About me

I grew up in Newton, Massachusetts, went to Harvard and moved to LA.  (My name was Claire Scovell for a large part of all that.)  I’ve written five novels for adults, Same as It Never Was, Knitting under the Influence, The Smart One and the Pretty One, If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home Now, and Families and Other Nonreturnable Gifts.  I’ve also published two YA novels with Harper Collins: Epic Fail and The Trouble with Flirting (due out in winter, 2012/3). With Lynn Koegel (who’s absolutely brilliant), I co-wrote  Overcoming Autism: Finding the Answers, Strategies and Hope That Can Transform a Child’s Life and Growing up on the Spectrum: A guide to life, love and learning for young adults with autism and Asperger’s.  I contributed to an anthology play called Motherhood Out Loud, and have been published in The New York TimesSelf, Vogue and other magazines.

I live in the Pacific Palisades with my husband Rob (who writes for “The Simpsons”), my four kids (Max, Johnny, Annie and Will) and too many pets to keep track of.

Email me at cslazebnik@gmail.com.  Please.   I promise I’ll answer!  I love e-mail.  And if you’re in the area and have a book club, I’ll come visit if you do my book.  Or maybe just if you’re doing Austen.  I love Austen.

And if you read one of my books and liked it, it would be wonderful if you’d post a positive review on Amazon.  It’s not a make-or-break kind of thing, but it helps.  And it makes me happy.  Thanks.

If you’re interested in having me sign a copy of one of my books for you, let me know and I’ll send you a signed adhesive bookplate.  The next best thing to being there, right?  I only do book signings when a book first comes out, so I’m happy to “sign” them this other way.  I remember once reading that a writer–I think it was Margaret Atwood–had some kind of contraption that allowed her to autograph books at home while some kind of computerized link would make a motorized pen do the exact same strokes and movements out at a public booksigning.  Something like that.  So she could sign people’s books from a distance.  Every writer’s dream–I swear most of us are agoraphobes who just want to hide in a corner somewhere and hunch over our computers.  (I can hear legions of writers screaming at me now, “Speak for yourself!”  Okay, I will.  I’M an agoraphobe who would just like to hide in a corner somewhere and hunch over my computer.  So there.)  Since I don’t have one of those, the bookplates will have to do.  Or you can drop by the Starbucks at Montana and 15th–there’s a good chance you’ll find me there.  I’ll be the one in the corner, hunched over my computer . . .

77 responses to “About me

  1. imdbman626

    Great site mom!!!!!

  2. Mathilde

    Hello
    First i’m sorry for my aproximative english but i’m french. I just ask you about the translation of all your books in french because i’can just read same as it never was and i really love it.
    It’s my favorite book !!!
    Thanks for all
    Friendly

  3. Claire

    Your English is great and I’m so glad you liked SAME AS IT NEVER WAS. Was it MA SOEUR, CE BOULET when you read it? I would love to get the other books translated into French, but I need a French publisher to pick them up! Thanks for writing.

  4. What an amazing, revealing, heartfelt biography~! I got bogged down a little in the middle because of how you go on and on, bragging about yourself, but that’s you, brag brag brag. Only you forgot to mention the part where you somehow manage to produce all these books sort of simultaneously, while every other writer watches jealously. How everyone who knows you thinks of you as their best friend, and how your house is always open to huge crowds of people who seem to more or less live with you. How even your DOGS are special people, that everyone wants to adopt your children, how your husband has invented a special treatment for wood floors. Your novels are wonderful. You are an amazingly talented writer. Your web site is cool. How many books are you working on now?

  5. Claire

    I’ve never met this Bruce person in my life. But he does make a good point: my dogs are very special people.

  6. margie

    Dear Claire:

    Enjoyed the book the smart one and the pretty one. Lots of great relationship material there between the sitsters and the parents and their relationships with men…..
    What is your next project……….

  7. Claire

    Thanks so much, Margie! My next project is also somewhat family based, but it’s a more unusual family, with second marriages and, well, other stuff I’m not ready to give away yet. I’m still in the early stages but I think I’m working it out. Hope so.

