While writing the novel over the course of two years, Landay said he spent quite a bit of time developing the idea for the plot.
“One thing readers do not — and should not — realize is how much effort goes into honing the idea before you write the first sentence,” he said in an email. “It takes a long time (to form a story line). Often they start with a real criminal case or a cluster of similar cases. Then my imagination goes to work ... In the end, the final product has almost nothing to do with the original idea.”
The eighth annual Literary Festival, which is a celebration of literature and reading, is set for April 26 and 27 with events and programs being held around the city. This year’s theme, “Imagination Soars!,” will highlight literature for young adults and children.
Festival organizers are honoring acclaimed author Matthew Quick, who recently saw his novel, “The Silver Linings Playbook,” adapted into a blockbuster movie that earned eight Oscar nominations. He is also the writer of the young adult novels, “Sorta Like a Rock Star” and “Boy 21.” His newest book for young adults will be released in August, and Dreamworks has already secured the film options for his fifth novel, “The Good Luck of Right Now.”
Sue Little, who recently marked her 40th year as the owner of Jabberwocky Bookshop in the Tannery Marketplace, will also be honored.
The festival will kick off with an opening ceremony on Friday night, April 26, at the Firehouse. Quick will discuss the writing process and life as a writer with a panel of high school students and the audience. The program will be followed by a dinner with the participating authors at Nicholson Hall in Newburyport. The dinner is a fundraiser for the festival, and tickets are $50 per person and available on the festival’s website.