Kim and Lauren from East Syracuse Minoa High School sent these to me.
First, all of your YA novels have pictures of eyes on the covers. Why?
Because that is what the sales and marketing department wanted.
How much, if any of your own life experiences are part of the characters
you’ve created in your novels? For instance, like Kate Malone, did you only
apply to one college??? (Can you see what is on our minds right now?)
Sort of… I only applied to OCC and I got in. When it came time to transfer, I decided I would apply one school at a time until somebody let me in. I couldn’t afford all the application fees at once. Luckily the first place I applied, Georgetown, took a chance on me.
Do your relationships with your daughters mirror any of the parent/child
relationships of the characters in your novels? Do you think your daughters
will become writers?
In PROM, the way the mom worries is the way I worry about my kids, but other than that, I try to steer clear of putting my kids in my books, to protect their privacy.
Can you talk about your experiences as a teen in Syracuse, NY.
I loved growing up in Pulaski and Syracuse. I was miserable in Fayetteville (high school). The biggest part of that was because my family was struggling with many different issues. It also did not help my social life that we were poor.
Why have you decided to move back to Mexico, NY?
My husband lives here. (Best reason!) Other good reasons – the people are nice, it’s a gorgeous place, and I like snow.
How do you begin a book? Where or how do you get your ideas? In what kind of
environment do you write best?
Books start with characters and the ideas come from all over, mostly from watching and listening to teenagers tell me what worries them, or what they’re excited about. I like to write where it is fairly quiet. Having my iPod with me helps.
We have noticed the sarcasm in your writing. Are you as sarcastic in real life? Where does the sarcasm come from?
I have, on occasion, when it is called for, in an appropriate and tasteful way, been a wee bit sarcastic. Sarcasm is the refuge of the tender heart that is easily wounded.
Do you have any other goals you would like to accomplish?
I’d like to live for another fifty years, if I can be healthy and active.
I’d like to travel.
I’d like to watch more movies.
I’d like to dunk a basketball.