Interview with Leigh Stein (2)

Posted by @ 3:24 pm on January 10th, 2012

Leigh Stein’s laugh-out-loud-funny first novel, The Fallback Plan, is about a girl named Esther who has just graduated from college and, for lack of anything better to do, takes a job babysitting for a girl named May, whose parents, Nate and Amy, lost their first child a few years before. Bored, Esther spends a lot of time imagining a Chronicles of Narnia redux, featuring panda bears.

HTMLGIANT: One thing I am thinking about writing about it is about doors. The Fallback Plan has some good ones — the door to the dead child’s room, the door to the studio, the panda’s doorway to the other world, the father’s security concerns, the throwing of keys, and the whole book represents Esther’s passage into adulthood. Was there anything intentional you were thinking about the doors when you were writing this?

Leigh: I wasn’t thinking intentionally about doors…I wish I was! That would make me seem so smart. One thing I do sometimes to test my memory is try to remember doorknobs. Like in the house I lived in until I was 13 or 14, the doorknobs were very particular (inspiring the doorknob to the attic in my novel) and by remembering them, I feel like I still hold on to a little piece of that house.

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