She is a beloved and renowned novelist, but really, Laura McBride has missed her calling. She could have been a lawyer or a politician. Exhibit A: her responses to our fiendish author questionnaire, below. Laura will be in conversation with Eleanor Brown in the Senior Hall Recital Room on the Stephens College campus at 10.30 on April 23, discussing her fabulous novel, We Are Called To Rise, and will be part of our panel, An Abundance of Lauras, in the Senior Hall Parlors at 1.15. (If you ask her a question in the Q & A, be ready for a slippery answer.)
What is your favorite word?
Name one book that you would like everyone in the world to read.
This question seemed a little bit hard, so I moved on to the next one.
If you could visit any literary location, real or imagined, where would it be?
You’ve cost me hours, imagining places so vivid to me in childhood: L’Engle’s Ixchel and Uriel, Cair Paravel and the stone table in Narnia, Holden Caulfield’s field of rye. And then, Rumi’s Persia and Sappho’s Lesbos and Yeats’ Isle of Innisfree. And on and on. Really, my mind turns round and round. I have to stop, or I may lose my job.
What is your favorite opening line of a novel or poem?
Ummmmm. I don’t have this kind of mind.
What book did you most enjoy in the last year?
I think probably Marilynne Robinson’s Lila. I’m a big fan, and her sentences make me think.
What’s the strangest question you’ve ever been asked at an author event?
Someone asked me why I chose the name Rosenberg for the police officer in We Are Called to Rise. And it took me a really long minute to stammer, “Did I call him Rosenberg?” No, it turns out. But this is what a tough question does to my brain. (See above.)
Tell us one thing about Missouri that you knew without having to look it up on the Internet.
That Mark Twain grew up in Hannibal. Hannibal. What a lovely name for a place. It was more lovely before that scary movie, but I digress.