Gina Perry

  • 4 min read

Author website/social media: twitter: @ginamarieperry instagram: @ginapineapple
· Tell me a little about yourself: I am an author and illustrator of children’s book. I live in seacoast New Hampshire with my husband and two children and one old fish. I went to art school and worked in animation and designing paper products before figuring out that making books for kids was my dream job. I like going for beach walks and hikes with my family, playing ping-pong, and drinking tea while I work.
1. When you were my age (9), did you like to read? I loved to read at your age! I loved mystery, adventure, and fantasy/science fiction.
2. What was your favorite story? A Wrinkle in Time and A Wind in the Door were my favorite books back then. I still love them and read them once every other year.
3. How do you get your ideas? A lot of my ideas come from silly songs I make up! Other ideas come from daydreaming what might be fun to illustrate. Thinking about my kids and my own childhood has given me lots of ideas, too. I find that getting the ideas is easy, not dismissing them as silly or too weird is the hard part. Don’t dismiss your ideas. Write them down and come back to them later to see if you still like them.
4. Your book – was it easy or hard? It was hard! I rewrote the story many times over many years. The idea for the characters, a rainy day, and the refrain “Too much! Not enough!” was always there, but most of the other elements changed several times.
5. What author do you really like right now? I love everything by Sara Varon. She creates the most unusual but likeable characters and stories. Her latest book, NEW SHOES, is fantastic!
6. Do you have any new or lesser known authors you would suggest? Yes! One author who might not be as well known in the US – Marguerite Abouet. She is from West Africa and her AKISSI books are just fantastic. When I was a kid I loved books that showed me kids living exciting lives in different places. I would have adored this funny graphic novel about a girl in West Africa.

A newer author that I really like is
Hannah Barnaby. Her first two books, BAD GUY and GARCIA & COLETTE GO EXPLORING are so different but incredibly well done – funny, and smart with just the right amount of heart and relatability.  Keep an eye on Hannah!
7. What advice do you have for a kid who wants to be an author? I think young authors should always keep a little notebook with them to jot ideas down. My first book, SMALL, was the result of waiting for my doctor’s appointment a little too long – but I had a notebook! Ideas can come at the strangest times. Also, never get rid of your old writing. We can all be too critical of our work, but when you look back at your older writing you can see how you’ve grown as a writer.
8. As an author, do you hear from your readers? What do you like about that? I love hearing what kids think about my books. It’s really cool when they notice the little details I put into the stories. I also love when kids walk away feeling something positive about themselves from my books.
9. If you could portal into any book (yours or another person’s), what book would it be? Oh, I think I would need to bravely step into Laurel Snyder’s ORPHAN ISLAND. I desperately want to know where the story goes after the book ends!

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