Marilyn Brant Week, Day 4: 12 Fun Questions and 1 Mean One

September 25, 2009 at 8:53 am (Virtual Gems)


Welcome! More Marilyn Brant Week and I, for one, couldn’t be more thrilled. I was tickled to meet more of Marilyn’s friends popping over for Day 1, and I think we’ll see more here on Day 4, because Day 4 brings out the deepest, darkest secrets of Ms. Brant, and it involves her….well, let’s just say it’s too scandalous to even write down. (If you’re really, super curious, skip to question #13 and—let me warn you—cover your mouth with your hand because you are going to gasp in shock when you read it.)

How’s that for a hook? True, it’s no “Netherfield Park has been let at last” but that’s why I have Marilyn here. Not only does she class up the joint, she also knows how to tell a fabulous story, and that includes the one about herself. Enjoy!

1.  In the movie they make about your fabulous, successful life, who would play you?
LOL! I have absolutely no idea. I’d be more curious to know who’d *want* to play me and, really, who’d even *think* to make a movie about my life. Who are these people? What on earth convinces the production company I’d be a good film subject? Which one of them is going to write the screenplay and where, exactly, did they dig up drama-worthy material? Who’s been talking about me behind my back, huh?!  No, no, wait! Don’t move on to question #2. I’m interested in this! Where is the director? I wanna talk to the director, Pam… I’m serious…

2. What is your deep, dark, hidden, awful, guilty sin?
Marilyn Brant has no deep, dark sins. Nope. None. With the possible exception that she’s at least partially fictional. Or, perhaps, it’s more accurate to say that Marilyn Brant has no sins she’s willing to disclose outside of a confessional. (She was raised Catholic, after all.) So, she’d need to be bribed with substances of a Cadbury nature in order to reveal a few publicly. Then again, she could be lying about that. In which case, that would constitute a fairly significant sin. 🙂

3. What can you tell us about your next book?

I can tell you that IT STILL HAS NO TITLE!! (And not for my lack of trying…) Aside from that, I can also tell you it’s a modern fairytale about three suburban moms who meet weekly for coffee and, in the course of one of their conversations, a very interesting question is raised by one of the friends. The result is that all three women set out to reevaluate their lives and their marriages. (Editor’s note: I also know it’s available October 1st, 2010 and after reading this tantalizing description, I cannot wait!)

4. What TV show would you most like to be on?
“Castle,” if only because I’d love to meet Nathan Fillion!!

5. In an alternative universe, what would you be doing?
I’d be traveling.  From the alternative universe’s equivalent of The Great Wall…to their version of the Pyramids…to the place where they make the best chocolate and/or ice cream on the planet. And I’d want to people-watch and blatantly eavesdrop–at cafés, historical sites, random shops, national parks, etc. It’s my way of proving that, the world over, people are all really the same.

6. If you could walk into a time in history (other than Jane’s), what would it be?
1880s New York. Years ago I fell in love with Jack Finney’s novel Time and Again, and his main character’s visit to that city (in that particular period) has always intrigued me.

7.  Speed Round:

Coke or Pepsi
Coke–but I’m not exactly a soda connoisseur

Mac or PC
I have PCs, although I prefer Macs in theory

Dogs or Cats
Cats (I’m an Andrew Lloyd Webber fan)

Beatles or Elvis
Ack!!! How am I supposed to answer this one?! Can’t be done…

Diamonds or Pearls

Muscle car or Mercedes Benz
Muscle Car–red–and I don’t care if it’s a cliché

Zombies or Vampires
Vampires, if only because sucking blood squicks me out slightly less than eating brains

Lasso of Truth or Wolverine’s claws
Lasso of Truth

8. What do you wish you could have written?
Mostly, I wish I could have written Mozart’s “Alla Turca.” In literature, aside from Pride and Prejudice, it’s a three-way toss-up between The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, Katherine Neville’s The Eight and Orczy’s The Scarlet Pimpernel.

9. Who was your greatest influence?
Well, Austen in literature—I’m sure that’s not surprising. My parents in life: Sometimes to faithfully follow their example; sometimes to diametrically oppose it. (Shh. Don’t tell.)

