In the meantime, please enjoy this interview with our amazing teenage partner, The Golden Eagle. If you haven't already checked out her blog, you'll want to soar over to The Eagle's Aerial Perspective.
The blogosphere is the most helpful place I’ve found when it comes to writing. There are so many other writers with advice, support, and who already know the ups and downs of the road.
What’s the most encouraging thing you’ve experienced along the way?
That almost all writers go through a process; many authors have written several novels before they were published, they’ve made mistakes, received a ton of rejection letters—but still achieved their dream of seeing their story in the hands of readers.
Favorite children’s books? Authors?
Oh, there are so many books. :) But some of my favorite authors are Blue Balliet, Eoin Colfer, Diana Wynne Jones, Lucy M. Boston, Kenneth Oppel, Wendelin van Draanen, Carole Wilkinson . . . to name a few.
What keeps you going when you feel like giving up?
The writing itself. Publication can only happen if there’s material there—and the material is what I fell in love with first. I enjoy working with words.
If you could choose to live any place on the planet, where would it be?
I’m not sure . . . I’d say the world from my novel(s), but that’s not one of the options! Maybe Japan. Or someplace in Canada. Or Australia.
Describe your fantasy writing space?
A large library room with tall bookshelves filled with old (and new!) books and high, airy windows, with a roaring fireplace at one end. There would be lots of cozy chairs and couches scattered across the room, and it would be winter outside—the room would look out on a pristine, white, mountainous vista.
(LOL. Okay, so I’m not going to be writing in a place like that anytime soon.)
What obstacles have you overcome in order to keep writing?
Time and my own unwillingness. Much as I love getting into the flow of writing, sometimes there are days when I’d just rather work on something else, read, blog, anything other than write.
What one word describes your writing process?
What do you appreciate the most about being part of the children’s writers community?
The other writers!
Best writing advice you’ve been given?
Hmmm . . . I had to think about this one. Though it wasn’t given to me directly, one phrase I remember well is “shut up and write”. :P And I find it is true—there are so many ways in which I manage to talk (or complain) about my writing, instead of actually getting into the nitty-gritty and trying to solve the problem.
What do you like to keep in mind while drafting a story?
1. Any typing errors, grammar problems, plot holes, character issues, and other pitfalls can be fixed later in rewrites/revisions. 2. Write down everything that comes to mind, since #1 allows for room to explore. 3. If the story fizzles, that’s okay. Not every idea is going to pan out as well as it was imagined in that first burst of inspiration.
How will you celebrate the publication of your first book?
Hopefully by writing a second book to be published. :) All right, that’s not much fun . . . If (when!) it happens, I’ll probably scream and shout and jump up and down, and then invite everyone I know to some kind of impromptu celebration.