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Wordsmith
Tarri
Posts: 457
Registered: ‎02-26-2007

Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?

Erick, thank you for the opportunity to read your book.  I thought it was a very interesting story and I love the way you write.  All the questions I had have been answered, well except for "who is Hannah"  *just kidding*.  I like that, as readers, we don't know the truth about everything and can put our on spin on characters and situations. 

 

Hopefully, by the next first look selection, the bees will have left and I will be able to sign on to B&N.  Of course, I'll still be getting caught up from all the responses that were posted while my computer was in the shop.  

 

Best wishes for a successful publication.  I will be following your progress on Facebook.  

Inspired Contributor
goingeast
Posts: 89
Registered: ‎01-03-2007

Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?

[ Edited ]

Erick,

 

I want you to know that I thought long and hard about the ambiguity surrounding Hannah and other details, such as the mist, in your novel.  While I was reading, it really didn't seem important to me that I knew who Hannah was.  It was more important to know how Meridia feels about Hannah, since she is the protagonist.  The same can be said for the mists and whether or not they were "real."  The point is they were real for Meridia and I just went with the flow, her flow that is. 

 

I was much more in awe of your style of writing.  How would you classify your style?  I could guess, but I would rather hear it from you.  All I know for certain is that I will not hesitate to read anything you have written in the future. I have not been able to say that about anyone except Pearl S. Buck.  I would love to read that first novel of yours, no matter how bad you think it may be.  By the way, since you thought the first was so awful, what did you change that made this novel the one you were prepared to publish?  How did you know that you were ready? 

 

Also, have you ever thought of writing a play?  I think you would succeed in that area of writing also.  In many ways, this novel was like watching a very long play.  The dialogue was just perfect. Even the movement of the novel was much like a play, which is probably why so many of us couldn't put it down!

 

I will miss your conversation here very much.  I have never known or heard of an author who gave as much insight into his/her novel as you have here.  If you ever have time, I would love to get your thoughts on Cormac McCarthy's "The Road!"  Until your next project, I plan to read some of those books you recommended, especially the ones that took you years to get into.

 

You have been most gracious and it's absolutely amazing that you managed to respond to everyone.  I will wish you good luck even though I know you won't need it.

 

Ann (goingeast)

 

p.s. Who is Hannah?...heehee...I just couldn't resist.

Message Edited by goingeast on 06-25-2009 09:30 PM
Inspired Correspondent
mv5ocean
Posts: 114
Registered: ‎12-03-2008
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Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?

Erick,

Thank you so much for sharing such an amazing piece of work with us!

Even more than that, I want to thank you for your well thought out and humorous answers to each and every question that was put before you.

I don't think I've been involved in any other First Look book that has had such an enjoyable "Questions for" thread.

You have taken the time to think about and give honest responses to each post and that has made an excellent book even more pleasurable!

Best wishes and I'm looking forward to your future as I will benefit from it as well.........bring on the next Erick book!:smileyhappy:

Inspired Contributor
pode
Posts: 43
Registered: ‎01-30-2009
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Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?


goingeast wrote:

Erick,

 

 

How would you classify your style?   .....

By the way, since you thought the first was so awful, what did you change that made this novel the one you were prepared to publish?  .....

How did you know that you were ready? .....

 

Also, have you ever thought of writing a play?  .....

 

I have never known or heard of an author who gave as much insight into his/her novel as you have here.  You have been most gracious and it's absolutely amazing that you managed to respond to everyone.

 

Ann (goingeast)

 

p.s. Who is Hannah?...heehee...I just couldn't resist.

Message Edited by goingeast on 06-25-2009 09:30 PM

Ann--great questions. 

Erick--I agree totally about it being amazing that you answered absolutely everyone's questions and shared so much of yourself the past few weeks.  You made a wonderful book even better!!

Thank you!!

