Interview with Christina McDowell, author of After Perfect
20 Jul 2015
Tell us a little bit about your new release, After Perfect.
When I was 18 years old my father (who was an associate of The Wolf of Wall Street in the 90’s and set up IPO’s with Stratton Oakmont Inc.) was later arrested for securities fraud, convicted and sentenced to prison. He saddled me with $100,000 of debt, left and never told me. It is my journey to the truth. A story that on the surface seems to be about the loss of money and material things, but is really a story about the loss of a father, the loss of a family and of innocence and values, yet in the end, is about accountability, love and forgiveness.
What makes your world go round?
Being of service to others.
Who is your favorite fictional character from literature?
Esther Greenwood in Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar. The insidiousness of her insanity is terrifying.
What’s something you’re truly terrible at doing?
If you had an extra hour each day, how would you spend it?
Snuggling with Zelda, my little Havanese.
What is the one movie that you can quote the most?
Gone With the Wind since I was a child, which in hindsight, scares me.
If you could have dinner with anyone, alive or dead, who would you choose and why?
My grandmother. She was a writer and died before I became a writer. I wish I could talk to her about what it was like for her when she wrote for the Long Beach Independent Newspaper.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
It doesn’t matter what other people think of you.
What’s your favorite line from After Perfect?
“…the truth of a lot of what you have had to say is hard to pin down, but when one does enough work, one finds that underneath it all there was no “there”, there.” The judge said it during my father’s re-sentencing.
Do you have a motto, quote or philosophy you live by?
Always be rigorously honest with yourself.
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