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

Sunday 27 May 2018

12 Curly Questions with author/illustrator Ruth Waters

1. Tell us something hardly anyone knows about you. 
I used to be quite good at playing the piano. I even entered competitions (although I always played the piece twice as fast as I got so nervous). Sadly, I now can’t play a single note.

2. What is your nickname? 
Roo, Rufus, Rootle Tootle. My kids call me poo poo mama (they’re 2 and 5). They have no respect!

3. What is your greatest fear?
I like to think of myself as pretty fearless – that said, I have an irrational fear of butterflies and moths.

4. Describe your writing style in 10 words. 
I tend to think in pictures first – playful, immature, warm.

5. Tell us five positive words that describe you as a writer.
Messy, unique, silly, hard-working, day-dreamer.

6. What book character would you be, and why? 
I’m finding this very hard to answer. I know I’d love to be any character in a Roald Dahl book – yes, some have a few issues but they’re usually very mischievous – qualities I admire! Also, Nancy Drew. I loved those books.

7. If you could time travel, what year would you go to and why? 
Late 18th century London. I wouldn’t like to stay for long but I’d love to walk down the cobbled streets, watch the people and smell the putrid air.

8. What would your 10-year-old self say to you now? 
As a kid, I was always being told off in class for daydreaming. I definitely lived in a different world. I wish I knew then that this was not necessarily a bad thing, and that this ‘skill’ would finally be of some use, some 30 or so years later.

9. Who is your greatest influence? 
My mum. She rocks.

10. What/who made you start writing? 
Since my stories begin with imagining what the characters look like, where they live, even the page spreads, I would have to say my story began with my art teacher, my mum and children’s TV programs like Blue Peter or Play School that taught me how to draw and make things.

10. What is your favourite word and why? 
Mischievous – hard to say without a sneaky smile.

12. If you could only read one book for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Perfume by Patrick Suskind. A very strange and disturbing book, but so amazingly well written that you can literally smell the smells pouring out of the pages.

Not So Scary Bear is Ruth’s first picture book. The collage illustrations are all handmade using acrylic, glue and mess. Ruth is from the UK but lives in Sydney with her husband and two children. In a previous life, for 20 years she worked in London’s theatre industry. For more information, see www.ruth-waters.com.