Meet Ngaire Elder, author of 'The Adventures of Cecilia Spark' series for children. Last week she kindly sat still long enough to answer some questions and munch on a slice of banana bread from Finwip Village. Here's what we found out!
What inspired you to write for the 5-8 age group? What do you love most about it?I think this age group is at such a magical stage in their life for discovering books, and defining their reading habits and genre. I love the step children take towards beginning to read by themselves. Having 4 children I was a major part of their ‘reading with mum to reading on their own’ transition. The books we read were amazing and I think I was captured by the juvenile fiction category … it seemed a natural place to start my writing.
Who is the first person you allow to read one of your completed stories?My daughter and then my editor.
How many Cecilia Spark books are you hoping to write?I hope to write at least 2 or 3 more in the series. I published book 2, The Mystical Mountains of Terra, as paperback in October and I’ve started book 3 which I hope to publish in 2013.
Do you have set working hours or a ‘whenever, wherever’ approach?I’m definitely a ‘whenever, wherever’ writer. M y family come first. If there is an hour or so in between the chores and the school-run then I’ll try and do a bit of writing … sometimes it isn’t always possible other duties call, for example, promoting, marketing, replies to emails, etc.
Describe your writing environment – what do you need to be able to concentrate?My working environment … let me see. Ah, perhaps a house empty of other humans, coffee, biscuits, a supply of sharp pencils and ‘The Last Samurai’ soundtrack playing softly. Don’t think that’s too much to expect …. do you (laughing)?
What keeps you motivated to write?Reader comments and feedback. One reader took the time to tell me that her daughter had started writing her own stories after reading one of my books. That is the best kind of motivation. Also, my children, god love them, always ask me ‘How’s your book coming on, Mum?’
What kind of books do you enjoy reading for relaxation – and when do you find the time?!
Gosh, I love to read a wide range of books … I’ve become a great fan on Mark Barry’s books (Carla, Hollywood Shakedown). The surge in YA titles, I’m afraid I’ve become a sucker for them. And also, contemporary fiction, such as Wendy Steele’s Destiny of Angels, I love her writing it is so inspiring and exciting.
My favourite classical writer at the moment is Charles Dickens; I’d say he was the greatest novelist of the Victorian era.
As you can see a wide range of books … and the list doesn’t end there. I tend to read at night, once the kids are in bed, my way of relaxing and switching off!
Tell us one thing that you would like for Christmas this year!
That’s super easy, world peace, sleep and lots of it and if Santa Claus thinks I’ve been extra, special good maybe a couple of paperbacks from The IndieLit Catalogue (link attached) and Snow White and the Huntsman dvd.
Thank you Ngaire! Hope you, your family, and Cecilia Spark have a wonderful Christmas!
http://www.amazon.com/Ngaire-Elder/e/B006VXOUN8 Amazon Author Central Link US
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Ngaire-Elder/e/B006VXOUN8 Amazon Author Central link UK
http://www.scribd.com/doc/110901547/Indielit-Scrapbook-Version-2 IndieLit Catalogue