BOOK CLUB QUESTIONS
Grannie Panties Are Underrated
What was the inspiration for this novel?
It is human nature to put forth one's best self to the world. This instinct is taken to new extremes now with the use of social media, where we are barraged with constant images of our friends and acquaintances documenting their perfect vacation, perfect children, perfect marriage, and perfectly perfect lives on Facebook. I am intrigued by the differences between the persona that one portrays with reality and wanted to explore what happens to a woman forced to reconcile who she pretends to be with who she really is. In addition, I think at one point or another, everyone approaching middle-age has looked at their life and wondered if they recognize the person they have become and if it is the person they always wanted to be.
Which came first for you, the characters or the plot?
The character of Elle came to me first - the idea of a middle-aged suburban housewife who is seemingly living a perfect life, but hiding a dark and sordid past was something I wanted to explore.
How did you choose the cover art and title and how does it pertains to your story?
I wanted a pair of thong underwear and grannie panties on the cover 1) to indicate that this is very much a book for and about women; 2) to suggest it's a light read and 3) because they are a metaphor for the main character's life. The thong underwear represents Elle's young self - a free, uninhibited party girl who is fun and up for anything. The grannie panties represent her middle-aged self - boring, practical and not the least bit sexy or daring. The title carries on with this theme begging the question - are wearing grannie panties giving up or is life in middle-age really underrated?
How much of you or people you know do you think make it into the characters?
As someone with children in high school, I certainly drew on some of those experiences in creating the fictional school Country Day and its parents. Both of my kids also participated in competitive youth sports, so I had plenty of fodder for describing those experiences. I think anyone with children will recognize the hyper-competitive parenting styles of the Country Day parents and will also be able to relate the pressures Elle feels as a parent in this peer group.
If your book was made into a movie, who would you like to play the lead characters?
Sarah Jessica Parker as Elle, Rob Lowe as Mitch, Ken Watanabe (actor from The Last Samurai) as Tak, and Mark Ruffalo as Win.
I am currently working on another fiction book titled Double Fault which is about a former professional tennis player who is accused
of sexual assault against a high school player he coaches. It is told from the point of view of the coach – a flawed man hiding secrets;
the player- an anxiety prone teenager who isn’t sure she even likes tennis; the player’s mom – the epitome of a crazy-sports parent;
and the player’s dad – a former investment banker who became a cop after 9/11. Part satire of the culture of competitive youth
sports in America, and an exploration of friendship and sacrifice, the book explores just how far parents are willing to go to ensure
success for their children.