unintentionally amusing character in a friend’s novel. I take bits and pieces from different people or change so much that even the people who’d been at the incident I’m describing might not recognize it (for my first novel, Party Girl, I…

Isabel Sharpe | My Two Hats
Romance / May 12, 2008

During a recent newspaper interview, the reporter made an observation that completely surprised me: “Your romance books are about finding men while your women’s fiction novels are about getting away from them.” Huh? I started to write women’s fiction because I had stories to tell that didn’t fit the romance mold, but I’d never thought about it in that light. Romance novels portray a beautiful fantasy—the forever joining of two souls meant to be together. Since I’m a divorcée it’s pretty obvious that fantasy didn’t work out for me. (And given my bad date stories it might never. Tip for men—during that first-impression conversation, leave out mentioning throwing up your dinner, ripping your underwear with too-long toenails or seeing your 85-year-old father’s naked buttocks.) That said, I don’t consider my women’s fiction to be a celebration of ditching men, but a celebration of women taking charge of their lives, of stepping off the martyr train and striking out for a destination of their choosing. I could have written about women quitting bad jobs or leaving dull towns but relationships are more important to women and involve more of their identities, thereby giving me the chance to tell a deeper story….