It is ALWAYS OK to eavesdrop when you are a writer, only you call it ‘research’. However, I’ve found through experience that blatant staring should be avoided. Also, “You are a perfect character for my next story,” when caught staring, seems to do nothing to help the situation.
2. Just what is inspiration? ( explain using body language and then use your words to explain that.)
She clawed her way out of sleep to find the pen left within reach, on the desk for just such occasions. An agonized character aching to be transposed to the page on the tip of her mind. Pen? Pen! She flailed in the dark in search of it. Gone. The idea was gone now too, as surely as her pen had disappeared into The Child’s den down the hall.
3. Has anyone ever told you to – just use your words?
Surprisingly often! I can write them down, no problem, but getting them out of my mouth is sometimes problematic for me, even more so when all of the words are coming through my fingers.
4. Would you rather cut your hair yourself in a darkened room with a nail scissors or do a live debate on the merits of reading YA?
I’m not opposed to DIY haircuts, and I’m pretty sure I’ve used nail scissors before during a long bout of travel, when long hair suddenly seemed impractical with few places to wash it. And a debate on the merits of reading YA? Don’t tell me such a debate is even necessary, is it?!
5. Please provide us with at least two lines from your previous argument?
“I’ve used nail scissors before” and it “is even necessary” (unless you want to get into the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest nails—have you seen those pictures?).
6. What does the phrase, She’s a lovely girl, mean to you?
She is hiding something isn’t she? Who thinks she is lovely? I’m almost sure she doesn’t. What is her story? Do you think I could eavesdrop for a while, so I can find out?
7. Do you write about lovely people or monsters in your books?
People who feel like monsters, but who everyone else thinks are lovely people. Or even better, people who everyone else thinks are monsters, but turn out to be lovely people. I think that about covers everyone, don’t you?
8. Ice cream or pasta as writing food?
Oh, pasta for sure. Even better if it is left over pasta that I just have to heat up. In fact, some writing weeks it is the same pot of pasta for the whole week.
9. Define: gold. Using only adverbs.
Hold on, aren’t adverbs BANNED? I am pretty sure every writing technique book I’ve read says to avoid them like the plague. (See how I cleverly avoided answering that question?).
10. Please ask me a question.
How in earth do you think of these questions?
Hmmm, I revert to the age of eight, wriggle my toes, curl my hair, and chew bubble gum and ask questions I had as a kid.
I write stories. Up to now, the stories seem to be book-length and for young adults. When characters start nattering in my head, I don’t think about who they are trying to talk to—but so far I’m told its people on the younger end of life. One of these stories, Finding a Voice, is being published in Autumn 2014! This is terribly exciting (but also not quite tangible to me yet).