 

Pode

"Where is human nature so weak as in the bookstore?"
â Henry Ward Beecher
Author
Erick_Setiawan
Posts: 122
Registered: ‎05-07-2009
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Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?/ early worries


vivico1 wrote:

Erick,

Now that we are down to the end of the club, (are you going to be here Monday and Tues.?) I had a question that occurred to me early on. I think you have a good sense of pacing and for all the things I have bugged you about, that was not one. But as we read through the first section of the book, there were people who said they were not sure from the first chapters if they were going to like the book or not and thought about putting it down, but hung in there to see if it got better and were glad they did. I am not talking about those of us, including me, who were not sure about liking it because it was out of our normal genres of reads, but rather those who didn't think the first part was as good as the succeeding chapters.

 

I do believe a book can grab you in two ways, it can build so that each chapter begins to pick up and propel you to read more and there are books that from the first sentence, you hit it at a run, from beginning to end, tho I think those are really harder for a writer to sustain the pace throughout. Anyway, when some were talking about not really getting into the book with the first chapters, did that have you worried some as a writer that people may not continue with the book, and that this might be a problem? Did it make you wonder about your first chapters? Did it make you wonder if this might be a problem with individual readers who were not in a group and kind of brought along by the experience? I have heard it said that if you don't like a book in the first 50 pages, its probably not for you, and there is a formula after that for how many pages it should grab you in, according to your age too. I don't know what I think about that, I am trying to think back on books I have set aside and not finished and there is probably something to it. I thought you had a wonderful and intriguing opening line so it kept me here, out of my genre to continue. But when you read some posts that some just found the first part slow and not as good as the following sections, did that have you worried, or what did you think? I think it would have me a bit worried about will people continue. Most are really glad they did, but how did you feel about it as the author?


Hi Vivian,

 

I'm not worried about the beginning chapters at all.  For every reader who says the early pages don't draw them in fast enough, I have one or more readers who say the opposite.  What's slow to some may be fast to others.  Besides, if you take any book, even those that are famous for being fast-paced and drawing in readers instantly (Harry Potter and Lee Child thrillers come to mind), you will always find readers who say the book is uninviting and moving at a snail's pace.  It all comes back to reading being extremely subjective.

Erick Setiawan

For more information, please visit www.ofbeesandmist.com. Click here for Facebook.
Author
Erick_Setiawan
Posts: 122
Registered: ‎05-07-2009
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Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?


Tarri wrote:

Erick, thank you for the opportunity to read your book.  I thought it was a very interesting story and I love the way you write.  All the questions I had have been answered, well except for "who is Hannah"  *just kidding*.  I like that, as readers, we don't know the truth about everything and can put our on spin on characters and situations. 

 

Hopefully, by the next first look selection, the bees will have left and I will be able to sign on to B&N.  Of course, I'll still be getting caught up from all the responses that were posted while my computer was in the shop.  

 

Best wishes for a successful publication.  I will be following your progress on Facebook.  


Hi Tarri,

 

Thank you for your praise and best wishes.  I'm sure you've come to some sort of conclusion about Hannah that suits you.  I'll see you on Facebook (thanks for being a fan!).

 

Erick Setiawan

For more information, please visit www.ofbeesandmist.com. Click here for Facebook.
Author
Erick_Setiawan
Posts: 122
Registered: ‎05-07-2009

Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?


goingeast wrote:

Erick,

 

I want you to know that I thought long and hard about the ambiguity surrounding Hannah and other details, such as the mist, in your novel.  While I was reading, it really didn't seem important to me that I knew who Hannah was.  It was more important to know how Meridia feels about Hannah, since she is the protagonist.  The same can be said for the mists and whether or not they were "real."  The point is they were real for Meridia and I just went with the flow, her flow that is. 

 

I was much more in awe of your style of writing.  How would you classify your style?  I could guess, but I would rather hear it from you.  All I know for certain is that I will not hesitate to read anything you have written in the future. I have not been able to say that about anyone except Pearl S. Buck.  I would love to read that first novel of yours, no matter how bad you think it may be.  By the way, since you thought the first was so awful, what did you change that made this novel the one you were prepared to publish?  How did you know that you were ready? 

