Today I am pleased to welcome Deborah Serra & Nancy Serra Greene
Welcome!! Thanks so much for agreeing to this Q&A. I can't wait to find out more!
Tell us about a favorite character from a book.
2 BROADS ABROAD: Moms Fly the Coop is a travel memoir I co-authored with my sister so the characters are us. The story created itself as we stumbled around Ireland on our poorly planned road trip. But then, as it turned out, we had more fun than we ever would have had if everything had gone smoothly. After all, who would plan: crying ghosts, insect invasions, fake castles, scary towers, wrong-way round-abouts, and a few too many drunken pub crawls.
Where do you dream of traveling to and why?
My sister and I have completely different travel desires. This was one of the elements that made traveling together so funny. I like to feel out-on-a-limb, a little fearful, and stretched to my limit in a foreign environment, while my sister appreciates a great bottle of wine, a romping novel, a stunning view, and a spa, if possible with reflexology. Consequently, I dream of traveling to Morocco and Slovenia, while she dreams of traveling to Provence or Baden-Baden; I dream of riding on a camel, while she dreams of riding in the backseat of a convertible around the seven hills of Rome. We settled on this road trip around Ireland, which I thought was rather tame, and she thought might be strenuous for a vacation: she was right.
What does your significant other and family think of the book?
Since 2 BROADS ABROAD: Moms Fly the Coop is a blending of poignant reminiscences of raising our children with our hilarious run away from home, we did have some concerns that the stories might make our children feel exposed. We didn’t want to invade their privacy, but we wanted to tell the story because we knew so many women would relate and smile with us. We contacted the kids (we have 5 between us) and sent them a copy to ask if there was anything they found embarrassing that they wanted us to remove – 4 of the 5 kids read and said go ahead, the 5th said, I believe “whatever”.
Do you hear from your readers? What kinds of questions do they ask?
We have heard from so many women who said after reading they were planning a trip with their sister or best girlfriend. They wanted to know how our significant others reacted to our telling them we were hitting the road without them after twenty-five years of marriage. They took it rather well, actually – they could see we were determined and desperately needed to get out of town. Our last kid had left for college and we were feeling lost.
We have also heard from a boatload of moms who experienced the same things with their kids that we did, and told us that having read the book they now found humor in it all. That was most rewarding for us, because that’s what matters, learning to laugh at it. All of it!
What was the scariest moment of your life?
My sister is a rule follower: she figures if there’s a rule there’s probably a good reason for it. For me, if there’s a rule I’m immediately annoyed. So when I see a sign that says “Keep Out. Danger. Do Not Trespass” well, I’m the first one in. While driving down from the Cliffs of Moher toward Cork we saw an abandoned medieval tower out in a field. We wanted to get a closer look. We parked and trudged out to it where my sister took some photographs and I saw the sign that said “Keep Out. Danger. Do Not Trespass.” So, naturally, I wanted in! Nancy was not on the Go Team for that at all. She tried to talk me out of it, but eventually we both wrenched open the old gate and slipped inside the dilapidated ruin, where we promptly got stuck. The gate closed and jammed behind us. Our phones were in the car parked 100 yards away on the street – there was no one around, it was getting dark…oops? This is when it’s really important that your sister loves you.
What book are you reading now?
Right now we are both re-reading the trilogy by Carlos Luis Zafon that began with The Shadow of the Wind. He is a brilliant and captivating storyteller and one of the few authors we both agree we can re-read.
What is your favorite meal?
We live about an hour from each other in Southern California. Nancy is a huge fan of Mexican food, and she has never seen a salad she didn’t like. For me, I’m partial to Italian. I don’t eat meat and I find a good bowl of pasta with mushrooms and broccoli blanketed with spectacular cheese is my favorite thing! (And wine, of course, always wine.)
ABOUT THE BOOK
Authors: Deborah Serra & Nancy Serra Greene
Published: November 6th, 2015
Publisher: Library Tales Publishing
When sisters, Deborah & Nancy, discovered that motherhood was a temp job they decided to run away from home. After packing up that last kid for college, and facing the sad stillness of their suddenly quiet homes, they decided to leave the country. 2 BROADS ABROAD: MOMS FLY THE COOP is a funny, irreverent, occasionally poignant travel tale of their impulsive road trip around Ireland.
In this witty warm-hearted adventure, they experienced some of Ireland’s quirkier history while sharing universally relatable stories of maniacal school coaches, neurotic neighbors, and tiger moms. Having kicked that empty nest into their rearview mirror, the sisters took off careening down the wrong side of the road, making questionable choices, getting trapped in a medieval tower, sneaking Chinese take-out into a famous cooking school, drinking way too much, and gaining a changed perspective on their lives ahead.
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When we thought about the phases of our lives at each juncture of change: our own departure from home, our first real job, our marriages, the birth of our children, all of the big phases of change held out something new for us. This change was shaping up very differently. This change was loss – complete dissolution of the fundamental family structure forever and that was all. We had to plan. We needed to be proactive. The alternative was to be left standing frozen in time, in a life that had moved on without us, and to become observers and visitors in our kids' lives. Not acceptable. So, we set our imaginations loose.
We considered our location. Now that we knew we were leaving – where could we go?
“Angkor Wat,” I said.
“Wat what?” Nancy asked.
“It’s the largest temple in the world, built in 1125.”
“Where is it?”
“Uh, huh. Deborah, I was thinking more along the lines of a bucolic vineyard in Tuscany. You know, stroll along the hills, sample the fruit of the vine, nectar of the gods?”
“Oh. Okay, how would you feel about a camel trek in Morocco?”
“Probably sore, smelly, and hot. And I understand camels are mean and they spit. They spit, Deborah. What about a civilized boat ride down the Rhine River in Germany? They have castles and I know how you like castles.”
“I do like castles, but don’t you think we should go more exotic?”
“This is our first trip together. I’d like to steer clear of nations at war, places we’d need to wear a burka, or can’t speak the language, or ride on an angry animal. Surely we can agree on somewhere.”
“I’ve always wanted to see where grandma’s family came from.”
“With a little research and a rental car we can see the entire island in a couple of weeks.”
“Perfect. Ireland it is!”
About the Authors:
Deborah Serra has been a sought-after screenwriter for twenty-five years having written for NBC, CBS, Sony, Lifetime, Fox, and others. She was a recipient of the 2012 Hawthornden Literary Fellowship. Her first novel was a semi-finalist for the William Faulkner-William Wisdom Creative Writing Award given by the Faulkner Society in New Orleans, LA.
Nancy is a graduate of San Diego State University. She worked in medical sales before stepping away to raise her two children, at which point she became: Team Mom, Snack Mom, PTA member, Assistance League Volunteer, and the list is never-ending. Nancy was the editor and publisher of the Buffalo Hills Echo newsletter with a circulation of 1400. She also designed and managed her community website.
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Ends July 31st at 11:59 PM EDT.
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