Thursday, May 23, 2013

Erin McGraw's "Better Food for a Better World," the movie

Now showing at My Book, The Movie: Better Food for a Better World by Erin McGraw.

The entry begins:
Full disclosure: I hardly watch any movies. There are a lot of reasons for this, including laziness of an almost heroic degree, but the sad result is that I can't discuss the differences between Tilda Swinton's performance in We Need to Talk about Kevin and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, because I've only seen Michael Clayton. I can do a little better with Daniel Craig, because my husband has a soft spot for James Bond. So when I cast my book with A-list actors, I'm not casting out of hubris. I'm casting from a narrow base of knowledge.

That doesn't stop me from ferociously imagining my characters inhabited by humans, though. At some not-quite-pinpointable place in a book's composition, I start draping an actor's flesh around my character. It's easier to envision a scene if I can imagine the particular human beings walking through it, and when a book has a lot of characters, as Better Food for a Better World does, I need to imagine specific hair and voice and mannerisms to keep myself sane.

The book involves, Big Chill-style, three married couples who were friends in college. Pooling their money and energy, they start an ice-cream store in a college town in northern California. Because they are in California and because the book is a comedy, they also join a marriage support group, Life Ties, a kind of riff on 12-Step programs that becomes alarmingly intrusive. Life Ties members think nothing of lecturing one another on how they should behave--in public, at home, in bed. Life Ties members mean well, but they are nosy and bossy. Life Ties drives Vivy Jilet, my main character, nuts. She's a high-spirited person, impulsive, equipped with a smart mouth that sometimes gets her in trouble. It's obvious...[read on]
Learn more about the book and author at Erin McGraw's website.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Erin McGraw & Max and Sister.

The Page 69 Test: Better Food for a Better World.

My Book, The Movie: Better Food for a Better World.

--Marshal Zeringue