Thursday, July 13, 2006

Interview with Rebecca Lee

Rebecca Lee, author of CW’s book pick this month lives a fascinating life. She divides her time between New York City and North Carolina, teaches writing at UNC Wilmington and is a mother to an 18-month-year old daughter. In the midst of all of this, her first novel, “The City is a Rising Tide” has just come out on bookshelves around the nation.

“For me, the novel grew out of a description of place,” she said. “I realized that when I was in North Carolina, I missed NY and when I was in the City I missed the countryside and the ocean. After that characters formed around that and then the plot.” They had to be characters she loved. Lee spent ten years working on the novel but as the 2001 winner of the National Magazine Award for fiction, she realized that writing a novel used different kinds of creative muscles. “An old college professor said that a short story is like a one night stand whereas a novel is like a relationship,” Lee said. “A novel is more thoughtful and meandering which was more suited to me.”

Lee, is a consummate writer, who not only practices what she preaches, she teaches it too. She said teaching has impacted her writing. “You can tell other people what to do but it’s hard to tell yourself the same thing,” she said. “It’s so inspirational for me to be teaching because you can see how really devoted writers can make leaps if they are devoted to working on the same thing.”

Meet the author
Join Ms. Lee at CW Book Club’s one-year anniversary cocktail party with on Monday, July 17th at 7PM at Joseph-Beth at SouthPark Mall. RSVP at

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