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Maria_H
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Questions for Annie Barrows

Do you have a question for Annie? Reply to this message to start the conversation!


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Melissa_W
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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

Annie,

Thanks for sharing your time with us!  I read that Ms. Shaffer knew the novel was to be published and I'm curious to know how much of Guernsey was finished when your aunt passed away.  Did she leave you any instructions for editing?

 

Thanks much :smileyhappy:

Melissa W.
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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

Are you going to continue writing children's books or has working on this book made you want to write for adults also?
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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows


pedsphleb wrote:

Annie,

Thanks for sharing your time with us!  I read that Ms. Shaffer knew the novel was to be published and I'm curious to know how much of Guernsey was finished when your aunt passed away.  Did she leave you any instructions for editing?

 

Thanks much :smileyhappy:


Hi Melissa,

 

Thanks for writing. Mary Ann fell ill just after the book was sold to The Dial Press. She asked me to complete the editorial work for her, so my job was primarily to add more to the story, rather than changing what was there. I consulted with her a few times, but she was pretty ill, so I tried not to pester her.  When in doubt, I invented.

 

Annie 


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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows


debbook wrote:
Are you going to continue writing children's books or has working on this book made you want to write for adults also?
The publisher of Guernsey has just signed me up to write two more novels, so there are definitely adult books in the cards. And I can't stop writing for kids, because I love writing for kids. So--my plan is to do everything! Crazy, but true.
  


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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows


Annie_Barrows wrote:

debbook wrote:
Are you going to continue writing children's books or has working on this book made you want to write for adults also?
The publisher of Guernsey has just signed me up to write two more novels, so there are definitely adult books in the cards. And I can't stop writing for kids, because I love writing for kids. So--my plan is to do everything! Crazy, but true.
  

 

Can you tell us anything about the 2 new novels? That is exciting news. i hope you are a fast writer, lol, b/c I can't wait to read them.
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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows


debbook wrote:

Annie_Barrows wrote:

debbook wrote:
Are you going to continue writing children's books or has working on this book made you want to write for adults also?
The publisher of Guernsey has just signed me up to write two more novels, so there are definitely adult books in the cards. And I can't stop writing for kids, because I love writing for kids. So--my plan is to do everything! Crazy, but true.
  

 

Can you tell us anything about the 2 new novels? That is exciting news. i hope you are a fast writer, lol, b/c I can't wait to read them.

I've learned from grim experience that if I talk about what I'm writing, I can't write it. So it has to be shrouded in mystery for now. As for speed, I don't know whether I'm a fast writer. Some paragraphs seem to go on forever . . .  


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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

Who was your favorite character of the Literary Society?I myself had several favorites.

 

 

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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

Bumped a message over to the "Whole Novel" thread because of a small spoiler!

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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows


debbook wrote:

Who was your favorite character of the Literary Society?I myself had several favorites.

 

 


Hmm.Characters really are like your children--you love them all, even when they misbehave. However, I have to admit that I'm especially fond of Clovis Fossey because he is a true lover of poetry. But I also love Booker, and Isola, and Thompson Stubbins and Will Thisbee and . . . you see the problem. If I was able to attend one meeting, though, I think I would choose one in which Dawsey spoke--I can imagine how everyone would lean forward to hear him, because he talks so little, and I can imagine how much he would care about his book. I adore Dawsey.

 

 


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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

I thought Adelaide was a trip at first. What a busybody, but she did provide much information to the readers. We all know someone like her.

Why did you decide to add Mark into the mix?

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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

 

To me Mark was added into the story in order to make Juliet a stronger person.  She suffered losses as a young child.  Both of her parents died when she was 12, the bomb that landed on her father's book store destroying  50,000 books and her uncle sending her off to boarding school.  Books were the only constant in her life that she could control and everything in her life seemed to center around books.  And, of course, Mark was with a publishing company.  It would have been very easy for Juliet to marry Mark but she knew she wouldn't be happy with him because whatever Mark wanted, Mark got.  I think she realized that Mark was only romancing her just to get her into his firm.  He was not interested in her, per se, and this was very evident when he referred to her correspondence with the Literary Society as a "parcel of strangers".  He knew that Juliet loved corresponding with these people but he saw it as a waste of time.  Mark was a user, he used people to further his interests.  Juliet was actually relieved when she absolutely refused to marry him.

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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows


literature wrote:

 

To me Mark was added into the story in order to make Juliet a stronger person.  She suffered losses as a young child.  Both of her parents died when she was 12, the bomb that landed on her father's book store destroying  50,000 books and her uncle sending her off to boarding school.  Books were the only constant in her life that she could control and everything in her life seemed to center around books.  And, of course, Mark was with a publishing company.  It would have been very easy for Juliet to marry Mark but she knew she wouldn't be happy with him because whatever Mark wanted, Mark got.  I think she realized that Mark was only romancing her just to get her into his firm.  He was not interested in her, per se, and this was very evident when he referred to her correspondence with the Literary Society as a "parcel of strangers".  He knew that Juliet loved corresponding with these people but he saw it as a waste of time.  Mark was a user, he used people to further his interests.  Juliet was actually relieved when she absolutely refused to marry him.


Mark does serve the purpose of making Juliet understand who she truly is and what she truly values, and he throws the Islanders into high relief, with his sense of entitlement, his demands, and his terse messages. Also, to be honest, he plays such a large role because he was such fun to write--and because he allowed me to write the date in the proper order for once!


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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows


debbook wrote:

I thought Adelaide was a trip at first. What a busybody, but she did provide much information to the readers. We all know someone like her.

Why did you decide to add Mark into the mix?


Adelaide is an exact copy of someone Mary Ann and I knew very well, unfortunately. See below re: Mark.

 


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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

I smiled when you said that Mark was such fun to write because no matter how you developed his character and no matter how big you made his ego, you had the final say in what happened to him.  I was so proud of Juliet when she finally turned him down.  I kept thinking how could she get along so easily with the Literary Society and like him at the same time...complete opposite personalities.
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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

Did you guys make up Potato Peel Pie?
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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

I love the part when Juliet tells about breaking up with her fiance' because he boxed up her books and replaced them with trophies. I would have dumped him too. How sad that she lost her books during the bombing. It would take me forever to replace my collection.
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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

Were all the characters invented from the onset or did they come along as the novel progressed?
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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

Although I may have missed it I noticed not a single letter was written FROM Sophie.  I've been discussing various theories with some friends (I have a particularly far out theory) and we were wondering if you or anybody would be willing to comment.

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Re: Questions for Annie Barrows

Annie, could you tell me what kind of research went into the Holocaust details put into the book?  I found the details startling and horrifying!  Just when I think I could not imagine any more horrid things that occurred, I am introduced to a few more, as I was in this book. 
Laura

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