Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Zombie and other Interviews

In case you haven't already heard, vampires are so spring 2009. What's the new rage nowa-today?
Zombies. Wonderful, wonderful Zombies.

As of today (and yesterday, come to think of it), Jaime Temairik , aka CocoaStomp, has left all other blogs behind by revolutionizing the art of the interview. Taking a page from the trendsetting Talking Potatoes, Jaime has raised the ante again with her SCBWI Team blog exclusive interview with the likes of Dan Yaccarino, David Weisner, Dan the man Santat, and the classiest artist around, Marla Frazee.

I laughed, I cried, I snorted. Clever-funny Jaime has outdone herself. Check it out.

Not to be outdone, Jolie Stekly at Cuppa Jolie, brought her own big gun out with another SCBWI Team blog interview with Newbery Winner Karen Cushman. Jolie is also nicely including any of us in her trip to the LA SCBWI conference by packing us in with her toothpaste. Right now she is taking any and all questions that we want her to hunt down while she's there. SCBWI in pj's? You bet! I'm in.

Kirby Larson is doing another excellent interview with Karen Cushman over at Kirby's Lane, A Place for Readers and Writers. Isn't that a great blog name? I love it. Makes me want to take my shoes off, drink some iced tea and stay awhile.

One more great interview, is by Amy Baskin at Euphoria. She's interviewing the talented and smiley author, Heather Vogel Fredrick.


  1. Thanks for the links. I so trust your opinion that I'm checking them all out right now!

  2. Wow, so many interviews! I better go check them out. And who knew zombies would get so popular?

  3. You know what, the Talking Potatoes have totally taken a page from Jaime! They worship her!

  4. You are very welcome but be careful on trusting my opinion. I throw it around pretty willy-nilly. Not exactly on target either.

    Yeah BJ, it seems like everybody is gearing up for the big conference and willing to talk. Pretty cool.

    Martha, I refer to my first comment, that being I am not "accurate" in the specific sense, more the broader drunk-throwing-dart sense. In the words of the immortal anchorman, Ron Burgundy, "Agree to disagree."
    I think I've hit this target as well as he hit the true translation of San Diego. But I also worship at the alter that is Jaime T.

  5. Hi there. I feel awful because you commented on my blog forever ago, and I only just now saw it. It's the middle of summer, so I keep forgetting that I even have one! I mainly used it toward the end of school whenever I got bored. I hope to get better with it once I'm back in a routine in a few weeks, though.

    I gear mostly toward write YA novels. I like paranormal best, but I've dabbled in plain old YA lit. When did you start writing? How long did it take you to get published/ find an agent/ stuff like that. The life of a writer can be so boring, yet it's so fascinating.

  6. Hey Robert, good to hear from you. No worries at all. I enjoyed reading your posts and you seem to be pretty passionate about writing. Not a bad list of blogs you're following either.

    What got my attention from Robert? Here's some new stuff:

    "So many people then take these words, carelessly toss them into the blender of crushed dreams, and shove them back down their own throats never to be repeated. Then they just stroll about their lives, collecting Bed, Bath, and Beyond 20% off coupons and eating at the closest Olive Garden, but only for special occasions."

    "So many people spend their lives in a cesspool of mediocrity, never reaching their potential and wasting away whatever their talent because."

    Hoohoo, Robert's got some talent. Not bad for a guy that just turned 19 (or any other age). One of the things that originally caught my attention--in addition to your posts--was your favorite books. "From Anthem to Harry Potter, from To Kill A Mockingbird to Twilight." Pretty respectable range there. What someone reads says a lot about them as a writer. Robert Peck said, "Nobody but a reader ever became a writer." Amen.

    Anyways, just admiring your chops. Let's see, I started writing seriously about six years ago or so. My first picture book came out last fall, so there's that answer. Though, I got some "attention" from an editor within my first year, which kept me going. I think I had talent when I started, but I've learned a ton through this process. One year I basically made myself stop pursuing publishing to attend a self-taught master's class in writing kid's books. I bought every book I could find on writing (and worked at a used book store which helped), attended every conference I possibly could afford, and read a bunch of biographies and autobiographies on writers I admired. I was already a member of SCBWI so I started getting to know as many writers as I could. Then picked their brains. And wrote.

    Still learning tons. But the biggest thing I've learned is don't rely on your talent. Means squat. You gotta work your ass off and never give up. You are obviously talented Robert, so I hope that makes sense. In this game a committed writer beats a talented writer every day. Both is ideal, but you get me.

    I don't have an agent, though I haven't pursued any. I've heard that there's an agent interested in seeing my WIP mg novel from word of mouth, but I'm not quite ready. There is an editor interested in it if I ever finish it and it's up to snuff. But the main thing is just writing it. All that stuff is not as important as just writing my/your very best story.

    And the life of a writer is like any other life. It is what you make it. And besides what's the alternative? That "cesspool of mediocrity?" No thanks. Financially it can be tough. John Steinbeck said, "The profession of book writing makes horse racing seem like a solid stable business."

    Sorry this is so long, but from when I first saw your blog it got my attention. I wish I started writing more seriously when I was younger. But at the same time, things seem to happen for a reason. As hard as it is, patience is beautiful, especially when writing books.

    If you keep writing those posts more frequently, I'll try to get some people to go check it out. Deal?

  7. Hi! Thank you for telling me that I'm not the only guy who reads Steph's blog. Not that there's something wrong with it. But knowing that I'm not an "alien" in some planetblog is quite relieving.

    Anyway, I'm so excited to find out that you are a children's book writer. I'm not a writer, of course, but I love reading. The case is I've been so into children's book lately since i got hired by a bookshop here in Indonesia to review some children (and teens) books in order to celebrate International Children's Day last month.

    So I've been sticking with my new selection of readings, that is children's book. I see that u have a novel published, The Boy Who Went Ape. Has it already reached Indonesia, in case you happen to know? If yes then I'd love to look for it at English/foreign bookshop, coz I guess it hasn't been translated to Indonesian language, has it?

  8. I found your blog from Angie Ledbetter's Gumbo Writer. Glad I did. Looks like some fun stuff here. I'm a Pittsburgh-area writer and enjoy blogs from other writers who don't take things too seriously. Have a great day!

    Chris R.

  9. HI Begy. Welcome. Boy have you "come" a long way. That sounds like a really cool job you got. Look forward to reading more about it on your blog. I have no idea if my book has or will reach Indonesia or what other languages it's translated in, but if it does you let me know. It is a picture book, not a novel. But I hope to have one of those too one day. Nice to meet you. Stephanie's blog is really cool, huh? One of my favorites.

    Hey Rodell, welcome! If you don't take things seriously, and I know you don't by your blog, then you've come to the right place. You have a great day/night yourself. Thanks.

  10. Wonderful interviews with Karen Cushman (sure wish she were related to me, but sadly, she's not.)

    Zombies, huh? My story is about a boy ventriloquist. How about a zombie ventriloquist? But, zombies don't talk, do they?

  11. Hey Deb, someday she'll be saying that about you! In this interview they do, but not much. Boy ventriloquist? Sounds AWESOME. Look forward to hearing more about it.