The GBC sat down with Kimberly McCreight to get the skinny on this month’s GBC book club choice Reconstructing Amelia. See our exclusive interview below:
1. How much of your book is fiction and how much comes from real life experience
The book is 100% fiction. But I certainly drew inspiration from the many news accounts of bullying as well as my own experiences as a parent.
2. Are you a mother?
Yes, I have two daughters. Both are a few years away from being teenagers, but I’m bracing myself for the challenges to come.
3. Was it difficult to write about the experiences you covered in your book?
If you mean, difficult to write about the loss of a child, then yes. But while I draw on my own emotional experiences, I am in the shoes of a character who isn’t me so I’m always keeping a certain amount of psychic distance. And because Amelia was very much “alive” for me as I wrote her chapters it was a good break from the sadness there was in Kate’s sections.
4. Were you in a Sorority?
No, my college didn’t have them.
5. Do you think the reader should blame Kate for not knowing more about what was going on in her daughter’s life?
I’d never want to dictate how readers should feel about various characters. I personally have an enormous amount of empathy for Kate and relate very closely to her struggle to be the best mother she could be. I don’t blame her, but I think each reader needs to decide for themselves.
6. How long did it take you to write the book?
It was 18 months from the time I started writing the book until it was sold to Harper.