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Original Essays | September 9, 2013 5 comments
Editor's note: Chris Bolton is not only a former Powell's employee, he was also once the primary writer for this blog. So we are particularly proud... Continue »
Dan GutmanDescribe your new book.
I figured that it's probably every kid's fantasy to have a machine that does your homework for you automatically. So... POW! I thought The Homework Machine would be a great title for a book. After that, I just had to come up with a story! There was a book called Danny Dunn and the Homework Machine back in the 1950s. But that was before the personal computer was born. Nowadays, it seems really possible that with computers, scanners, printers, the Internet, and artificial intelligence, it is really believable that somebody could create a homework machine. So that's what somebody does in this story. The story is more about what happens after that, to the kid who invented it and the other kids in his class. It's a tragedy, really.
One time, when I was a kid, a bird flew into my house. I don't know how it got in. I guess there must have been an open window and no screen. Anyway, my mom and dad and sister went running around yelling and screaming like we were under attack. My dad decided he should take charge, so he barked, "Get me a towel!" So we went running to get him a towel, figuring that he was going to somehow trap the bird in the towel and safely get it out of the house. So we give him the towel, and do you know what he did with it? He wrapped it around his head. He didn't want the bird to peck him! Isn't that silly? I don't remember how we got the bird out of the house, but I'll always remember my father running around with a towel wrapped around his head.
What is your idea of bliss?
If you could be someone else, who would that be, and why?
Tell us about your pets.
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Why do you write books for kids?
Make a question of your own, then answer it.
Q: Do you eat breakfast in your pajamas?