Today, I am at the University Bookstore, assisting my freshman, Ben, in acquiring his textbooks for this upcoming quarter. Actually, I am just presenting my visa card to the clerk while my son loads all possible renditions of Husky attire into his shopping cart. Oh yes, he has a textbook or two in there as well. Next to me in line is Irene Helenowski who has just released a book entitled “Order of the Dimensions.” While my son tries on Husky boxer shorts, Irene and I will chat about her book.
Naomi: Let’s start with just a brief synopsis of your book. In 20 words or less, tell me what it is about.
Irene: My book is about how the same characters can lead different lives in different dimensions.
Naomi: This undoubtedly takes place at college campus where multiple dimensions are found in every building along with someone left over from the 60’s who never graduated. Who is your favorite character and why? You can use more than 20 words from here on out.
Irene: The protagonist’s 5-year-old daughter, Amy, is one of my favorites, since she can be sweet and spunky and it’s interesting how she interacts with different characters in different dimensions.
Naomi: I presume Amy isn’t going to college at the same time although we do have a few of those brilliant little protégés running around here as well. My son is certainly not one of them. No Ben, you don’t need lab goggles if you don’t have a lab class. I don’t care that they have a little Husky on them. Irene, if this character called you up tomorrow and said, “Hey, let’s go do something.” What and where would you go with them?
Irene: Probably to an air show, where her dad, a pilot, is flying in the show.
Naomi: Now that is my kind of guy. Did you hear that Ben? He flies airplanes while you have not yet finished your ground school.
Ben: He’s fictional! I’m not.
Naomi: That’s debatable. Sorry, Irene. What’s the hardest part about writing your book?
Irene: The hardest part would be trying to maintain continuity.
Naomi: What’s that? What’s the easiest part?
Irene: Getting my ideas out.
Naomi: Oh honey. Just let them come. Once those voices get out, they’ll leave you alone, hopefully. If you had to pick one object to represent your story and one color to paint it in, what would it be and why? A purple octopus? An orange hula hoop?
Irene: A blue pinwheel, spinning in all directions.
Naomi: Alright. We can explore the deeper meaning of that, I suppose. Do you do anything else besides write and if so what is it?
Irene: I’m a statistical analyst at an academic medical center in Chicago.
Naomi: Okay, we can explore the deeper mean of that later too. What’s in the bottom of your purse, backpack, attaché or whatever you carry?
Irene: My cellphone, which I never can find in time when someone is calling.
Naomi: Hah! Maybe it’s in one of those alternative dimensions! Name one character in your book that reminds you of a real person and tell us who it is and how they are similar.
Irene: The protagonist is based on my niece, Julia, the aspiring physicist in our family.
Ben: I bet she gets to buy lab goggles.
Naomi: Ignore him. I may just write him out of this. Did you ever wonder if you were a little crazy for writing fantasy/fiction?
Irene: Yes, but I just started writing for fun, as a stress reliever.
Naomi: Me too but strangely it seems to be causing me even more stress. Did your friends ever wonder the same thing?
Irene: Maybe, but they’re still very supportive of me.
Ben: I’m supportive.
Naomi: No dear, you are supported. Did you pick up your English 101 book yet? Perhaps, you should open it and start reading. While Ben and I do that, you can find Irene online at: