“I think it takes a greater creative leap to attempt to throw yourself into a stranger and try to make sense of him or her in a way that often makes sense of yourself too”: Michelle Hoover and Allison Amend discuss their latest novels and the difficulties of writing fiction based on historical fact.
“The most important part of a character’s Wounding Event is the darkness and fear it represents, a darkness that the character will soon have to face head on—as will we”: Michelle Hoover on stories that put characters’ flaws and fears to the test.
Every work of fiction is grown from at least one seed of truth, whether it’s an emotional truth, an actual event, or a fact of nature. For Michelle Hoover, author of the elegant debut novel The Quickening, this seed was a fifteen-page document that her great-grandmother typed out in the final year of her life. In it, “broken hearted and sick in mind and body,” she recounted her seven decades as an Iowa farmwoman. Loosely based on this document and family oral histories, The Quickening follows the journeys of two Iowan families trying to build their lives amid the hardships of the Great Depression.
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