Interview with Ricki Schultz, Author of Mr. Right-Swipe
Today, Ricki Schultz discusses her debut novel, Mr. Right-Swipe.
Please describe what the story is about.
Boy meets Girl. Boy ghosts Girl. Girl decides to just die alone.
Share a teaser sentence or two from your novel.
It’s a Tale of #LeftSwipes, #NotMyTypes, and #Vodka.
What do you want people to know about your book?
It’s a wryly humorous take on the crazycakes world that is modern dating.
What did you learn about yourself while writing this novel?
I learned that there is a reason I keep dating! To sell books!
What was your timeline from drafting to publication?
The writing was spread out over the course of about nine months, but actual writing time was about four months total.
What is your favorite part of writing (drafting characters, making up scenes, plotting, developing emotional turning points, etc). Why?
My favorite part is the actual drafting of the novel, because I tend to plan things out pretty tightly at first. However, when I start getting the words down, the characters always end up taking different turns that surprise me!
Briefly, where did the idea for your book come from?
It came out of a conversation I had with a bunch of married ladies during my friend’s book launch—one of those married ladies being my agent! They were asking me about the dating scene and I was telling them about online dating. I started firing up some apps and showing them the method behind my Left and Right Swipes. They were delighted and horrified. A few days later, my agent called and told me—This is what you should be writing!
When do you do your best thinking about your work in progress?
There isn’t a particular time of day that’s better or worse for me. I just have to be focused. Some people write to music, and that’s not me AT ALL. I’ve got to have a coffee, a juice, and a water on hand; I’ve got to be sitting in my office; and the house needs to be pretty well silent. It’s there at my desk that I might stare into space for a while and think about my WIP. If I’m stuck, I might go for a walk with my dog, pace around my back yard, call someone and talk it through, etc. That all usually does the trick for me.
Share something people may be surprised to know about you?
I spent most of high school and college wanting to be on General Hospital. I used to do a lot of community theatre, and soap opera acting was what I wanted to do when I got out. Now, I spend most of my time wanting to marry Jason Segel.
So I’ve always had big, offbeat, specific goals. Haha!
What’s the best piece of writing advice you’ve ever gotten?
Read your work out loud. You can catch so many important issues, from errors to cadence and flow, from doing so.
I’m currently working on my next novel, which will also be with Grand Central Publishing. So excited! It’s called SWITCH AND BAIT, and it’s a humorous modern retelling of Cyrano de Bergerac, wherein an online dating matchmaker/messaging ghostwriter starts falling for one of her clients’ matches, finding herself in an ethical dilemma.
Do any of the dating experiences in the book come from real life?
Yes, and no. Anyone who has done the online dating thing understands there are certain shared experiences we all have—the catfishing, the ghosting, the guys holding fish (Why are there so many dudes out there brandishing fish? Who are the women who want this??). There are kernels of truth to some of the dating experiences Rae experiences which come from my own personal online dating experiences, sure. But, at the same time, I don’t think any of those people would ever want to admit that! 😉