1. What inspired you to write this book?
I knew my editor wanted me to write another story about a mother protecting her children, and I was in line at the grocery store and saw a tabloid with the headline, “Zac Efron Enters Rehab Again.” My daughter was a High School Musical fan when she was little, so I felt like I had watched Zac Efron grow up, and to know he was suffering and that his suffering was being made public made me feel horrible for him and his parents. The idea Child Star popped in my head. At that point I wasn’t certain what the story was going to be, but I liked the idea of exploring what goes on behind the glitz and glamour that causes so many young actors to suffer such tragic setbacks and downfalls.
2. This is your second novel. Was your writing process for "No Ordinary Life" any different from "Hush Little Baby?"
Every story has its own journey. While I knew the topic of the novel, it took some time for me to discover the story I wanted to tell. HUSH LITTLE BABY was very linear, a cat chases mouse story, while NO ORDINARY LIFE didn’t have as direct a path. The antagonist was not as defined nor was the outcome. I didn’t write the story chronologically, an idea would strike and I would write about it, then I would have another idea and write about that. It was complicated and often confounding. I think I wrote 800 pages to get 400 because it was so unclear where the story wanted to go.
3. Who is your favorite character in "No Ordinary Life?"
I love Griff because he is so good and heroic, but my favorite characters are Helen and Bo. They are quirky and cool and were incredibly fun to write.
4. Can you tell us about your favorite scene in the book?
I love the airport scene. As a mom, it was the scene that affected me the most. I was once in a Bed, Bath, and Beyond when my daughter had a meltdown because I wouldn’t buy her a toy she desperately wanted. For twenty minutes I stood there while she screamed and had a tantrum while people walked by with either sympathetic expressions or judgmental frowns. It was the worst feeling and, to imagine something like that happening while dozens of photographers documented it, knowing it was going to be plastered in every tabloid and shown on every celebrity gossip show in the world, made my heart split in two with sympathy for Faye. It was the pinnacle moment in the story that illustrated how out of control Faye’s life had become.
5. If you could bring three fictional characters to a deserted island, who would you bring and why?
Ironman. He’s smart, resourceful, and funny. And who wouldn’t want Robert Downey Jr. on an island?
Captain Jack Sparrow because that would just be a whole lot of fun.
Hermione because she could keep the other two in line and she’s a wizard, and how cool is that?
Thank you for the great Q&A, Meg. This was fun.