  8. Nicole C

    I just finished reading ‘the smart one and the pretty one’ and truly enjoyed it. I wanted to let you know that the reason I purchased it was because the back of the book said you were coauthor of Overcoming Autism. I instinctively knew that you had been touched as I have by the spectrum disorder, my 5 yr old daughter has PDD-NOS. I am looking forward to getting Knitting Under the Influence. Thank you for the very entertaining read Santa put in my stocking this Christmas. I think there is enough for a follow up on the book, it was excellent!

  9. Nicole C

    P.S. I’m from your homestate of Massachusetts!

  10. Claire

    Thanks so much, Nicole! KNITTING has a whole autism storyline so it may speak to you. Let me know what you think. Where in Mass are you from? Thanks for writing! My wifi has been out so I’m slower than usual in responding but it should be fixed tomorrow (fingers crossed!).

  11. Nicole C

    Excellent. I’m going to have to order it on Amazon this weekend along with your other book on Autism. I will let you know what I think, absolutely. I live in Leominster, about 50 miles northwest of Boston. For us with out daughter, it’s been a great place to live to help her with the support she needs. although her brother who is one year older is probably the best things she has going for her.

    I must say that I think you did a very good job at developing the characters in your book–it helps that I have two sisters of my own and felt connected to the different personalities as we three are as well. Looking forward to the books!

    Happy New Year 2009!

  12. Katie

    I love your books! I can’t put them down I have read them all. When is your next one coming out!!!! I loved knitting under the influence. I am not one to get involved in reading I used to hate the thought but there is something about your writing that keeps me focused. I can’t wait for the next one!

  13. Claire

    Aw, thanks, Katie! I’m finishing up another novel for 5 Spot but it isn’t slated for publication until 2010, I’m afraid–and possibly not until that fall. I’m so glad my books hold your attention. I find that’s the most important thing for me with books these days. I love that feeling of being riveted to the page.

  14. sophie

    Bonjour,

    Dsl pour mon Francais mais je ne parle pas l’anglais, je viens de lire votre livre ma soeur ce boulet et j’ai adoré j’ai dévoré le livre en 2 jours alors que d’ordinnaire je n’aime pas specialement lire. Voila je souhaiterais vous suivre, et lire vos autres livres sont ils dans le meme esprit ? Sont il disponible en France ? et traduit en Francais ?
    Encore felicitation pour votre livre je vois que vous l’avez ecrit à 20 ans j’ai environ le meme age que vous 22 ans, et je trouve cela admirable que si jeune vous avez autant de talent bravo et j’attend avec impatience vos prochains livres.

  15. sophie

    Bonjour,

    Dsl pour mon Francais mais je ne parle pas l’anglais, je viens de lire votre livre ma soeur ce boulet et j’ai adoré j’ai dévoré le livre en 2 jours alors que d’ordinnaire je n’aime pas specialement lire. Voila je souhaiterais vous suivre, et lire vos autres livres sont ils dans le meme esprit ? Sont il disponible en France ? et traduit en Francais ?
    Encore felicitation pour votre livre je vois que vous l’avez ecrit à 20 ans j’ai environ le meme age que vous 22 ans, et je trouve cela admirable que si jeune vous avez autant de talent bravo et j’attend avec impatience vos prochains livres.

    merci

  16. Claire

    Merci, Sophie! Je ne peut pas ecriver bien en francais mais je peut l’entender. (J’espere que ce dit ce que je pense!) Mes autres livres ne sont pas traduit en francais–seulement le premier, Ma Soeur, Ce Boulet. Peut-etre un jour . . . Encore merci!

  17. Sandra

    Hi Claire,

    I’m currently reading The Smart One and The Pretty One. I am loving it! I can’t put it down. Except now, cause I’m writing. Where do you find your inspiration? What did you do before becoming a writer?

    Well, thanks for keeping me entertained :-)

    Sandra

  18. Claire

    Thank you so much! I’m so glad you like it. I wrote essays for magazines for a while, worked at one point for a production company, and mostly raised kids before becoming a writer. I never really had any other career–lucky for me this one worked out.

  19. I just found you via your sister’s FB posting of your newest book. Your voice is strong here and makes me want to read your books….so I will!
    Thanks
    Marla

  20. Claire

    Thank you, Marla! That makes me very happy.

