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Author/Reader Discussions > Love Water Memory Author/ Reader Discussion

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message 1: by Lori, Super Mod (new)

Lori (tnbbc) | 10060 comments Mod
Next month, we'll be discussing Love Water Memory with author Jennie Shortridge

The publisher has given us a total of 30 copies to give away (a mix of print - limited to US resident, and digital - read the giveaway on the blog for specifics on this part).

In order to be considered, you must comment here or on the blog for a shot at winning one and secure a spot in the discussion that kicks off September 15th:


This giveaway will run through August 8th.

Winners will be announced here and via email (if you provide one) on August 9th.

Here's how to enter:

1 - Leave a comment here or in the giveaway thread over at TNBBC on goodreads, stating why you'd like to receive a copy of the book, what format you prefer, and where you reside remember, only US residents can win a paper copy!.


2 - State that you agree to participate in the group read book discussion that will run from September 15th through September 21st. Jennie Shortridge has agreed to participate in the discussion and will be available to answer any questions you may have for her.

*If you are chosen as a winner, by accepting the copy you are agreeing to read the book and join the group discussion right here in this thread next month.

3 - If your goodreads profile is blocked (set on private), please leave me another way to contact you.

message 2: by Emma (new)

Emma | 8 comments Yes please would love to read this and participate in the discussions, a digital copy would be great.

message 3: by Tracy (new)

Tracy | 2 comments Would love a copy so that I can participate in discussion. Have not been a part of a discussion yet and would like to start. Would prefer digital copy

message 4: by Tressa (new)

Tressa (always1453) | 2 comments I would love to participate in the discussion of this book. I am new to the group and I would love to be a part of this :) I would prefer a printed copy of the book. I can be contacted here or by email
Happy Reading!!

message 5: by Carol (last edited Aug 04, 2014 08:57AM) (new)

Carol (carolvv) | 10 comments book sounds fascinating- i would love to read and participate in the discussion
thank you

message 6: by Amy (new)

Amy (garnet1377) | 31 comments The book sounds AMAZING!! Yes, I's participate in the discussion - I already have questions! LOL

Thank you

message 7: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda Farrell (vanaef) | 46 comments I have been wanting to read this book so I would love to participate in the discussion. Any format would be fine with me,digital or print.

message 8: by Megan (last edited Aug 04, 2014 01:19PM) (new)

Megan (meganparnell) | 5 comments Hello! I would love the opportunity to join in this. I have been unable to participate in others due to military life, but this one falls right during my vacation time! I would prefer the paper copy if chosen and I reside in Florida. I can be contacted at

message 9: by Rosanna (new)

Rosanna (rosannabell) | 125 comments Hi! I'd love to win a paper copy of this book. I read Lori's review of Love Water Memory and it piqued my interest. I'd be happy to participate in the discussion and I reside in the US.

message 10: by Rachel Marie (new)

Rachel Marie (floodingaugust) | 21 comments I would love a copy of this book! It really sounds fascinating.

Live in Rhode Island.

Would be more than willing to participate in discussion. Would prefer paper edition. But any would be great :)

message 11: by Megan (new)

Megan (mmmega) | 12 comments This book sounds really interesting! I would love to participate in the discussion. I'm in Canada, and would like a digital copy for my Kindle, if I win!

message 12: by Lori, Super Mod (new)

Lori (tnbbc) | 10060 comments Mod
Congrats to everyone!!! You are all winners!!

If you passed along your email address, check your inbox. If you didn't check your goodreads mail!

Be sure to send along the information I'm requesting so I can get your book over to you asap!

Congrats again, and thanks so much for all of your interest.

message 13: by Lori, Super Mod (new)

Lori (tnbbc) | 10060 comments Mod
Hey guys! I know some of you expressed concern about not having received the book yet. I found out from the publisher that the books shipped late from the warehouse. They should be arriving within the week.

The publisher has generously offered to email winners a PDF of the book if you haven't yet gotten your copy. So, if you don't have your copy yet, and want the PDF so you can begin, send me a private message with your email address!

Sorry about the delay everyone!

message 14: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda Farrell (vanaef) | 46 comments My book arrived here yesterday. Thanks for letting me know!

message 15: by Rosanna (new)

Rosanna (rosannabell) | 125 comments I got mine too! :)

message 16: by Tracy (new)

Tracy | 2 comments This is my first time participating in a group discussion. What is the general rule? Should we have read the whole book by start of discussion or do we read a certain number of chapters and discuss them before continuing?

message 17: by Lori, Super Mod (new)

Lori (tnbbc) | 10060 comments Mod

We don't break the reading out because the author is only with us for one week. (read the first post for details on that).

Please try to have the book read before the author joins us!

message 18: by Megan (new)

Megan (meganparnell) | 5 comments Just started reading this! So far, so good! Looking forward to the discussion.

message 19: by Kelly (new)

Kelly (kelleenie) | 8 comments I got my book a few days ago and am starting it today!!

message 20: by Lori, Super Mod (last edited Sep 08, 2014 08:49AM) (new)

Lori (tnbbc) | 10060 comments Mod
Hey everyone, Jennie joins us in exactly one week! How's our progress on the book? Any initial thoughts you'd like to share with the other participants?

message 21: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda Farrell (vanaef) | 46 comments I am a hundred pages into this book. I am really curious about the mystery surrounding her memory loss. Great story so far!

message 22: by Amy (last edited Sep 10, 2014 08:48AM) (new)

Amy (garnet1377) | 31 comments I'm just about done with the book, have my notes made and am ready to chat about the book!

I'm not a fan of in debt, bossy, Lucie. The new Lucie seems fragile.

message 23: by Kelly (new)

Kelly (kelleenie) | 8 comments Im finished and I really enjoyed the book! In some ways I could strangely relate to Lucie during some parts. Can't wait to hear from the author :)

message 24: by Lori, Super Mod (new)

Lori (tnbbc) | 10060 comments Mod
OK guys and gals,

Jennie joins the group tomorrow! I want to start by giving her a big ole TNBBC welcome (since I'll be at work for a bit tomorrow morning)...

Welcome Jennie!

We are thrilled to have you here with us and appreciate the time you're taking make yourself available this week!

The winners are abuzz regarding your book and I'm really curious to see what questions and comments they have for you!

Let me break the ice with the very first one (everyone else, feel free to throw out a question tonight if you like...)

Where did you initially come up with the idea behind the book?

message 25: by Tia (new)

Tia (proceedcyclone) | 8 comments Jennie, how and why did you decide to tell the story from multiple perspectives? On one hand, I think I enjoyed the parts where Lucie discovered things about her previous self herself (like her conversation with her neighbor) more than Grady's internal recollections, but, on the other hand, I could really sympathize with Grady's perspective.

message 26: by Kelly (new)

Kelly (kelleenie) | 8 comments I would love to know, at the end of the book when Lucie gets in to the bed and thinks about seeing what will happen next, what do you see happening next?
I have my version in my head, but I would love to hear yours!

message 27: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments First of all, good morning from the far Northwest corner of the country and thanks so much for being part of this discussion! I'm always humbled and happy to talk with people who've made the decision to read one of my books. It means very much to me.

I have so much to say, but will take these one at a time.

WHERE I CAME UP WITH THE IDEA: Actually, it was a newspaper clipping from the Seattle Times! The headline read "His Heart Remembers But His Mind Forgets," and had a photo of a man and a woman having a cup of coffee. In this case, the man had gone missing, leaving behind his fiance, disappearing for six weeks without a trace. He turned up in Denver (my home town, oddly enough) and had no memory at all. They were reunited and she brought him home to begin again, and I wondered, How the heck is that going to go? It was such a juicy question that I knew I wanted to write the story.

message 28: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments WHY I DECIDED TO WRITE FROM MULTIPLE PERSPECTIVES: This was my greatest challenge in telling this story: the protagonist had no memory of anything. It was also what excited me about writing the story, trying to figure out the puzzle of it all.

Lucie's fiance, Grady, knew her immediate history. Helen knew her childhood history. Each, of course, had to bring their own opinions and quirks and personalities and wounds into the picture, and all of that had to somehow create a story about Lucie as a whole. Because as Lucie began to get better and get back some memory, she became more evident as her "real" self, not the self others may have remembered.

That was my intention, anyway! It was a very big juggling act, and I wanted to stay true to each character in the story, rather than just having them "serve" the story by revealing information.

message 29: by Amy (new)

Amy (garnet1377) | 31 comments Hello!

In the book Lucie wondered about friends and if she had any. Why didn't she look through the wedding invitations, read the addresses and contact those people? She seemed to only be interested in Aunt Helen.

message 30: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments Fyi, I'm taking the questions in the order they were asked, and will answer every single one.

WHAT DO I ENVISION HAPPENING AFTER "THE END" OF THE BOOK: I get this question quite a bit, or it's less friendly stepsister, Why didn't you tell us if they get together or not??? :-)

I will back up a bit to say, once upon a time when I was learning to write novels (which I still am, of course, but this was early) a very wise author and editor said something that resonated deeply for me. He said, a story ends when you've given the reader enough information to answer the question the story posed. So, in Lucie and Grady's story, of course, it is: Will Lucie and Grady find love and happiness together?

Meaning, I guess, that I believe I've written the story to the point that you know the rest. What do you think? What does her finally crawling into bed with him, excited and happy, mean about the future of their relationship? What does his turning over and placing a hand on her hip mean? To me, it means they have come together as a couple. She has opened herself to him, and he welcomes her. From the beginning they so naturally fit together (their hug the very first day) and finally, it is so.

