Our latest book chat is especially fun because this time, we dove in together and read "Eightysixed" by a fellow Chicago girl boss, Emily Belden. Typically, we tend to seek out intense dramas and mysteries so it was a nice change of pace to enjoy a fun read full of 20-something humor and emotions. Self-described as a story about the "hellish purgatory that is somewhere between “wanting it all” and “having no clue how to get it," we could immediately relate to this feeling and all of the concerns we experience as we get older and try to navigate that divide.
Much like real life, broken hearts and bottles of wine go hand in hand in this story. It's the modern day Carrie Bradshaw whose looking for love (and an equally important relationship, a career) in a big city. Whether you're single or not, these tragedies and triumphs speak to all young ladies who undoubtedly have a few of their own experiences that would make others shake their head and laugh...because when it comes to being young, sometimes that's all you can do. This is the perfect weekend (or beach) read that you'll devour in a matter of hours.
Not only did we enjoy the book we were so pleased to spend some time getting to know the author.
Behind the scenes with Emily...
When/why did you decide to write a book?
I began writing several “entries” about things going on in my life. Some I published to my blog and some I did not. Eventually I reached a critical mass where I found myself saying...this could be a movie. Or this could be a book. Since they were all chronological, it wasn’t hard to turn them into chapters and eventually compile a full-length manuscript.
Do you write full-time or are you pursuing other talents as well?
Writing and re-writing (edits) used to take up the majority of my time. But now that Eightysixed has been optioned for film, I’m spending about half my time working on the episodic development of the show. Additionally, I’ve become known as a foul-mouthed keynote speaker and do about an event a month. In fact, I just came back from The Lady Project Summit in Providence, which was a blast.
Which actor/actress would you like to see playing the lead character from Eightysixed?
I’ll go with who I always thought prior to actually optioning the book for film: Emmy Rossum and David Beckham as Emily and Floris. Nick Jonas/Zac Efron as Trent. Something like that. Will be interesting to see who is finally cast!
Any tips on how to get through the dreaded writer’s block?
As bloggers, it can be hard to curate fresh content all the time!
Food. can’t write unless I have something to mindlessly nosh on. My preference is a sandwich, but I’m also prone to cookies and wine. After that, my fingers just take off. I don’t “storyboard” anything out. When I sit down throw down some words, I truly have no clue where the story will go in that hour or two. It’s always a great surprise to me.
What book(s) have you read recently that you would recommend?
I Take You by Eliza Kennedy. It was a recommendation by my agent because I’m working on a novel where the lead character is less moral, but still likeable. She thought ITY was a good example and it was!
Being a local Chicago gal, what are your favorite spots to eat, drink & play in the city?
Lou Malnati’s for pizza. Portillo’s for their chopped salad. Acadia for their Pimm’s Cup. Gold Coast to live. Lincoln Park to play. Other than that, I love rollerblading on the lake path, shopping at Macy’s, and discovering a hole in the wall place for a latte.
Interested in reading Eightysixed? We've got your book hookup!
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What are you currently reading? It's time to move on to our next book!