Thursday, January 14, 2021

Megan Chance's "A Splendid Ruin"

Megan Chance is the bestselling, critically acclaimed author of several novels. Her books have been picks for Amazon Book of the Month, IndieNext, and the Historical Novel Society Editors’ Choice. Booklist calls her writing “provocative and haunting.”

Chance lives in the Pacific Northwest.

Here she dreamcasts an adaptation of her new novel, A Splendid Ruin:
I always cast actors or models as my characters before I start to write. I find it really helpful because when I’m writing I see the scenes unfolding in my head like a movie. It’s all very cinematic, so the wrong actor can mess up everything. It becomes rather obsessive on my part, trying to find the perfect person to represent the character I see in my head.

This also means that I have pictures of actors taped up all over my office, so it looks like the bedroom of a 14-year old girl, which can be embarrassing when the cable guy comes to fix the modem.

In A Splendid Ruin, I cast Rebecca Hall as May Kimble. I wanted someone attractive, but who wasn’t classically beautiful, and the look she had in The Prestige was exactly what I wanted for May. Capable and smart and vulnerable.

Margot Robbie was Goldie Sullivan. Gorgeous but with this edge that could make her either vulnerable or mean—that very Tonya Harding quality.

Domhnall Gleason was Jonathan Sullivan. I’m not sure why; he just popped into my head full bodied as Uncle Jonny. Pale and self-assured. Gleason always looks like he could be really kind but also could be hiding sinister secrets.

Ellis Farge was Gaspard Ulliel. I wanted someone who looked like he could have been arrogant once but then lost his way. Someone confused but also opportunistic. Also … handsome.

Dante LaRosa for me was Luke Pasqualino. Italian, charismatic, self-assured and confident. A little brash but also smart. I loved him in The Musketeers and Skins, and he’s great at being both charismatic and vulnerable.
Visit Megan Chance's website.

--Marshal Zeringue