If you've read my other books, you will know that I always end on a note of hope for a better outcome for my characters (whom I love very much.) :-)

message 31: by Jennie (new)


Actually, Lucie does look at the invitations, but she doesn't know the names; they mean nothing to her. She's more freaked out about this crushing event bearing down on her when she doesn't even know the man she's supposed to marry, so she's more invested in discovering herself and her relationship with Grady.

I imagined while writing her that it would feel worse to be inundated with the names of 200 people she'd formerly known well enough to invite to one of the most significant days of her life, but no longer even recognized, just as she did with her work files. I did not spell that out specifically, however.

message 32: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments Just for fun, here is a link to the article that inspired the book:

message 33: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda Farrell (vanaef) | 46 comments Hi Jennie!I am always interested in the life of the author! How old were you when you felt the call to be a writer? Do you have a certain ritual or place that you go to when you do your writing? Also I thank you for volunteering your time to raise awareness

message 34: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda Farrell (vanaef) | 46 comments for literacy. Sorry for the continuing note. Typing with my 2 year old granddaughter helping!

message 35: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments WRITING LIFE: Thanks to Rhonda and her granddaughter for a few questions about my own writing journey.

Like a lot of writers, I was just always a writer, from the time I learned to write. I still remember stories I wrote in 2nd grade! In 7th grade I wrote what I thought of as a novel, though it was probably more a novella and very dramatic in that junior high way. But I first felt like a writer when my 5th grade teacher took me aside and told me that the stories I was writing (about my experiences living in Wash DC during the 60s race riots) were important. I believed her, I guess! (I've since reconnected with her and she still supports and encourages and inspired me.)

I write every weekday morning in my home office. It's not so much about being inspired as it is just showing up everyday to write. That is how long works get written: applying butt to chair. Though I've recently started working at a standup desk to save my aching back.

However, I LOVE to go for writing retreats in nature, the woods or the sea. We have plenty of both here in the Pacific Northwest, and it's such a gift to retreat to a little cabin to write.

message 36: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments And yes, I do a lot of volunteer work to support writers from every walk of life. Five years ago I started a nonprofit collective of authors (with Garth Stein) called Seattle7Writers (we now have 73 members) and our mission is to raise awareness of NW literature while doing good works for literacy causes. We also work hard to connect readers and writers in our community, and support local indie bookstores and libraries! You can read more about us at

message 37: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments Thanks, Rhonda, for the nice shout out about that!

message 38: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda Farrell (vanaef) | 46 comments Did you or your family save some of your work from school? In a way I guess your teacher kind of inspired you to keep on writing and help instill that spark of creativity. For that, many happy readers and fans thank her for giving you the confidence to press on! I am trying to share my love of reading and making up stories with my granddaughter. We have weekly trips to the library for story hour and checking out books to take home and read over and over again! I hope that it will become a part of her life forever! I think when she gets older I might check into volunteering to teach someone to read. I have noticed other tutors in our library teaching adults to read. I know that you must not have much free time but what is your favorite thing to do? Is it the retreats maybe, or hanging out with friends and family?

message 39: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda Farrell (vanaef) | 46 comments That was a very fascinating article. I still find it strange how with that type of amnesia even your taste in food can change. Things you used to like you no longer do. Now just like someone said about your story I wonder how that couple is doing today.

message 40: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments My mom saved everything, but somewhere between moving her into a nursing home and getting her memorabilia into storage, much of it was lost, unfortunately. Makes me quite sad, but I try to following Buddhist principle about such things: everything is impermanent, and attachments only lead to suffering. :-)

My mom took us to the library every week (my 3 sisters and I) and I know it has everything to do with my love of reading (and writing). There are many great programs out there where you can help others with their reading, or you can do it informally, just by taking time to read to kids (storytime at libraries, preschools, etc). I did that for a long time and loved it.

message 41: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments OTHER INTERESTS: Actually, I sing in a band of other authors (and some author spouses) called The Rejections! I've been a singer most of my life in various bands, but not once I began writing novels, so I've really loved getting music back in my life.

I also love to cook, hike, hang out with friends, watch films, and travel as much as I can.

message 42: by Lori, Super Mod (new)

Lori (tnbbc) | 10060 comments Mod

I have to ask, do you sign about writerly things?? Are your lyrics bookish?

Also, I am curious to know, what was the publishing process like? How much did your book change - from manuscript to finished product?

message 43: by Rhonda (last edited Sep 15, 2014 04:01PM) (new)

Rhonda Farrell (vanaef) | 46 comments I was looking at your other books and saw Hotel Angeline. Who came up with the idea to write a book live on stage in six days written by 36 authors? Bet that was quite an experience. This book is actually the first one I have read by you and now I am happy to see that I have quite a few more to pick from. Are you deep in the works of another book?

message 44: by Rachel Marie (new)

Rachel Marie (floodingaugust) | 21 comments Sorry I am so late to the discussion I had a very busy work schedule today.

