The Author Hotline
being developed by CW4K, or Creative Writing 4 Kids. They are the company behind a website that enables children to create and publish their own stories online. In its first year it has signed up over 2000 members and has been enthusiastically received by children, parents and teachers. In fact the response has been so encouraging that they are planning a huge expansion of its services. Embedding The Author Hotline into the site is part of that expansion...
For more information on CW4K CLICK HERE
Q: What were you like at school?
VERY shy. So much so, in fact, that you only had to speak to me to make my face go so red, it would MELT off my skull. I was forever scooping up my melted face, but when I wasn't, I was reading or daydreaming.
Q: Which three words describe you best?
Funny, imaginative and... BONKERS!
Q: What are you afraid of?
CHICKENS. They tend to want to jump on my head. I have NO idea why. Actually, I'm so petrified, I'm totally unable to write the word 'CHICKEN' without doing so in capital letters. Strangely, I also have that problem with 'CHEESE'. But I'm not scared of CHEESE. Wh-who'd be scared of CHEESE? N-not me anyway.
Q: What is your most treasured possession?
My children. Though I still have a teddy I was given when I was 4 years old. That makes the teddy 26. It's a gorilla called "Gorilla" (I guess I wasn't that imaginative when I was 4) with only one eye because the other one fell off during a wrestling match I had with him when I was 5.
Q: What do you do as a hobby?
I practise Shotokan karate. And yes, I have a black belt! Needless to say, Gorilla is pleased I no longer have fights with him.
Q: What did you want to be when you were a child?
A doctor. Until I read my first Roald Dahl book. Then, I wanted to be Roald Dahl! As Roald Dahl died when I was 7, I thought it was probably best not to be him after all... So I decided to try to be LIKE him instead. Just a little bit more alive!
Q: What do you day dream about?
Ideas for books, of course! And then how rich and famous those ideas might one day make me, hehe!
Q: What profession other than yours would you like to attempt?
Singing and acting. But DEFINITELY not dancing!
Q: What quality do you most admire in a person?
KINDNESS is the most beautiful quality human beings can have. If you make it your life's goal to be kind, to everyone, everyday, you can be certain that you will be loved wherever you go and remembered forever.
Q: What is the best advice anyone has ever given you?
"Never get old" was the advice given to me by a 90 year old woman when I was 18. Unfortunately, despite my best efforts, I have aged almost 12 years since she told me this, and continue to do so. Sometimes, the best advice is the hardest to follow!
Q: What would you most like to change about yourself?
I used to want to change my ears, because they're quite big. But the Big Bad Wolf taught me that they're "all the better to hear you with", so I no longer want to change a thing about myself. I can now concentrate on changing the world instead. And I would encourage everybody else to do the same!
Q: What has life taught you?
Never trust a CHICKEN. Or CHEESE. Definitely never trust a CHICKEN with a block of CHEESE balanced on it's head. I've certainly learned my lesson...
Q: How long have you been a writer?
My first children's book was published 3 years ago. Though I had been writing poems for a few years before this, I like to think of 2011 as the year I began to take my writing seriously.
Q: Was there a specific moment in your life when you decide to become a writer?
I had always wanted to be a children's author but this ambition was forgotten until, one day, A BUMBLEBEE FLEW INTO MY FACE! I thrashed out, as you do, but as it flew away, I sat wondered why that bee's buzz had made me go mad. Later, I wrote about it. It's funny. Thanks to that bee, my love for creative writing had been re-ignited!
Q: Where do you do your writing?
I have a shed with a desk, chair and bookshelf in it. On the desk is a selection of pens, pencils and watercolour pencils. I write and draw here sometimes, but usually, it's wherever I have had an idea. Which can be ANYWHERE!
Q: What are the best and worst things about being an author?
The best thing is that you get to take ideas out of your head and put them into other peoples heads! Also, as a writer, you know how to put the right words in the right order to make people do what you want them to do... like laugh, cry or feel scared! I think that's MAGIC and with practise, anyone can do it! The worst thing is that you can't always write because of commitments, responsibilities and distractions. When you can't do what you want to do, it hurts... *Sniff!*
Q: Where do you get your greatest ideas from?
Other authors. I just STEAL all the best bits from their books, muhuhuahaHAHAHA! Ahem. Not really. I get some great ideas by listening to music without words. Music can make you feel different emotions, and when you feel emotional, your brain automatically starts trying to understand why. It does this by putting pictures in your mind. When you see these pictures, you can link them together to make a story.
Q: What was your favourite book as a child?
'Matilda'. And 'James and the Giant Peach'. I also loved the story 'The Hairy Toe' and SO MANY MORE.
Q: What book do you wish you had written?
'The Gruffalo' by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. I also wish I had illustrated it!
Q: What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Write down all of your ideas and keep them in a box. While you're filling your 'idea box', listen to your teachers and learn about lots of different writing skills and techniques. Treat each technique like a piece of a puzzle. The first piece might be spelling. The second piece might be punctuation. The third piece might be rhyme. And so on. Take one of your ideas and write about it by putting all of the pieces together. Then, put it back in your box and go and learn more. Keep coming back to your idea and watch how it grows, as you do as a writer!
Q: What do you do to combat “writers’ block”?
Um... I can't think. I'll have to go and have a drink and come back to this question later! ;o)
Eeedgar! The Elephant Who Exaggerated
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Morkeee! The Mouse Who Munched Too Much
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Beeely! The Bee Who Buzzed a Bloke Bonkers
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