We have Harriet Reuter Hapgood on the show today! Harriet is a freelance journalist who has worked with Marie Claire, ELLE, and InStyle in the U.K. Teen Vogue named her debut novel, The Square Root of Summer, the “Best New Book of 2016”. In today’s episode, we discuss writing about heartbreak, quantum physics and time travel, the heavy research process for Harriet’s novel, creating multiple layers of plot to enhance your story, and why it’s important to sacrifice our own personal ties with the story for the ‘bigger picture’. We even dive into what it’s like to have depression and anxiety, and how we as writers can push through and stay on course with our writing goals with special attention to self-care. I’m so excited for you to learn about Harriet and her journey as a writer!
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What You’ll Learn From This Episode:
How Harriet weaves quantum physics into her novel The Square Root of Summer
- Why you need to remove your personal connection from the story
- Sacrificing what you want to happen in your story for what is best for your book and its characters
- How to thread different themes together to create a multi-dimensional story without losing focus of your main theme
- Harriet addresses writer’s block and gives us advice on how to use outlining to break free from it
- Why self-care is so crucial to your happiness and success as a writer
How Harriet created a dream list of literary agents and pitched to them
The Square Root of Summer
My heart is a kaleidoscope, and when we kiss it makes my world unravel . . .
Last summer, Gottie’s life fell apart. Her beloved grandfather Grey died and Jason left her – the boy to whom she lost her virginity (and her heart) – and he wouldn’t even hold her hand at the funeral! This summer, still reeling from twin heartbreaks, Gottie is lost and alone and burying herself in equations. Until, after five years absence, Thomas comes home: former boy next door. Former best friend. Former everything. And as life turns upside down again she starts to experience strange blips in time – back to last summer, back to what she should have seen then . . .
During one long, hazy summer, Gottie navigates grief, world-stopping kisses and rips in the space-time continuum, as she tries to reconcile her first heartbreak with her last.
Learn More About Harriet Reuter Hapgood
Harriet’s Recommended Books & Resources:
The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson
A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking
The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock