Books

Interview with Tavi Taylor Black, Author of Where Are We


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What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write Where Are We Tomorrow?

I worked backstage on rock tours, theater shows, corporate events, you name it, for over twenty years. I didn’t really want to write about touring, as I was tired of it, but eventually, the story came out. The book started as a contemplation of miscarriage, how we don’t often talk openly about it. I actually went to a job interview the day after I had a miscarriage. Crazy. As I was writing, I realized the juxtaposition of this incredibly female experience inside a testosterone-heavy environment in the rock ‘n’ roll touring world was too good to pass up. I based many of the characters on women I had known on the road. Once I had those characters solidified, the story took off on its own. Each woman has her own story, her own trajectory–only parts of which made it into the final draft.

 

If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of Where Are We Tomorrow, what would they be?

  • Alex, the head electrician, would have “Try” by Macy Gray
  • Lily, the personal assistant to the star: “Paper Bag” by Fiona Apple
  • Brooke, the production assistant: “Me Too” by Meghan Trainor
  • Kat, the guitar tech: “Bellbottoms” by Jon Spencer Blues Explosion

If you had to write a blurb for the last book you read, what would it say?

A family drama that subtly draws you in, We Are the Brennans will keep you rooting for them to the end. Sunday, Denny, Kale, and the rest of this Irish Catholic crew made me long for a large family, dysfunction and all. Lange’s clean prose carries the reader easily along to a satisfying (if somewhat predictable) finish. I didn’t want to let this book go.

What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?

I mostly read and write literary fiction myself, but as my young daughter grows, I read with her. I feel lucky to have found amazing children’s books that I would have missed otherwise. Currently, we are reading a lot of middle-grade novels. We have also written a middle-grade fantasy together, so that was a fun project. I’m working on a revision of that story now.

Do you have any quirky writing habits?

Well, I suppose this is a little strange. As I sit down to write in the morning, the first thing I have to do is download my bank statement. I like to balance the checkbook before I write. Yeah, I guess that’s kind of weird.

Where did you write Where Are We Tomorrow?

I worked on this book for ten years, so it’s been worked on everywhere: couch, tour bus, hotel room, lawn chair, hammock, coffee shop, and sure, bars too.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

From my mentor, A.J. Verdelle: “Clarity is non-negotiable.”

 

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