Our mother daughter book club with Laura Whitcomb (back left).
Q: The subject matter of A Certain Slant of Light is a bit mature, and it’s recommended for an audience of 9th grade and older. Did you have a young adult audience in mind when you were writing?
LW: “Actually I was just trying to write the best story I could think of in the best way I could tell it. My agent sent it out to both adult and YA editors. After it sold as YA, it made sense to me – even though the ghosts were in their twenties when they died, the bodies they took over were teens. The characters had to deal with teen life.”
Q: You’ve attended a Mother Daughter Book Club meeting where A Certain Slant of Light was being discussed. What was it like hearing readers’ comments about your book?
LW: “It’s always interesting to hear people talk about something you wrote. I was impressed by the sophistication of the questions and comments from both generations. It feels great to have your work be the fuel for such lively conversation.”
For complete text check out her interview on motherdaughterbookclub.com.
I met Whitcomb a year ago when she came to a meeting for my Mother Daughter Book Club. At first it was a little awkward for everyone, the group members because we had never talked about a book with the person who had written it before, and Laura because she hadn’t attended a meeting where people she didn’t know were talking about her book. But Laura was truly charming and before long we got comfortable and started chatting about the characters and the story line. It was very interesting to hear her reasoning behind certain plot lines and to get a feeling for her idea of the characters’ personalities.
I’ve since heard Laura speak at the monthly meeting for Willamette Writers about her non-fiction book as well as A Certain Slant of Light and I continue to be impressed by her down-to-earth demeanor and her approachability.
It’s definitely worthwhile to see if there are children’s or young adult authors in your area who would attend a meeting to discuss the book with your group members. Some authors may not be open to this, but you may be surprised how accessible many of them are.