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Author interview: Lisa Patton

August 16, 2011

I recently read and enjoy Lisa Patton‘s newest book, Yankee Doodle Dixie, so I thought it would be fun to ask her a few questions.   I actually got to meet Lisa at SIBA last year and she is adorable and charming.  I’d like to thank Lisa for taking the time to answer my questions.

Is the character of Leelee based on you?

Well, maybe a little. Leelee and I are both redheads. We are both from Memphis and we were both Vermont innkeepers. But our personal stories are completely different.

What characteristics do you share with her?

Leelee is much more naive than I ever was. She’s a whole lot sweeter and she’s got the physical attributes I’ve always wanted. I will say that that we both love to have fun and can each get ourselves in a whirl of trouble at the blink of an eye. Calamity seems to follow the two of us and we both have life-long friends that we can’t live without.

Do you think you’ll ever live outside of the South again?

I hate to say never but I can’t see myself ever living outside the South again. Number one, my body is just used to the heat. I don’t fare well when it’s cold outside and frankly it just causes me to be a little blue when the temperature drops below 40. I love the fact that I can walk down the street and have people saying hi and greeting me with a smile. No offense against the North but the South just seems to be a little friendlier. I know we’re quirky, trust me, but we recognize our idiosyncrasies and we’re not ashamed of them at all. We may have a wacky vernacular down here but the way of life is just right for me.

Are you working on another book?

I am writing my third book right now.

Will it feature Leelee and her friends?

Absolutely! Leelee and her friends are way to much fun to leave with only two books.

Reading about Elvis Week was a lot of fun!

Thank you for saying that. It was a last minute afterthought to the book so I’m so glad you enjoyed it.

Are you an Elvis fan?

It would be un-Memphian to not hold the King in high regard. I think everyone who lives in Memphis is an Elvis fan. First, he still contributes richly to our economy and second, he’s the undisputed King of Rock and Roll! Like I say in the book, every Memphian over the age of 50 has an Elvis story. One of my best friends, Vicki, knew his step-brothers personally and hung out at Graceland. She’s even been inside Elvis’ bedroom. Towards the end of his life Elvis only entertained in his bedroom. At least that’s what I’ve heard anyway.

I noticed that you thanked Linda Yoder for being your cussing coach, and I think that’s a first for me.  What does a cussing coach do?

That’s so cute that you noticed that. It’s actually a running joke between the two of us. Linda is a dear friend of mine and we joke about having cuss words in my books and I always consult her on which ones to leave in. I’d really rather leave them out entirely, but I wouldn’t be true to certain characters if I didn’t include a few minor ones. I never want to offend anyone so I prefer to keep my books pretty clean.

I think YANKEE DOODLE DIXIE would make a great movie.  Has there been any interest yet?  Who would you like to see play Leelee?

Thank your for your thumbs up. I’d kill for YANKEE DOODLE DIXIE to be a movie. WHISTLIN’ DIXIE IN A NOR’EASTER, the prequel to this book, landed me an agent at CAA in California in their book-to-film department. Nothing on the horizon yet for either novel but I still love to dream about it. My first choice for Leelee is Amy Adams. Oh and I’d be perfectly fine with either Julia Roberts or Reese Witherspoon. How’s that for super-size dreaming?

YANKEE DOODLE DIXIE will be published by Thomas Dunne Books and will be released in hardback on September 13, 2011.
32 Comments leave one →
  1. August 16, 2011 5:45 am

    Sounds like a great read you enjoyed! Thank you for sharing.

  2. August 16, 2011 6:01 am

    I may not have read the book but I still think Amy Adams would be great in the role 🙂 And I would see it

  3. August 16, 2011 6:21 am

    I need to read her books! (Put that on the list along with everything else I need to read in the next couple of weeks!) She was adorable and so much fun at SIBA. I love the idea of a cussing coach. Hey…I think I could do that. I’m talented in that field.

  4. August 16, 2011 7:46 am

    What a fun interview! I don’t think I could live in the South — the heat really bothers me — but sure do love visiting the South and reading books set there.

  5. August 16, 2011 8:34 am

    What a fun interview! I remember reading your review of this book and it sounded so interesting!

  6. August 16, 2011 8:48 am

    Fun interview! I’ve never heard the word Memphian before!

  7. August 16, 2011 8:50 am

    I love the idea of a cussing coach – that is too funny!

