Wax, a St. Pete Beach native, is a graduate of the University of South Florida and worked at WEDU-TV in Tampa before moving to Georgia about 16 years ago. Wax, who had a radio show in the mid 1980s called Desperate & Dateless, now writes from her home base in Atlanta. Her new novel, While We Were Watching Downton Abbey, will be released April 2; she'll be signing it in Sarasota on Friday. (See Book Talk.)
What's on your nightstand?
I'm reading two advance copies. The first is Time Flies by Claire Cook. She's the author of Must Love Dogs. It's really fun. It's sort of a Romy and Michele's High School Reunion for boomers. It's coming out in June. The other is Whistling Past the Graveyard by Susan Crandall. It's set in 1963 Mississippi, and it is not as humorous, obviously, as the other, but it has the feel of The Help and The Secret Life of Bees. It's coming out in July. I think the two books are exceptionally different from one another.
Can you describe Cook's humor?
She's very personal, writes first person. It's light and fun and comforting humor. It's sophisticated and well-done. She's got a great style.
How did you proceed with your new book?
Everyone I knew was in love with Downton Abbey, and I missed the first season, but I ended up watching the whole season in one weekend and I loved it. You know how writers are. It grabbed my attention. I write women's novels with female protagonists, and I thought it would be so cool to write about their lives wrapped around Downton Abbey. The show is what brings the people together.
Piper Castillo, Times staff writer