Liza Palmer, Conversations With The Fat Girl
The book received favorable reviews in magazines like People and Entertainment Weekly, way to go, Liza!
Liza Palmer contacted me a while back asking if she could send me a copy of her debut novel, Conversations With The Fat Girl. I'm always interested in finding good books so I said of course. I couldn't wait to read it, but had a bunch of other novels to get through first. When I did finally open the book, I enjoyed it immensely from the very first page.
I relate so well to any character who is flawed or troubled or imperfect. Many people shy away from books that remotely bear the chick-lit stamp. I want to encourage you to pick up this novel and give it a try because it's wonderful and well written. I could be friends with Maggie, the character who is hanging on by a thread to her once fat, but now skinny and gorgeous friend Olivia.
I became emotionally involved with Maggie and wanted to give her a good shake a few times throughout the book or at least email Liza and ask why Maggie didn't see who Olivia had become. You just have to read the book to appreciate Maggie's journey to confidence and self assurance. Fat, skinny, pretty or not, we have all felt like Maggie at one time or another and Liza does a great job with the emotions of a character who finally figures out the truth about a friendship which has run its course.
What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?
Put on my glasses, check the time, walk downstairs, find the dog, pet the dog, make coffee. Breathe.
Which character do you identify with the most?
I think that's beauty of writing - I identify with all the characters. Every one of them has a piece of me - obviously Maggie being the one I most identifywith - it's her voice which is the most true to mine.
What do you think of Tyra Banks donning a fat suit to experience life as an overweight person? Do you think people are generally accepting of those who are overweight?
Gasp of all gasps. You mean overweight people are treated differently than Victoria's Secret models. What has this world come to? Blasphemous. I think - jeez, what do I think - I dunno.
On one hand I like that she's exploring prejudice and unearthing a truth maybe - but, that's kinda bullshit, I mean, we all know this Truth and I just think it's a tad bizarre that it's being treated as this expose or something. It's like someone drinking water and going...wow, it really is wet. But, the gist of my whole novel is that you never know how big Maggie is.
There are so many themes in this book- love, acceptance, following your dreams and your heart, friendship... What do you want people to take from the book when they finish it?
Stop wasting time hating yourself. It's exhausting and you're really the only one doing it. I always revel looking at pictures of myself - and I remember distinctly thinking I was fat when those pictures were taken. And now when I look back I was never as fat as I thought I was. I've ruined so many amazing moments thinking my Area was showing or that everything would be better if I were 10 pounds lighter. Start living now.
What is your favorite color and why?
I love pink. It's taken me a long time to really come to terms with being girly. And now I hope by embracing pink, I've learned to embrace my softness, feminity and feeling lovely. It's taken way too long.
I wanted to go to school to be an art restoration specialist so I was excited about Maggie's job opportunity. Is art something you enjoy, and if so, who are your favorite artists?
The LACMA is one of my great escapes. I adore art. I adore museums. There is something - well, everything about them I love. My favorite artist -it depends. I love the modern stuff - but, I love just getting right up next to any piece - looking at the brush strokes - the nuts and bolts of genius. Everything. I appreciate a something. I love seeing a manifestation of thought.
Who were Bella and Emily based on? They were so cute, their personalities came through very well.
I am blessed to have two such lovely little women in my life. I hope I did them justice.
Do you read your horoscope? Ever had tarot cards read? Would you want to know what the next chapter of your life holds if you could find out?
There is a huge part of me that loves horoscopes and tarot. The curious, hopeful part. The part that loves seeing myself as a courageous lion and not someone who sometimes may not feel so roar-y.I would love to say that I wouldn't look at that little chapter - but, there's no way I wouldn't look.
How has life changed for you since the book was published?
In too many ways to even begin listing - and in ways that I don't even think I know about yet. Life is a rollercoaster right now - and I'm not quite ready to let go of that security bar enough to really look behind me just yet.