Author Nicholas Sparks visits Kansas City

Posted at 2:45 PM, Jan 28, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-28 19:53:33-05

His new movie is called The Choice. It reminds author Nicholas Sparks of a big choice he made in his own life - a choice that almost brought him to Lawrence.

"I was very close to attending the University of Kansas; that ended up being my second choice," said Sparks. "I ended up going to Notre Dame, but that was my second choice."

Sparks considered the university because of his Midwest roots.

Born in Omaha, Sparks believes the Midwest helped shape him and his writing.

"Even though I didn't spend a lot of time here, my parents grew up here and my grandparents lived in the Midwest for a long time," Sparks said. "I guess you would call them Midwest values, right?  You work hard, save your money do your chores, all that good stuff."

Sparks is known for his romance novels-turned-movies like The Notebook, Message in a Bottle and Dear John — so where does all of his romantic inspiration come from?

"I grew up in a house with a lot of love, we'll start there," said Sparks.  "And as a writer I tend to be fairly observant of people, about what they like and the things they like."

With one hundred million books sold, it's clear they like his love stories.
In The Choice, a bachelor — a character inspired by Sparks's brother — unexpectedly falls in love.

"He was the consummate bachelor for about 10 years until he finally settled down. I wanted to write a story about a guy like that," said Sparks.

In his writing, Sparks says he often develops the characters before writing the story.

"I start trying on voices, how do they sound when they talk," said Sparks. "When they talk about the weather, how does it sound different than when other people talk about the weather?" 

His own story began in the Midwest, but even he couldn't have predicted the exciting chapters to come.

To see Justin's full interview with Nicholas Sparks, visit his Facebook page here.

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