Interview with Michaela
1. Which children’s authors do you admire?
“You just can’t beat Lewis Carroll, A.A. Milne and Edward Lear – but, to be a bit more up to date, I also really love books by Morris Gleitzman. I also have a great fondness for the BFG by Roald Dahl. I love books that are funny and play with words and I admire Morris Gleitzman for being so funny and sharp and light and serious at the same time. That’s an art!”
2. Where do you read?
“I read books anywhere – in bed, on a beach, in the bath. That’s why I don’t like showers – you can’t read poetry (for long) in a shower.”
3. What made you decide to be an author?
“I didn’t DECIDE to write poetry and stories. It seemed to come naturally – like speaking or walking. I have always liked to play with words and to make up stories and rhymes in my head. I went into writing for children because I had a child and I enjoyed sharing the same world as him.”
4. What would you have been if you weren’t an author?
“As well as being an author I have already been a traveller, a worker at odd jobs (some very odd jobs…), a teacher, I had my own business and I worked as a Writer in Residence in prisons. And I was a mum – a very important job.”
5. What are the best and worst things about being an author?
“The best thing about being a writer is getting a new idea and capturing it. The worst thing is when you have managed to get a story or a poem just right and an editor wants to change it – often for reasons of marketing or fashion.”
6. Where do you get your ideas from?
“Reading influences my writing. I read a lot – all sorts of things. I also listen to what is going on around me. I keep my eyes open. And I give myself time to think and dream.”
7. What is your advice to those who would like to write?
“My advice is – if you really want to write – just do it. Every day, sit down somewhere and write. Anything. For practice in finding words, finding your voice. Don’t think about ‘being a writer’. Just write.”