Wednesday, May 25, 2011

SCBWI Crystal Kite Award Winner, Marsha Skrypuch

Last month I received a book in the mail that I'd won through a blog contest. Cool, right? I'd read about this book and the author and was eager to read it. What a delightful discovery! The day I finished reading, I found out the author had been awarded the SCBWI Crystal Kite for her region. 

It is with pleasure that I share Marsha's comments with you. You can learn more about the author and her books here: Marsha's Website 

On Writing

Favorite thing about writing a first draft:

There is a certain thrill to starting on something brand new and not knowing where the journey will be taking you. It is akin to a reader's experience of finding a brand new excellent novel to plunge into.

Best thing about writing for kids and/or teens:

Kids and teens are more discerning in their reading tastes. If a novel doesn't grab within the first paragraph or two, they will set it aside. I love the challenge of writing for such an intelligent audience.

Favorite word? 


One word that describes your path to publication:


If I could have two dream careers, I’d be an author and a:

Letter Carrier 

On Life

If I could snap my fingers and solve one of the problems here on earth, it would be:


One question I wish I had a definitive answer to:

Why must history continue to repeat itself?

Best thing about being a child:

My favourite thing about being a child was that I could imagine all sorts of futures. I also loved creating an intricate fantasy world for myself. I stayed a kid longer than most and in fact some people claim that I never grew up.

Worst thing about being a child:

I didn't like the assumption by adults that kids know less than they do. In fact, I have met a whole whack of kids that are way smarter than adults. Kids' perceptions are purer than adults and they don't have so much mundane stuff on their minds. Why is it that so many adults don't understand and respect that?

Best thing about being a teenager:

The entire world opens up when you're a teenager. In many ways you are treated like an adult and you can do things that adults can do, but it's all new and exciting. When I was a teen, I plunged into reading and writing in a big way. I discovered that I loved history and social justice.

Worst thing about being a teenager:

The stereotypes. So many adults assume all sorts of negative things about teens. It is frustrating to have adults assume that you know less than they do just because they're older.

Most memorable teen moment:

I was a teen in the 1970s and at that time, there wasn't yet equality of the sexes. I belonged to a club called Junior Achievement. High school students would form businesses with about 20 students in each business. There were ten or more of these student businesses in my city. Each student business developed a product – something simple like a kitchen gadget or decorative item that could be made in a woodworking or machine shop. We made the product, packaged it up, marketed it and sold it. The company that did the best job won. Individuals also won various prizes. In all past years  a top male achiever and a top female achiever were named but because it was the 1970s, there was an assumption that it was really the top male achiever that was the true winner. When I was in grade 11, I won the first overall top achiever for my city. They didn't even choose a male, just combined the award and gave it to me. That was such a thrill!

A quote I live by:
The only failure is when you stop trying.

My  dream vacation:
A remote island with lots of books, swimming and sand.

In My Perfect World…

What I would like is that each person realize that they bring something unique to the universe. We are all equal, yet different and the world is only complete when we are all valued. I would love it if everyone had that feeling affirmed once a week

There would be an abundance of food and water.

No one would be deprived of basic human rights.

Every child would have love.

No one would ever hurt others.

Books would be free for everyone.

Marsha holding a few of her novels with readers


  1. Great interview, Angi. I loved her answer about free books for everyone. Never thought of that! Her comments about kids knowing more than they're given credit is totally on point. That's the secret of Alexander McCall Smith's character, Bertie. He said he gets more fan mail and comments about Bertie than any other character. =)

  2. GirlParker, you are right!!!

    Angelina, thanks for the great interview!

  3. "I didn't like the assumption by adults that kids know less than they do."

    Amen to that!


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