1--What is the title of your latest release?
2--What’s the “elevator pitch” for your new book?
What would you do if your ex brought your breakup to the big screen? This is the question 31-year-old preschool teacher Callie Dressler faces just as she’s also dealing with “the invasion” – her Type-A older sister Nina and her family are moving in with her while their house is being renovated. While the movie consumes her thoughts, Callie can’t help wondering if Nina and her friends are right that she hasn’t moved on. When a complication with Nina’s pregnancy brings Callie in close contact with Nina’s smart and funny architect, Callie realizes she’d better figure out whether she wants to open the door to the past—or risk missing out on her future.
3--How did you decide where your book was going to take place?
They say “write what you know” – and what I know best is suburban New Jersey. And at the time I started writing, my own boys weren’t far out of preschool – hence Callie’s job!
4--Would you hang out with your protagonist in real life?
Yes. Perhaps not surprisingly, Callie’s sense of humor resembles my own! And while she clearly has a lot to learn about herself over the course of the book, she’s smart and kind and funny.
5--What are three words that describe your protagonist?
Warm, artsy, cautious
6--What’s something you learned while writing this book?
I learned that your characters really can tell you things you didn’t know if you listen to them. I discovered that Callie’s sister Nina had a secret that neither Callie, nor I, knew until she revealed it!
7--Do you edit as you draft or wait until you are totally done?
Yes and no. I usually write 2-4 pages per day, and I re-read them before I move on. So, there may be some minor editing at that point. But the real revision happens later.
8--What’s your favorite foodie indulgence?
Pumpkin muffins that a local café serves only in the fall. I think Callie would like them, too.
9--Describe your writing space/office!
Well, I have a basement office with a decent-sized window near the ceiling and lots of family photos on the wall – along with the first jigsaw puzzle of many I completed during Covid, framed on the wall as well. However, given that I write on a laptop, I rarely actually sit there. I’m much more likely to be found hunched over on the family room couch with the laptop on my lap (hence my neck pain!) or seated at the kitchen island.
10--Who is an author you admire?
There are so many – but one I’ll mention is Marian Keyes. Not only do I admire her writing and her long and successful writing career, but I admire that she can write such smart and witty books about serious subjects and that she doesn’t shy away from tough topics like mental health. That’s become much more common in today’s fiction, but it was fairly unusual when she was first writing in the late 1990s.
11--Is there a book that changed your life?
I’ve learned so much from so many books – including what I like, and don’t like, in terms of writing styles, character development, etc. But I still distinctly remember being in second grade and being allowed to check out only one book per week from the school library. I finished Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder the first night I had it at home and hated the fact that I’d have to wait a whole week to get the next one in the series. I’d say that was the beginning of my real love of books.
12--Tell us about when you got “the call.” (when you found out your book was going to be published)/Or, for indie authors, when you decided to self-publish.
I had just toured a university with my older son – one of the first we visited during his college search. We decided to get a late lunch before driving home, and in the parking lot of the restaurant, I saw the email from my publisher telling me they had accepted my book. I made my son read it to me to make sure I was reading it right, and I literally jumped up and down!
13--What’s your favorite genre to read?
Women’s fiction with a bit of romance – like TYPECAST.
14--What’s your favorite movie?
Oh wow. Can I name more than one? Films I can watch over and over again are “When Harry Met Sally,” “Some Kind of Wonderful,” “Gosford Park,” and the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
15--What is your favorite season?
Fall – but I also hate when summer ends.
16--How do you like to celebrate your birthday?
I like surprises, but I’m really hard to surprise!
17--What’s a recent tv show/movie/book/podcast you highly recommend?
Just Last Night by Mhairi McFarlane and The Guncle by Steven Rowley
18--What’s your favorite type of cuisine?
19--What do you do when you have free time?
I read – A LOT. I also take walks, take (and edit) photos for bookstagram, and play board games with my kids.
20--What can readers expect from you next?
I’ve started two new novels – one is a follow-up to TYPECAST, focusing on Callie’s sister Nina about four years after TYPECAST ends, and the other is something completely new, about a young woman who receives a letter from her late mother with a shocking revelation.
A Scary Mommy Pick of New Books We Can’t Wait to Cozy Up with This Fall
Callie Dressler thought she’d put her past where it belonged—behind her. But when her ex-boyfriend brings their breakup to the big screen, she can no longer deny that their history has been looming over her all along.
At thirty-one, Callie Dressler is finally comfortable in her own skin. She loves her job as a preschool teacher, and although living in her vacant childhood home isn’t necessarily what dreams are made of, the space is something she never could have afforded if she’d stayed in New York City. She knows her well-ordered life will be upended when her type A, pregnant sister, Nina; adorable four-year-old niece; and workaholic brother-in-law move in, but how could she say no when they needed a place to crash during their remodel? As Nina pointed out, it’s still their parents’ house, even if their mom and dad have relocated.
As if adjusting to this new living situation isn’t enough, the universe sends Callie another wrinkle: her college boyfriend—who Callie dumped ten years earlier for reasons known only to her—has a film coming out, and the screenplay is based on their real-life breakup. While the movie consumes her thoughts, Callie can’t help wondering if Nina and her friends are right that she hasn’t moved on. When a complication with Nina’s pregnancy brings Callie in close contact with Nina’s smart and funny architect, Callie realizes she’d better figure out whether she wants to open the door to the past—or risk missing out on her future.
Women's Fiction Contemporary [Girl Friday Books, On Sale: September 13, 2022, Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9781954854659 / ]
Andrea J. Stein is a lifetime lover of books. Born in Brooklyn, she was raised in New Jersey before attending a small, quirky liberal arts college and a large, preppy university, both in New York State. A book publicist by profession, she lives with her husband and sons in suburban New Jersey—where the boys attended preschool at a place much like Bouncy Castles. She spends an inordinate amount of time taking pretty photos of books. Things that make her happy include strong tea, turtles, sunshine, sheep, and the ocean.
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