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?
I wrote a lot of stories and read a lot, and I like to think I was quite good really. However, I did get into trouble for always giggling uncontrollably at the wrong moment (AWFUL), and being "a madam". I was terrible at maths. I was once told by my form tutor that if my brain was as big as my mouth I would have no problems in life. So I must have been a bit of a pain...
Q: What did you want to be when you were a child?
A writer or an explorer
Q: Which three words describe you best?
Short, forgetful, daft
Q: What is your favourite word?
Q: What makes you cringe?
Remembering embarrassing things that I have done!
Q: What are you afraid of?
Q: When did you last have a really good laugh?
A couple of days ago I had a really big laugh, but my son and my husband make me laugh most days
Q: What is your most treasured possession?
My Anglo-Saxon brooch
Q: What do you do as a hobby?
I haven't had time for ages, but I like making clothes
Q: What strange habits do you have?
When I go swimming, I always use the same locker. That's quite weird, isn't it?
Q: What’s your favourite food?
Q: What do you day dream about?
Exotic places in ancient times
Q: What profession other than yours would you like to attempt?
I'd still like to be an explorer
Q: Do you feel younger or older than your current age?
I can remember very clearly what it is like to be a child or teenager, so sometimes I feel younger, but if I am very tired, I feel ancient
Q: If you could meet one person, dead or alive, who would it be?
Q: What quality do you most admire in a person?
Q: What is the most interesting place you have ever visited?
Q: What is the best advice anyone has ever given you?
It wasn't advice as such, but I had this great boss when I was 18 and worked in an art gallery. I accidentally charged £1,000 to someone's debit card instead of £10, and he said, "Don't worry, no one is going to die as a result of what you have done – we can fix it and it really doesn't matter in the great scheme of things!". I remember this often whenever work gets on top me. Keep a sense of perspective!
Q: What would you most like to change about yourself?
Maybe to be more organised
Q: What has life taught you?
To spend it doing things that I enjoy.
Q: How long have you been a writer?
Since I was about 10
Q: Was there a specific moment in your life when you decide to become a writer?
Q: Where do you do your writing?
I used to have a shed, but now I write at a table inside
Q: What are the best and worst things about being an author?
I love it! It's brilliant. I can go anywhere I like using my imagination, and I get paid for it. The hardest thing so far has been not having maternity leave like most people when I had a baby - that was gruelling!
Q: Where do you get your greatest ideas from?
Sometimes the landscape around me or reading about exotic places like the Silk Road – an ancient system of trade routes between Europe and China. I've always been an armchair traveller and sometimes a real one.
Q: Which of your own characters do you most identify with?
Hard question: I identify with all of them in different ways. Cai in Bloodline Rising was the easiest to write.
Q: What do you do to combat “writers’ block”?
By writing - you just have to keep at it.
Q: What was your favourite book as a child?
I had so many at different times and for different reasons. I had quite a long love affair with The Outsiders by SE Hinton when I was a teenager. The author was only 17 when she wrote her first book, and it is full of energy and passion.
Q: What book do you wish you had written?
On the Road, by Jack Kerouac. When I was fifteen, I wished I was driving across the USA. Anyway, it's a wonderful book.
Q: What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Write as much as you can and read as much as you like.
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