Sunday, February 15, 2009

Gwendolyn Zepeda

Gwendolyn Zepeda is the author of a short-story collection called To the Last Man I Slept with and All the Jerks Just Like Him and the children’s book, Growing Up with Tamales, a 2009 Charlotte Zolotow Award Highly Commended Title.

From a Q & A with the author about her new novel,
Houston, We Have a Problema:

1. What gave you the idea for this book?

I was in a friend’s office, telling him I couldn’t decide what to write next. He had a Magic 8- Ball on his shelf. I took it and asked, “Should I try to write a novel?” It said the answer was unclear. I was annoyed and wished I knew a real psychic who could tell me for certain what to do. Then the idea came to me: What if someone based all her decisions on fortune- telling, signs, and superstition?

2. Are you Jessica Luna? How similar is your life to hers?

I’m not Jessica. There are a few similarities. I grew up in Houston, I work in insurance, I’ve worked for nonprofits, and I’m sometimes superstitious. Like everyone else, I’ve had doubts about the direction my life is going. But besides that, we’re pretty different. I’m older than her. My mom’s white, and I grew up with my dad and his family. I have two younger brothers, no sisters. I’ve been married, and I have three sons. I’ve been dating the same guy for five years now. Most strikingly, Jessica has way more time to go out drinking and dancing than I do.
Read the complete Q & A.

The Page 69 Test: Houston, We Have a Problema.

--Marshal Zeringue