Gwendolen Gross recently released her third book, "The Other Mother," a work of fiction that falls in the drama genre. The novel revolves around two mothers - one who works outside of the home and one who stays at home - and the struggles that they go through to understand each other. Gross is an engrossing writer (no pun intended) and I was able to finish the book in record time - even with a toddler in tow!
Here's your chance to get to know Gwendolen...
ME: Your newest novel revolves around the topic of motherhood (and more). Are you a mother and, if so, how many children do you have and what are their ages?
GG: I am a mother--my son is 8 and my daughter is 5. I started writing The Other Mother shortly after my son was born, so this novel (my third) has taken a while (revisions and other writing...) to make it to press. With each of my children, I had a new book---but this third time around, no new babies. It does make it easier to promote.
ME: How do you make time for writing?
GG: I'm fairly regular about my writing time (I write out the hours--or parts thereof--in my day planner, and don't schedule other things then...or try not to)--which is not to say it always happens when planned. However, I feel like the time pressure associated with parenting (and my kids are both in school now, which gives me a good envelope of time--when I'm not teaching, cooking, editing, etc) helps me write more efficiently.
ME: What tips would you give to moms who are aspiring writers?
GG: Writers are people who write. The whole business bit is separate and comes later. Write every day, even if the only time you have is in the school parking lot waiting for your kids. Give yourself permission to find your way, to write until you get to the truths you want to tell. I write because I can't not write. But sometimes it can take a while to get going. And lots of pages are engine-revving pages.
ME: Your two main characters (Thea and Amanda) have very different lives and yet they are also very similar. Which character do you relate to more and why?
GG: There are little bits of me (the Franklin Day Planner, the hyperemesis for Amanda; Thea's naturalist experiences and desire to get out) in both characters. I'm a work at home mom, so I'm not really one or the other, which means at the beginning I felt left out of some social groups. That wasn't necessarily a bad thing. I have friends on both "sides," and friends who don't have children! But when my son was born I was amazed that there really were these two camps---SAHM and WOTH (seven years ago I'm not sure we called them that, but it was there already, even if mommy lit hadn't hit yet).
WIN IT! One lucky winner will be selected to receive her own signed copy of "The Other Mother." To enter, leave a comment and your e-mail address on this post by Thursday, November 15, at midnight. Don't forget to leave your e-mail address! The winner will be announced and contacted via e-mail on Friday, November 16. * Winner must provide a U.S. mailing address.
NOTE: I have to agree with "5 Minutes for Mom" reviewer Jennifer with her rating of a "strong PG-13" in terms of content.
*UPDATED* The winner is #48 Bebemiqui!