Willig, White, and Williams discussion

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TFR book club > Chat Here 2/23!

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message 1: by Erica (last edited Feb 22, 2016 01:42PM) (new)

Erica Martirano | 15 comments Mod
The Forgotten Room has three different stories and three different main characters woven together into one big story, all taking place at the same mansion. Did you like or empathize more with one particular story line or protagonist?

If you have other questions you want Karen, Lauren, or Beatriz to answer please post them and be sure to identify who you want to answer (it can be all three ladies if you'd like!).


message 2: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Shannon  (cincindypat) | 2 comments Hi! This is for all authors, I suppose: what was co-writing a book like? Did you know where the story was going, or was each chapter a surprise?


message 3: by Vita (new)

Vita Pelletier | 5 comments Good Morning. How did you come up with the plot and was it hard to bring the storyline together with all three writing it?


message 4: by Erica (new)

Erica Martirano | 15 comments Mod
This just in!!!! Join the chat tonight and be entered to win a SIGNED (by all three authors!) copy of THE FORGOTTEN ROOM while supplies last!


Elizabeth (Miss Eliza) (strange_misseliza) | 1 comments Did you have any specific house that inspired the Pratt Mansion? Or was it an amalgamation of the typical upper east side mansions at the turn of the last century?


message 6: by Betty (new)

Betty Strohecker | 10 comments The story flows so well. I am amazed at the process to bring it all together. Are you ever going to reveal who wrote each character? Very curious to know.


message 7: by Betty (new)

Betty Strohecker | 10 comments Also, I'm wondering who wrote Harry at the end of the story. Was that a collaboration too?


message 8: by Andrea (last edited Feb 23, 2016 05:13PM) (new)

Andrea (andreakapp) | 11 comments I absolutely loved the book!

Karen - I loved the Tradd street reference in this book. It made me smile when I read that part.

My question to all three authors: How long did it take to intertwine all three stories in such a way that it seemed like fate?


message 9: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Cynthia wrote: "Hi! This is for all authors, I suppose: what was co-writing a book like? Did you know where the story was going, or was each chapter a surprise?"

It was surprisingly easy! None of us had ever collaborated with anyone before, so it was a grand experiment for all of us. We did our initial plotting of the story over a very, very long tea at Alice's Tea Cup in New York, toured the house together, emailed back and forth to create a relatively detailed outline-- and then started writing! We wrote round-robin, in exactly the order you find in the finished book, so each of us always read the previous chapters of the other two author's before starting on our own latest chapter, which helped with flow.

So there were no big surprises, but there were lots of wonderful little surprises along the way, as characters developed in unexpected ways and each of us picked up on what the others had just written and ran with it.

Would you agree, ladies?


message 10: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Betty wrote: "The story flows so well. I am amazed at the process to bring it all together. Are you ever going to reveal who wrote each character? Very curious to know."

We're sworn to secrecy! Although Karen has indicated that she might be open to bribery....


message 11: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Shannon  (cincindypat) | 2 comments Lauren wrote: "We wrote round-robin, in exactly the order you find in the finished book, so each of us always read the previous chapters of the other two author's before starting on our own latest chapter, which helped with flow."

Wow! That's such a creative approach. Also love Alice's Tea Cup.

Follow up question: How did you know when the story was over?


message 12: by Andrea (new)

Andrea (andreakapp) | 11 comments Erica wrote: "This just in!!!! Join the chat tonight and be entered to win a SIGNED (by all three authors!) copy of THE FORGOTTEN ROOM while supplies last!"

Sounds wonderful! :)


message 13: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Cynthia wrote: "Follow up question: How did you know when the story was over? "

Funnily enough, all of our individual stories went longer than our original outline-- but they all went longer by the exact same amount, so it all synced up perfectly!


message 14: by Erica (new)

Erica Martirano | 15 comments Mod
Off topic but I want to be sure you all saw the AMAZING chocolate scones Beatriz is having tonight in honor of our chat...I don't want to be the only jealous one!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BCJZQ_wi8...


message 15: by Rena (new)

Rena Olsen (renaolsen) | 3 comments Those scones look amazing!


message 16: by Erica (new)

Erica Martirano | 15 comments Mod
Rena wrote: "Those scones look amazing!"

RIGHT!?


message 17: by Megan (new)

Megan What type of bribe to reveal who wrote which era?

I loved the book and am a long time fan of both Lauren and Beatriz's work. Thank you for introducing me to Karen and her work!


message 18: by Jencey/ (new)

Jencey/ (jencey) | 7 comments Hello Karen, Lauren, and Beatriz! I am currently reading The Forgotten Room. i am very much enjoying it! My question is this one of the character's last name is Schuyler. Is this Schulyer related to Beatriz's other books?


message 19: by Beatriz (new)

Beatriz Williams | 33 comments Mod
Lauren wrote: "Cynthia wrote: "Hi! This is for all authors, I suppose: what was co-writing a book like? Did you know where the story was going, or was each chapter a surprise?"

It was surprisingly easy! None of ..."


I agree with Lauren -- I think this was one of the easiest writing projects I've ever done! Our plotting sessions were pure magic, and in fact I ended up calling on both Karen and Lauren when I got a little stuck on my own books, just because our brains have this wonderful shared space where we both understand and enhance each other's thoughts. I don't know any other way to describe it! Because of the nature of the book, we did have to outline far more extensively than we usually do, and that ended up serving the story very well.


message 20: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Erica wrote: "Off topic but I want to be sure you all saw the AMAZING chocolate scones Beatriz is having tonight in honor of our chat...I don't want to be the only jealous one!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BCJZQ..."


And THIS. This right here. Is the problem with virtual reality. When will they come up with a "beam me up, Scotty" for baked goods?


message 21: by Beatriz (new)

Beatriz Williams | 33 comments Mod
Erica wrote: "Off topic but I want to be sure you all saw the AMAZING chocolate scones Beatriz is having tonight in honor of our chat...I don't want to be the only jealous one!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BCJZQ..."


HAHA! My daughter's idea, actually. We are both fools for chocolate!


message 22: by Karen (new)

Karen White (karenwhite) | 32 comments Mod
Beatriz--I better be hearing my doorbell ANY SECOND NOW with my personal delivery of chocolate scones...


message 23: by Diane (new)

Diane | 11 comments Hi Ladies; Completely loved the book and have recommended to several others. How did you decide on the eras for settings?


message 24: by Beatriz (new)

Beatriz Williams | 33 comments Mod
Betty wrote: "Also, I'm wondering who wrote Harry at the end of the story. Was that a collaboration too?"

As Lauren said, we're sworn to secrecy about who wrote each section. But we might reveal at a later date...or we might hang on to the secret for years, like Carly Simon!


message 25: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Vita wrote: "Good Morning. How did you come up with the plot and was it hard to bring the storyline together with all three writing it?"

Karen claims she came up with it in a dream.... Right, Karen? Or, at least, with the idea of having three women connected to a single house. Beatriz chimed in that she had the perfect house for us-- and then we all sat down over about ten pots of strong tea and we were off and running!

I think what made it easier for the storylines to come together was that initial plotting session was done together, with all of us chiming in, and exclaiming, and feeling like these were real people who we were discovering together. So, even though each of us wrote a different character, we all felt a stake in the entire story and all contributed to all parts of the plot.


message 26: by Vita (new)

Vita Pelletier | 5 comments I also have not read Lauren or Beatriz's work, but I will be now. Love this book and the way it all comes together.


message 27: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Christine wrote: "Hello!

This book was so perfect. Any plans for future collaborations?"


Maybe.... (twirls imaginary mustache)


message 28: by Karen (new)

Karen White (karenwhite) | 32 comments Mod
Megan--we are taking bribes to fund our research trip on the Queen Mary for our next collaborative novel. Private message me for suggested amount. ;-)


message 29: by Carol (new)

Carol Boyer | 6 comments Hi Beatriz, Lauren and Karen, are you all writing another book together?


message 30: by Karen (new)

Karen White (karenwhite) | 32 comments Mod
Hi, Jencey--

Yes! Good call! Beatriz--this one is for you (the connection between the Schulyers in The Forgotten Room and your stand alone novels)


message 31: by Beatriz (new)

Beatriz Williams | 33 comments Mod
Elizabeth (Miss Eliza) wrote: "Did you have any specific house that inspired the Pratt Mansion? Or was it an amalgamation of the typical upper east side mansions at the turn of the last century?"

The house was actually inspired by a mansion that once (a century ago!) belonged to my husband's great-grandfather and his family. If anyone's read my books (A HUNDRED SUMMERS in particular) it's the house that the "real" Aunt Julie grew up in, and it's the most amazing building! It's a double-fronted townhouse on East 69th Street and it's now a hospital, and it really does have a beautiful staircase winding up the center of the house, with a breathtaking secret studio room at the top. We were lucky enough to get a self-guided tour of the place on the same day that we plotted out most of the book, and many of the story elements were directly inspired by what we saw.


message 32: by Carol (new)

Carol Boyer | 6 comments Beatriz wrote: "Betty wrote: "Also, I'm wondering who wrote Harry at the end of the story. Was that a collaboration too?"

As Lauren said, we're sworn to secrecy about who wrote each section. But we might reveal a..."


