It is. It really is. Today my wonderful editor sent me the Reading Group Guide for EXIT THE ACTRESS. First the Discussion Questions. It was strange and surreal to see the book broken down into discussion topics. To see it quoted and questioned and unthreaded theme by theme? It was marvelous.
Then came the Book Club Activities. Suggestions for recipes and ways to make the two dimensional reading experience a three dimensional practical experience. I actually tried to make several of the recipes--they are all real Restoration era recipes--but they turned out terribly--flat macaroons and fizzy eggs. That is most likely due to my appalling lack of culinary sense rather than a historical hiccup.
And lastly came the Author Questions. I have to send them back next week. I am trying to think of what I would want to know from an author but my mind seems to have gone curiously blank this side of the curtain. How did I choose my heroine, my story, my style? Why, when how, who? It is difficult to convey just how unexpected it all was. The format, the subject, the period. Each element of the story just presented itself as fait accompli without bothering to ask for my input. Like guests who show up at the door with bag and baggage and move right in.
These elements were wonderfully determined. If I tried to throw one out at dinner it would show up at the breakfast table the next day and slurp its tea loudly to show it was not scared. If I tried to invite my one of own friends over to join the plot the elements would put her bags politely on the doorstep and call her a cab. This book wanted what it wanted and ran me over if I got in the way. I really liked that about it.