Hello Bookworms, if you couldn’t already tell, I love doing author interviews! Not only do we as readers or writers get an insight into their processes, but it can create a deeper meaning or connection to a book we already love. Today’s interview is with Laurie Elizabeth Flynn, author of Firsts, and The Girls are All Nice Here, a novel that was just recently published!
Erin : What is the most surprising thing you discovered while writing this book?
Laurie : I really found out how deeply engrained the mean girl/nice girl labels are in our society, to the point where I had to stop myself from judging my own characters for their actions. It’s interesting that once a girl has been labeled, it’s like she has been condemned. It’s very hard for her to break out of that mold and be seen as anything else.
Erin : Do you have a favourite character that you have written? If so, who? And what makes them so special.
Laurie : Writing Sloane “Sully” Sullivan was wickedly fun, but I think thus far, Ambrosia is my favorite character I’ve written. She’s deeply insecure and intersects with Sully at the exact moment when she needs validation most, and as loathsome as some of her actions are, I believe her descent into darkness is believable because we can see bits of our own vulnerabilities and insecurities in her.
Erin : What is the significance of the title, The Girls are All So Nice Here?
Laurie : I didn’t have a title for this book until I had finished writing it. The title was taken from a line in the book, when Ambrosia muses over the letters she wrote to her grandmother during freshman year, lying about the girls she had met at school. It immediately felt like a perfect fit. It’s just so ironic, because the girls in this book, for the most part, do such horrible things to each other.
Erin : What was the highlight of writing this book?
Laurie : I loved writing the freshman year timeline and getting inside teenage Ambrosia’s head. Those hard-partying, second-guessing scenes, fraught with anxiety and excess, were some of my favourites to write.
Erin : Describe your writing space.
Laurie : My home office has a beautiful window, so I get a ton of light. I have bookshelves along one wall, a couch along another (which I try to avoid due to nap temptation) and two desks, one for typing and one for organizing. I have a corkboard on the wall that I intended to use as a storyboard, but it’s mostly just filled with my kids’ pictures instead. I always have a hot mug of coffee beside me.
Erin : How long have you been writing?
Laurie : I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. I vividly recall being in the fourth grade and going up to my teacher’s desk to ask her for more paper when we had creative writing time, because my stories always got unwieldy. I started writing seriously with the goal of publication in 2011-2012, and my first YA book was released in 2016.
Erin : What are you reading now?
Laurie : We Can Only Save Ourselves by Alison Wisdom, which just released this week. It explores the dark side of girlhood and has the most exquisitely gorgeous writing. I’ve also started I Don’t Forgive You by Aggie Blum Thompson, which is out in June, and is so taut, addictive, and compelling. I highly recommend both!
Erin : And here’s a final fun question, can you share a link to a recipe you love?
Laurie : I’m not much of a cook, so if it’s not extremely easy, chances are I’m not making it. That said, I love to bake with my 3 year old and 2 year old. These blondies are a favorite, except we would add lots of sprinkles at their request.
About Laurie Elizabeth Flynn
Laurie Elizabeth Flynn is a former model who lives in London, Ontario with her husband and their three children. She is the author of three young adult novels: Firsts, Last Girl Lied To and All Eyes On Her, under the name L.E. Flynn.
Her debut adult fiction novel, The Girls Are All So Nice Here, will be released in 2021. It has sold in eleven territories worldwide and has been optioned for TV by AMC.
The Girls Are All So Nice Here
Two former best friends return to their college reunion to find that they’re being circled by someone who wants revenge for what they did ten years before—and will stop at nothing to get it—in this shocking psychological thriller about ambition, toxic friendship, and deadly desire.
Alternating between the reunion and Amb’s freshman year, The Girls Are All So Nice Here is a shocking novel about the brutal lengths girls can go to get what they think they’re owed, and what happens when the games we play in college become matters of life and death.