Was the release of Gone bittersweet? Or were you ready to move on to
new characters, a new story? Would you ever consider revisiting Janie
Writing GONE was bittersweet, but when it was released, I was eager and excited for the end to be told. As for moving on to new characters and a new story, by the time GONE came out Feb 9th, I had written two more manuscripts (usually I’m finished writing a book about a year before it actually comes out and hard at work on what’s next), so in a way I had moved on. I’ve deeply considered revisiting Janie and Cabe, because I do love them, but what more can be told? People have asked if I’ll tell the story from Cabel’s perspective, and I’d love to if he had a story that my readers didn’t know about. But you all know how it ends, and I’m afraid it would be a disappointing book in that regard. And that’s the last thing I want to write.
I loved getting a look inside Cabel’s head. What motivated you to switch perspectives and give Cabe his say?
My publisher, Simon Pulse, asked if I’d write a short story of some sort as a freebie/extra for my fans to help get them through last summer while they waited for GONE. I tossed out the idea that it would be interesting to tell Cabe’s side of the story in that passage where he discovers what’s up with Janie and her ability. They thought that sounded cool so I wrote it.
Miss Stubin is a great character, and while she provided pertinent, necessary information to advance the trilogy’s story arc, it never felt like that was her sole purpose. How much of her background did you put on paper or have in your head while writing?
I know a lot more about Miss Stubin than what is told in the book. Most of her story is in my head, although I always write down biographies of my major characters. If you’ve read all three books, you know bits and pieces of her past, and how something that happened to her when she was a teenager really changed her life. You also know bits about her man… I see Janie’s life mirroring Miss Stubin’s in several ways.
The style the Wake trilogy employs is bold, different. For me, it made the story feel more immediate. Did the style dictate or drive the story and characters in any way, or did the characters/story decide the style.
I think both. When I was first discovering the story and character of Janie, they had this very mystical feel in my mind, and when I started writing it, it just came out like that. I think the style drives the story and the story drives the style, if that makes any sense. For a peek at the very first bit I wrote, read the top half of page 68 of WAKE. Those are the first words that ever came out in the story. When I wrote them, I didn’t even know who “he” (Cabe) was yet.
To borrow a (condensed) page from Inside the Actor’s Studio, five questions:
Your favorite “classic”?
The Count of Monte Cristo
Which book do you think everyone should read?
Author’s Day by Daniel Pinkwater – it’s a brilliant, hysterical, and probably true picture book about what school visits are like for authors.
If you could spend the day with one character from any novel, who would you choose?
If your books were a flavor of ice cream, what flavor would they be?
And now it’s giveaway time! If you’d like a shot at a copy of Lisa McMann’s Gone, leave a comment on this post. (US addresses only, please.) A winner will be selected by Random.org and announced here on Sunday, March 28th. Thanks to Spruce TV for the opportunity and giveaway copy! And to Lisa for answering my questions!