“With The Fever, Megan Abbott has created a mesmerizing, modern portrait of teenage life today: Brutal crushes, competing allegiances and first-bloom sensuality, all magnified by the rush and crush of technology. The Fever holds true to its title: It’s dark, disturbing, strangely beautiful and utterly unshakeable.”
—Gillian Flynn, author of Gone Girl
A Short Q & A With Megan Abbott
Are there any elements in this book that are drawn from your own life?
I did work in a pizza joint as a teenager, and I did once live in a town with mysterious weather, which plays a role in The Fever. The kind of place where the entire climate changes on a dime. Living there, it always felt like Wuthering Heights to me. Like living on the moors.
When did you first know you were a writer?
I’m still awaiting confirmation. But I was a book lover since before I can remember and spent most of my childhood running my fingers across book spines at the public library, looking for new bounty, so that much was there since consciousness.
If you weren’t a writer, what do you think you would be? Put another way, what else fills your life besides writing (and how does this influence your writing, in practical or ephemeral ways)?
Movies, movies, movies. Which is not a profession (at least not the way I mean), but movies have always influenced my fiction. I grew up watching old movies, planted on the shag rug in front of the TV watching retro Saturday matinees, bad basic cable, anything at all. And it all made its mark.
Which writers (or books) have made you think about your own writing in new ways?
For this book, Shirley Jackson, Daphne DuMaurier, Hawthorne short stories and, though not strictly a book, Twin Peaks always seems to find its way in there.
Are there any writers featured in this giveaway with whom you have a strong friendship? How did you meet that person? How do you support each other’s work?
It’s been a great pleasure to get to know the terrific Julia Fiero in the last few years. I feel unduly lucky to have been one of Cutting Teeth’s early readers and to have shared the stage with her at Book Court—and can’t wait to do so again June 18 at WORD Brooklyn. I’m also delighted to have recently met Roxane Gay, I writer I greatly admire, at the Tennessee Williams Literary Festival. And I love everything Emma Straub writes, so I can’t wait for her new one. Thanks to her I first discovered Chocolates for Breakfast by Pamela Moore when she invited me to participate in a book event in celebration of its reissue. (Also excited for Edan Lepucki’s California!)
More About Megan Abbott
Megan Abbott is the award-winning author of seven novels, including Dare Me, The End of Everything and Bury Me Deep. Her stories have appeared in anthologies including Detroit Noir, Best Crime and Mystery Stories of the Year, Queens Noir, Wall Street Noir, The Speed Chronicles and the forthcoming Best American Mystery Stories of 2014. She is also the author of The Street Was Mine, a study of hardboiled fiction and film noir, and A Hell of a Woman, a female crime fiction anthology. She lives in Queens, NY. Her latest novel is The Fever (June 2014). You can find her on her website, Twitter, and Facebook.
Enter Today’s Giveaway!
To enter, answer the following question in the form below:
Writer Tana French writes that Megan Abbott ‘captures the essence’ of being a teenager – read the rest of Abbott’s blurbs here. How would you describe that time of life?
One winner will win one signed copy of Megan Abbott’s novel The Fever. Limit one entry per IP address. No purchase necessary. Open to legal residents of the United States, who are the age of 18 or older. Deadline for entry is 8:00 P.M. ET on April 21st, 2014. Read the complete rules.