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

Tuesday 3 October 2023

12 Curly Questions with author/illustrator Blake Nuto

1. Tell us something hardly anyone knows about you.
I always loved art, but I completely bombed out in my art studies throughout high school and didn’t touch a paintbrush again until I turned 27.

2. What is your nickname?
Blakey Boy.

3. What is your greatest fear?
Going too fast.

4. Describe your writing style in 10 words.
An earnest sunbeam that dreams to be a Catherine wheel.

5. Tell us five positive words that describe you as a writer.
Ecstatic. Delicate. Interested. Buoyant. Humbled.

6. What book character would you be, and why?
I would be Snufkin from the Moomintrolls because he is a wandering ponderer without much interest in owning things. He is content to play his harp, pay attention and promote forest bathing, and in doing so, holds up a mirror to the crazy ways of the world. On top of that he wears a sweet green cloak and a fantastic hat, and seems to associate exclusively with mythical creatures.

7. If you could time travel, what year would you go to and why?
I would say sometime way back, so I could check-out the megafauna, but I realise I might be eaten. So instead, 1968 and I would see all the live music I could.

8. What would your ten-year-old self say to you now?
That’s a cool picture. Now, let’s play Donkey Kong Country, drink some Milo and then go for a swim!

9. Who is your greatest influence?
I think my greatest influence is the Australian wilderness. I feel most inspired when I’m outside and wandering. Everything has something to teach you.

10. What/who made you start writing?
My Year 10 English teacher was the first one to stop and notice. She also gave me a book of poems, leant me a Jeff Buckley CD and introduced me to Joni Mitchell. That was important too, because reading poets and songwriters made me start writing.

11. What is your favourite word and why?
Trousers is my favourite word. The way it sounds, the images it conjures. If you haven’t said it lately, have a go. Say it low and slow.

12. If you could only read one book for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Don’t make me choose! But okay, if we’re talking kids literature, Winnie the Pooh. If we’re talking grown-up literature either Devotions by Mary Oliver or Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman.
Did you notice how I didn’t actually choose?

Blake Nuto is an award-winning writer living in lutruwita (Tasmania), Australia with his wife and three children. He is a trained teacher with a deep love of literature and a desire to integrate philosophy and mindfulness into education.His books, A Day That’s Ours and Child of Galaxies are currently available through Flying Eye Books, and When You’re A Boy through Affirm Press. For more information, see www.blakenuto.com.