  21. I absolutely loved “Knitting Under the Influence”!! Myself and two other ladies actually knit together once a week at a local diner that is quite tolerant of our hours of talking, laughing, and knitting (so long as we eat pancakes). I personally have a son who is on the Spectrum (Asperger’s Syndrome) who also knits up a storm (a pair of camoflouge socks at the moment). We actually picked up and moved states just so he could get good services. So your book was a delight on three fronts: friendship, knitting, and ASD. :)

  22. Angela

    I just wanted to say I just finished your book The Smart One and The Pretty One and LOVED it! I feel like I can really relate to the characters because I have an older sister that was always the “pretty one” with all the boyfriends. And then there was me. :P I was the only one in my family that went to college, so I guess you could call me the smart one (although definitely not as smart as Ava). But I really enjoyed how the focus of the book was not primarily on the relationship with the guys, but on sisters and family relationships. I think that’s really refreshing! I’m a huge chic-lit fan, so this hit the spot, but was a little different, so I loved that! I was a bit disappointed with the ending for Lauren – I felt like we were left hanging! Any chance of a continuation of her story?
    (PS – I left a review on Amazon too) :)

  23. Claire

    Oh, thank you, Angela! I’m so torn about the sequel. Here’s the thing about where I leave Lauren: I LIKE that she’s realizing life isn’t about finding a guy or being with a guy. Sometimes it’s about just loving your family and being there for them. That’s kind of what she needed to realize. But sometimes I want to revisit the family . . .

  24. I loved Olivia’s Sister. Olivia reminded me of an edgy, angry and unconventional Jane Austen’s “Emma” (my fav Austen protagonist).

    Looking forward to reading your other books.

  25. Anonymous

    did you graduate from harvard? because im doing a book report on your book the smart one and the pretty one ( GREAT BOOK ! ) so yea thanx ! (:

  26. Claire

    Hey, I thought I responded to this but it wasn’t showing up. In case I didn’t, email me directly (cslazebnik@aol.com) if you have any other questions and, yes, I went to Harvard!

  27. christina !

    could you please tell me your three sisters full names and your brothers full name? ^^^^ im the one who had the harvard question ( :

  28. C.S.

    i read your book the smart one and the pretty one and it was absolutly awesome ! deffinelty one of the best books ive read! i cant wait read your other books i bet they’ll be greattt ! (:

  29. Anonymous

    could you please tell me your three sisters full names and your brothers full name? im doing a book report on it !

  30. Joce

    Dear Claire,
    Where can I start? I love love your books! Im definitaly one of your biggest fans. I enjoy your work in the smart one and the pretty one and especially knitting under the influence. Im reading these at such a young age(13) and feel so attached to them. Please keep writing more…..Im even writing a book review on Knitting Under the Influence…and even with all this homework Im going to read it again.:)

  31. Kat

    I read your book Knitting Under the Influence for my Independent Reading Project for school. I honestly could not set it down, I was getting in trouble in class for reading it, silly high school. I just bought your two other books and am looking forward to reading them. It’s can’t be just me who thinks your book would transfer perfectly into a movie right?

  32. Claire

    I’m so glad you liked it, Kat! I was hoping maybe it would end up a movie but it never happened. Maybe someday. Hope you enjoy the others–and I’ve got two more books coming out this summer, so you should have plenty of chances to get in trouble at school next fall. :)

  33. paola

    i have to say i love the book epic fail. it was so awesome, i felt like i was in the book. i enjoyed it like you have no idea. i felt like i was the one in love woth derek edwards lol. keep making books like that. i will check out your other books because i am sure they are good too. i think you should make a part 2 for the book epic fail cuz i really like 2 know what happens with elise and derek. thanks from paola

  34. Claire

    Paola, that’s one of the nicest comments I’ve ever gotten! So glad you liked the book!

  35. casey

    i just read your new book epic fail and i couldnt put it down i was wondering if your going to make a sequal?

  36. casey

    i also think you should turn it into a movie

  37. Pingback: Claire LaZebnik’s 5 Loves and a Dud | Chick Lit Is Not Dead

  38. Danielle

    LOVE your work! I am hooked on your books and just finished “Families…” I am already waiting for you to publish another! Your characters are easy to connect with and your style of writing makes me feel as though I am in the story! I am so glad I was given “The Smart One …” as that is how I got hooked!

  39. Kathy Spielman

    I’d love a sequel to Epic Fail. Loved the book.

