Paula, an amazing children's writer, was kind enough to give me some time to interview her.
Tell us about you as a person. What makes you, you.
I am a strong willed determined personality that from childhood has stood up for the underdog even taking on authority figures such as nuns, to defend others. It has taken many years for me to learn to listen before acting and have accomplished that more so in my own defense but, still get somewhat out of control if dealing with someone else's defense.
Did your latest project take a lot of research?
The stories I am getting ready to write, all but one have a basis in occurrences that happened in the past six months.
Another one has had lots of research into pre-historic time in the Scotland area, but it will be a one off from my YA series that has been hanging fire for the second installment because of health problems that have dogged us for close to two years.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I write mostly, not exclusively, children's stories or novelettes. My adult stories are short stories. I normally have several going at the same time. I do that with reading as well. I have a short attention span and for that I will read a chapter or two and the same with the stories.
Although, some of my kid's stories I sit down and start writing, and when I'm done I stop. And, the story is not usually the one I envisioned. I also tend to mull the story lines over in my mind with mental corrections before starting, but the only story I was able to complete in my mind was Mason and The Rainbow Bridge. That conclusion was set as the dog’s passing was the point. It is yet to be put in a solo story with pictures. Maybe this year. The print copy without my illustrator’s pictures is in The Rain Cloud’s Gift, one for The Peacock Writers Presents for children’s charities.
My stories start out benign, but usually end up with a moral point - I started one on Pixies and it ended up on prejudice.
Anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
The time to actually put the stories swirling in my brain onto the keyboard. I write much faster on keyboard than with pen/pencil/paper and also find anything I commit to paper in that mode, stays mostly on the paper and does not translate into my finished copy theme.
I allow my characters free rein, finding I am not boxed in when done. I do start with themes but where it takes me, I am as surprised as my readers.
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
My readers are children and some adults that relate to the whimsical world of childhood where learning is a serious but yet a fun and wacky time. Children had a wry sense of humor and if we adults are able to hang onto that, the world is a marvelous adventure.
Any final thoughts?
Each job, each decision I’ve made in my life has led me to this time where I spend my hours during leisure time, writing. Nothing in life is wasted if you understand that each step brings your story towards its conclusion.
I hope that all my readers understand that their story also is woven into the larger fabric of time and that when their story ends, others around them understand it was a story well told.
Where can readers find you on the web?