The Divining Wand

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The Revealing of Rebecca Rasmussen

March 16, 2011 By: larramiefg Category: Profiles, Q&A

The talented Rebecca Rasmussen introduces readers to her beloved state of Wisconsin as she pays fictional homage to her grandmother in the debut novel, The Bird Sisters coming April 12, 2011.

This one sentence describes the book: The Bird Sisters is a lush and moving story about discovery and disappointment, failing and forgiveness, and the enduring bond of family.

And critical praise follows:

From Publisher’s Weekly: “Achingly authentic and almost completely character driven, the story of the sisters depicts the endlessly binding ties of family.”

From Library Journal Review, Starred Review: “Rasmussen’s debut novel is full of grace and humanity. Her heroines are fearless and romantic, endearing and engaging, and her poetic prose creates an almost magical, wholly satisfying world.”

“The Bird Sisters is a unique, beautifully written, and heartbreaking story that explores the fierce bonds, wounds, and tender complexities of the human heart. Rebecca Rasmussen has crafted a magical debut.”–Beth Hoffman, Bestselling Author of Saving CeeCee Honeycutt

The Divining Wand has scheduled a presentation/review of The Bird Sisters for Monday, March 28, 2011 but, right now, let’s meet the author through her “official” bio:

Rebecca Rasmussen teaches creative writing and literature at Fontbonne University. Her stories have appeared in Triquarterly magazine and the Mid-American Review. She was a finalist in both Narrative magazine’s 30 Below Contest for writers under the age of thirty and in Glimmer Train’s Family Matters Contest. She lives with her husband and daughter in St. Louis. This is her first novel.

Indeed quite talented! But there’s much more to Rebecca and it’s time to get to know her better, upclose and personal: 


Q: How would you describe your life in 8 words?
A: Bird Husband. Bird Daughter. Bird Family. Bird Love.

Q: What is your motto or maxim?
A: Never give up on your dreams.

Q: How would you describe perfect happiness?
A: The moment right before you cross the finish line.

Q: What’s your greatest fear?
A: Flying.

Q: If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?
A:A: At my old camp in Eagle River, Wisconsin

Q: With whom in history do you most identify?
A: The Pioneers.

Q: Which living person do you most admire?
A: Marilynne Robinson + Alice Munro. (I cheated. I know.)

Q: What are your most overused words or phrases?
A: “You know?” As in you know what I mean?

Q: If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?
A: I don’t know if x-ray vision is a talent, but I’d like to have it.

Q: What is your greatest achievement?
A: Writing my book.

Q: What’s your greatest flaw?
A: I have been known to be a little too passionate.

Q: What’s your best quality?
A: I have been known to be a little too passionate.

Q: What do you regret most?
A: Losing touch with old friends.

Q: If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?
A: I would like to try being a bird for a little while.

Q: What trait is most noticeable about you?
A: My eyes, I think.

Q: Who is your favorite fictional hero?
A: don’t know if people would call him a hero. But John Ames from Gilead by Marilynne Robinson.

Q: Who is your favorite fictional villain?
A: I’m not super into villains these days.

Q: If you could meet any athlete, who would it be and what would you say to him or her?
A: I’d want to meet a professional runner. Any one of them would be so interesting to go for a jog around the block with. Well, they’d be jogging, and I’d be running. Eventually, I’d say, “Go on without me.”

Q: What is your biggest pet peeve?
A: When people chew with their mouths open.

Q: What is your favorite occupation, when you’re not writing?
A: Teaching.

Q: What’s your fantasy profession?
A: A painter.
Q: What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?
A: Kindness, honesty, and heart.

Q: If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?
A: Red curry with coconut milk.

Q: What are your 5 favorite songs?
A: I’m going to have to go with my five favorite artists:
Indigo Girls
Gillian Welch
Tracy Chapman
Bach
Nina Simone

Q: What are your 5 favorite books of all time?
A: Gilead By Marilynne Robinson (Surprise!)
The Stone Diaries by Carol Shields
Tracks by Louis Erdrich
The Progress of Love by Alice Munro
Disgrace by JM Coetzee

Smart, heartfelt, and ever so thoughtful, Rebecca Rasmussen is a new author/friend to follow on Twitter and become a fan of on Facebook.

* * * * *

Book Giveaway: For those readers who have Kindles, The Divining Wand will honor the first 10 comments left only on this specific post, Suzanne Anderson and Mrs. Tuesday’s Departures — until tonight at 7:00 p.m. EDT. — with a download of Suzanne Anderson’s Mrs. Tuesday’s Departure. Please include the email address used to download and the ebook will be gifted to you promptly.

13 Comments to “The Revealing of Rebecca Rasmussen”


  1. Q: How would you describe perfect happiness?
    A: The moment right before you cross the finish line.

    So apt! Great answer.

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  2. Keetha picked out my favorite part of the interview too. 🙂

    What a list of accomplishments Rebecca has!

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  3. Thank you so much, Kristan and Keetha! It’s nice to meet both of you 🙂

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  4. Q: What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?
    A: Kindness, honesty, and heart.

    Hard to go wrong with that combination. Much enjoyed the interview!

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  5. Lovely Rebecca on the Divining Wand! I was thrilled to read an advance copy of The Bird Sisters — and even more thrilled to offer a blurb. This is a fabulous book! Can’t wait for her pub day!

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  6. What a fun interview. Red curry and coconut milk, yuuum. Thanks for allowing us to get to know you a little better. I’m so excited for your release day, Rebecca!

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  7. I loved all of your answers Rebecca. I am so excited for you!!

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  8. Great interview. Can’t wait to read the book. But really, red curry with coconut milk?? Hmmmm.

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  9. Leslie — it’s my favorite thai dish — panang curry w/ veggies, rice and shrimp. Yikes I should have been a bit more clear 🙂

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  10. Can’t wait for book to take flight! Wonderful Q & A!

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  11. I enjoy these interviews so much, I always want to meet the one you’ve just interviewed….Rebecca sounds like a lovely and fascinating person…and I love the cover of her book, it’s beautiful!

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  12. Ok… Thai food, I get it now. The coconut milk threw me. I only eat it, I don’t know what’s in it!

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  13. Thank you so much for the lovely comments everyone! What a pleasure to see you all here 🙂

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