…“the plot is the least intriguing part of a book. I start writing because of certain characters or themes or events I want to explore, but I’m often not sure what form that will take. So I do float along a bit. I probably write two novels for everyone I end up with—lots of deleted scenes as I try to figure out what it is I’m really interested in, what it is I’m actually writing.”
Constantly aware of the need to avoid cliché, Gillian Flynn is the author of the incredibly popular Gone Girl (over 6 million hardcover copies sold since its debut in 2012, available in paperback from April 2014). Flynn admires Joyce Carol Oates for being an “inventive, brilliant, curious and creative writer” as well as Stephen King and Margaret Atwood. An avid reader of all genres – Westerns, graphic novels, sci-fi, fantasy, etc – she dislikes it when people are close minded about a genre as a whole because they are proud of being “poorly read.” She particularly likes unreliable narrators because a great thriller, one with more suspense than violence, creates a sense of uneasiness – the feeling that something is not quite as it seems to be – and figuring out that the narrator – whose job it is to guide you through the tale – is not to be trusted is both unnerving and wonderful. As a child, she loved the Choose Your Own Adventure series and the puzzle mysteries by Ellen Raskin such as The Westing Game. A self-proclaimed book hoarder, she has a variety of favourites including an extensive Tolkien collection and the lurid 1979 best seller Flowers in the Attic that she had read when she was twelve. She is currently writing a screenplay for Gone Girl.
– From NYT Review of Books May 11, 2014 & Interview “How I Write” Daily Beast 21st November, 2012