Q&A with Joyce Maynard discussion

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message 1: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Welcome to my Q&A group. I'm really looking forward to chatting with you all about my new book and my writing in general. I will be back on September 19 to begin the group. In the meantime, feel free to introduce yourselves.


message 2: by Cindy (new)

Cindy | 1 comments Hello, Joyce. The Usual Rules is one of my favorite books of all time. I am currently mid-way into The Good Daughters. I look forward to meeting you next month at the Carmel Clay Public Library Foundation's book and author event.


message 3: by Jeannie (new)

Jeannie (jeanniet) | 3 comments I just ordered "The Good Daughters" yesterday from Amazon.com--I can't wait to read it.

Jeannie


message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

I was lucky enough to get The Good Daughters as an ARC copy when I attended the Fantastic Fiction conference in Rochester Hills this spring. I really enjoyed it but Labor Day blew me away. I work at a library and recommend it often.

You are an amazing author!


message 5: by Jeannie (new)

Jeannie (jeanniet) | 3 comments So, I guess I better put Labor Day on my Wish list:)


message 6: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Cindy wrote: "Hello, Joyce. The Usual Rules is one of my favorite books of all time. I am currently mid-way into The Good Daughters. I look forward to meeting you next month at the Carmel Clay Public Library ..."


i love it that you're reading Usual Rules , cindy. be sure to say hello when we meet in Carmel.


message 7: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Dallas wrote: "I was lucky enough to get The Good Daughters as an ARC copy when I attended the Fantastic Fiction conference in Rochester Hills this spring. I really enjoyed it but Labor Day blew me away. I work..."

Jeannie wrote: "I just ordered "The Good Daughters" yesterday from Amazon.com--I can't wait to read it.

Hello, Jeannie. Librarians are my favorite people. (I recently adopted two little girls from Ethiopia--ages 7 and 11. We practically LIVE at the library.

Jeannie"


Dallas wrote: "I was lucky enough to get The Good Daughters as an ARC copy when I attended the Fantastic Fiction conference in Rochester Hills this spring. I really enjoyed it but Labor Day blew me away. I work..."


message 8: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Joyce wrote: "Dallas wrote: "I was lucky enough to get The Good Daughters as an ARC copy when I attended the Fantastic Fiction conference in Rochester Hills this spring. I really enjoyed it but Labor Day blew m..."

Joyce wrote: "Dallas wrote: "I was lucky enough to get The Good Daughters as an ARC copy when I attended the Fantastic Fiction conference in Rochester Hills this spring. I really enjoyed it but Labor Day blew m..."

Jeannie wrote: "I just ordered "The Good Daughters" yesterday from Amazon.com--I can't wait to read it.

Jeannie"



This is meant for Dallas. I am still a little confused about how to post my responses to your posts here. I just addressed DALLAS (very cool name, must remember for a character some day) as JEANNIE (also a good name for a character). Still figuring this one out....


message 9: by Jeannie (new)

Jeannie (jeanniet) | 3 comments Joyce wrote: "Joyce wrote: "Dallas wrote: "I was lucky enough to get The Good Daughters as an ARC copy when I attended the Fantastic Fiction conference in Rochester Hills this spring. I really enjoyed it but La..."

Laughing--I think I did it wrong myself last time--oh well, live and learn!!


message 10: by Naomi (new)

Naomi (nblackburn) Joyce-

I will be heading to grab The Good Daughters tomorrow to read it quickly for this group. I must tell you that I thoroughly enjoyed Labor Day. I grabbed it as a quick read and was blown away. As a result, I have recommended it repeatedly for others to read.

Again, Thanks for a great read....

Naomi


message 11: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (kathyhippo) | 1 comments So glad you are doing the Q&A. I just read Labor Day and The Good Daughters. I really enjoyed the intimate writing styles of both books. I loved it that you took us through the decades with these characters. I came to love them all. Especially Edwin in TGD. Even when we make decisions based on what we know at the time we don't know how the outcome is going to affect those around us. Especially the ones we love.


message 12: by Simone (new)

Simone Karsman (simonek) | 1 comments Hi Joyce,
I am just finishing The Usual Rules (parts of it really tore me up) and will start The Good Daughters asap!!
Hello from Savannah :))


message 13: by Naomi (new)

Naomi (nblackburn) Started The Good Daughters this morning and am already on page 100. What a great book. I think I like it more than Labor Day and I didn't think that was going to happen.

I would like to know how you develop your storylines. The books that you have written have come from totally different concepts. How do you think of them?


message 14: by Abigail (new)

Abigail | 1 comments I am also interested in knowing how you develop your story lines. Loved Labor Day and plan on reading The Good Daughters soon.


message 15: by Susan (new)

Susan | 6 comments I am still waiting to get The Good Daughters it is probably two weeks. Not sure why it is this long. Oh Darn. I loved! Loved! Labor Day. I am not sure why your book was not on everyone's lips. I usually know about every author out there. But you I did not find out till later. I am telling everyone about Labor Day. It was just great. I am recommended it to my book club as well.


message 16: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Abigail wrote: "I am also interested in knowing how you develop your story lines. Loved Labor Day and plan on reading The Good Daughters soon."

Abigail wrote: "I am also interested in knowing how you develop your story lines. Loved Labor Day and plan on reading The Good Daughters soon."

Hello Abigail! (I hope i'm doing this replying correctly , at last. Every story I write is different, but I will tell you that the story ALWAYS comes from the characters. What I mean to say is that the events that take place in a good story should come out of WHO the characters are. Ruth's love affair with Ray, for example, is a function of her being a person who hungers for something wild and unconventional and totally unlike her parents' marriage. Dana's decision to become a farmer and her purchase of the farm in Maine was not a random plot choice on my part. That's the kind of thing Dana would do.
Sometimes, the story lines that develop in a book I write are as much of a surprise to me as they may be to you, as a reader. Unlike a lot of writer friends of mine, I do not ever fully know (or even partially know, at times) the outcome of a novel I write. I set my characters in motion and they tell me.

Jeannie wrote: "Joyce wrote: "Joyce wrote: "Dallas wrote: "I was . lucky enough to get The Good Daughters as an ARC copy when I attended the Fantastic Fiction conference in Rochester Hills this spring. I really enj..."


message 17: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Susan wrote: "I am still waiting to get The Good Daughters it is probably two weeks. Not sure why it is this long. Oh Darn. I loved! Loved! Labor Day. I am not sure why your book was not on everyone's lips. I us..."

Thank you Susan (particularly for the word of mouth recommendations of Labor Day.) I've been writing a very long time now (37 years, since the publication of my first book, Looking Back.) It is a challenging part of my own career--and perhaps a reason you didn't know about my fiction before--that in some literary circles I am known chiefly for events in my life than for what I have written. You can read that story in my memoir, At Home in the World. It has just been re-released with a new forward by me. That book tells a difficult story, and was very controversial when first published in 1998, but it's one I'm deeply proud of.

Susan wrote: "I am still waiting to get The Good Daughters it is probably two weeks. Not sure why it is this long. Oh Darn. I loved! Loved! Labor Day. I am not sure why your book was not on everyone's lips. I us..."


message 18: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Naomi wrote: "Joyce-

I will be heading to grab The Good Daughters tomorrow to read it quickly for this group. I must tell you that I thoroughly enjoyed Labor Day. I grabbed it as a quick read and was blown aw..."


Thanks so much for the encouraging words (and for recommending my work), Naomi. Let me know how you liked Good Daughters (and if you do, I want you to know there are more novels of mine you might enjoy--The Usual Rules, Where Love Goes, To Die For, The Cloud Chamber, and my very first novel--published in 1981--Baby Love. So I can keep you busy for a while.


message 19: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Aaron wrote: "Joyce, it seems like many here haven't read The Good Daughters yet, so I'll try not to spoil it. A co-worker and I were discussing Dana's development and eventual love story, how truthful and love..."

Thanks so much, Aaron. My work as a journalist definitely allowed me to experience many things, but actually I'd say the most significant influence on my writing life --and the factor that has contributed in the most meaningful way on my ability to create believable characters from a diverse range of backgrounds--have been the letters and stories readers have told me over the many years (38 of them now) I've been a writer.
I have reader friends all over the country , who write to me , sometimes, over the course of many years. That has meant a huge amount to me as a writer.


message 20: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Susan wrote: "I am still waiting to get The Good Daughters it is probably two weeks. Not sure why it is this long. Oh Darn. I loved! Loved! Labor Day. I am not sure why your book was not on everyone's lips. I us..."

Gosh, Susan, I don't know why it is taking so long for you to get my novel. Let me know how you like it once you've had a chance to read it. I always love to hear what readers think.


message 21: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Naomi wrote: "Started The Good Daughters this morning and am already on page 100. What a great book. I think I like it more than Labor Day and I didn't think that was going to happen.

I would like to know ho..."


Hello, Naomi. The story I tell in The Good Daughters is made up but a key element that inspired me in writing it was a true story I heard about (and was asked to write about as a journalist) involving two women in Oregon, born on the same day . When I got the assignment to write about them I was just heading off to a precious monthlong writing retreat in Wyoming, and so I made the difficult decision to forfeit the reporting job and hold to my plan of spending that month in a little cabin on a ranch out west, writing a novel (wiht NO idea at that point what the novel might be.)

The story that emerged was Good Daughters. A fictional version of the situation the Oregon women encountered (but the many story elements in this one did NOT take place in the real story.)

Kathy wrote: "So glad you are doing the Q&A. I just read Labor Day and The Good Daughters. I really enjoyed the intimate writing styles of both books. I loved it that you took us through the decades with thes..."


message 22: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Susan wrote: "I am still waiting to get The Good Daughters it is probably two weeks. Not sure why it is this long. Oh Darn. I loved! Loved! Labor Day. I am not sure why your book was not on everyone's lips. I us..."

Thanks , Susan!


message 23: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Naomi wrote: "Started The Good Daughters this morning and am already on page 100. What a great book. I think I like it more than Labor Day and I didn't think that was going to happen.

I would like to know ho..."



I'm still working out the kinks in this posting system, Naomi. my response is lower on this page.


message 24: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Kathy wrote: "So glad you are doing the Q&A. I just read Labor Day and The Good Daughters. I really enjoyed the intimate writing styles of both books. I loved it that you took us through the decades with thes..."

Thank you , Kathy. The novel I wrote just before The Good Daughters--Labor Day-- all takes place over the course of six days (rather than five decades). I think I was inspired to try a very different kind of story after Labor Day. (Though I am very fond of LD too, and hope you take a look at it. That one's just out in paper back.


message 25: by Diane (new)

Diane (diane52) Joyce, I have LOVED every book of yours that I have read and I think I have read almost all. 'The Good Daughters' is on my nightstand and I'm anxious to get into the story.

I heard recently that 'Labor Day' is being made into a movie. Do you know yet who will be playing the major roles? Congrats to you on your success as a writer! Keep the books coming!


message 26: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Hi Diane.

There has been some talk of Josh Brolin playing the role of Frank in Labor Day , but that's totally unconfirmed and may only be a rumor. I think he'd be great.

The director (who has also adapted my novel for the screen) is Jason Reitman, who made Up in the Air and Juno. I feel the book is in very good hands.


message 27: by Diane (new)

Diane (diane52) Thanks for filling this in. Josh Brolin would be great!


message 28: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
and who would you like to see in the role of adele?


message 29: by Diane (new)

Diane (diane52) With Brolin? I'd like to see Naomi Watts. ^_^


message 30: by Susan (new)

Susan | 6 comments Joyce I would like to thank you so much for your book labor day. Labor Day was a long overdue catharsis for me. I was never able to understand what my son was going through. Your book helped me to understand my son a little better. He is now over the teenage years. He has just reached 20. Thanks so much.


message 31: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Susan wrote: "Joyce I would like to thank you so much for your book labor day. Labor Day was a long overdue catharsis for me. I was never able to understand what my son was going through. Your book helped me to ..."


your observation about your son interests me a lot, susan. if you care to explain i'd love to hear.


message 32: by Naomi (new)

Naomi (nblackburn) Joyce, I have already added a chunk of your books to my TBR list. I love to read and cannot believe I didn't come across you before. Then to read in earlier posts that you have been writing for 37 years. When did you do start writing-at the age of 5? The picture in the back of The Good Daughters is beautiful!

On a serious note, though, since you have been writing that long, how do you keep your writings from "going stale"? I have stopped reading a number of authors who have written a large quantity of books because I notice that the books appear to become "pushed out" or the author seems to become "commercialized". Your books have not even begun this process, so how do you do it?


message 33: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Dear Naomi

To answer the first question: I started writing full time (with my memoir, Looking Back, when I was 18. That's 38 years ago. I'm 56 .
(And by the way, you can read the story of my coming of age and development as a writer, and a lot of what happened after, in my more recent memoir, At Home in the World, which was just reissued in paperback with a new forward by me.)

Running out of ideas has never been a problem. My life presents them , and even though my novels are not autobiographical (with the possible exception of Where Love Goes, published long ago) they always contain elements of things I've lived through or thought about or been moved by.

I know there are writers who feel a need to seal themselves off from the world to work. In my case, the opposite is true. I like to be very much in the world, and around people, to be the storyteller I am. (This is particularly true at the moment by the way: this past january I adopted two little girls from Ethiopia, sisters age 7 and 11, so after a twenty some year hiatus, i am down at the soccer field again. )

I also want to add here that I have a website, www.joycemaynard.com, with lots of my old essays posted, and information about my books. If you register your email address there you will receive my periodic letter. It's important to me to stay in touch with readers in forums like this, and my website, and facebook. So, thank you for being here.


message 34: by Bob (new)

Bob Hello Joyce,

Which fiction book of yours would you recommend as a good 'first'? I am thinking about 'Usual Rules' because someone above said that it was in their all-time favorites.

Also, given your story in "At Home in the World", which I thought was a tremendously compelling read, I was wondering if you have any thoughts about why there has been no public mention at all about what was in Salingers 'vault', into which he supposedly put all that writing he was doing for all those years? It was such an urban legend that I thought at least we would have heard *something*.

