More questions

Five questions from karlitea:

1. Who is your favorite fictional character and why?

I have a soft spot for Meg Murray from Madeleine L’Engle’s books. When I read those books in high school (thanks to lucy_anne handing me a copy of A Swiftly Tilting Planet when we were both in Mexico–wonder if she remembers that), I immediately identified with Meg: the braces, the glasses, the awkwardness, the brightness, the being full of angles and rough edges and unable and unwilling to fit into the world she was stuck with. I can think of other characters who are more compelling to me now (though many are still YA characters–Harimad Sol would get a strong runner-up vote), but Meg helped me get through high school (even though her books were aimed younger), and gave me a needed sense of kinship, that there were others like me out there in the world.

2. Color Association: What does the color yellow remind you of? Off the top of your head?

Top of my head–the color of light in Tucson. Everything has a yellow cast to it, even (especially) the greens, and that yellow turns everything to gold at sunset.

3. What’s your favorite accent to listen to?

Australian or New Zealand.

4. What, in your opinion, is the best human personality trait?


5. Is there a career you wanted to pursue but didn’t have the apititude for it?

Chemistry. Liked the theory, was wretchedly unhappy in the lab classes, at least once those classes reached a point where, like, getting accurate results mattered. Just didn’t have the sort of focus and precision that was needed. I probably could have learned it–I did get better over time–but at some point I realized if I was unhappy in a college lab course, how would I feel when my whole life consisted of this work? So with much angsting, I got out, declared an English major (with a second major in biology, just to prove I could), and have never regretted it.

Five questions from madwriter:

(1) What was your favorite book(s) as a child?

Assuming child includes teen, Madeleine L’Engle’s A Swiftly Tilting Planet.

If child means little kid, that would be a book called Katie and the Big Snow. 🙂

(2) You are granted the ability to relive one day of your life as often as you desire. Which day would you relive?

The day I visited Thingvellir in Iceland (site of the earliest Parliament). Because it was very much a place of power, and I got an idea for a book I very much want to write there, and it’d be good to be able to revisit as I work on the book without having to flu back every time.

Also, I visited the site of the farmhouse burned down (rather dramatically) in Njal’s Saga that day, only since my car battery had died twice I didn’t dare turn the car engine off or linger there long, and I want more time.

Also, I’d like to hang out in the Reykjavik Hard Rock Cafe again.

(3) You’ve been given the opportunity to go off on a spaceship. Thanks to subspace communications you can still publish your stories back on Earth, so you won’t have to worry about not writing–but it could be years before you return. Would you go?

A couple decades ago this would have been a clear-cut yes. Now, probably only if I could take lnhammer with me. Unless the trip was closer to six months or so.

(4) Do you have a difficult time leaning on other people, even if it’s obviously necessary?

For the most part, yeah.

(5) And the Question You’ve Probably Gotten One Million Times Before: Do you have any advice to give to writers who want to craft stories for children and teenagers?

Be stubborn. (Not too stubborn to edit. Too stubborn to give up.)

Don’t forget what it felt like to be a kid from the inside.

Read kids’ books for fun. If you don’t find reading them fun, write in a genre you do have fun reading instead.

Respect your audience. If you can’t respect your audience, write for an audience you can respect instead.

Do exactly the same things you’d do when writing for adults, only do them better, and edit them harder.

Be really stubborn.

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