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Tuesday 12 May 2015

12 Curly Questions with author Celine Kiernan

Credit: Grace Kiernan
1. Tell us something hardly anyone knows about you.
I hate cooking?... nah, my eternally suffering family already know that… um… eh… I’m stumped! I’m a bit of an open book really. I have very few secrets.

2. What is your nickname?
An African friend once told me that ‘a loved child has a thousand names’ so I’m glad to say that I have many nicknames! My Mam & Dad called me Mupsy. My husband calls me Emily. My kids call me all sorts of unrepeatable things.

3. What is your greatest fear?
Daddy Long Legs (I’m terrified all their legs will spontaneously fall off)

4. Describe your writing style in ten words.
Descriptive, character driven and exploratory with many layers of undercurrents.

5. Tell us five positive words that describe you as a writer.
Determined. Philosophical. Fearless. Nuanced. Scary.

6. What book character would you be, and why?
NONE! The books I enjoy really put their characters through the wringer. I’d like my discomfort to remain of the purely fictional sort, thank you very much.

7. If you could time travel, what year would you go to and why?
OOooo, so many things to choose! I’d like to take a peek and see what Henry the Eight’s court was like. I’d like to zoom way back and see what the people who made the Irish stone age tomb New Grange were like. I’d like to see what Cleopatra was like. I’d like… I’d like… I’d like… *head explodes*

8. What would your ten-year-old self say to you now?
‘I thought you’d be taller.’

9. Who is your greatest influence?
In life? My family (Mam and Dad, Husband, Kids… I learn so much from them every day).
In my work? I keep adding to an expanding list of wonderful writers who influence and inspire me: Ray Bradbury, Shirley Jackson, Stephen King, Hilary Mantel, Sebastian Barry…

10. What/who made you start writing?
No idea. I always seem to have been at it – for as long as I could hold a pencil or form words I was either writing or drawing.

11. What is your favourite word and why?
Onomatopoeia – it feels so round and lovely on the tongue.
(I also very much like the word ‘jam’)

12. If you could only read one book for the rest of your life, what would it be?
NOOOOOOOO. I refuse to answer that question on the grounds I can’t live without my many and varied secret worlds. Give me all the books! Always and forever!

Celine Kiernan is an award-winning Irish author of fiction for young adults. Her latest novel, Resonance, is published in Australia by Allen & Unwin. Visit Celine's website and Facebook page for more information about her books and other writing projects.

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