A word of advice for all writers looking to spend 143 weeks on the "New York Times" bestseller list: do what "Twilight" mastermind Stephenie Meyer did and listen to your mother. The author appeared on the "Oprah Winfrey" show Friday afternoon for her only interview leading up to the release of "New Moon" and revealed a little-known fact about her second novel — the ending would've been much tamer if not for her mother's advice.
"My mom was like, 'You know, Stephenie, maybe a little more action at the end would be a good idea. Maybe you need that.' And she was right, as usual. So after kind of stewing about it I introduced the Volturi a little bit earlier in the series than I was planning. That whole scene at the end — that's kind of my favorite part now — is there because my mom told me it would be better that way."
Much of Oprah's interview focused on how Stephenie first began writing "Twilight" — something many Twihards are already quite familiar with — but it served as a nice primer for the uninitiated. As Oprah put it, "If you're not a part of the 'Twilight' world, just get with it."
Stephenie first came up with the story for "Twilight" in a dream. She woke up the next morning — June 2, 2003 (the first day of her summer diet and her kids' swim lessons) — and began putting it into words. "This dream was just something I was so interested in. It was so different from what my every day was at the time, something that was fantasy. And I just wanted to remember it so badly, that's why I started writing it down. Not because I thought, 'This would be a great story for a novel.' No. It was just, 'I don't want to forget this story.'"
Because it was such a vivid story, she kept writing. Over the past several years, her life had been so focused on raising her children that she didn't spend too much time on herself. "It was a release. That was the dam bursting. I had been bottling up who I was for so long, I needed an expression. …When your kids are little, their lives depend on you all the time, and you really have to devote yourself to them. It's part of the job. So who you are, your imagination and all that, you do have to put it on hold. ... And so a lot of who I was — my crazy imagination and that person — was on the backburner."
The "stay-at-home mom-turned-multi-gazillionaire behind it all" (as Oprah put it) said turning the book into a movie was a natural progression because it was so visual in her head. Casting Edward proved to be the hardest part, but she loved Robert Pattinson because "he just doesn't look like everybody else." Plus, "he smells great. Rob is hilarious. He's the funniest person. He is really fun to hang out with. He is not at all like the Edward character. It's interesting to watch him kind of shift back and forth because he's so different as Rob and he just changes."
Seeing the Wolf Pack come to life has been the most exciting part of the "New Moon" movie process. "The first time I got to see them, there's this scene where all of [the Wolf Pack members enter] at once and the ground shakes. They're so big and they looked so real. That for me was just the most amazing moment where I wanted to cry and I wanted to jump up and scream. It was amazing."
As for what's next, Stephenie said backstage that she's not sure if there will ever be a fifth book because she's a little burnt out on vampires — maybe she'll visit aliens next. Currently, she's working on the movie version of "The Host" and thinking about two more books to make it a trilogy.
What did you think of Oprah's interview? Too much of a retread of things we already knew, or enlightening for non-"Twilight"-knowledgeable moms? Did Stephenie's reaction to seeing the Wolf Pack make you even more excited to see the movie next Friday?