Author Interview with Ferris Robinson
What is it Making Arrangements about?
The small town of Barrington, with its picturesque cottages, breathtaking gardens and friendly neighbors, is very appealing. Things are going swimmingly for Lang Eldridge, an unlikely cancer survivor who is marking the one-year anniversary of her “death sentence with a special trip.” She spent her supposed final year of life making sure her beloved husband, Jack, could survive without her. A caramel cake is in the freezer for his first birthday without her and love letters for every occasion are carefully written and tied with a pink ribbon.
But just as she is packing for their celebratory trip, Jack drops dead on the tennis court.
Devastated and reeling from shock, Lang realizes all of her perfect arrangements are in utter disarray. A mute stray dog posts itself on her front porch, its tail beating the wooden floor like it was a percussion instrument. A grammar-butchering fashion plate, A.J. Cole, practically takes up residence, regularly revealing too much information to loner Lang. Her son, Teddy, a tennis has-been, has his own ideas of how she should manage her life, and they don’t include cavorting about with a veterinarian who resembles Wimpy. Lillian, Lang’s long-lost mother, reappears and is as obnoxious as ever, waving to the pews at Jack’s funeral like she is Miss America. Lang’s granddaughter, Katie D, is a consistent bright spot, and Lang can’t imagine her life without her.
As she realizes Jack wasn’t exactly the person she thought he was, she discovers a secret he carried to his grave could ruin her life. If she lets it.
Compared to the Mitford Years by Jan Karon and Good Grief by Lolly Winston, Making Arrangements features “rich sassy writing with characters you’ll want to slap.” It is a story of family, and forgiveness. With a lot of fun mixed in.
Tell us about yourself. Why did you start writing?
I've always written, starting with little cardboard picture books when I was old enough to hold a fat crayon. It's always been easier for me to write than communicate in person with words.
Do you use social media? Has it helped
I post regularly on Facebook, but when I'm promoting my book I try to make it as 'entertaining as possible. Folks don't seem to mind dogs blabbing about the book or folks dressed up as characters from the book and acting out scenes. I'm new to Instagram but it's so much fun setting up the little scenes or taking pictures of beautiful spots - and usually my book is wedged in somehow.
Who is your favorite author and why?
Lee Smith if probably my favorite because of her skill at portraying hidden pockets of the South. And I've heard her speak a few times and she is adorable.
What genre(s) do you write in and why?
Women's Fiction mainly, but a little YA b/c those are the genres that interest me most.
What are you working on now?
I am turning Making Arrangements into a play and also working on a sequel.
About Ferris Robinson: Biography
I write. I cook. I love my dogs.
My first novel, Making Arrangements, was recently published by Kindle Press. A novel of funerals, flowers, friendships and forgiveness, it features "delightfully sassy writing with characters you'll want to slap," according to one reviewer.
When my husband had open-heart surgery at the age of 34, I changed the way I cooked. The result was The Gorgeless Gourmet's Cookbook - practically fat-free recipes for super-busy people. That cookbook sold 10,000 copies and resulted in my appearance on the cover of Woman's World magazine. My husband was also on the cover, and he thinks it's ironic that the main character's husband in Making Arrangements drops dead of a heart attack. He says that 'after 20 years of taking care of him, I had to have an outlet somewhere!'
Dogs and Love - Stories of Fidelity, shows the emotional connection between dogs and their humans. I wish I could be half the person my dogs think I am.