Paula Hawkins reflects on the crazy success of 'The Girl on the Train'
We said goodbye to Don Draper and hello to Adele. Doughnuts were licked, and dinos were vanquished. And whether we were getting to know Supergirl or supervillains (looking at you, Robert Durst), 2015 turned our emotions Inside Out. So join us as we revisit the year’s most unforgettable moments—for better or worse. (By the time we’re through, maybe we’ll finally have our invitation to join Taylor’s #squad.) See more Best of 2015 coverage.
Parts of this extraordinary year still seem quite unreal to me. I’m now financially secure, which is a very pleasant change. But at the same time, I still live in the same house, I still see the same friends. It’s a different thing when one becomes famous as, say, an actress, because you’re instantly recognizable. As an author, you can still carry on your completely normal life and no one bothers you, which is lovely.
I’ve been astounded by the speed with which the film got going. When it was optioned, everyone said, “It’ll be years; they might not even do it.” And in less than a year I found myself visiting the movie set. They actually made Emily Blunt look like a woman who’s let herself get into a complete mess. I don’t know that she ever could be ugly, she’s got such a beautiful bone structure. But she looked really authentic. It’s strange to see people acting out the things you thought up.
You do feel vulnerable, though, with people knowing how you think. You pour your darkest thoughts onto the page, and millions of people can see how weird the inside of your mind is. I’ve even seen people reading my book a couple times on the train. I kept trying to sneak glances at one woman to see if she looked interested or bored. She probably thought I was some weirdo.
As told to Isabella Biedenharn.
To continue reading more on EW’s Best and Worst of 2015, pick up the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, on newsstands now, or buy it here.
The Girl on the Train