Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Q&A With Alice Eve Cohen and Giveaway!

Please join me in welcoming Alice Eve Cohen, author of What I Thought I Knew (my review) to The Book Chick today! Ms. Cohen has kindly stopped by today to answer some of my questions. Be sure to enter to win a copy of this enthralling memoir at the end of this post.


The Book Chick: What I Thought I Knew is a very raw, honest book about parenting, especially about the pregnancy and birth of your daughter Eliana. Will you let her read it when she's old enough?


Alice Eve Cohen: My husband I struggled with this question before the book was published. Eliana was eight at the time, and originally we wanted her to wait till she was older before reading it. But she said, “It’s a book about my birth, and I want to read it before the public does.” We couldn’t argue with that, and Eliana already knew much of the story about her birth. We told her that she could read it on the condition that Mommy or Daddy was in the room with her while she was reading, so she could ask us questions. She had some questions—not too many. When she finished, she turned to me and said, “Good book, Mom. I really liked it.” That was the best review I could ever get!


TBC: How long did it take you to write What I Thought I Knew?


AEC: Hmm… Should I count the seven years I wanted to write it, but was too scared? I think not, although I believe that “writers block” can be an important part of the creative process—it’s like keeping farmland fallow, so it can replenish and bear fruit in the future. After seven years of not being able to write, I sat down one day, started writing and couldn’t stop. I wrote for exactly a year—September to September—until I had a draft that I was ready to show a few friends. When Penguin bought WHAT I THOUGHT I KNEW six months later, my editor asked me to significantly expand it. I spent the following six months writing, expanding, editing, and polishing the book for publication. In total, it took me two years to write the book.


TBC: What was your journey to publication like?


AEC: It was a thrilling journey! I was very fortunate to find a phenomenal agent, Sally Wofford-Girand, who believed in my book and quickly found a perfect home for it at Penguin. I learned so much from my brilliant editor, Carole DeSanti, who guided me through the process; she helped me clarify themes in my book that I wasn’t even aware were in it. And I thoroughly enjoyed the publicity and media experience.


TBC: Do you plan to continue to write books, either fictional books or another memoir?


AEC: Yes! I’m in the thick of writing a new memoir (working title, MY LEFT EYE), and I want to work next on fiction.


TBC: What books are on your nightstand right now?


AEC: There’s a tower of books on my nightstand, including: GOING BOVINE, a remarkable new YA novel by Libba Bray, which I bought today; I just finished another YA novel, THE GIVER, by Lois Lowry; all of David Sedaris’ books—I love rereading his dark and hilarious stories, especially the collection ME TALK PRETTY ONE DAY; Tony Kushner’s brilliant play, ANGELS IN AMERICA; WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE, by Maurice Sendak, my favorite picture book; David Shields’ beautiful THE THING ABOUT LIFE IS THAT ONE DAY YOU’LL BE DEAD; Abigail Thomas’ gorgeous memoir, A THREE DOG LIFE; and THE HISTORY OF LOVE, by Nicole Krauss.


Thank-you so much to Alice Eve Cohen for stopping by! I'll definitely be reading her future memoir. You can also visit her at her website, her Twitter page, or her Facebook page.


Courtesy of BookSparks PR I have one copy of What I Thought I Knew available to give away! To enter:


1. *Mandatory Entry* Leave me a comment and tell me: what is your favourite memoir? If you don't read memoirs, just let me know in your comment. Please leave me an e-mail address so that I can contact you if you win. No e-mail= no entry!


2. *Bonus Entry* Become a follower of this blog through Google Friend Connect, and leave me a separate comment letting me know that you now follow. Already a GFC follower? Leave me a comment letting me know that you already follow.


3. *Bonus Entry* Spread the word about this contest in some way- blog about it, add it to your sidebar, Tweet about it, Facebook it, whatever! Let me know in a separate comment how you spread the word (1 bonus entry maximum for spreading the word).


That's three potential chances to win! This contest is open to US and Canadian mailing addresses only, and runs until November 24, 2010. I will be notifying the winner by e-mail, who will have 48 hours to respond. Good luck!