  8. August 16, 2011 8:55 am

    I have both books sitting here next to my chair to be read. Great interview! I can’t say I have heard of an author having a cussing coach. I can think of a few authors who really could benefit from having one!

  9. August 16, 2011 9:12 am

    Fantastic review! Lisa sounds adorable and it comes through in both books!

  10. August 16, 2011 9:38 am

    I saw Lisa on a panel at the Columbia Book Festival – she was hilarious! So fun to see her here!

  11. August 16, 2011 9:42 am

    As Lisa Patton, I live in South (of France), and think that South is a pleasure : not for the heat, I prefer cool weather, but for the beauty of the sky, the flowers and the wonderful fruits and vegetables we can eat there ! I love too the smiling people and theit kindness !

  12. August 16, 2011 10:44 am

    This was such a fun interview! Lisa was indeed wonderful last year at SIBA, and I am hoping to read her second book soon. I like the bit about the cussing coach, and think that is so unusual and different. Thanks for the great interview, Kathy and Lisa!

  13. August 16, 2011 11:06 am

    I’m not usually drawn to this type of story but for some reason this series has caught my eye. I think it might be because I’m in the opposite position, a Yankee in Atlanta. :O) I’m glad you’re enjoying the books and thank you so much for this interview. :O)

  14. August 16, 2011 12:12 pm

    Great interview! You are so lucky to meet so many great authors Kathy! I’ve got this book on my night stand and I can’t wait to dive into it.

  15. August 16, 2011 12:26 pm

    Enjoyed your interview, have to read the book.

  16. August 16, 2011 1:32 pm

    Enjoyable interview! 🙂

  17. August 16, 2011 2:03 pm

    Thanks for posting that – I LOVED Whistlin’ Dixie so I can’t wait for Yankee Doodle Dixie!

  18. August 16, 2011 3:24 pm

    I never thought about cussing being a way of keeping the character true to their personality! Makes sense though! I’ve been wanting to read this book and after this interview, I want to read it more.

  19. August 16, 2011 3:41 pm

    I think she’s got some super dreams for the movie casting and I love the cussing coach idea.

  20. August 16, 2011 5:27 pm

    Lovely lovely interview…

  21. holdenj permalink
    August 16, 2011 8:48 pm

    I am looking forward to reading both of these.

  22. stacybuckeye permalink
    August 16, 2011 10:37 pm

    She looks like fun 🙂 I need to give some love to the north. We have quirky people who smile at strangers too!

  23. August 17, 2011 12:40 am

    Great interview. I have the impression she really enjoys writing her books. She made me want to read her books. I laughed when she talked about having a cuss coach.

  24. August 17, 2011 12:48 am

    This sounds like a cute book – I am going to have to add it to my pile!

  25. Carol Croop permalink
    August 17, 2011 9:43 am

    I can’t wait for the movie Lisa! Amy Adams would be perfect. I’ll buy the next book as soon as its released – Sept 13th, right?

  26. Paige Crutcher permalink
    August 17, 2011 10:04 am

    Adore Lisa and her ability to weave a story! Looking forward to this one.

  27. August 17, 2011 10:47 am

    I really enjoyed this interview! Definitely makes me want to read her books.

  28. August 17, 2011 12:54 pm

    Lisa, you’re a delight! So lucky to share an agent with you. I’ve yet to read your second, but I can’t wait as I loved the first. I would also be the first in line for a film, and I so relate to the cussing coach bit. I really hope I get to chat with you in person some time.

  29. Sandra Kaczanowcke permalink
    August 17, 2011 4:57 pm

    I read Whistlin’ Dixie in a Nor’easter and was sooo happy to find out after that there is going to be another book about Leelee. I am really looking forward to reading this new one and the third one as well.
    I agree a movie would be great. I certainly would go see it. Oh and another actress that might be good for Leelee is Sandra Bullock.
    Thanks for a great interview.

  30. August 17, 2011 4:58 pm

    Fingers crossed for Reese, just wait it’s just a question of getting the ink to dry on paper – why…. call it PK intuition….

  31. August 18, 2011 11:15 pm

    Thank you to Kathy for giving me the opportunity to talk about my new book. I love all of your comments, ladies. Hope you enjoy Yankee Doodle Dixie. It sure was fun to write!

  32. August 21, 2011 11:57 am

    What a fun interview! I have the first book TBR and can’t wait to read it and this second book. I am a fellow redhead and can’t wait to see how Lisa portrays us:)

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