I think I know....:)!


message 33: by Erica (new)

Erica Martirano | 15 comments Mod
Vita wrote: "I also have not read Lauren or Beatriz's work, but I will be now. Love this book and the way it all comes together."

Vita, be sure to look at the shelf for this group...all three authors have AMAZING backlists of great books (instant gratification!).


message 34: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Diane wrote: "Hi Ladies; Completely loved the book and have recommended to several others. How did you decide on the eras for settings?"

Thanks so much, Diane! Some of it was dictated by historical events (we knew that the house needed to be Gilded Age and we wanted to get the crash of '92 in there-- and we also knew that we wanted it to be a World War II era hospital) and some of it was dictated by the relationships between the characters. It was also that all three are eras we've all written in and love, because they're such times of flux and change.


message 35: by Megan (new)

Megan Karen wrote: "Megan--we are taking bribes to fund our research trip on the Queen Mary for our next collaborative novel. Private message me for suggested amount. ;-)"

Perhaps you need someone to carry your briefcases, fetch your drinks and snacks?


message 36: by Carol (new)

Carol Boyer | 6 comments So want to know how are the scones?


message 37: by Beatriz (new)

Beatriz Williams | 33 comments Mod
Christine wrote: "Can I offer you a character themed cookie recipe as a bribe? ;-)"

We are ALWAYS open to bribery! Especially Karen :)


message 38: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Christine wrote: "Can I offer you a character themed cookie recipe as a bribe? ;-)"

If it comes with samples of the cookies, you might have a deal....


message 39: by Jencey/ (new)

Jencey/ (jencey) | 7 comments Ah so the next setting/destination has been chosen?


message 40: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Karen wrote: "Beatriz--I better be hearing my doorbell ANY SECOND NOW with my personal delivery of chocolate scones..."

I've got the wine if you've got the scones!

Oh, wait-- we're collaborating again. We're really no good at this whole conflict thing.


message 41: by Betty (new)

Betty Strohecker | 10 comments Beatriz wrote: "Betty wrote: "Also, I'm wondering who wrote Harry at the end of the story. Was that a collaboration too?"

As Lauren said, we're sworn to secrecy about who wrote each section. But we might reveal a..."


Oh, no! That would be torture.


message 42: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Vita wrote: "I also have not read Lauren or Beatriz's work, but I will be now. Love this book and the way it all comes together."

Thanks so much, Vita!


message 43: by Beatriz (new)

Beatriz Williams | 33 comments Mod
Jencey/ wrote: "Hello Karen, Lauren, and Beatriz! I am currently reading The Forgotten Room. i am very much enjoying it! My question is this one of the character's last name is Schuyler. Is this Schulyer related t..."

Indeed it is! I'm working on that long-promised Schuyler family tree on my website, so you'll see where all the cousins fit together. And you may just find Philip Schuyler popping up in my next book, A CERTAIN AGE! :)


message 44: by Lauren (last edited Feb 23, 2016 05:12PM) (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Jencey/ wrote: "Ah so the next setting/destination has been chosen?"

It has! All those pictures of drinks we posted on the #TFRbooktour? Those weren't just idle amusement-- they were plot fuel! (At least, that's what we tell our editor.)


message 45: by Diane (new)

Diane | 11 comments In regards to the Queen Mary research and Megan's message #37---

Count me in! I'll bring the wine!!!


message 46: by Karen (new)

Karen White (karenwhite) | 32 comments Mod
Diane wrote: "Hi Ladies; Completely loved the book and have recommended to several others. How did you decide on the eras for settings?"

It was more of an organic approach rather than anything planned. Since it's three generations of women in the same family, we needed to make sure the years between each generation made sense--and then we picked three pivotal historic eras that were with the right time frames. Very scientific!


message 47: by Beatriz (new)

Beatriz Williams | 33 comments Mod
Jencey/ wrote: "Ah so the next setting/destination has been chosen?"

Haha - stay tuned, Jencey! :)


message 48: by Kierstin (new)

Kierstin Carnahan (kiercarnahan) | 3 comments This question is for Beatriz, is Kate Schuyler related to the Schuylers in your other books?


message 49: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Willig | 34 comments Mod
Karen wrote: "Diane wrote: "Hi Ladies; Completely loved the book and have recommended to several others. How did you decide on the eras for settings?"

It was more of an organic approach rather than anything pla..."


That's us. Totally scientific and data driven....


message 50: by Beatriz (new)

Beatriz Williams | 33 comments Mod
Vita wrote: "I also have not read Lauren or Beatriz's work, but I will be now. Love this book and the way it all comes together."

Thanks so much, Vita! If you want any recommendations, just message me :)


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