Sep 16, 2022 • 35M

Very Serious About Fun Reads Ep 333 with Emily Henry

It has to be realler than real life.

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Entertaining, actionable advice on craft, productivity and creativity for writers and journalists in all genres, with hosts Jessica Lahey, KJ Dell'Antonia and Sarina Bowen.

THIS EPISODE. “Overnight success” Emily Henry reminds us that she’s not—she published three sad-and-serious YA novels before she embraced her real calling and wrote the book she craved—Beach Read, which she says “I never expected to send to anyone.”

This discussion was so true to our hearts (KJ writing, Sarina co-signing). It’s hard to for some of us to give ourselves permission to write fun books in a world where “things we like” and especially “things women like” are often dismissed as less worthy. Sarina reminded us of this George Michael quote—when asked when he was going to “write serious music” his response was “You don’t understand. I’m very serious about pop music.” And KJ immediately demanded that everyone read This Is Not a Book About Benedict Cumberbatch which is, instead, a book about exactly what we just said. That you should read. Immediately. We’ll wait.

So how do your get very serious about writing fun reads? Emily’s insight on how to turn the seemingly small internal battles that our kind of fiction often hinges on is perfection: “you have to make things realer than real life”. For more, hit play.

Links in the Pod

#AmWriting Episode 302 with Katherine Center


Emily: Miss Aldridge Regrets, Louise Hare

The Bodyguard, Katherine Center

The Change, Kirsten Miller

Sarina: The Bodyguard, Katherine Center

Upgrade, Blake Couch (Emily then shouted out Dark Matter and The Letty Dobesh Chronicles with its Good Behavior TV adaptation)

KJ: This Is Not a Book About Benedict Cumberbatch, Tabitha Carvan

Thank You for Listening, Julia Whelan

Emily Henry on Insta: @emilyhenrywrites

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