  40. Allison A.

    I’m soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo x1,000 o’s obsessed with EPIC FAIL. It’s one of my favorites. The first thing I do when I come home from school I grab EPIC FAIL right away get in my zebra-stripped chair and read speedly. I remember when I brought this to school and I was reading it at lunch with my friend, Elizabeth. Elizabeth began reading it to me and stopped for a moment, she showed me the cuss word and I didn’t see that coming. I mean it’s okay theirs cuss words in their because the book was STILL awesome! :D I finished it in 3 days and I was sad because their weren’t any more Epic Fail books. Now, that I’m done reading it I gave it to Elizabeth. When, she was done with the book she said. . . “This book is Ah-Maz-Ing.” I loved Epic Fail so much that I wanted more books of Epic Fail. Claire, you are the bestest author to make a romance book, because this book had so much. . . Passion, I LOVED IT!

  41. Claire

    LOVE your comment, Allison! Sorry about the cuss word. It’s hard to write a realistic book about teenagers and not include a couple . . . I’m glad Elizabeth liked it too!

  42. Elizabeth

    Hi Claire! :) Yes, I’m Allison’s best friend of course. I have to say. . .
    I
    LOVED
    EPIC
    FAIL
    PERIOD
    Lol. Thank you so much for letting me borrow your book, Allison. I’d have to say Epic Fail is better than any other book I’d read about romance. Even though there was cuss words it still fine with me. I just didn’t wanna say the cuss word because, Jenny and Kevin were there. I knew they were gonna tell the teacher. For some reason, I now wanna be an author now. But then, at the same time I wanna be a Guitarist and a backup vocalist to a band. I’m into rock music. :P But, like I said Epic FAIL was AH-MAZ-ING! You know why? ‘Cause I’m an Epic FAIL too.

  43. Kim Fox

    Claire, I think your books are amazing and cannot wait for a new one. You have a great sense of humor! It is hard to put your books down once I start reading. Thank you for being such an entertaining writer!

  44. Claire

    Thank YOU, Kim, for such a nice note!

  45. Kiki

    Claire, i LOVE EPIC FAIL! i have never read a book as good as yours. one day, i hope to be a phenomenal writer like you. i can’t wait for your next book. love you and your writing the first word i read!

  46. Claire

    Aw, thanks, Kiki!

  47. Veronika

    I loved your book Epic Fail. I was reading in class and started laughing. And embarresed my self. The guy next to me gave me another weird look. It was totally worth it, I’ll take a hundred weird looks for more books. And since I get a lot of those keep writing!

  48. Veronika

    me again
    I normally hate romance books because I hate sappy books
    I loved your book
    Awesome!

  49. Cherie

    Hi Claire. Your books are page turners to me. So far, the books that I have made by you are The Smart One and The Pretty, and Epic Fail. I have finished both. And, I’m totally looking forward to getting new books from you this year. ♥

  50. I just finished your book, “Epic Fail”, and I thought it was absolutely AMAZING!! You should really make this into a movie, it would be sooo cool. haha, I’m a girl 12 year old so, yeah. i hope we get to talk again soon. I wonder what’s your email address………… haha. I would like to ask you for advice for personal “love troubles.” I hope you’re open in telling me your email address if possible. Thanks for the amazing book. BYEE
    Sincerely,
    (is it safe to put my name in public here?) Angelika

  51. Claire

    Hi, Angelika! You can email me at cslazebnik@aol.com. I’d love to hear from you. I’m so glad you liked EPIC FAIL and I’m getting some interest in it as a movie so FINGERS CROSSED! Thanks for writing!

  52. Ava Nauman

    Thanks for the article post.Much thanks again. Fantastic.

  53. Smile

    I LOVED your book “Epic Fail”!!!!!!!! It was soooo good.I defiantly think that it would make a GREAT movie. I know i’d be one of the first people in the movie theater to see it. Also, I really think that you should make a sequel or two or three or four… Thank you so much for writing that book. I loved it so much I poured through all 295 pages in one day!

  54. Pingback: PrAACtical AAC | Supports for language learning

  55. candy soriano

    good day!
    EPIC FAIL brought me here :) I have been trying to find a really good book for quite sometime now, and thank the stars I accidentally found yours. It was such a good read, the characters are consistent and lovable (which is by the way a rare scene from the couple of reads I had, thank you :D), the dialogues are fun, flirty and smart, and best of all, you have written it flawlessly (which again is rare), thumbs up!!!!

