Tell us about your novel, “In the Margins”
A modern love-hate story, “In the Margins” is written in alternating
viewpoints, finding rhythm and complexity in the he-said-she-said decay of a
relationship. As undergraduate students, Allie and Liam clashed in a careless
and irreparable way. Years later, they come together again in an attempt to
rehash their history. Their mutual truth then becomes clear: all stories need
to be told, if only for the sake of emerging from between the lines and
discovering what memories look like in print.
Are there any main themes or messages in the book?
The main theme of the novel is that of forgiveness - the ability to forgive oneself and the people who damaged you in the past. Tying in with this, we find the essence of hindsight and the tendency to color our pasts in ways to make them easier to live with.
Who is this book written for?
“In the Margins” is a novel about being young, but is not written expressly for the young. This book is really for anyone who has ever uttered the sentiment “if only I had known then, what I know now.”
“In the Margins” is written in a unique style and format. Tell us about that.
The book begins many years after the end of Allie and Liam’s relationship. Both of them working writers, Allie and Liam again clash as they attempt to pen the story of their relationship. Their resulting “he-said-she-said” vignettes comprise the majority of the novel. I chose this style in a deliberate attempt to shatter the sacred “fourth wall” of fiction. “In the Margins” is the book actually being written, within the book itself. This style not only provides a unique and quick-paced perspective on a classic young love tale, it also challenges the reader to acknowledge the importance of honesty in reviewing one’s own history.
About your main characters, can you tell us how you would describe Allie and Liam?
Allie spends most of her free time in the company of dead writers, often shutting out a world she deems exclusionary and dull. She is wealthy and extremely intelligent, and latches onto anything or anyone that manages to hold her attention. Liam is a true artist, able to find poetry in everything – especially Allie. He trusts far too easily. While some consider him a waste of potential, he is content with his place in the world, rarely questioning his deservedness for the good or the bad bits of life.
What inspired this book?
Young love is an often-explored subject and I hoped to provide a new perspective by creating a modern, retrospect-tarnished version of love-gone-wrong. This book is largely based on every relationship I’ve ever had or observed. The character of Liam is inspired by every man I’ve ever loved and Allie is a portrait of every woman I’ve ever disdained.
What were some challenges you faced when writing this book?
I couldn’t get my characters to shut up at times. My characters are my starting point and my guides and I’m largely just recording the actions and words they offer up. My challenge is when a character seems to be making a decision or statement that I am personally uncomfortable with. I often came up with a bit of dialogue or a scene that literally made me wince. I had to resist the urge to strike the ‘delete’ button, as those bits often turned out to be the most honest and essential to the story.
Why the title “In the Margins?”
Allie and Liam are writers. Their shared obsession is subtext and they embrace the reality that more things are said between the lines, rather than in them. While they literally pen furious notes in the margins of their college books, they later realize that the most essential words are often left out.
When and where can we buy the book?
“In the Margins” is scheduled to be released in mid September and will be available for purchase on Amazon or via my personal website at www.kerrifarrellfoley.com. You can read an excerpt of the novel at: http://www.kerrifarrellfoley.com/p/in-margins-excerpt.html
In : Author Interviews
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