Thanks
Bob


message 35: by Naomi (new)

Naomi (nblackburn) Joyce...

I stayed up finishing The Good Daughters last night. What a read. There are so many questions to ask, but I don't want to give this treat away to anyone. What an emotional roller coaster this book was for me! Anyone who looks at my profile can see I am an avid reader and I pushed several books aside because I could not put this book down because of its' twists and raw emotions. It was wierd because it was mainly anger and frustration-I can't say at who, but anyone who has finished this book will know why. My question for you is when you are writing, do you feel those emotions or are you on such a path that you push emotions aside for writing the book?

BTW...I am giving this book 5 stars on Goodreads. I normally reserve 5 stars only for debute authors or classical works who have stood the test of time, but this book was unbelievable the way it emotionally brought the reader into the story.


message 36: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
dear naomi

of course there is not much a writer likes to hear more than the words of a reader, telling her she cared so much about the story she couldn't put the book down.

i most certainly DO feel strong emotion when i write. (sometimes i cry.) unlike a lot of writer friends of mine, i never know the outcome of a book i'm writing until i get there, so i am my own first reader.


message 37: by Naomi (new)

Naomi (nblackburn) Joyce,

That blows me away that you wouldn't know the outcome of this book, particularly this book, because of the twists and turns. Wow.

I have recommended this book to about 20 people this morning. I now find myself going back and trying to "look for clues" as to who knew what...when.


message 38: by Naomi (new)

Naomi (nblackburn) Also, who was the real "villian"? Throughout the book I had been thinking one thing and then was slapped with another option at the end! Too Good!!!Too Good!!


message 39: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Naomi wrote: "Joyce,

That blows me away that you wouldn't know the outcome of this book, particularly this book, because of the twists and turns. Wow.

I have recommended this book to about 20 people this ..."



Hello again, Naomi: About my not knowing, myself, all of what happens in my novels. I should be more clear. I know the essential aspects to a character's makeup--which is to say, I know what kind of person she is, what she likes, what she dreams of . I also know certain basic , life-shaping things about her history. (And in hte case of The Good Daughters, you know which ones those would be. without being a spoiler, i will simply say: I knew from the beginning what transpired the night of the hurricane.)

what i do not know is how these elements will play out in the plot. but you know, it' my profound belief as a writer that what happens in our lives--a lot of it--comes out of who we are. so for me, the writing of a novel depends on my creating characters sufficiently real that they will lead me to the last page. and they do.

thanks so much for recommending my new novel to friends, by the way. this is how a writer (who isn't jonathan franzen) survives.


message 40: by Naomi (new)

Naomi (nblackburn) thanks so much for recommending my new novel to friends, by the way. this is how a writer (who isn't jonathan franzen) survives.

Too funny...That's ok. I know many an avid reader that the recommendation took him off their reading list!!!!

I am trying to get my librarian to use it as a reading group pick. I think this could give some great discussion.


message 41: by Susan (new)

Susan | 6 comments Joyce wrote: "Susan wrote: "Joyce I would like to thank you so much for your book labor day. Labor Day was a long overdue catharsis for me. I was never able to understand what my son was going through. Your book..."

I would, but not on a public domain. If you would like to send your email. I will answer that question. Or if I could send a private message through goodreads. Not sure if there is one.


message 42: by Susan (new)

Susan | 6 comments Joyce, I finally received your book. I finished it two weeks ago. What a great read. I think it was better than Labor Day. I have told a girlfriend of mine. She is turned by you as well. I hope to recommend this, and hope everyone will read for our book club. So much to talk about. Can't wait for your next one. I just enjoyed it.


message 43: by Diane (new)

Diane (diane52) I agree with Susan! Every book gets better and better. When can we expect your next one to be published? No pressure! lol ^_^


message 44: by Susan (new)

Susan | 6 comments Joyce, I am so happy our book club, is reading and discussing, Good Daughters. I wanted so badly to discuss, Labor Day back to back on the same day with Good Daughters. But it did not work out. But, I have a feeling we will be discussing Labor Day as well. Thank you so much for a enjoyable read. Can't wait for your next one.
Best regards,
Susan
Susan's Literary Cafe( book blog)
38th Ave. Diva Readers Book Club


message 45: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Maynard | 21 comments Mod
Thanks so much for choosing my novel, Susan. I wish i could be there for the discussion. One question I'd love to know: at what point in the book did you figure out the secret?

have a great discussion. i hope there's red wine involved.

warmly

joyce


message 46: by Susan (new)

Susan | 6 comments Not till the end of the book. I will let you know about our book discussion, Feb. 14th, Valentines Day!!! LOL!!


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