Monday, October 10, 2011

This Week's Reader Interview with Emily Hill

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Certainly.  The first thing I’d like you to know about me is that I am a fan of your writing.  So, I’m thrilled to be able to share my reading preferences and why I like your writing style so much. 
I am an avid reader.  As a child I was read to – classics, comics, it didn’t matter the format, we were encouraged to read, to listen to the readings of our teachers and librarians; and accept the perspective of other’s.

When and how did you discover that you love reading fiction?
Well, before I answer that question, let me make a distinction.  There is love – and there is passion.  I knew I loved reading when I discovered The Wizard of Oz.  My maternal great-grandmother was an antique dealer.  Somehow she came to be acquainted with L. Frank Baum, the author of ‘The Wizard of Oz’.  After her death my sister and I were bequeathed a complete, autographed set, of Baum’s Oz series.  My sister still has that set in her library.  

But, as I said, there is also passion.  I became passionate about fiction when I discovered Stephen Dobyns’ ‘The Two Deaths of Senora Puccini’.  No finer book has ever been written by a contemporary author.  Oh, sure, there is Feuntes’ ‘The Death of Artemio Cruz’; and ‘Chronicles of a Death Foretold’ by Gabriel García Márquez; and ‘The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis, by Jose Saramago – but American contemporary writers?  Dobyns is the one who swept me away.

What are some of your favorite books and who are some of your favorite authors?
Well, you are certainly a pretty clever author! ‘Baby Talk’ was right up my alley – the pathos, the level of evil.  And your titles! Who comes up with your titles!  Oh…right…I guess I know that story!  But, beyond your work, I would include Richard Russo for laughs; and Anita Shreve for topics that concern, primarily, women.  

I pay attention when Ann Patchett publishes.  Margaret Atwood’s books line my shelves; and I would be remiss not to mention the late great Edith Wharton.  Wharton’s ‘The House of Mirth’ was a masterpiece of gradual pathos.  So, my point here is that my standards are pretty high, and I’m pleased when I look over my collection and see that your titles are included in my collection.

What is your favorite thing about reading fiction?
The ‘life is stranger than fiction’ aspect of fiction. Or rather, the type of fiction that I enjoy.  I could conceptualize a young father falling into a state of madness and mayhem in the way that you described in ‘Baby Talk’.  Equally, I can envision a daughter carrying on her father’s defense as portrayed in ‘Lust, Money, and Murder’.  

I have had the luxury – and the challenge – of an interesting life  Therefore, it is easy to frame into a fictional context all that I experience, and visa versa.

Do you have any “pet peeves” about authors, something they do that really annoys you?
Nope.  “Hug an author” is my motto.  I cannot imagine having a pet peeve with anyone’s creative genius, whether an author, or an artist who specializes in oils, or watercolors, or photography.  I’m not that presumptuous.

Do you write fiction yourself?
Yes.  Like you, I write across a number of genres – from historical fiction to paranormal non-fiction.  No, I did not cross-switch those two descriptions.  

What do you think about ebooks vs. paper books?
I’m a bit of a traveler, eBooks have certainly lightened my suitcase.  And who, other than an author, can argue with the great price of eBooks.  But I cherish my paper-book collection.  My hard cover, and soft cover books are my collection of nieces and nephews.  

What is your favorite Mike Wells book and why?
Well, I was introduced to your writing – and your personality – over ‘Lust, Money and Murder’ but the grabber for me was ‘Baby Talk’.  Although I may look like a kindly suburban grandmother, my tastes run to dark, edgy, twisted individuals.  Oh my!  No, no!  I’m not referring to you, dear.  I am referring to your character in ‘Baby Talk’, little baby Natasha.  

Truly I could not put ‘Baby Talk’ down and missed my call for bedtime because - in my wildest dreams - I could not have thought up as devious a plot as little Natasha had in mind for her less than welcoming daddy.  A horror classic.  

Thanks so much for taking the time to be intereviewed The Green Water Blog, Emily!

Thank you for inviting me to guest-chat your wonderful, and colorful, blog.  There’s something about the color green that is so compelling.  It’s been my pleasure to share your company on Twitter and other social media networks.  I wish you The Best in a long and successful literary career.  I’ll be watching you, and taking note. 

My contact email is
My website is at

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