We recently published Barb Ristine’s musical Boys of Summer: A Playlist.

Here, we ask her two questions about her story:


1) I have to admit, I’m not familiar with a couple of these songs! Are they the sort of songs your narrator hears from time to time and is taken back to these moments, these boys?

 Yes, she hears these songs and she’s transported to pivotal moments in past relationships, and once she’s on that backward journey, she recalls other songs, other details. I wanted to use songs evocative of specific times and places in her life.  You probably didn’t recognize the first song—it’s by Renaissance—which takes the narrator back to college when she listened to progressive rock (do they still call it that?)


2) The story title is also a song title, and implies that these relationships were fleeting. Do you think there is a song (and a boy) for the narrator that has stuck?

 Her relationships don’t seem to last, or if they do, they end badly. I think the song that stays with her is “Nick of Time” because it reminds her how narrowly she escaped staying with a man who didn’t  share her dreams but had been too much of a coward (or perhaps too selfish?) to admit that to her. The song encapsulated her life at the moment when she lost her parents, and she finally realized she wanted a family. I believe she has a very different playlist for her life now.