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Women Supporting Women Writing About Women

Friday from the Archives: “Therese Anne Fowler and Maligned Women: Setting the Story Straight
on Zelda Fitzgerald and Alva Vanderbilt Belmont”
an Interview by Sheryl Cornett from NCLR 27 (2018).

“Other writers are not your competition. They are your sustenance.” -Karen Joy Fowler, quoting Ursula Le Guin.

In this day and age, one hopes to replace “writers” with “women,” as shown by this interview between friends and colleagues and fellow writers, Sheryl Cornett and Therese Anne Fowler. Cornett writes, “This tweet’s timeliness is a reminder of the sunny person and friend Therese Anne Fowler is to many writers, both local and national, and an inspiring example to literary artists on various stages of the publication journey.”

The interview covers these topics, from writing to publishing to selling books, as well as some behind-the-scenes tidbits from the television adaptation of Fowler’s novel Z by Amazon. The best-selling book is told from the perspective of Zelda Fitzgerald, who spent the later years of her life in and around Asheville. Fowler says, “When writing about real people – even in fiction – it is, in my view, unethical to be lazy or false with the representations of those people.”

She talks about the lengths of research she went to in order to accurately tell Zelda’s story, and the Vanderbilt story she published next. When Cornett asks what was pleasurable about the depth of research for the historical fiction story, Fowler remarks, “The pleasure was in ultimately getting to the truth of who they were,
in understanding how and why things went so wrong and then being able to tell that story. The challenge was in getting to the truth!”

NCLR looks forward to Fowler’s next book coming this fall!

Read the article on ProQuest and order the 2018 issue for your collection.