The Opposite of Love Winner
Irreverent Freelancer is this week's winner and Julie Buxbaum is answering her question from Istanbul. "Irreverent," please send me your snail mail address so I can send you Julie's book! And, Jodi, I'm still awaiting your address as well.
As someone who lost my mother as a teenager, I only recently
fully grieved that loss when I recently lost my grandmother (who took
over the motherly role). I don't know how much of yourself goes into
your writing, but did you find yourself reliving some of your own
losses while writing this book? And if so, did you find the process
painful or cathartic?
I find the act of writing cathartic pretty much regardless of the
topic. It would be naïve of me to say that none of my own experiences
with loss went into THE OPPOSITE OF LOVE, but since Emily's story
wasn't my own story, the experience was never painful. (Though it was
painful on those mornings when I just couldn't articulate what I
wanted to say!). Oddly enough, the scenes in the book that most made
me cry when I wrote them--and to be honest, I'm not sure whether most
writers are weird like I am and make themselves laugh and cry--were
scenes that even if I had wanted to I couldn't find a parallel in my
own life. (For example when Emily fights with her dad in the
hospital.) That said, in my second book I keep finding myself
returning to certain themes--loss being one of them--and so I do
wonder if a huge part of why I write is purely for the cathartic
experience of it.