It probably won’t surprise anyone to learn that I was a massive nerd in high school. HOW massive, though? Well, I was a member of the Red Dwarf fan club, and I wore a Star Trek pin on my school blazer. That massive.
2. What is your nickname?
I’m pretty un-nicknamable. In high school I got called Shakespeare for about a week after killing it in a debate. Some of my friends call me Lil.
3. What is your greatest fear?
It used to be vomit, but then I had a baby which pretty much took care of that. So now it’s edges. I do not like edges. Jetty. Cliff. Etc.
4. Describe your writing style in ten words.
Talking about big issues, but with funny bits and kissing.
5. Tell us five positive words that describe you as a writer.
Productive. Succinct. Funny. Feminist. Improving.
6. What book character would you be, and why?
A mix of Anne Shirley, Hermione and Mia from The Princess Diaries. Dreamy, nerdy and a bit neurotic.
7. If you could time travel, what year would you go to and why?
Tricky. I don’t want to go backwards, because then I wouldn’t be able to vote or own property or wear jeans. And I don’t want to go forwards, because I think environmentally speaking it might be rather depressing. So I think maybe I’ll just stay here, which I realise is very boring.
8. What would your ten-year-old self say to you now?
“You did it!”
9. Who is your greatest influence?
I don’t know if I could name a single greatest one. But all the amazing writers that I read and have met are a big influence – reading brilliant writing makes me want to be better. I’m also very inspired by Jim Henson, who knew that the best way to change the world was through singing and dancing and making people happy.
10. What/who made you start writing?
Books. I was a big reader as a kid, and I loved making up stories. The idea that I might write a book that someone might love as much as I loved books by Isobelle Carmody or Diana Wynne Jones is pretty motivating.
11. What is your favourite word and why?
My eight month old son has just learnt to say “us”, which is pretty adorable.
12. If you could only read one book for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Diana Wynne Jones’s Fire and Hemlock. I reread it every few years, and each time it’s a little bit different. It’s like a spell.
Lili Wilkinson is an Australian author of YA fiction who is currently completing her PhD in Creative Writing at Melbourne University. Her novels include The Zigzag Effect, A Pocketful of Eyes and Angel Fish. Her latest novel, Green Valentine, is published by Allen & Unwin. Visit Lili's website for more information about her books and author events.
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