Janet Tashjian Interview, plus links to author biography, book summaries, excerpts and reviews

Janet Tashjian

Janet Tashjian

How to pronounce Janet Tashjian: ta-jen (Armenian)

An interview with Janet Tashjian

Janet Tashjian talks about her books, how she writes them and how she got started as a writer.

Are you like any of the characters in your books?
While I'm working on a book, I never think the characters have anything to do with me. Then when I finish and read the manuscript over, I discover they do. Trudy's ambition and runaway ideas are familiar qualities; Monica's hyper-analyzing stems from me too. (I also freeze snowballs in the winter to use in July the way her neighbor Darcy does.) Larry and I believe that ordinary people can change the world - in fact it's the main reason why we're here. (We both do yoga too. I do a better full lotus, but his tree pose blows me away.) There's usually a little piece of me in every character I write.

How long does it take you to write a book? How do you write them?
It usually takes me 3-5 months to write a novel, another month to rewrite it. I write both on the computer and in longhand. I like the freedom of writing in a notebook; you can do it anywhere. I edit and revise on the hard copy itself.
(A leftover habit from being a Journalism major.)

Nonfiction when I'm working on a novel. For me, it's difficult to be inside two fictional worlds at the same time. But I read a lot, at least two books a week. Reading is one of my favorite activities, hands down.

Once you write a book, are you done?
NO!! It's just like when your teacher gives you back the book report you slaved over and thought was perfect. But when you get it back, there's so much red ink on it, it looks like a road map of downtown Manhattan. Same thing when my editor returns a manuscript to me. I storm around the house for a day, then roll up my sleeves and get going on the rewrite.

Do you ever base your characters on people you know?
You have much more to mine from when you stay in the world of the imagination. That doesn't mean, however, that I don't steal my friends' names and use them all the time; I do.

Did you have anything to do with the Disney Channel movie 'Tru Confessions'?
I didn't write the screenplay but went to the set in Toronto for three days while they were shooting. The movie was different than the novel (the kids were older, there was a father) but I thought they did a great job. I was mostly concerned that Eddie be portrayed well; Disney had a mental-health professional on the set to make sure he was. I was very happy when I saw the finished product. I am always breathlessly asked if I met Shia and Clara. Yes, they are both adorable, talented, and take their jobs very seriously.

Unless otherwise stated, this interview was conducted at the time the book was first published, and is reproduced with permission of the publisher. This interview may not be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the copyright holder.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket
    Love and Other Consolation Prizes
    by Jamie Ford
    Love and Other Consolation Prizes was read and reviewed by 22 BookBrowse members for First ...
  • Book Jacket: The Judge Hunter
    The Judge Hunter
    by Christopher Buckley
    In London 1664, Balthasar de St. Michel or "Balty" has no discernable skills besides pestering his ...
  • Book Jacket: Star of the North
    Star of the North
    by D.B. John
    It's summertime. You're looking for an absorbing thriller while you flop at the beach. ...
  • Book Jacket: The Abbot's Tale
    The Abbot's Tale
    by Conn Iggulden
    The Abbot's Tale purports to be a re-discovered manuscript written by a real historical figure,...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Mississippi Blood by Greg Iles

New York Times bestselling author Greg Iles illuminates the brutal history of the American South.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Me, Myself and Them
    by Dan Mooney

    A fresh, funny and heart-wrenching story about human connection and the power of friendship.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win A Place for Us

A Place For Us

A deeply moving story of love, identity and belonging--the first novel from Sarah Jessica Parker's new imprint.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

H, W H A Problem

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.