10. If you had to move out of the Midwest, what’s the one thing you’d miss?
The autumn. I love the changing of the leaves in fall, especially when they get all crunchy underfoot and the ones left on the branches glow bright orange, yellow and red against the blue of the sky. I’d also really miss the friends I have here. They are phenomenal and true. And while I’m convinced we’d still be close no matter how far apart we lived, I really like seeing them in person. Frequently.

11. Tell me about your writing routine/an average writing day.
I begin by checking email right after my son leaves to school in the morning. I then work on any publicity or website projects that need to get done, visit blogs of writing friends and/or make phone calls, drive to the post office, etc. All of those writing-related things. Then, I check email again and have a snack while procrastinating… Finally, usually by 10am or so, I try to get down to real writing. I’m a very slow writer, and I work chronologically through the book, so I don’t move onto the next page until the one I’m on seems to flow moderately well. I break for lunch or for anything important–calls from family members, close friends or writing colleagues–but, mostly, I stay focused on the book or writing-related activities until my son returns home from school. After that, it’s homework for him and afterschool sports or playdates, etc. Plus, fixing dinner and the occasional household chore. (I really avoid those whenever possible!) A few times per week I manage to slip in a visit to the gym for a workout, but I’m not nearly as consistent as I should be. When my husband returns from work, the three of us have dinner together and talk. Some nights we watch a TV show. After they both go to bed, I get back to work again.  Ultimately, it’s a lot of computer time and not very glamorous at all.

12. You get free cuts to Antiques Roadshow—what would you bring?
My husband has this wooden sculpture of the Eight Immortals (Chinese in origin). I’d be interested in learning more about the piece–particularly its history and, possibly, some information on the artist.

13.  5 minutes with Jane Austen, or have the next Bon Jovi #1 hit be about you?
Yeah, Pam. I resent you terribly for making me answer this. I had to think about my response for a rather long time, but here’s the reasoning behind my choice:  While I would personally benefit greatly from meeting Jane (and I’d find a way to question her about any mysterious relationships from her past–there’s so much I’d love to know!), I’d have to go with the Bon Jovi song. It’s no secret that I Heart Bon Jovi. But, were they to write a song about me, millions of people in addition to me would get to enjoy the music. After all, the band didn’t write “I’ll Be There for You” or “You Give Love a Bad Name” just for ME. I don’t personally know the women who inspired these songs… Although, between us, I’m pretty sure Jon *did* write “Born to Be My Baby” about me.  Even though he and I haven’t met.  He just KNEW. 🙂


Okay, everybody else totally in love with Marilyn, raise their hands. Yeah, I thought so. How can you not love somebody so nice, funny, talented, and just so darn fabulous? And just wait until you read According to Jane—then you’re going to want to just be BFF with her, sitting around with her eating chocolate and drinking tea, chatting about anything and everything. Because she’s just that wonderful.

If you’re like me and enjoy stalking…er, seeing what Marilyn’s up to, you can catch her at her blog, or at her group blog with the other wonderful 2007 Golden Heart finalists (delightfully titled The 007’s: Nobody Writes It Better.) She has a Facebook page, a Goodreads page, and a Yahoo newsletter sign-up.  She also has written one of the most amazing books in the whole wide world and it’s coming out September 29th, so check out the According to Jane page on Amazon. Then come back here on Tuesday for the culmination of Marilyn Brant week and our grand release celebration.

See you then!



  1. Montana (curtbooks) said,

    Pam and I are looking forward to a ride in your red muscle car when you buy it. Thanks for a great interview, and I have to agree… Zombies, ugh, too much like K-Mart shoppers to be any fun.

  2. Marilyn Brant said,

    LOL, Montana! The mental image of all those zombified K-Mart shoppers will not leave my mind, and it’s giving me a very inconvenient case of the giggles (I’m at the library). I will, of course, drive you and Pam around first when I get my very own Little Red Corvette. I’ll make you both sing Prince songs with me, too. 🙂

    Pam, you darling, wonderful person you (except for that last hateful question)–thank you!!! If I thought it were possible, I’d force you and your hubby back to the Midwest where you belong… I still can’t believe you left Chicago before we met! But, I guess if you were here, I’d be pestering you a lot and you wouldn’t get any writing done and that future-bestseller you’re currently submitting wouldn’t have been sent out on time. So fine. Live far away. I’ll just have to hug you (in geeky virtualness) from here. *mwah*!

