I’m so very pleased to bring Lisa Nowak here today for an interview as a part of her DRIVEN Blog Tour! Lisa is a fellow member of SCBWI and a very funnyauthor. She’s also one of the most generous and sharing individuals I know. In addition to writing, Lisa is a faculty regular at SCBWI regional events and will present at Willamette Writer’s Conference later this summer. Without further ado, here’s Lisa!
Cidney Swanson:When did you start writing?
Lisa Nowak:I started writing when I was thirteen. My first book was about a young girl and her telepathic cat who got abducted by aliens. It was all one long paragraph. My school librarian took pity on me and explained that I needed to create a new paragraph every time someone else started speaking.
CS:What are some of your favorite books?
LN:I really love YA and mostly read that genre because it’s such a dynamic, emotionally charged time in a person’s life. Within the genre, I like coming of age, contemporary realistic, and any story where a kid is in a tough situation—where he feels alienated and alone and finally finds someone to connect with. A couple of books I really enjoyed when I was young and have re-read through the years are The Changeling by Zilpha Keatley Snyder and Dogsbody by Diana Wynne Jones. It’s the emotional connections in those books that appeal to me.
CS:What do you remember about your first time behind the wheel?
LN:The very first time I remember driving a vehicle was when I was thirteen and my older brother thought he’d be cool and give me a lesson. It was in a white, older truck, probably a Chevy or Ford from the ’70s, though I have no memory of that truck other than in this particular incidence. I don’t recall our family owning it. At any rate, the snapshot in my head is of driving down theOld Scenic Highway, approaching the road we lived on, and wondering how I was going to figure out how to slow down and turn at the same time. I don’t even think shifting was an issue. As I recall, it was an automatic. The main thing going through my head was, “oh crap!”
CS:How about your first time racing?
LNI can’t specifically recall my first race. Weird, huh? But I do remember there was this huge sensory overload my first few times on the track, then again after I’d sat out a couple of seasons and started racing again. You’re belted into the car, trying to watch your gauges, listen to the engine, pay attention to the traffic around you, win the race, and follow so close to the guy ahead that you can’t even see where his taillights would be if he had taillights. Totally nerve-wracking. Your brain can’t process it all at once. But you get used to it, and after a while it becomes second nature.
CSI hear a rumor that Euphoria Chocolate sponsored you when you used to race. What is the best flavor of chocolate truffle at Eugene’s Euphoria Chocolate?
yle=”text-align: right;”> ~ Bob Martin, writing professor, Pacific Northwest College of Art