Question: How did you decide to become a writer?
Answer: It was that or study to be doctor, and I really don’t like all that blood… But seriously: I love a good story—always have. When I was a little girl, I used to read Roald Dahl books way (way, waaaay) past my bedtime. When I got older, I decided to put my love of stories to good use. At first, I wasn’t very good at writing, but over time I got better. Bookstores and libraries are still my favorite places to go.
Q: Where did you get the idea for Double Vision (Harper Children’s, due out Oct. 2012)?
A: Double Vision really started with Lincoln Baker (better known as Linc), the main character of the adventure book series. From the very beginning, Linc was very strong in my mind—sometimes I feel like he's telling his stories right in my ear! I was lucky to have amazing people on my team that helped me turn Double Vision into the great book it is today: my agent, editors, and even my husband helped me brainstorm ideas for the story.
Q: So is Linc a real kid?
A: I wish—he’s that much fun to hang out with! I still never know what he’ll do next. His friends Henry and Francoise, and even his double, junior agent Benjamin Green are just like real people to me. I hope that kids reading Double Vision feel the same way.
Q: What’s with all the codes and cyphers in your books?
A: I love a challenging puzzle and a good mystery. The codes Linc and Francoise have to solve in the book were my way of having fun by adding some clues to solve.
Q: Is the Vault at the Paris bakery real?
A: Hmmmm, maybe it could be? There are many stories about top-secret warehouses that hold dangerous artifacts, and that’s where I drew my inspiration from. But the Maison du Megere is totally made up. The places Linc and Francoise visit on their quest across Paris are very real though: the Eiffel Tower, Pont Neuf, Montmartre and the Sacre Coeur. And so are the tunnels—but you’ll just have to read Double Vision to find out more about all that.
Q: I want to be a writer! Do you have any advice?
A: Being a writer is the best job in the world (well, I think so anyway). Writing is a lot like playing an instrument or your favorite sport: you have to practice a lot before you’re good at it. Have fun making up stories, and start a reading or writers group with some like-minded friends. Be sure to read lots of books—the best way to learn how to write well is to read books by authors you love.