  3. Pamela Cayne said,

    Montana–lovely thought with the ride in the muscle car, but I’m afraid you’re going to have to sit in the back. I get to be up front with my gal! (And you know you love zombies…) 😉

    Marilyn–Don’t worry–the car is the one place I have no problem belting out songs. And anytime you want to geeky virtually hug me, I’m all cyber arms. Mwah back! 😀

  4. Erika Brunmeier said,

    Loved the interview with Marilyn. It is great to learn more about this wonderful person ! I think Loren Graham would be a great person to play you in the movie about your life. the smile and friendly laugh make completely. I was surprised about the answer to 13 but after hearing the answer it makes complete sense. I would like to add my dream Mustang convertable into the mix and would trade you ride for ride – Except mine is blue. Can’t wait for your book to come out.

  5. Robin said,

    My hands in the air!! Fantastic interview, Pam!! I loved your questions. Dang, you’re good! And Marilyn, I loved reading your answers! You guys have made my Friday! Oh, and I totally LOVED the book!!!!

  6. Marilyn Brant said,

    Erika!! I’m so glad you stopped by–thank you. 🙂 Now I can introduce you to both Pam (*hugging her again*) and Montana (who, I just found out, has a secret love of zombies…in addition to that odd goat attachment…). A dream Mustang convertible in ANY color would still be lovely. I’m definitely up for a ride in that, too. Oooh! Can we invite Jon??? I’m SURE he’d say yes. He wrote “Lost Highway” after all…


  7. Marilyn Brant said,

    Oh, I just saw your comment, Robin! Thank YOU, too!!!
    Hope you ALL have a WONDERFUL weekend! 🙂

  8. Erika Brunmeier said,

    John is defenitely invited. I still regret not getting tickets when he came to Madtown in 2005. But I was being responsible – silly silly silly. Have a great weekend take some deep breaths and enjoy what is about to come.

  9. Pamela Cayne said,

    Erika–thanks for stopping by! Wonderful choice with Loren Graham (Gilmore Girls, right) And anybody who shares my passion for Mustangs is always welcome here! 🙂

    Robin–I knew you had a Q&A coming next week so had to bring my A game. I’m not going to mess with the originator of the *pom pom swish* 😉

  10. Pamela Cayne said,

    Goats, Zombies, Mustangs and Bon Jovi. Do I know how to run a release party here or what? 😀

  11. Sandra Ferguson said,

    You good catholic girls. I can never tell when you’re telling the truth**GRIN**. Guess, that’s the fun part about writing; we so get to make stuff up!

    Great interview. Of course, you’re not a soda fan. That might ruin your taste buds for the lovely coffee indulgence!

  12. L.A. Mitchell said,

    I think Marilyn’s deep dark sin is that she refers to herself in third person… *giggles*

    I adore you, Marilyn {{{hugs}}} I’m so happy for you on your release!!

  13. Pamela Cayne said,

    Sandra-yeah, we’re going to have to keep a close eye on Marilyn, aren’t we? Somehow I think she might be hiding a few more secrets we could pry out. 😉

    L.A.-you noticed that, too? But, yes, I adore her as well. It’s so dang hard not to! 😀

  14. Marilyn Brant said,

    LOL, Sandra! I’m afraid it’s been a long while since I’ve been a *good* Catholic girl. 🙂

    L.A. and Pam~Marilyn Brant likes to delude herself that 3rd person is one of her strengths…of course her friends know why she was using it in that 2nd question *wink* (Thanks for the good wishes, you two!! And hugs back!)

  15. Ann Victor said,

    Fabulous interview Pam & Marilyn!

    Marilyn I just *knew* you had to be a cat person (Theodorable sends you her warmest purrs!) but, really, how could you miss the obvious answer to Beatles or Elvis? It just has to be Elvis! (*swoon*)

    Seriosuly though – a great interview!

  16. NAC 2009 – A Summary said,

    […] Brant – Another author that I discovered because of the wonderful Pamela Cayne. Marilyn’s According to Jane is a wonderfully fun read, especially for anyone who loves Jane […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s