Known for teen love, Molly Ringwald now writes of adult betrayal

Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:49pm EDT
 
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By Erin Geiger Smith

(Reuters) - Molly Ringwald is perhaps best known for playing the teenage protagonist in 1980s film classics "Pretty in Pink" and "Sixteen Candles," but the now 44-year-old mother of three has published a novel focusing on the decidedly adult topic of betrayal - marital and otherwise.

"When It Happens to You" centers on a Los Angeles couple with a troubled marriage, while also telling the stories of their friends' and neighbors' struggles with child-rearing, crashing careers and the death of a spouse.

The novel is Ringwald's first book of fiction, though it does follow her 2010 title, "Getting the Pretty Back," which was part advice book, part memoir.

Ringwald, whose newly launched website includes a simple introduction page noting she "acts, writes books and sings jazz," spoke with Reuters about her novel, communicating with fans via Twitter and suffering with other writers.

Q: You call the book "a novel in stories." What do you mean and why choose to write it in that form?

A: "I had originally intended to write just a collection of stories along the line of betrayal. As I started it, I realized ... it would be more interesting to have the characters connect and intersect, because ... one of the themes, if you want to call it, is that we are all betrayers and we are all betrayed. I thought it would be interesting to have them all connect in that way, even though their betrayals are of different natures."

Q: You write a lot about what children do to a marriage, the good and the bad. Can you address that?

A: "It really is different for each character. You know, I have three mothers in the book and the ways that they are with their children are very, very different. And ... in terms of Greta and Phillip, who are the anchor of the book, it's very difficult for them.   Continued...