Describe your latest project.
Since finishing Edward Tulane, I've got several picture books in the works (one about a chicken and one about a monkey). I'm also working on a new Mercy Watson (yep, she's a pig) story.
Introduce one other author/illustrator you think people should read, and suggest a good book by him/her.
Joan Aiken, The Wolves of Willoughby Chase.
Describe your most memorable teacher.
I took a writing class with Jane Resh Thomas. She is a kind, patient, insightful and inspiring teacher. One night, after class, I said to Jane that I didn't know if I could believe in myself as a writer anymore. She told me that I didn't have to believe, that she would believe in me for me. It was one of the greatest gifts anybody has ever given me.
Offer a favorite sentence or passage from another writer.
"Something very strange was happening to Treehorn."
Florence Parry Heide, The Shrinking of Treehorn.
How did the last good book you read end up in your hands?
A Bank Street librarian gave me her advanced reader's copy of The Book Thief.
What is your favorite breakfast cereal?
As a child, I dreamed of somebody purchasing Captain Crunch for me. It never happened. Now I eat the same cereal I was raised on: granola. Extra crunchy.
What do you do for relaxation?
What is your idea of bliss?
Bliss is a sunny morning, a cup of coffee, a dog at my feet, and a book in my hands.
Why do you write books for kids?
Because kids are brave enough, still, to believe in love and magic. And because they demand love and magic in their stories.