Q: Who’s your favorite baseball player?
Q: What were your favorite books growing up?
A: I may have visited several local libraries in nearby towns in order to read as many of the books in The Babysitters Club series by Ann M. Martin as possible. I also loved Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery, and anything by Judy Blume and Lois Lowry.
Q: How many books do you read in a year?
A: Typically between 100 and 150. Librarians — future, former, and current — we like to read! Though there was one year when I read 262 (not counting picture books). That was a doozy.
Q: Who’s the most famous person you’ve ever met?
A: For the longest time, I had not met any famous people and was just dying to meet one. I may have once left my veggie burger and ran down the streets of London because my friend and I thought we saw the movie star Gwyneth Paltrow (it turned out we did not). But then a couple things happened. My neighbor became president. (Yep, Barack Obama lived in my neighborhood. No, we were not BFFs, sadly, though I did tutor his nephew’s seventh grade girlfriend). Also, in college, the musician Elvis Costello used my Hello Kitty toaster. True story. Oh, and I’ve met John Green and Hillary Clinton.
A: Frances (from Bread and Jam for Frances by Russell Hoban), Anne Shirley, Alice McKinley (from Phyllis Reynolds Naylor’s Alice series), and Rowley. Also, a little bit Fregley.
Q: What do you think you’d be if you weren’t a writer?
A: In my dream world, a film or TV critic. Or Lorelai Gilmore.
Q: How many books did you write before you got published?
A: Two, both YA. (And we’re not going to count that Red Sox fan fiction book I wrote for NaNoWriMo. We’ll just pretend that never happened . . .)
Q: What’s the most hamsters you’ve ever had at one time?
A: Fourteen. It’s a long story.
Q: What’s the most exciting thing that’s ever happened to you?
A: Besides finding out somebody wants to buy my book? Probably this. (I was in bleacher seats with my husband and the Red Sox were losing, and we were cold and depressed at how the game was going until Big Papi did what he’s always done, which led to me screaming until I lost my voice.)
Q: Do you have any tips for someone who wants to be a writer?
A: Read. Lots and lots of books. Write. Revise and revise until it’s as good as you can make it, and then find some other people who love to read and write and share it with them. And then, this is the hard part: listen. Listen to their questions and the things they didn’t understand. And revise. Read more books to see how other authors made a bunch of words on the page into the feeling you had when you read the book. Revise some more. Share with your friends again. Repeat as many times as necessary. That’s how all books get written, whether it’s your first or your 759th.