Poetry Friday blog posts: laurashovan.com/blog
Instagram (robot doodles): @laurashovan
1. When you were my age (10), did you have a book inspire or impact you?
In fifth grade, the kids in my class discovered the Narnia books. Once I read The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe, I was hooked on fantasy adventure stories. Another favorite series is The Dark Is Rising by Susan Cooper.
2. Have you read anything recently that inspired or impacted you?
I just read Malaka Gharib’s graphic memoir, I Was Their American Dream. As a first generation American, I love stories about what its like to have an immigrant parent, and to be from a family with two or more cultures. I couldn’t put this book down!
3. Can you share what your usual day as an author looks like?
I work from home, so my writing day depends on the book or project I’m working on. Most recently, I wrote a robot poem every day in November – to go with the robot doodles I post on Instagram. Now that I’m revising the first, messy drafts, I am spending several hours on the robot poems every day. Good thing I have help from my editorial assistants, Sam the Schnauzer and Rudy the Beagle.
4. Is there a newer or less know author you think kids should know about?
I think every kid should read Super Jake and the King of Chaos, by debut middle grade author Naomi Milliner.
5. What is a cool thing about being an author?
There are so many cool things! Making wonderful author friends, working at home with my dogs for company, and hearing from readers – especially kid readers – who connect with the characters in my books.
6. Is there anything hard about being an author? I know it is not rainbows, cupcakes, pens and a pot of gold.
Now I’m dreaming of a pot of gold rainbow cupcake! There are many difficult parts to being an author. Working to meet a deadline often feels like cramming for the biggest test ever. Learning to deal with rejection, such as a less-than-wonderful review of a book you worked hard on – that is really challenging.
7. Book access and diversity in books is a big topic. As an author what do you think your role is in this topic?
I live in an area where the schools are very multicultural. One of my goals is to reflect that reality in the books I write. A positive change that’s happened in the last few years is that many authors will only appear at events or speak on panels if an effort has been made to include diverse voices.
8. If you could portal into any book which would it be?
If I could portal into a book at this moment, it would be Victoria Jamieson’s graphic novel All’s Faire in Middle School. I’d love to be part of Imogene’s extended family, working behind the scenes at the Renaissance Faire.