 

Also, have you ever thought of writing a play?  I think you would succeed in that area of writing also.  In many ways, this novel was like watching a very long play.  The dialogue was just perfect. Even the movement of the novel was much like a play, which is probably why so many of us couldn't put it down!

 

I will miss your conversation here very much.  I have never known or heard of an author who gave as much insight into his/her novel as you have here.  If you ever have time, I would love to get your thoughts on Cormac McCarthy's "The Road!"  Until your next project, I plan to read some of those books you recommended, especially the ones that took you years to get into.

 

You have been most gracious and it's absolutely amazing that you managed to respond to everyone.  I will wish you good luck even though I know you won't need it.

 

Ann (goingeast)

 

p.s. Who is Hannah?...heehee...I just couldn't resist.

Message Edited by goingeast on 06-25-2009 09:30 PM

Hi Ann,

 

Great questions!  That was an excellent point you made about being able to just "go with the flow."  Especially with this book, I think it's easiest if readers simply surrender to Meridia's world without fighting it or questioning it too much, and I find that readers who were immediately drawn into the story and got the most enjoyment out of it are exactly those who did!

 

My writing style . . . golly . . . I suppose I'm drawn to sentences that are lyrical, devoid of cliches, in parts witty and humorous, and also utilize language in a new way.  I always get a kick when I use a word or a phrase in a way that it's never been used before. Let me give you an example.  In Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon, a character who has just been punched in the gut is throwing up and she described it this way: "He sat contemplating his lunch on the grass." I thought it was genius!  And if you look at my idols--Morrison, Edith Wharton (who taught me a lot about dialog), Virginia Woolf, Garcia Marquez--I think you can see a bit of every one of them in my writing (or so I hope!).  Thank your for the Pearl S. Buck comparison!  She was a great writer as well.

 

How did I know that Bees was ready to publish?  I felt it.  Deep in my gut.  (And no, you don't want to read my first or second novel.)  As I posted somewhere before, I was too insecure and terrified to join a writers' group, so I never showed the manuscript for Bees to anyone until my agent.  But I believed that it would find an audience, so I just sent it out (on second thought, maybe it was my delusion talking).  At any rate, Alex Glass (a first-class agent, if you're looking for one!) signed me three weeks after I queried his agency, and he sold the book to Kerri in about a month after that.  When it's right, it's just right.  And I feel incredibly blessed to be here.

 

Thank you for being such a thoughtful and responsive reader.  I urge you not to deprive future First Look authors of the benefit of your readership! 

Erick Setiawan

For more information, please visit www.ofbeesandmist.com. Click here for Facebook.
Author
Erick_Setiawan
Posts: 122
Registered: ‎05-07-2009
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Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?


mv5ocean wrote:

Erick,

Thank you so much for sharing such an amazing piece of work with us!

Even more than that, I want to thank you for your well thought out and humorous answers to each and every question that was put before you.

I don't think I've been involved in any other First Look book that has had such an enjoyable "Questions for" thread.

You have taken the time to think about and give honest responses to each post and that has made an excellent book even more pleasurable!

Best wishes and I'm looking forward to your future as I will benefit from it as well.........bring on the next Erick book!:smileyhappy:


Hi mv5ocean,

 

Thank you for participating.  I'm glad you found both the book and my answers pleasurable to read.  I appreciate your enthusiasm for the next one!

Erick Setiawan

For more information, please visit www.ofbeesandmist.com. Click here for Facebook.
Author
Erick_Setiawan
Posts: 122
Registered: ‎05-07-2009
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Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?


pode wrote:

goingeast wrote:

Erick,

 

 

How would you classify your style?   .....

By the way, since you thought the first was so awful, what did you change that made this novel the one you were prepared to publish?  .....

How did you know that you were ready? .....

