It is a pleasure to have her with us today at Beyond the Books!
Thank you so for this interview, Camila. Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?
I think I was fairly portrayed. I appear in only one essay in the book, but it is a very special essay called “The House on Amity Street.” The author portrayed the people on our street with sensitivity and awareness, and painted a good portrait of our lives in the neighborhood.
Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality? If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?
I think she did a fine job. I am from Honduras, and she was able to build into the piece some of my beliefs and experiences, as well as some of the aspects of our friendship.
What do you believe is your strongest trait?
I am a very and honest strong. I tell people what I think, and I never give up.
Some people might say that telling people what I think is a bad trait! But I don’t think so.
If you could choose someone in the television or movie industry to play your part if your book was made into a movie, who would that be?
Oh, I don’t know. Maybe Sophia Vergara!
Do you have a love interest in the book?
I have been married to my husband for more than 30 years, and he also appears in that essay, but only briefly.
At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?
This book is a memoir-in-essays, so I knew how it turns out! I live across the street from the author.
If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?
I wouldn’t want to trade places with anyone. I am happy with who I am.
How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?
I think it really shows a lot about life, how we have to find the happy moments even when life is difficult. We have to celebrate and be happy whenever we get the chance.
What words of wisdom would you give your author if s/he decided to write another book with you in it?
She didn’t use my real name, which is a good thing. To protect me she also didn’t mention me in the acknowledgments. But next time, yes, I’d like that!
Thank you for this interview, Camila. Will we be seeing more of you in the future?
I hope so! I am always telling Faye to write a book about my life. But if not, I hope I will show up in more essays.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Faye Rapoport DesPres is the author of the new memoir-in-essays, Message from a Blue Jay. She earned her M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the Solstice MFA Program at Pine Manor College. Her essays, fiction, poetry, and reviews have appeared in Ascent, International Gymnast Magazine, Platte Valley Review, Superstition Review, In the Arts, Fourth Genre, TheWhistling Fire, the Writer’s Chronicle, and other journals and magazines. Faye was born in New York City and has lived in England, Israel, and Colorado. She currently lives in the Boston area with her husband, Jean-Paul Des Pres, and their cats. Visit her website at www.fayerapoportdespres.com.
About the book
From an astonishing blue jay to a lone humpback whale, from the back roads of her hometown to the streets of Jerusalem and the Tower of London, debut author Faye Rapoport DesPres examines a modern life marked by a passion for the natural world, unexpected love, and shocking loss, and her search for a place she can finally call home in this beautifully crafted memoir-in-essays.
Three weeks before DesPres’s fortieth birthday, nothing about her life fit the usual mold. She is single, living in a rented house in Boulder, Colorado, fitting dance classes and nature hikes between workdays at a software start-up that soon won’t exist. While contemplating a sky still hazy from summer wildfires, she decides to take stock of her nomadic life and find the real reasons she never “settled down.” The choices she makes from that moment on lead her to retrace her steps-in the States and abroad-as she attempts to understand her life. But instead of going back, she finds herself moving forward to new love, horrible loss, and finally, in a way that she never expected, to a place she can almost call home.
Readers who love the memoirs and personal essays of rising contemporary writers such as Cheryl Strayed, Joy Castro, and Kim Dana Kupperman will appreciate Faye’s observational eye, her passion for the natural world and the creatures that inhabit it, and her search for the surprising truths behind the events of our daily lives.