Today I am welcoming Susan Schneider, author of The Wedding Writer to Teresa’s Reading Corner.
Teresa, so sorry you didn’t get a chance to finish the novel! I understand totally, of course; I too have books scattered all around my apartment. Am I reading “The Memory Palace” by Mira Bartok or “Pictures of You” by Caroline Leavitt? Both, actually! Speaking of Caroline, she interviewed me (www.carolineleavittvilleblogspot.com) when “The Wedding Writer” came out last month and asked me what a lot of people ask: what in the world was it like to work at a bridal magazine for as long as I did (about 10 years)? And not only that, but doing it while single!
The answer is, it was both awful and fun. I saw weddings get more ornate and costly—I saw women with modest means aspiring to mimic celebrity weddings and the weddings of the wealthy. Bad idea! I hated to think that couples were going into debt—everyone knows that almost nothing has such a long-term negative impact on marriage. Sometimes at a fashion shoot I would look at a gorgeous $15,000 wedding dress and marvel at both its beauty of fabric and design and its wasteful extravagance. As women, we crave beauty, but how do we reconcile this sort of expense in our world today?
At the magazine where I worked, we tried to reassure engaged women that they really don’t have to have a “perfect” day—in fact, there is no such thing! But our magazine, like other wedding publications, constantly touted “perfection.” A perfect white dress. Perfect flowers. Perfect everything. Setting the bar a bit too high, don’t you think?
As for my being single throughout all of this, well, sometimes I was relieved that it wasn’t me worrying about achieving perfection or blowing my budget. Other times, I simply loved seeing the happiness on brides’ faces—the smiles that dazzled through tears of absolute joy, the moments of intimacy that will never be forgotten. Always I felt that a wedding is a unique moment in time—a celebration of love and commitment and hope for the future—and that, all in all, I was lucky to be part of it.
Good news Susan, I got to finish the Wedding Writer and my review will be appearing shortly. I cannot even imagine what it must be like to work in the wedding industry. Even the sanest of brides can get a little bit loony on their big day. Thank you so much for stopping by.
© 2011, Teresa. All rights reserved.