Your new novel,'Falling into Place', is emotional and insightful with powerful subject matter. Can you tell us more about it?
Falling Into Place is about a girl named Liz Emerson who doesn’t believe in much except the idea of cause and effect. She’s not a particularly good person—she lies, she cheats, she’s hurt a lot of people in her life, and she doesn’t know how to stop. So she attempts to take her own life. Liz’s story is told by an unknown narrator through the lens of Newton’s laws of motion, and it’s about falling in love and being a good friend and being a bad friend and making mistakes, and all of the other things in life that go beyond cause and effect.
Where is your favourite place to write?
Paradigm, my favourite coffee house. It used to be a bike shop, and it still has these vintage bikes hanging from the ceiling. There are these armchairs that just swallow you when you sit in them, and there’s always great (and sometimes live) music playing, so it’s the perfect place to read and write.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given as a writer?
Allow yourself to be terrible. Everyone writes bad things and makes mistakes. You’ll write awful stuff and more awful stuff and somewhere along the way, you’ll get better. Don’t procrastinate. Don’t ever give up.
What’s one book you love that you always recommend to people?
THE HANDMAID’S TALE by Margaret Atwood. Besides just being a beautiful book that highlights so many societal issues, it was the book that taught me to have an opinion, and more importantly, to not be afraid of it.
Find out more about Amy Zhang at amyzhangwrites.com.