Jennie, I just want to say.. this book is beautiful. I have a B.S. in Psychology and memory is something that's so tricky. We can't really tell how the brain is going to react to situations. What made Lucie snap... like what was the final straw? Was it all of her life's traumas and struggles that led up to the moment. Honestly its hard to pick one. (even though Im sure you know the true answer).

I really liked how you told the story from more than 1 person's point of view. Imagine how much information we would be lacking if we didn't have Grady's side or Helen's. All we would know is what someone with Amnesia knows... and that's that she didn't know much of anything.

Unfortunately. I haven't gotten to finish the book because I got my copy much later than expected and I have been swamped at work. But honestly, I plan on finishing the book shortly. Im a little over half way done. I wish I had gotten to read the ending before today so I could contribute more questions within this thread.

But Jennie I honestly really love this book! I was planning on buying a copy even if I didn't win the give away because I love novels like this. You really start feeling for each character and rooting for them to succeed and get better and whatnot.

Thank you for a wonderful book <3

message 45: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments DO I SING ABOUT WRITERLY THINGS: What a fun question, Lori! And the answer is yes. Because our band (The Rejections) is mostly a cover band made up of authors, and we appear at book-related events (author launches, like Garth Stein's on 9/30, and the Washington State Book Awards this month) we choose songs that are either book related (Paperback Writer, Everyday I Write the Book) or are specifically about someone's book. For Garth's new one, we're playing a song that is ghost related (but I can't spill the beans about exactly which one, it has to be a surprise).

message 46: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments THE PUBLISHING PROCESS: You know the old analogy about sausage factories? Like, you might like sausage, but you might not like watching how it gets made? It can be very much like that in the publishing industry. I am VERY lucky to have a great agent and editor who really help me fine tune my manuscripts in a way that is super respectful of what I'm trying to accomplish. I've never been forced to change anything I didn't want to in the text, or a title. I've chosen all of my titles, although they've rarely been the first one I chose. :-)

Other authors aren't always that lucky, so I feel extremely grateful.

Covers are also a difficult part of the process, but with Love Water Memory, I had a lot of input on the hardcover (which I adore, still) and I fell in love the the paperback once I saw it. I've had mixed success on other covers with a previous publisher (love two, not so much the other two, see if you can guess!)

message 47: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments Further on how much my book changed from manuscript to publication, once I found the characters (once they found me) it was pretty smooth sailing! I had a few false-starts trying to find the right people and place for the story, but that's typical of me. I scout around, try things first. My agent did suggest I cut a main viewpoint character from the story, which broke my heart. It was Grady's youngest sister, Dory, who had some of Grady's history for the reader, but then kind of took on a life of her own (as his sisters seem to do! They're so bossy!) So sadly, I bid her adieu.

message 48: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments HOTEL ANGELINE: A Novel in 36 Voices was the brainchild of Garth Stein and together we architected it into being (I know, architect is not a verb). It was our organization's ( ) first fundraiser for literacy. Basically we decided to have 36 authors collaborate on one novel, each writing for two hours live onstage and streaming to produce a chapter. It was a six day marathon, attended by hundreds in person and thousands online, and when it was all done, a publisher (Open Road Integrated Media) published it!

We had a five person editorial board (including us and Maria Semple) come up with the basic story, and then I broke it all out into a big huge spreadsheet showing each chapter and what the writer needed to accomplish in the chapter, then assigned writers. It was a HUGE undertaking and took the better part of life for me for six months to accomplish, as it was also a public event with many mini-events included (happy hours, live and online auctions for naming rights, etc) and I also got to write the first chapter! I think it's incredible that it came out as coherent as it did (which is pretty coherent) and a lot of people enjoy reading it! All of the money that would normally go to the authors goes to literacy in the Northwest, and three years later, we're still getting royalties.

message 49: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments MY NEXT BOOK: Thanks for asking, Rhonda! I am deeeeep into the next one and loving it so much, the characters, the mysteries, what might happen next. I love this part. It's all about discovery and reaching deep for the truest emotions that drive the story forward. I'm not quite ready to talk about the subject matter but if you follow me on Facebook ( ) you will be the first to know when I go public.

message 50: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 28 comments PSYCHOLOGY BEHIND THE BOOK: Thanks, Rachel Marie, for the lovely and kind words! It's so true about amnesia, that no one knows what will make anyone break, and every person experiences amnesia in their unique ways. I studies a lot of cases of dissociative fugue before writing Lucie, so that she would be as real to a psychologist as she is to a layperson (I hope). This brings up another story behind the book, one that is very personal, that I'd like to share with you all, posted here:

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