Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Allison Winn Scotch's Time of My Life

When I first read the premise of Allison Winn Scotch's latest novel, Time of My Life (Shaye Areheart Books, October 2008), I quite literally felt shivers of excitement. This is the kind of woman's-journey story that never fails to fascinate me and has the potential to provide hours of contemplation and discussion with friends. Allison is also the author of The Department of Lost and Found, and she's a frequent magazine contributor to publications like American Baby, Bride’s, Cooking Light, Family Circle, Fitness, Glamour, InStyle Weddings, Lifetime Television, Men’s Health, Parents, Prevention, Redbook, Self, Shape, USA Weekend, Woman’s Day, and ivillage.com, msn.com, and women.com. She lives in New York with her husband and two children.

Time of My Life has gotten some excellent advanced reviews and praise, such as being named a "Today Show Top 10 Must-Read for the Fall Season."

People magazine wrote: “Scotch’s novel is a clever, entertaining look at the compromises women make – and the dangers of getting what you asked for.”

Publishers Weekly said: “Scotch keeps one dexterous step ahead of page-flipping readers eager to guess the outcome.”

And, from Booklist: “Scotch’s second book shows a writer coming into her own, a storyteller who doesn’t take the easy way out, and a woman with a fine understanding of human nature.”

All this AND it's been optioned for film rights by The Weinstein Company with producer Meryl Poster (whose work includes "Emma," "The Cider House Rules," "Chocolat" and "Cold Mountain"). WOW!!

Hi Marilyn, Thanks so much for touring me! You're very welcome, Allison! It's a delight to have you here :).

New readers want to know about your book! Can you describe the premise? Time of My Life is the story about a woman who, on the surface, seems to have it all. But when you peel back her layers, you discover that she is deeply unhappy and has lingering “what ifs” about her past. Rather than face her current problems, she wakes up one day seven year in her past – at her old job, with her old boyfriend – and has the opportunity to rewrite her future.

What's one scene from this story you loved writing and why did it excite you? Oh, wow. Well, I loved the scenes in the book in which Jillian, my protagonist, ran into her future husband, Henry, only she was now running into him in the past…and she was also now attached to someone else. They were great fun to write because, well, imagine what would be going through your head if you KNEW what was going to happen with this person but had to pretend that he was a stranger? Those scenes gave me the opportunity to have a little fun, infuse some humor, but also have Jillian reassess how she remembered her husband: she sees him through clear eyes before she got used to seeing his face wake up next to her every morning. (I can imagine how this would happen, too. Every once in a while I get a flash of what I'd felt or thought when I first met someone...and then that impulse is gone, and it's replaced by the years of familiarity between that moment and the present. The memories change the experience, adding depth and shading to the relationship but, also, they cloud that fresh vision.)

Favorite food? If I had to, I could probably live on dessert alone. (Ohhh, me, too!!) Preferably anything with chocolate, but I’m not so picky. From there, maybe cereal. I eat cereal every morning for breakfast, and I swear, I love it. Some people love going out for brunch on the weekends – French toast, pancakes, waffles… But me? Nope, I’d much rather just stay home and enjoy my cereal!

Who was the first person you told when you got The Call announcing you'd sold your first novel? My husband. We knew that the offers were coming in – there was an auction with an expiration time – so he was waiting at his office to hear from me. When the final offer came in, my agent and I squeed, and then I picked up the phone and called him. From there, I called my parents, my best friend and my brother. The second time around was a little less exciting. I DID call my husband again immediately after getting my offer, but once you’ve been there, done that, the squeeing is a little calmer and quieter.

What's your Writer Fantasy? Great question! And I’m not really sure of the answer! I guess it would be to hit the NY Times list because then you know that actual real people, not just your friends and family, are picking up your book! LOL. They actually are already working on an film adaptation of Time of My Life, and that’s definitely a big writer fantasy as well. Seeing it come to life with real people and real vision. But, since I’m never one for resting on my laurels, I’ll make the NY Times my next goal…though to be honest, that’s such a lofty aspiration, I’ll be okay if I never get there. Just getting two books published and knowing that people are reading them seems pretty a-okay with me too. :)

Looking forward to seeing the film, Allison! Glad you stopped by.


L.A. Mitchell said...

I can imagine how amazing those scenes where she runs into her husband in the past were to write. Great interview, Marilyn :)

Eliza Evans said...

Oh, wow, this sounds like a great concept. Can't wait to get a copy of the book.

Pamala Knight said...

*Sigh* Is it wrong for me to be jealous? This sounds like such a great book and I wish I'd written it.

You better watch it Marilyn or else I'm going to have to move in with you since my book buying budget will become a bone of contention with my husband, lol. Once again, I have you to thank for introducing another great book to me.

You're the best.

Robin said...

Thanks for the introduction to Allison, Marilyn! The book sounds great! (And she sounds so nice!) Like Pamela, my book buying budget is increasing with all these terrific recommendations!

Marilyn Brant said...

L.A., Eliza, Pamala and Robin~thank you all!! I'm so glad you took the time to read Allison's Q&A.

Being part of the Girlfriends Cyber Circuit has been a blessing and a curse...so many wonderful authors and novels...and a TBR pile that is threatening to crush me when it collapses :).

And, Pamala, you can move in me with anytime, my friend!

Sandra Ferguson said...

Marilyn, thanks for stopping by recently. Sorry to be such a bum and not visit more. Still dealing with family stuff.

That said, I love pure women's fiction. The scope of what can be explored, the nothing's off limits sounds wonderful exciting.

And for the auction on her book . . . well, how wonderful is that. As usual, another great interview.

Marilyn Brant said...

Sandra, sorry to hear the family stuff is still going on...I'm thinking of you. Glad you were able to take a few minutes to visit--thank you :).

Everyone~some great news! Allison just got word last night that this novel hit the extended NYT Bestseller list!!!! Hey, Allison, you'll need to find a new fantasy now, eh?? :-) CONGRATULATIONS!!

Pam said...

Wow, this sounds like a fabulous book! (Excuse me while I give Amazon.com a shout...)

Great interview and congrats on the movie! May we all be so rewarded someday!

(And NYT! How exciting! Congrats!!!)

Marilyn Brant said...

Pam~thanks! And, yeah, I'm looking forward to celebrating each of us hitting the big list with enormous pieces of dark chocolate, at least 1-ft. high and 3-in. thick, shaped like the letters N-Y-T...and then, maybe, we should all get cool t-shirts to wear to our movie premieres... :)