Other random facts:
– I learned to scuba dive in Japan (sugoi desu ne!)
– I have lived in New Zealand, Australia, Japan, Switzerland and the U.K. I live with my fabulous husband, our two super sons, and zero goldfish (because our goldfish always die, sob :-/).
– I like chocolate milk, fruit bowls, children’s books, hiking, energetic people, dogs, bicycles, spag bol on a cold windy night, opportunities, good luck
– I dislike queues, banks, most cats, having cold feet
– I regularly create lists, plans, book ideas, piles of clothes
My first book, Takeshita Demons, won the 2009 Frances Lincoln Diverse Voices Book Award and was selected as part of the 2010 Booktrust Booked Up program. Book 2 is The Filth Licker, Book 3 is Monster Matsuri and Book 4 is MerMonster.
More! More! More!
– I studied science, which was super-interesting and full of fun people: I was working at CERN in Switzerland when they turned on the atom-smashing LHC.
– I have worked as a garbage analyst (smelly), patent translater (slow), Santa’s helper (fun), editor of Scientriffic (awesome), editor of iSGTW (busy), performer in the Shell Questacon Science Circus (noisy) and mother (yikes).
– As a feature writer, I’ve researched giant wetas, DNA technology, women’s boxing, Japanese paragliding, killer tomatoes, trends in tea…you name it!
– I have a Bachelor of Science in Biotechnology, a Graduate Diploma in Science Communication, and a Masters in Professional Communication.
– My first children’s manuscript, One Weekend with Killiecrankie, won a “Young and Emerging Writer” fellowship at Australia’s Varuna House and went on to win the 2008 Voices on the Coast writing competition, held in Queensland as part of the Voices on the Coast literature festival.
– I work as a freelance editor and writer of magazine features, popular science and childrens books. My first ever article was about ear wax.
What inspires you to write?
I always wished I could write my own book. But, I didn’t know how to write a book, and so I never tried.
Then, one day, I grew so sick of my own procrastination that I challenged myself to write a 30,000-word manuscript in 30 days. And I did. It was hard work, but it felt great.
Tell us about your writing process
I often spend hours lying awake, figuring out how to survive a zombie apocalypse. And then, when I think I’ve figured out the answer, I jump up, turn on my computer and start writing.
This technique applies to all my books. And if I get stuck and all my characters are going to die, I go for a walk to figure out how to save them.
How do you think writing for children and young adults is different from writing for an adult audience?
You can have WAY more fun writing for children and young adults. Massively way more fun.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
No. Are you mad?
(What’s that? OK, sure)
Erm. Actually, yes.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I didn’t decide. I sent my first book to 20 publishers and was rejected 20 times.
I sent my second book to another 20 publishers and 15 agents, and was rejected 35 times.
I sent my third book to noone, because I knew it wasn’t good enough.
I entered my fourth book into a writing competition and won! And then a publisher offered to publish it.
Best. Feeling. Ever.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
It’s going to get more and more exciting, and for readers that means it’ll be harder and harder to find books you really love.
What do you use?
What genres do you write:: Children’s fiction, adventure, fantasy, folklore
What formats are your books in: Both eBook and Print
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