 

Also, have you ever thought of writing a play?  .....

 

I have never known or heard of an author who gave as much insight into his/her novel as you have here.  You have been most gracious and it's absolutely amazing that you managed to respond to everyone.

 

Ann (goingeast)

 

p.s. Who is Hannah?...heehee...I just couldn't resist.

Message Edited by goingeast on 06-25-2009 09:30 PM

Ann--great questions. 

Erick--I agree totally about it being amazing that you answered absolutely everyone's questions and shared so much of yourself the past few weeks.  You made a wonderful book even better!!

Thank you!!

 

Pode


Hi Pode,

 

Please read my earlier reply to Ann's questions.  First Look has been a truly wonderful experience for me, and I'm glad my participation connected with readers.  It's my pleasure!

Erick Setiawan

For more information, please visit www.ofbeesandmist.com. Click here for Facebook.
Scribe
vivico1
Posts: 3,456
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan?

That reminds me of the first time I heard the phrase "praying to the porcelan gods" when a friend I knew was losing it over a toilet, just sitting on the floor leaning over it and staying there. That is what she said she was doing and it was the first time I had heard the phrase lol, ages ago of course. I love to collect great one liners from books. A good turn of a phrase is worth pages of words otherwise.

 


Erick_Setiawan wrote:

 

My writing style . . . golly . . . I suppose I'm drawn to sentences that are lyrical, devoid of cliches, in parts witty and humorous, and also utilize language in a new way. I always get a kick when I use a word or a phrase in a way that it's never been used before. Let me give you an example. In Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon, a character who has just been punched in the gut is throwing up and she described it this way: "He sat contemplating his lunch on the grass." I thought it was genius! And if you look at my idols--Morrison, Edith Wharton (who taught me a lot about dialog), Virginia Woolf, Garcia Marquez--I think you can see a bit of every one of them in my writing (or so I hope!). Thank your for the Pearl S. Buck comparison! She was a great writer as well.

 

 


 

 

Vivian
~Those who do not read are no better off than those who can not.~ Chinese proverb
Contributor
USwede16
Posts: 21
Registered: ‎03-10-2009
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Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan? (Hannah Part II)

I definitely agree with you that Hannah has been trying to tell Meridia how she feels over the course of many years and that the only reason she hasn't been able to do so is because everytime she tries she is interrupted (Meridia cutting her off, Daniel appearing, etc.). Her confession of adoration on p.393 is the first chance Hannah is ever given to express her feelings without being interrupted.

 

Thank you again for spending so much time with us readers and taking the time to answer all our questions!

 

Christina

"Hold fast to dreams for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly."
Langston Hughes
Author
Erick_Setiawan
Posts: 122
Registered: ‎05-07-2009

Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan? (Last Post)

As the hours wind down and I'm all out of questions to answer, I just want to reiterate how wonderful this First Look experience has been for me.  Thank you B&N, thank you Paul and Rachel, and thank you most of all to all of you who have been so kind and generous and thoughtful with your comments and questions and word-of-mouth recommendations.  I will gladly tell the next author who will take up my space that he or she will be in for an amazing adventure.

 

I'm sure I'll have withdrawal symptoms for weeks to come.  You can keep up to date with what's going on with the book through my website and Facebook page.

 

Happy reading and I'll see you all at the bookstores!!

Erick Setiawan

For more information, please visit www.ofbeesandmist.com. Click here for Facebook.
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ReadingPatti
Posts: 2,523
Registered: ‎10-24-2008
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Re: Questions for Erick Setiawan? (Last Post)

Eric, Thank you for an enjoyable book. I love the characters. It shows us how we need to value our familes. THe difunction in these two familes makes my thankful for the family I had and the family I have left.

 

Are you planning on a sequel to this book? I would love to know more about Daniel and Meridia. I like these two characters and hope that they get back together. I think that they truly love each other.

 

I loved your book and will recommend it to my library director.

 

ReadingPatti