LISA: Brenda, when you sat down for the
first time to write scenes between Christy and Neil, is there one
particular scene in the book that you use as your point of
BRENDA: Yes, that was when Christy went into his cabin and was
left there. This is after she falls in the river. David has left
her, and then she walks into Neil's world. She's only seen him as
this sort of mad doctor (up to this point) and in this dramatic
setting. And then she gets in there, and she sees these pictures
and his world, and it's such a dichotomy from the other things
that she has been exposed to from the other mountain people.
Here's someone who's of there, but at the same time, he's so
different. I think that it is at this point that he becomes
incredibly interesting to her. And (laughing) the fact that he has
these women's clothes around; that's a little odd and yet
LISA: We talk about swooning a lot (on the forum). Swooning is
big for us! What is your definition of swooning?
BRENDA: I think it's basically when you see someone and your
stomach drops out! (laughing) Like Kaboom! And it's gone. I
think it's a real thing!
LISA: Well, Stewart sure does it for us!
BRENDA: Yeah, no kidding!
LISA: How often do you think MacNeill makes Christy swoon? How
often do you think she affects him in the same way?
BRENDA: I think it's about every time they see each other. You
know, I really do. There is definite chemistry.
LISA: What do you think it is about each other that invokes this?
BRENDA: I think that it is the chemistry. For her, as with many
women, it's the danger that exists in this man. He's
unpredictable, he's stark, and he's complex.
DEE About NeilandChristy.com, the webmaster has a swoon meter for every episode!
BRENDA: (Laughing) She will swoon about my episode, I promise
you! It will be off the chart in swooning!
LISA: Do you have a swoony moment from the book?
BRENDA: I didn't really have a swoony moment; any time that they
are together, there is this sort of romance and intensity between
them. At the same time, you feel for David. Here is someone who
has really fallen in love with this girl and has deep feelings for
her and this invokes feelings in her that I think are unusual.
She's very young when all this happened.
LISA: Tell me the defining scene or lines that you wrote for
Christy and also for MacNeill that you feel nails them to a "tee."
And if you can't answer this question at this time because the
mini-series hasn't aired yet, that's O.K., just give us a hint.
BRENDA: Neil leaves the cove. I don't know if that's been told or
exposed yet or not, but he leaves. It's clear that Neil leaves
because of these feelings he has for Christy. Then, in my episode,
he comes back, sort of on the spur of the moment, unannounced.
Through circumstances that occur, Christy ends up in the woods,
sprains her ankle, and Neil has to get her out of there. David has
been separated because of other circumstances. He's also in the
woods looking for her. David doesn't know what's happened to her.
Neil is carrying her because she can't walk and they see each other
and then this struggle that happens between these two men to
physically take this woman out of each other's arms was great fun
for me to write (laughs very gleefully).
And I think then, as that's going on, you hear "adult
Christy" saying that, "All of a sudden, she's 'seeing' these two
men, and she's got to make a choice." She looks at them and says,
"I saw before me two paths, one that's harsh and rocky, and that's
not travelled and one that is more graceful and familiar and
straight." In that moment she makes up her mind and so she gets up
LISA: Tell us your favorite Christy swoon moment?
BRENDA: I think, for me, in this episode that I wrote, Christy is
all aflutter because of her wedding plans. She doesn't know that
Neil is coming back, and she's running around and her mother is
calling her and she's doing all of this stuff. She turns around
and Neil is standing there. And it's like the (very) first time
that she just smiles. And thinks, "Oh my God!" And you see that
even in the midst of these wedding plans with David, that this is
someone that still has a piece of her heart. And you see it in
both of them.