First up, Nora Raleigh Baskin. Nora wrote the 2010 Schneider Family Book Award winner, Anything But Typical, a book I adore. And meeting Nora made me like her even more; she is really nice and especially good at making you feel at ease when nervous. I even got to tell a whole room full of people what her book meant to me, and she was really nice about it! A huge THANK YOU to Nora for answering some of my questions! I can't wait to read more of her books!
Why do you write for kids?
I didn't start out writing for kids, but all my stories were ABOUT kids, mostly about my own life and memories. I tried writing for kids when my older son was in third grade and it just worked and felt right. I got my best and most personal rejections from children's publishers..so I knew I was on the right track!What advice do you have for kids who want to be writers?
Don't worry about being published..Write. And don't worry if it's no good. It's not supposed to be ...(my first drafts are always awful!) Find a good reader..someone who is kind and smart and will give you good, positive feedback.What made you interested in writing a book whose main character is a child with a disability?
And read a lot.
I had a personal connection to autism and I didn't even know it until I started writing the book. So maybe I was drawn to the character (and I loved the character) before I even understood what I was doing.What is your current favorite book (can be a kid or adult book) and what was your favorite as a kid?
My favorite book as a kid were the three E.B.White novels..Trumpet of the Swan, Charlotte's Web, and Stuart Little.Do you have a favorite Newbery winner?
Now, I love anything by Sue Miller, Anne Tyler, Margaret Atwood..too many to name...
You won't like this, Laura..but I loved Holes. I also loved Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William McKinley, and Me, Elizabeth
When and where do you write?
on my lap top, which means I can write anywhere...usually close to the kitchen so I can cook or EAT!What are you working on now or having coming out soon we can look forward to?
I have the Summer Before Boys coming out in June 2011.Have you ever gotten rejection letters?
Oh, boy have I! And they hurt, every time. No one likes rejection, but I learned a lot from them...I mean, I learned to keep going. Never give up. And try and get better..read more. write more. Write from the heart..not for the market.Do you feel like a famous author? Has anything fun ever happened because you are famous?
No, I don't feel like a famous author..but being published is a very good feeling. Especially after nine years of rejections. What has happened is that now I can keep writing..I feel more legitimate, if that makes sense.How many bookcases do you have?
oooo...good good question. So many. James built me a whole (same) room of shelves..but I have books in every single room..all over. I think there should be a book to grab and look at no matter where you are in the house...