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Jennifer Weiner says late mom inspired plus-size characters

May 17 (UPI) -- Jennifer Weiner says her late mom, Fran Weiner, helped inspire the plus-size characters in her books.

The 51-year-old author discussed on Monday's episode of Good Morning America how her mom influenced her writing.

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Weiner's mom died at age 77 this month after a battle with pancreatic cancer. On GMA, Weiner recalled how her mom taught her to embrace her body and an active lifestyle.

"So my mom was never skinny her entire life, and she was always active," Weiner said. "She was a hiker and a biker and a skier and a swimmer, and she taught me how to move through life in a larger body and just use your body as a tool, as opposed to something that you've constantly got to beat yourself up on and try to change."

"For so many women, there's so many toxic messages we get about weight and their home is just one more place where they get to see, you know, maybe a mom who's always dieting," she added. "I never got that. I got a mom who was just active and out in the world. I feel so lucky."

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Weiner said her mom inspired her to create characters who embody the same values.

"When people ask me, 'Why do you have plus-size characters in your books? Why is it important to have those women and to have them get happy endings?' That's really the reason why -- I'm trying to be the Fran I want to see in the world," she said.

Weiner also discussed her mom's message in a video Sunday on Twitter.

"One of the greatest gifts my mom gave me was the gift of her example. I watched her move through the world in a larger body, actively and happily, doing everything she wanted to do, in the body she had," Weiner captioned the post.

"The world teaches fat women to hate ourselves. My mom taught me otherwise," she said.



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Weiner is known for writing In Her Shoes, which was adapted as a 2002 film starring Cameron Diaz, Toni Collette and Shirley Maclaine. She released a new book, That Summer, last week.

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