Today I'd like to welcome Jennifer Frank, author of “Getting It Right the Second Time Around” to The Thursday Interview. Before we get started, a quick intro!
Physician by Day...Writer by Night. My love of writing grew out of the many meaningful moments I've shared with patients - some joyful, often emotional, always special. My initial essays, appearing in medical journals and literary magazines, allowed me to work through the ups and downs of a medical life. Eventually, I decided to create my own. Not a planful writer, instead my story develops as I write, so I am often as engrossed with what will happen next as if I was reading a book created by someone else. My characters are my favourite part of any story I write. Too bad I will never meet them in real life! When I'm not stamping out disease or coaxing patients to eat their veggies, I am kept busy with my four crazy nutballs - my children and my wonderful and supportive husband.
OK - HERE WE GO !!
1) Would you break the law to save a loved one? .. why?
Depends on the law and which loved one. Seriously, there are certain circumstances in which I would break almost any law to save the life of someone I loved. As I think about it, I am hard pressed to think of any law that I wouldn’t break in order to save the lives of my children.
2) What is the difference between being alive and truly living?
Being alive is about physiology. Truly living is about feeling and thinking and acting and doing. Being alive is about your lungs expanding and collapsing, your heart relaxing and contracting, your kidneys filtering blood, and your nerves shooting electrical impulses. Truly living is about inhaling all of life’s experiences deeply. Truly living is about your heart beating fast with fear or anticipation or excitement. Truly living is about feeling things into the marrow of your bones. Truly living is about the part of you that is intangible.
3) What motivates you to write?
The voices in my head. I may hear or read about something, even a snippet of an event and my mind starts weaving together the missing parts of the story to answer all the questions I have. Why did it happen? How did he feel? What happened next? How did it change her life? That’s why I write – to fill in the gaps in the stories I see unfolding around me.
4) Why do humans want children?
Humans want children for many reasons, some noble and others less so. Those who have children to stroke their own ego, to accessorize their lives, or to fulfill someone else’s desires get what they deserve as they try to raise independent beings. Most people have children because they want to create something from the love they share with another or because of a desire to pour themselves into the nurturing of someone else.
5) What was the biggest challenge in creating your book "Getting It Right the Second Time Around"?
Rewriting it! I asked my mom and my mother-in-law to read the first draft of my novel. They had some wonderful feedback to share with me. It was obvious that the plot needed a major rewrite. That was hard – I had to abandon certain parts of the story that I enjoyed. Plus, it was a ton of work.
6) What is the most important thing you have learned in life so far?
Choosing the most important lesson learned is challenging because different lessons matter more at different points in life. At this particular moment, the most important thing I’ve learned is to trust your own instincts. Your gut isn’t always right but it usually points to something you know that you’re choosing to ignore for whatever reason.
7) How did you come up with the title "Getting It Right the Second Time Around"?
It wasn’t already a book title on Amazon, which is a difficult task with all the books out there. I wanted the title to reflect the main conflict in the book – choosing how to right a past wrong.
8) How do you handle personal criticism?
Not as well as I wish. I usually go through the typical feelings – denial, disgust, and despair – before I remind myself that criticism, when done well, can be a great gift. We rarely know what someone else really thinks about us. When they either trust us enough to share that or don’t care about our feelings enough to sugarcoat it, we can learn a lot about ourselves, particularly our blind spots.
9) Why should people read your book?
Because within its pages there are so many great lessons and things that provoke thought about how we live our lives, the choices we make, regret, and listening to yourself. Alison, the main character, is someone you’d like to get to know. Plus, Alison’s Aunt Elinor has some great quotes at the beginning of each chapter to keep the book fun.
10) Why is there something rather than nothing?
Because that’s the way God made it.
Thank you Jennifer for taking the time to answer my questions & the best of luck with your new book!
“Getting It Right the Second Time Around"
Alison is a 28 year old living in Boston who is more-or-less happy in her somewhat boring life. She is challenged by the terms of her eccentric aunt’s will to fix a big mistake she made as a college senior - turning down law school for love. While having everything from her job to her apartment disrupted, she has to decide if she’s willing to re-do things the right way around this time, or if she’s courageous enough to find her own path. Having been burned by love before, she is hesitant in allowing another guy - even one as hot as Ryan - shape her future.