An Alternative Author Interview:
TCL’s Countdown Questions.
This week I’m featuring author
Mary Doria Russell
I was trying to get Fredrik Backman to answer these questions, but his publicist said he didn’t have time. However, she very generously gave me pre-approved widgets to two books on NetGalley instead. One of them was for Mary Doria Russell‘s novel “The Women of the Copper Country.” Well, if you look at my review of that book (in the link here), you’ll understand why I had to ask her to answer my questions, and she was so sweet to answer so quickly with her replies…
- If you could visit five (5) places you’ve never been, where would you go and why?
Belfast, Northern Ireland, to visit friends.
Caesarea and Tiberias in northern Israel: setting for my eighth novel
Normandy, to scope out the setting for my ninth novel.
Wales, same reason.
And I’d return to Cuneo in NW Italy for the best cheese and pears on the planet.
- Name four (4) foods or dishes that you enjoy so much that they’ve practically become part of your personality.
These are in heavy rotation at our house
My friend Dina’s salad: mixed greens, diced roasted beets, dried cranberries, cheese, diced apple, shredded chicken, and a balsamic vinegar dressing.
Homemade Pizza with a White Sauce: 1 Mama Mary’s Pizza Shell, topped with a cream sauce, and a stir-fried mixture of onion, mushrooms, and spinach, topped with mozz.
Roasted vegetables drizzled with balsamic vinegar reduction, topped with grated romano.
Emergency fall-back meal: Boston Market chicken. They live short, terrible lives, but they’re delicious! And the bones make soup to die for.
- There is the past, the present, and the future – if you could choose, which of these three (3) would you prefer to live in, and why?
Definitely NOT the past. Dental care alone…
Maybe two years into the future. I am hoping to see US Marshals show up at Trump Tower with a warrant and cuffs. (TCL: I hear you!)
But really? For me and my husband, the present is pretty damned close to perfect. Wouldn’t trade this time for anything.
- Best and worst – you choose which – name two (2) of either your best moments of your life, worst moments of your life, or one of each.
My son’s wedding was a day of shadowless joy. Eight years later, our beloved daughter-in-law announced that she was leaving him for a woman she met at work. That pretty much brackets it.
- Name one (1) book you’ve read in the past year (or so) that you wish you had written, and why.
I just read a novel called Country by the Irish author Michael Hughes. It’s a new Iliad, mapping the Troubles of Northern Ireland directly into Homer’s story, and makes the old tale sing again. Wonderful.
Thanks Mary! So… Caesarea and Tiberias, eh? Well, since I live in Israel, I’ve been to both many times. If you ever want some fact-checking about either place, do let me know!
Mary Doria Russell has been called one of the most versatile writers in American literature and one of our greatest contemporary storytellers. Her novels are studied in literature, theology and history courses in colleges and universities, and often chosen as book club and “community read” selections.
Dr. Russell has served as the featured speaker for commencements, library events, volunteer organizations, and educational institutions in over 100 cities, addressing groups from the American Library Association to the Virginia Military Institute. Her guest lectures have proved popular from New Zealand to Germany as well as in the U.S. and Canada.