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

Saturday 6 December 2014

12 Curly Questions with author James Phelan

1. Tell us something hardly anyone knows about you.
I'll tell you 3 somethings: I have a PhD in Young Adult Literature. Hmm, what else… When I was a teen I had lessons for my pilot's licence. Oh, and I was the first person to have the idea for opening up fresh juice shops… but my mum and dad squashed that dream.

2. What is your nickname?

3. What is your greatest fear?
That someone in my family will suddenly disappear. That, and sharks. And spiders. And robot ninja shark spiders.

4. Describe your writing style in ten words.
I don't think I can do that in ten words.

5. Tell us five positive words that describe you as a writer.
Optimistic. Cynical. Economical. Dreamer. Realist.

6. What book character would you be, and why?
Will from Nick Hornby's About A Boy, because like Will I just sit around all day, daydreaming, goofing off - and I'm coming to realise that someday, possibly soon, I'll have to grow up.

7. If you could time travel, what year would you go to and why?
1995 to say goodbye to my grandmother; she helped raise me, and was my favourite person.

8. What would your ten-year-old self say to you now?
Dude, really? Awesome! (being 10 was an interesting year for me - I changed schools, and travelled through Europe and the USA, writing a journal as I moved about and later I put a lot of that into The Last 13).

9. Who is your greatest influence?
Jesus. No, wait, not him. Homer. Homer Simpson. And Hank Moody. And Christopher Hitchens. With a touch of Hemingway. Oh, and Harold Bloom.

10. What/who made you start writing?
A love of reading fun stories.

11. What is your favourite word and why?
Don't have one - I hate favourites! My most hated is "like" when used to create a simile. OMG, I wish there were no similes. They're like farts in an elevator. Any book that has more than one or two, I stop reading; it's the laziest form of writing.

12. If you could only read one book for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Oh gosh, either Harold Bloom's Novelists and Novels, or Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's The Little Prince, or Hermann Hesse's Siddhartha. You asked for three, right? I hate favourites!!

Australian author James Phelan has published books for both adults and children, including the popular The Last Thirteen series for children and Alone trilogy for teens. Visit The Last Thirteen website to find out more about this great middle fiction action/adventure series and visit James' website and WhoSay profile for more information about his other books and writing.

If you are an author or illustrator who thinks they are BRAVE enough to answer our questions, 
OR if there is an author or illustrator you would like to hear from, LET US KNOW! 
We will see if they are up to the task. Just email: susanATkids-bookreviewDOTcom