Here are my answers to questions children ask authors. If you have any other questions, I’d like to see them.
What is the most important thing a writer needs?
Perseverance. That means, to be a novelist you need the ability to stick with your project and see it through to the end.
Where did you go to school?
I attended El Monte Elementary School in El Cerrito, CA. That school is now called Prospect Sierra School. This is the neighborhood I lived in when I was a child. Here’s a link to something I wrote about our house there.
After leaving there when I was in third grade our family moved to White Cliff Acres, a housing development in Richmond, California, near the smaller town of El Sobrante. There I attended Sheldon Elementary School, Valley View Elementary School, Juan Crespi Junior High School, and De Anza High School.
When did you publish your first book?
On June 2, 2012. I was still living in Happy Camp, California at that time. Now I live in Idaho and am working on revision of four novels, all part of the Antediluvian Adventures series.
How long does it take to write a book?
I can write the first draft of a novel in less than a month, but sometimes I hesitate, and take several years. Writing the book is the fun part. When it comes to revision and editing, I slow down. That takes much longer.
Where do ideas come from?
They spring forth out of my imagination and say, “write me!” I have no trouble coming up with new ideas. I start with a place and time period, then choose a character, place him there, and write to see what happens next.
What are your hobbies?
I like to write on websites, ride my bicycle, create folk art, and sing.
Sorry to say, these questions weren’t sent to me. They are questions sent to one of my favorite authors of all times, Scott O’Dell. I wrote about him on my children’s literature website: Scott O’Dell Tribute: For the Author of Island of the Blue Dolphins.
Children ask a lot of questions. One of the most frequent is, “What’s the most important thing a writer should have?” Anthony Trollope, the great English storyteller, said that it was a piece of sticking plaster with which to fasten your pants to a chair. I agree. Writing is hard, harder than digging a ditch, and it requires patience. Children also want to know where you went to school, when you published your first book, how long a book takes to write, where ideas come from, and what your hobbies are.
I’d be happy to get questions… so please, if you have any, ask them here, in the comments.
Authors: If you want to answer these questions on your blog, you’re welcome to come back here to post a link to that blog post.