Interview with Laura GriffinMarch, 2010
What Readers want to know...
SS: How would you describe perfect happiness?
LG: I think happiness is doing what you want to do, not what you have to do. And I think very few people are lucky enough to do that.
SS: What’s your greatest fear?
LG: Heights make me dizzy, so it amazes me that I let my college roommate talk me into skydiving. I thought I would have a heart attack, and then it was one of the most exhilarating things I've ever done.
SS: If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?
LG: At the beach drinking a margarita.
SS: What do you regret most?
LG: Wow, what a downer question. I think my biggest regret that I'll share on the Internet is being offered a free (free!!) ticket to see U2 on their Joshua Tree tour. And then my mother told me I was much too young to go to a rock concert.
SS: If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?
LG: I would love to be able to play a musical instrument. And as long as this is fantasy, why not the violin? I saw a violin concert once that brought tears to my eyes.
SS: What is your greatest achievement?
LG: I think I'm most proud of the fact that I refused to give up on my dreams (of becoming an author) even when nothing was going my way and it seemed like a futile endeavor.
SS: What trait is most noticeable about you?
LG: Thankfully, nothing. I don't stand out in a crowd. I much prefer to hang back and observe people.
SS: Who is your favorite fictional hero?
LG: Favorite fictional hero... there are so many amazing men in fiction. Ha. But I might have to go with Holden Caulfield from Catcher in the Rye, even though he's kind of an anti-hero.
SS: Who is your favorite fictional villain?
LG: Of all the villains in fiction, I might have to say Hannibal Lecter. The genius of Lecter is that Thomas Harris created a terrifying villain with a sympathetic side. Anyone who saw the movie Silence of the Lambs knows what I mean... Who wasn't rooting for Lecter to take out the psychologist at the end of the film?
SS: What is your biggest pet peeve?
LG: I can't stand long-winded phone messages.
SS: What is your favorite occupation, when you’re not writing?
LG: When I'm not writing, I love to read--newspapers, magazines, books. Actually, I have a very expensive book habit. And, maybe because I have so many author friends, I can't bring myself to buy books used, so it really adds up.
SS: What’s your fantasy profession?
LG: I would love to be in some kick-ass law enforcement job. But I guess writing about people who are is the next best thing.
SS: If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?
LG: chocolate pecan pie
SS: What are your 5 favorite songs?
LG: I have favorite artists, not songs, because I love to listen to albums straight through. I love U2, Coldplay, Patty Griffin, Allison Krauss and Union Station, Dave Matthews. U2 would have to be my favorite. They're mesmerizing in concert.
Questions About Books and Writing
SS: What are your 5 favorite books of all time?
LG: The Catcher in the Rye (Salinger) Slouching Towards Bethlehem (Didion) Lonesome Dove (McMurtry) The House of Mirth (Wharton) Snow Falling on Cedars (Guterson)
SS: Is there a book you love to reread?
LG: Catcher in the Rye... and it's the one book I won't lend out because I'm very attached to my dog-eared copy.
SS: What comment do you hear most often from your readers?
LG: The best compliment I ever got was from a reader who said she got so hooked on my books, she read them by flashlight during a weeklong power outage after Hurricane Ike.
SS: Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?
LG: Develop a thick skin and don't give up.
SS: Who are your favorite authors?
LG: There are so many! A sample from my bookshelves: Suzanne Brockmann, Patricia Cornwell, Jennnifer Crusie, Joan Didion, Lisa Gardner, David Guterson, (can you tell I have them alphabetized?), Tami Hoag, Larry McMurtry, J.D. Salinger, Edith Wharton.
SS: What is your birthdate?
SS: What were your previous occupations?
LG: newspaper reporter, teacher, research assistant at an art museum, substitute teacher
SS: What was/is your favorite job?
LG: My LEAST favorite job was substitute teaching. But I think everyone should do it because it teaches you to think on your feet.
SS: Where did you go to high school and/or college?
LG: Vanderbilt University, grad school at Texas State University
Get more on Laura Griffin at SimonandSchuster.com