We were sent a copy of The Wedding Beat by Devan Sipher.
Sipher, a writer of the New York Times “Vows” column, Sipher will sweep readers of their feet with his smart and charming debut romantic comedy where he explores a thirty-something New Yorker’s quest to find his soulmate with humor, intelligence and heart. The Wedding Beat, Gavin Greene works as the wedding columnist for the Pultizer Prize-winning newspaper, The Paper. He is surrounded by lavish wedding celebrations, romance, and the promise of everlasting love, and yet he still can't find himself a girlfriend, let alone a bride. Where is the nice girl that he (along with his daft but well meaning parents) dreams of? When he finds and then loses the woman of his dreams at the same New Year's Eve party, Gavin knows it's time to get serious. Armed with questionable lessons from his brother (a serial monogamist) and coaching from a gung-ho dating guru (whose wedding he happens to be covering), Gavin is following a new set of rules, and the surprising chain of events that follow lead to something he never could have predicted.
We interviewed Sipher. We are as CW, and Sipher is DS.
Connecting Women: What inspired The Wedding Beat?
Devan Sipher: For five years, I was a single guy writing the Vows wedding column at The New York Times. (“Always the wedding columnist, never the groom.”) It occurred to me that my life would seem far more amusing to someone who wasn’t living it.
CW: What kind of research was conducted to write The Wedding Beat?
DS: Most of my research was the years I spent writing about thousands of weddings. But I also immersed myself in the world of romantic comedies, reading books and renting videos. Helen Fielding’s Bridget Jones’s Diary was my bible.
CW: What are some themes that can be found in The Wedding Beat?
DS: Late in the book, the protagonist, Gavin Greene, says “Everything in life is a choice, and I’m choosing to be happy.” Happiness is a choice. That’s what I learned from my time interviewing brides and grooms, and it’s what I consider the central theme of the novel.
CW: What is your favorite scene?
DS: The quote I just mentioned is one of my favorites as is the scene it comes from. Gavin takes a romantic leap of faith and finally confesses his feelings to the woman he loves. He just happens to choose a painfully (and comically) inappropriate time and place.
CW: I can see The Wedding Beat turned into a romantic comedy. Have you thought of turning your book into a movie?
DS: I’d love to see it end up on a movie or television screen. I’m keeping my fingers crossed.
CW: What other projects do you have in the works?
DS: I have a two-book deal, and the next book is also a romantic comedy. I’m not supposed to say a lot about it, but I can tell you that it’s about two people who make a lot of wrong turns on the way to finding each other. The tagline is “Sometimes love at first sight can take a lifetime.”
CW: Anything else you would like to add.
DS: One of the other things I learned writing about weddings is that men can be every bit as romantic as women – and just as comically confused. My goal was to share that with readers and to write the best beach book possible – lots of laughs and lots of heart. I’m hoping I succeeded.
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