Thank you Leanne!
*When did you first start writing?
I started writing on a family holiday in Europe when I was eight. My family hired a campervan and drove all round Europe. I spent a lot of time in the back of that van feeling bored. So I started writing stories in notebooks. I still have some of them; they’re very funny! The characters are all fruit and vegetables, or my soft toys. I haven’t stopped writing since.
*Did you always want to be a writer, or did it come to you slowly?
I always felt like a writer, because I was always secretly scribbling in journals and notebooks. But I only ever quietly hoped I could be a published writer. I tried to follow so many sensible careers and jobs, but I couldn’t stop writing. It bubbled along in the background, until I had to admit I really wanted to have a novel published. I made a decision to work part-time for many years while I tried to improve my writing.
*What is your favourite thing about This is Shyness?
It’s a toss up between my characters, and the world. Like choosing between two children! I would have to say Wolfboy and Wildgirl. They’re like friends to me. I feel like they whisper things in my ear, and get up to no good while I’m asleep, and sometimes they’re really annoying and don’t do what I tell them to.
*What was it like, hearing that you'd won the Text publishing prize and that This is Shyness was being published?
It was very surreal and very exciting. I was just so pleased to even be on the shortlist. I don’t think I can even describe how I felt, it was all so overwhelming. It was a long held dream of mine to have a book published.
*What are you currently reading?
I’m reading Indigo’s Star, a quirky, funny little book by British author Hilary McKay. It’s the second book about the Casson family. I loved the first book, Saffy’s Angel, and so far Indigo’s Star is equally great.
*In a film version of This is Shyness, who would you cast as Wildgirl and Wolfboy?
Argggh! Difficult question! I have no idea. Suggestions please!
*Why do you write?
I write because I can’t NOT write. It must be the way I try to understand the world. And I write because I love to read. Reading a good book brings me such pleasure, and I would love to do that for other people through my own writing.
*Do you have any tips for upcoming writers?
Read and write as much as possible. Read as widely as possible, and then write in every spare moment you can find.
I do like this text...
More from me soon,