Topic of the Week: April 5-9, 2010

Wendy Webb

If recent releases by Audrey Niffenegger (Her Fearful Symmetry) and Connie May Fowler (How Clarissa Burden Learned to Fly) are any indication, readers love a good ghost story. Whether it’s the hope of an afterlife as a spirit or an in between place of confusion and frustration, the idea that something exists on the other side of death is one of the most powerful themes in fiction. Join us this week in #litchat for discussion about contemporary gothic novels.

Joining us as guest host on Friday, April 9th is author Wendy Webb, whose debut novel, The Tale of Halcyon Crane delivers a multi-layered contemporary gothic, complete with surprise inheritance, spooky sing-song voices, apparitions, mischevious twins, generational curses,  and contemporary love interests. Set in the offseason of a fictional resort island in Lake Superior, The Tale of Halcyon Crane takes readers on a twisting journey to a bittersweet conclusion.

Wendy Webb grew up in St. Louis Park, Minnesota (also the home town of directors Joel and Ethan Coen and comedian-turned-politician Al Franken). She attended the University of Minnesota, graduating with a degree in political science. After spending some time living abroad, Webb settled into a job in Washington, D.C., where she was lucky enough to work on Capitol Hill for a senator from her state. Home was calling, though, and after a few years in D.C., she moved back to Minnesota and decided to try a career using what she felt was her most marketable skill — writing. She got an internship at City Pages, an arts and entertainment weekly in Minneapolis, and never looked back. During the past 20 years or so, she has written for most of the major publications in the Twin Cities. She lives in the Lake Superior port city of Duluth, where she is the editor-in-chief of Duluth-Superior Magazine, a lifestyle monthly.

When she’s not writing, Webb and her mate, photographer Steve Burmeister, and son Ben enjoy spending time at their cabin in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, walking their 130-pound Alaskan Malamute named Tundra, and visiting with family and friends in Minneapolis.

Follow Wendy Webb on Twitter at @WendyKWebb.

Read chatscript from Wendy Webb’s visit in #litchat here.