42 comments:

  1. My favorite memoir to date is by Wayson Choy titled Not Yet. Check it out, it's amazing!

    freda.mans[at]sympatico.ca

    ReplyDelete
  2. Already a GFC follower.

    freda.mans[at]sympatico.ca

    ReplyDelete
  3. tweet; http://twitter.com/#!/fredalicious/status/29573470826

    freda.mans[at]sympatico.ca

    ReplyDelete
  4. I've heard great things about this one and would love to win! My favorite memoir thus far has been Craig Thompson's Blankets, which is also a graphic novel. Beautiful, moving and haunting.

    writing.meg [at] gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  5. I'm also a follower. :)

    writing.meg [at] gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. my fav memoir to date is :Slash by Slash. My son suggested that I read it and I could hardly put it down.

    heatherdpear at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  7. Already a follower

    heatherdpear at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  8. I added this to my weekly giveaway blog. :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. I have not read many memoirs yet as the few I picked up have been slightly disappointing. This one sounds marvelous though!
    Thanks,
    candc320@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  10. I am a GFC follower (Colleen Turner).
    candc320@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  11. My favorite memoir is the one by Andrew Agassi. Title leaves my memory. I am already a follower. mggwells@gforcecable.com

    ReplyDelete
  12. My favorite memoir is Safe Passage by Ida Cook. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  13. No need to enter me, babe. I'm dropping in to say thanks for the e-mail. I've got this posted at Win a Book for you.

    ReplyDelete
  14. My favorite memoir is Homer Hickam Jr's "Rocket Boys" (also known as "October Sky").

    This looks like an interesting read. Thanks for hosting.

    lostlibrarygirl@sbcglobal.net

    ReplyDelete
  15. I'm a follower!

    lostlibrarygirl@sbcglobal.net

    ReplyDelete
  16. I tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/LostLibraryGirl/status/29670284541

    lostlibrarygirl@sbcglobal.net

    ReplyDelete
  17. The most recent memoir that I enjoyed was Bobo's Daughter.

    kdurham2@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  18. I am a follower!

    kdurham2@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  19. My favorite memoir is Cowboy & Wills by Monica Holloway. It's a fantastic book about a little boy with autism and the adorable puppy and helps me cope with life.

    Thank you for hosting this giveaway!

    Aimala127 AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  20. I'm a new Google Friend's Connect follower!

    ~ Amy
    Aimala127 AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  21. I really enjoy Memoirs and have alot of favorites, so I will tell you the most recent one that I read which is Labor of Love:A Midwife's Memoir by Cara Muhlhahn. Thanks for the chance into this giveaway!

    unforgetable_dreamer_always (at) hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  22. I haven't read too many although i would like to read more. But recently i did read one about a young model.

    billiondollarprincesss@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. I have read a few memoirs. One of my favorites was "Riding the Bus with My Sister" by Rachel Simon. It's about the lessons the author learned while she rode the city buses with her mentally handicapped sister. Very moving.

    jillhagemeier@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  24. I haven't been a reader of memoirs so far.

    littleone AT shaw DOT ca

    ReplyDelete
  25. I follow on GFC.

    littleone AT shaw DOT ca

    ReplyDelete
  26. Eat, Pray, Love...the book, not the movie.

    ruthiekb72@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  27. i remember reading john denver's story awhile back

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  28. follower :)

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  29. Thanks for the chance to win!!

    areallibrarian[at]gmail[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  30. I also follow!!

    areallibrarian[at]gmail[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  31. I am a Google Friends Follower.... Twitter and Facebook are my right and left arms. I can't think of any memoirs I have read (unless I didn't realize I was reading one). Love to read !!! Thanks for having a contest . Debbiburnie@yahoo.ca

    ReplyDelete
  32. I'm not sure if they are technically memoirs but I love Jenny McCarthy's books (Belly Laughs, Baby Laughs, etc.) They are hilarious.

    dftrew(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  33. I follow with GFC

    dftrew(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  34. I LOVE glass castle by jeannette walls, so beautiful.

    strandedhero at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  35. This books sounds really interesting! Please count me in.

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

    ReplyDelete
  36. GFC Follower

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

    ReplyDelete
  37. Tweet! Tweet!
    @NancyeDavis

    http://twitter.com/NancyeDavis/status/6903279988506625

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

    ReplyDelete
  38. I do not really have a favorite because memoirs are so different. One I enjoyed last year was Japan Took the J.A.P. Out of Me. aitmama {{at}} gmail {{tod}} com

    ReplyDelete
  39. Follower aitmama {{at}} gmail {{tod}} com

    ReplyDelete
  40. http://twitter.com/aitmama/status/7201619796041728

    ReplyDelete
  41. This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to the winner, Colleen Turner!

    ReplyDelete