5 More Questions About WAKE ME UP—#literary #crime

WMUpwraparound coverAll for fun, I’m providing five more answers in the January joy theme activator, one question for each day of the month . . . These cover January 6th through the 10th and I’m happy to begin thinking of why I wrote something that way, or how I created a certain character, conflict, resolution, scene, and setting. Follow me down this rabbit hole, please. Above is the full paperback wraparound cover in all its glory. If you like family sagas in a beautiful package, Wake Me Up might be the right book for you or your book club. Please let me hear from you in the comments below.

All of these answers are about the novel Wake Me Up!

  1. A character you’d be best friends with and why. I’d love to be best friends with Sai. He is the fictional small-town reporter in Sun Valley, Idaho who has moved there from California and is written about by Deepika within the novel—a story within the story. He has problems like anyone else, strengths and weaknesses, and a sense of humor. That’s what I like.
  2. The very first idea or inspiration you had for this novel. When I began writing Wake Me Up, the image of a husband and father materialized, and I thought about how he was suffering internally from guilt, and this guilt, why it was there also appeared: he’d had an affair . . . and more. He had quit his law firm, and wasn’t paying any of the bills coming in to run the household. His wife then was there, someone he’d hurt, someone who knew about his affairs, and had let him back into the family home . . . and then Chris Bullet, the fifteen-year-old son stepped forth, almost full force, as the narrator who was left in the dark about most of what his parents were up to . . . what secrets they were withholding from him. I wanted to answer the question: Why would this father sit in his home office contemplating the end of his life?
  3. A favorite line from Wake Me Up about a character. “The life of Alice Plesher was planned out from the beginning days on the farm as if God had inhabited her mother’s flesh on one of His bad days and a tiny part clung to her when He had to go put a crack in a dam somewhere across the world to teach the people caught in the flood a lesson about sticking together, helping your neighbor, in hard times. You did what you were told. The family didn’t go to church often. Alice always wondered why and imagined her parents balking at religion the same way they dug into the sand when anyone tried to tell them what to do or how to live.”
  4. A favorite piece of description from Wake Me Up“He thinks of Mexico, beaches his sister haunts, the ocean far away, and then recalls the summer moments when his father would drive the family, or just Geoffrey, all the way to the Jersey Shore for a long afternoon. Sometimes they’d rent a cottage at Cape May. Happy days. Geoffrey would stare at the ocean. He was just a little boy, the back of his head seal slick. He watched the rolling waves crush the beach and laugh, run into the water and sparkle alone, figure things out in his head as his father watched, as his family watched on those occasions. If he could retrieve those happier moments more often, maybe the darkness within him wouldn’t clutch at his heart.
  5. A favorite line of dialogue from Wake Me Up. It’s kind of part description/dialogue: “The woman’s husband says: She’s a lucky woman. She says in reply: I get a second life now. Ananda says to them both: I firmly believe in fate. I don’t fear anything. Things come and things go. Deepika would roll her eyes and tell her brother he’s laying it on a bit thick.”

So, there you have this installment of five questions. I’m happy I get to share a little bit more about Wake Me Up, and I hope you find the story as involving as I intended it to be.

ever,

Justin

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