In Carlene Bauer's debut novel, Frances and Bernard meet at an artists colony. Though very different in temperament, they continue their friendship through letters and occasional visits. They discuss their faith, their families and their feelings. As the intensity of their relationship grows, from 1957 to 1968, and their writing careers develop, so does the difficulty in maintaining their lives and their sanity.
About Diane Slocum
Diane Slocum has been a newspaper reporter and editor and authored a historical book. As a freelance writer, she regularly contributes to magazines and newspapers. She writes features on authors and a column for writers and readers in Lifestyle magazine. She is assigned to write interviews of first-time novelists and bestselling authors for Authorlink.
Insights Into Diane
If I were to pick one type of book that I most like to read it would probably be historical novels. I appreciate the research that goes into recreating a world from our past and populating it with characters both historical and fictional.
I don’t really have a favorite author. Since I’m usually reading debut authors for my interviews, I rarely have repeats. Maybe that is also my reading quirk. The same way I dish up my plate at a potluck – take a little taste of everything.
The first peeve that comes to mind about the writing world is form rejections that say “It’s not right for us at this time.” I know agents, editors, etc. are overwhelmed with reading submissions, but something triggered the rejection. I would rather get a rejection that said “boring,” “weak lead,” “got to page 2,” than “it’s not right for us at this time.” Of course, I would hope that the reader really did think it was brilliant but just not what she needed then, but then one word to say why, what was in her mind, would help.
What foods do I like? As I said, I sample everything at a potluck. Maybe fruit? I live in Fresno County. We grow almost everything. Fresh and local is the best. My food quirk is probably raw potatoes. I could be lured into a trap by a trail of raw potato slices. So far, I’ve never enjoyed tasting liver or kidneys. I also don’t want to eat food that should be accompanied by a fire hose because it’s spicy hot.
In my leisure time, I go camping and hiking. I keep a journal. I watch TV shows like Poldark, Victoria and Mercy Street. I run, but that’s not exactly leisure, neither is growing my vegetables. And, of course, I read.
Of all the people in the world, who I would most like to have dinner with, is another hard choice. But right now, I’ll choose Jimmy Carter. I have great respect for his character and all he does to help people, even continuing into his very advanced years.
Author Archives for Diane Slocum
In Michael Dahlies second novel, The Best of Youth, Henry Lang is trying to find his way in life after his parents die and leave him 15 million dollars. Henry is not quite sure how to handle much of anything including his fourth cousin Abby, a million-dollar herd of heirloom goats and some inherited pistols.
Ben Schranks third novel, Love Is a Canoe, taps into his knowledge of the publishing world. At age 23, Peter Herman wrote a book on marriage based on what he learned during the summer he spent with his grandparents when he was 13. On the fiftieth anniversary of that summer, Stella Petrovic conceives a contest to promote the book by giving the winning couple a visit with Peter.
Sigrid Schröder has an office job in World War II Berlin, a live-in mother-in-law and a husband on the eastern front. She also has a Jewish lover and a secretive young neighbor who needs help evading police inquiry. Daily life with rationing and British bombing raids is hard enough before Sigrid gets dangerously drawn into the lives of people who rarely are quite what they seem to be.
Ling (later named Cassandra) sees ghosts. As a child, she moves from Shanghai to The Black Isle, where she grows up through colonialism, war and independence, all the while aware of the haunted souls that share the island with the living. Her struggles take her from poverty to comfort to the horrors of wartime occupation in this debut novel by Sandi Tan.
In Gregory Hills award-winning debut novel, Shakespeare Williams returns to his family farm to bury a dead cat. He finds his fathers mental state and the farm have deteriorated alarmingly so he stays on and tries to rebuild. He hooks up with former schoolmates whose lives have stagnated and together they bungle their way toward a get-rich and get-revenge plan.
Younis and Christopher share a cave in the mountains above a destroyed village. Younis is a teenage refugee from the village. Christopher is an American soldier. Christopher treats Younis wounds and writes in his journal. Younis changes his name to Jonas and comes to America. Christopher doesnt return. While Jonas tries to adapt to life in the United States, his memories keep returning him to those last days in his homeland. The memories are incomplete as he shares them with his counselor, Paul, but he cant escape them. And he cant escape the connection he had with Christopher.
Jock Boucher is no sooner appointed a U.S. District Judge than he has to take over the caseload of an ailing senior judge and immediately steps into a 20-year-old case of corruption, murder and intrigue. Scientist Bob Palmetto and lawyer Ruth Kalin emerge from hiding long enough to entangle Boucher in the race for undersea methane hydrate a volatile and dangerous, but extremely valuable new source of energy. Some will stop at nothing to get it, including murdering anyone who gets in their way, even a federal judge or two.
In Stay Awake, Dan Chaon uses the uncanny to show how it feels to be alive now. The characters in his latest short story collection are haunted by the ghosts of their own past.
In Alex Adams debut, apocalyptic novel, White Horse, death does ride a pale horse, but in this case, it is the name of a disease manufactured and loosed on the world by an unscrupulous pharmaceutical company. Zoe, a lowly employee who cleans their lab, becomes a pawn in this plan when a mysterious jar shows up in her apartment. As disease, deformity and death spread across the globe, Zoe ponders the meaning of the jar, and takes off on a journey of survival through devastated lands, determined to maintain her humanity and to reach her destination.