    EPIC FAIL had this :D pasted on my face until now. please please do right a couple more of young adult novels. I just love that giddiness that young love brings, so pleaaaaaaase :)

  56. candy soriano

    EPIC FAIL in big screens, double finger cross I was thinking about how cool it’ll be.. jeez.. so excited :D sorry I have to write about that.

  57. I read your book Olivia’s sister and absolutely loved it but I was wondering whether it can be sold as an ebook for my iBooks because I can’t find any ebook formats of it available on the Internet.

  58. Claire

    Olivia’s Sister was published in America under the title Same As It Never Was. I’m so glad you liked it–it’s still probably my favorite of all the books I’ve written. Unfortunately, it came out so long ago that e-books weren’t really around much then and, as far as I know, it’s never been converted to an e-book format. I’m sorry!

  59. Well that’s unfortunate, but I have the book in paperback all the same. The plot and writing were brilliant and it was numerous in all the write places. Well done.

  60. Ashlyn

    hi! I am doing a research on you, because youre my favorite auther! anways, I would love to ask you some personal questions about your life if that’s okay.. could I get your email?

  61. ashlyn

    when were you born?

  62. Anonymous

    what’s your birthdate?

  63. lexi

    what is a special event that changed your life, with details? whens your birthday?

  64. Claire

    My birthday’s October 9. Same as John Lennon. I guess a special event was having my son be diagnosed with autism: it made me rethink all my previous ideas about what success was and started me down a new path. Up until then, I’d thought mostly about the kinds of success you can show off to other people: getting books published, becoming rich and famous, having kids who excelled at everything . . . Then life threw me an unexpected curveball and I realized that happiness isn’t about showing off–it’s about appreciating and enjoying and loving the people in your life. I wish I could say I’ve been a better, more accepting person since then, but I’m not sure we ever learn a lesson completely. It takes an entire life to figure this stuff out. But I’m working on it.

  65. ashlyn

    How old are your kids? What was your childhood like?

  66. Claire

    My kids are 22, 19, 16 and 13. My childhood was very boring–I grew up in a suburb of Boston, went to my local public schools, had one brother and three sisters, a dad who worked and a mom who stayed home, and the only unusual thing was that I skipped ninth grade and went to college when I was 16.

  67. lexi

    How old was your son when you found out he had autism, and what is his name?

  68. Claire

    He was two and a half and I call him “Andrew” in the autism books.

  69. ashlyn

    What is is his real name, though? sorry If I am getting a little personal.

  70. Claire

    It’s okay, but I prefer not to give it out.

  71. Ashlyn

    I understand! How long does it take you to write a book? When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer? How do your books get published? When did you write your first book, and how old were you? What do you like to do when you’re not writing? What does your family think of your writing?

  72. Claire

    It’s hard to say how long it takes me to write a book, because it depends on so many factors. I also write a LOT of drafts–the first draft usually takes a few months, the next one a month or two, and then future drafts depend on how many notes my editors give (and how soon the deadlines are). I wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember: I LOVED reading when I was a kid and thought being a writer would be the most exciting thing in the world. I have an agent and when I write a book she sends it out to different editors to find one who wants to publish it–but once I’ve written one book for an editor, we can sometimes make a deal for more books, which is nice. My first book was accepted for publication in 2002, when my youngest son was a baby. But I had written a bunch of books before then that hadn’t been published. I’d been writing pretty much since I graduated from college in 1985. So I wasn’t exactly an overnight success! When I’m not writing, I’m mostly being a mom to my four kids, picking them up, driving them around, making meals, doing laundry, etc. I also like to go on walks (mostly with my dogs) and to knit and watch TV and read (big surprise). My family’s very supportive–both the one I was born into and the one I created with my husband. He’s also a writer, so we can read each other’s stuff and make suggestions. And the kids are always enthusiastic about seeing my books in stores.

  73. Ashlyn

    Thank you so much for your information! I loved learning about you, and all your journeys through life! I hope I get a good grade on this project! thanks again! :)

  74. Claire

    you’re welcome! Good luck on the project!

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