Mary: Thank you so much for having me, and for all your support for The Good Girl, Orsayor! I’m thrilled to be here.
Orsayor: What inspired you to write The Good Girl?
Mary: When I started working on The Good Girl, I only had a piece of the plot figured out: a kidnapping that was not quite what it seemed to be. This essentially came to me in a daydream; I was plotting, one of my favorite parts of being an author. As I started writing the novel, the story came to me bit by bit, and the characters themselves inspired the story as I figured them each out: who they were, their pasts and motivations, what made them tick. I like to say that the characters told their story to me rather than the other way around.
Orsayor: Do you work with an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?
Mary: I don’t work with an outline. I find the more I over think a plot, the less natural it feels to me. It takes awhile for me to get to know and understand my characters and their motivations, and ultimately I want my work to be their stories and not mine. When I write, on any given day I’m not entirely certain what will happen in the lives of my characters, and often times their actions surprise me as much as they do the reader.
Orsayor: When you wrote that paragraph below – did you pause for a minute and think… “Wow! There’s no turning back”?
“I’ve been following her for the last few days. I know where she buys her groceries, where she has her dry cleaning done, where she works. I’ve never spoken to her. I wouldn’t recognize the sound of her voice. I don’t know the color of her eyes or what they look like when she’s scared. But I will.”
Mary: This is one of my favorite lines from The Good Girl. This is where the reader first meets Colin, our kidnapper, and it sets the tone for the novel: dark and a bit foreboding. The reader gets their first glimpse into the kind of man Colin is and understands the task at hand. It was an exciting moment, and yes, I did think: there’s no turning back now.
Orsayor: Was there a scene in The Good Girl that was hard for you to write?
Mary: I spent a solid five years of my life writing The Good Girl and in that time felt a very close bond to each of the characters. I thought about them all the time; I dreamt about them. Intrinsically, I wanted the very best for all of them, but as an author certain mishaps had to happen for the sake of the plot. Without giving any spoilers away, it was hard for me to write any scene that affected the characters in some adverse way.
Orsayor: Give readers an insight into one of your main characters from the book.
Mary: Eve is the character I most often relate to. She’s a mother, as am I, and feels quite vulnerable in her marriage to the powerful James Dennett. When her daughter goes missing, she – with the help of a detective – launches an investigation to find her. I was able to put myself in Eve’s shoes time and again and ask myself: what would I do, and, how would I feel if my child was missing? I sympathized with Eve and her plight.
Orsayor: How do you feel when people compare your book, The Good Girl to Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn?
Mary: Truly honored. Gone Girl is such a massive success, and people love it. Gillian Flynn is a very talented author. It really is an honor to have comparisons made between my book and hers.
Orsayor: Your book ended with a powerful word that shook me to the core. If you had to do it all again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Mary: I wouldn’t change a thing. That said, I feel I will learn and grow as an author with each novel I write. My hope is that the quality of my work improves with every subsequent book and that I will learn in some way or another from the books that have gone before it.
Orsayor: I can’t wait to read your upcoming book, Pretty Baby! What can readers expect from your novel, Pretty Baby.
Mary: Thank you so much, Orsayor! Pretty Baby will release July 28, 2015, from Harlequin MIRA. It’s the story of a Chicago mother who comes across a young homeless girl waiting beside the Chicago ‘L’ with an infant in her arms. She becomes quite taken with the girl and wants to help her, and as she does she begins to discover who the girl is and how she’s come to be here. As with The Good Girl, nothing is quite as it seems to be. I hope you and your readers will enjoy it!
Mary Kubica is the international bestselling author of THE GOOD GIRL. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, in History and American Literature.
She lives outside of Chicago with her husband and two children and enjoys photography, gardening, and caring for the animals at a local shelter.
Book Links: (* American, UK, etc.) – (these are available on my website)