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- author Jackie French

Saturday 20 August 2016

12 Curly Questions with Richard Newsome

1. Tell us something hardly anyone knows about you. 
I can wiggle my ears with hummingbird levels of efficiency. On hot days I fan those around me with a cooling breeze.

2. What is your nickname?
My family nickname is Boz. My parents couldn’t figure out what to call me, so for the first few weeks of life I was referred to as Bozo. This was shortened once they settled on a name. Years later I discovered that Charles Dickens’ nickname was also Boz, possibly for the same reason.

3. What is your greatest fear?
That no one has actually finished reading any of my books and they’re all just being terribly polite.

4. Describe your writing style in ten words.  
Shove a dictionary in a blender and switch it on.

5. Tell us five positive words that describe you as a writer. 
Persistent. Determined. Brave. Cumquat. Sasquatch.

6. What book character would you be, and why?
Jim Hawkins from Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson. That kid just had a knack for adventure.

7. If you could time travel, what year would you go to and why? 
I’d actually rather go forward to see what amazing stuff is to come — can you imagine what the world will be like 100 years from now? But if pushed, I’d go back to January 25, 1788 for a walk around the foreshore of Sydney Harbour, just before everything changed forever.

8. What would your ten-year-old self say to you now? 
What have you done to all my hair??

9. Who is your greatest influence? 
Every English teacher I had through my years in school. They were relentless pushers of books and accepted no excuses. My love of story comes from them.

10. What/who inspired you to start writing?
See above. A good teacher should never doubt the influence they have on a fertile mind. I was fortunate to have a string of excellent teachers (and one complete dud, but he taught maths so no great loss for me there.)

11. What is your favourite word and why? 
Empathy, because that is what a good story will breed.

12. If you could only read one book for the rest of your life, what would it be?
The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame. There’s something about the writing in that book that steals you away and time ceases to be a factor. Simply magical.

Richard Newsome is an Australian children's author living in Brisbane. He won the inaugural Text Prize for Young Adult and Children’s Writing for The Billionaire’s Curse, the first book in the six book Billionaire series. The final book, The Curiosity Machine, was recently published by Text Publishing. Visit Richard Newsome's website and Facebook page for more information about his books and author events.