1. What’s your hidden talent?
I play the Irish fiddle. My talent is hidden from everyone but me.
2. Who is your favourite literary villain and why? Macbeth. That guy was seriously messed up—but oh so fascinating. Don’t get me started on his mother issues.
3. You’re hosting a literary dinner party, which five authors would you invite? (alive or dead).
Diana Wynne Jones. Clarissa Dickson Wright. (Have you read her memoirs? She wrote beautifully and had a formidable intellect). Neil Gaiman. Daniel Handler. Geoffrey McSkimming. This lot would keep me in awe (and in stitches) for hours.
4. Which literary invention do you wish was real?
The Room of Requirement in Harry Potter. How fab would that be? Endlessly useful and a great comfort especially in airports and foreign countries ...
5. What are five words that describe your writing process?
Shambolic, orderly, passionate, obsessive, capricious.
6. Which are the five words you would like to be remembered by as a writer?
Generous, versatile, funny, playful, inspiring.
7. Picture your favourite writing space. What are five objects you would find there?
Vintage teacup, Miss Mary Mac (my dear old computer), my woolly writing cardi with piled sleeves and paint stains, fifty pens that don’t work and so count as one useless object, a tube of red lipstick (just in case).
8 Grab the nearest book, open it to page 22 and look for the second word in the first sentence. Now, write a line that starts with that word.
I swear to god page 22 is blank! The book I grabbed was, A Universe from Nothing: Why There is Something Rather than Nothing by Lawrence M Krauss.
Second try: Isn’t it frustrating to find that in this book the first sentence is split between page 21 and page 22 so technically I am referring to page 21 and I am wringing my hands because I do not want to be thought of as uncooperative. Cherry Ames, Girls Annual, 1958.
9. If you could ask one author one question, what would the question be and who would you ask?
Where do you get your jewellery? Lauren Child.
10. Which would you rather do: ‘Never write another story or never read another book’?
I could give up writing because I know there are others ways through which I could express myself. But to never read another book? Unthinkable. In The Artist’s Way, there is a week where you are required to NOT read. Apparently people get really angry when they come to it.
Jen's latest book, The Fourteenth Summer of Angus Jack (ABC Books), is out now, Learn more about Jen and her wonderful books at www.jenstorer.com.