'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Tuesday 14 May 2013

12 Curly Questions with author Angelica Banks

1. Tell us something hardly anyone knows about you.
Angelica Banks was born on the tenth and a half of August. Well, to be honest, her two halves, Heather and Danielle, celebrate their birthdays on the 10th and 11th of August, respectively.

2. What is your nickname?
‘Angelica Banks’ is our nickname. Our real names are Heather Rose and Danielle Wood and we chose the name ‘Angelica Banks’ because we wanted to move up in the alphabet. Since Heather’s last name starts with R and Danielle’s with W, we are used to being shelved – in book shops and libraries – at the height of browsers’ knees and ankles. We wanted, for the first time, to be shelved at eye level!

3. What is your greatest fear?
Half of Angelica is frightened of very large spiders, while the other half of her is terrified of getting stuck in elevators.

4. Describe your writing style in ten words. 
Being two-headed, Angelica is careful and daring, passionate and precise.

5. Tell us five positive words that describe you as a writer.
Lively, perspicacious, optimistic, committed, imaginative.

6. What book character would you be, and why?
Danielle says: I would be Rosemary in Barbara Sleigh’s book Carbonel, because she has the chance to take a magic potion that allows her to hear everything that animals say.
Heather says: I would be George, from the Famous Five because I love breaking the rules and I always want the boys to do the washing up.

7. If you could time travel, what year would you go to and why?
Danielle says: I’d like to go forward in time, about 20 years, just to get a glimpse of what my children will look like when they’re all grown up.
Heather says: I would go to 1601 so I could see Elizabeth I before she died and tell her she did a great job.

8. What would your ten-year-old self say to you now?
Curiously, both halves of Angelica’s ten-year-old self would remind her that she promised she would one time get locked in a library overnight (preferably with a sleeping bag and a torch).

9. Who is your greatest influence?
Danielle says: My grandfather was a huge figure in my life. He had a sad and difficult childhood but because he was an amazingly strong person, he went on to have a happy and successful life. Above all, he was very persistent. Whenever I doubt myself, or whenever things seem unusually difficult, I remember the things he would have said to encourage me to keep going.
Heather says: Right now, my greatest writing influence is Haruki Murakami, because he makes me remember that the world is a mysterious, curious and magical place.

10. What/who made you start writing?
Danielle says: It’s been said that all you really need to get a good education is access to books and one good teacher. I had more than one good teacher, but the very best teacher I had was Mr Jerrim who taught me in class five, read wonderful books aloud, and encouraged me to write every single day.
Heather says: The blank page.

11. What is your favourite word and why?
Danielle says: It changes all the time, but today my favourite word is dragoncello, which is Italian for tarragon.
Heather says: My favourite word is imagine because I think it’s what we’re all here to do.

12. If you could only read one book for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Danielle says: I’d want an English translation of Kinder und Hausmarchen, the collected fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm.
Heather says: George R R Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire books. I mean all of them, even the ones he hasn’t written yet. I think they would keep me thinking forever! And if that’s cheating, because it’s more than one book, then I’ll give up ginger biscuits for the rest of my life.

Finding Serendipity by Angelica Banks is published by Allen & Unwin and is available now in all good bookstores. Visit the Tuesday McGillycuddy website for more information and keep up to date with the latest events for Angelica Banks on Facebook.

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