Interview with Sheila Curran

October, 2009
Sheila Curran

Quick Start

SS: How would you describe your life in only 8 words?

SC: Family. Friends. Food. Fiction. Forgetting. Fobias. Farmeceuticals. Foster's.

SS: What is your motto or maxim?

SC: Faith, like a guillotine. As heavy. As light. Franz Kafka.

What Readers want to know...

SS: How would you describe perfect happiness?

SC: Hearing from a reader who says s/he loved my book. Drinks and dinner with my favorite people. Losing myself in my writing. Having someone tell me they liked what I cooked. Painting, reading, laughing. Losing myself in a movie.

SS: What’s your greatest fear?

SC: I'm afraid to tell you, because then it might happen.

SS: If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?

SC: Right here, but I'd be able to live within walking distance of my favorite people, the beach, and a pub.

SS: With whom in history do you most identify?

SC: Charles Darwin, whose best friend published prolifically, while Mr. Darwin laid on a couch most of the day, complaining that his head hurt.

SS: Which living person do you most admire?

SC: My parents. Sappy answer but they have lived extraordinary lives of generosity, gregarity, intellectual rigor and grace under fire.

SS: What are your most overused words or phrases?

SC: Awesome. Starving! Thirsty! Where did I put my Kloniphen? What's that noise? I'm sorry. I'm lost.

SS: What do you regret most?

SC: Being mean to people when I didn't even realize I was doing it. Not staying up with my brother on our last night together. The time I spend being anxious, hungry, lonely or angry.

SS: What is your biggest pet peeve?

SC: Reviews of movies and books that spoil the ending

SS: What’s your fantasy profession?

SC: Surgeon

SS: What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?

SC: sense of humor, open-mindedness, kindness

SS: If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?

SC: Pasta Marinara

SS: What are your 5 favorite songs?

SC: Thunder Road, Blue Bayou, Losing My Religion, Ave Maria, Maggie May

Questions About Books and Writing

SS: Who are your favorite authors?

SC: Dennis Lehane, John Le Carre, Virginia Woolf. Kaye Gibbons. Wallace Stegner. William Styron. Doris Lessing. Mary Doria Russell. Alice McDermott. Mary Gordon. Elizabeth George. Jane Austen. Charlotte Bronte. Charles Dickens. Ken Follett. Pat Conroy. Toni Morrisson. Tolstoy. Garcia Marquez. Mario Vargas Llosa. James Lee Burke.

SS: What are your 5 favorite books of all time?

SC: These change constantly, but as of today: The Constant Gardener, (John Le Carre). Push,( by Sapphire). Aunt Julia and The Script Writer (Mario Vargas Llosa.) The Sparrow (Mary Doria Russell) Beloved (Toni Morrison.

SS: Is there a book you love to reread?

SC: I don't reread books, at least not on purpose. Sometimes I'm halfway through something before I realize I already read it, and usually I can't remember the ending, so I will have to finish it again. Suspense is important to me.

SS: Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?

SC: Write one bad page every day.

SS: What comment do you hear most often from your readers?

SC: I couldn't put your book down.

General Questions

SS: What were your previous occupations?

SC: Waitress, receptionist at alcohol rehab hospital, docket clerk at law firm, bartender, college adminstrator.

SS: What was/is your favorite job?

SC: Self-employed writer supported by professor husband's salary.

SS: Where did you go to high school and/or college?

SC: Youngstown, Ohio. Ursuline Academy. Oxford, Ohio, Miami University. University of Chicago.

SS: Name of your favorite composer or music artist?

SC: Bruce Springsteen.

SS: What is your favorite movie?

SC: The Piano.

SS: What is your favorite television show?

SC: The Wire.

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