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Author Laurie Halse Anderson MAG
Probably best known for her novel Speak, Laurie Halse Anderson has won multiple awards for her writing. With novels like Fever, 1793 and Twisted, she spans genres and tackles unique plots. Her latest novel, Wintergirls, is available now.
Rachel: How were you inspired to write Speak? Was it based on a real-life incident?
Laurie Halse Anderson: Speak is about 10 percent based on the depression I suffered after I was raped, and 90 percent fiction.
Were you involved with the making of the movie “Speak”?
I was given the opportunity to work on the script, but I turned it down because I was busy writing a novel. I was on the set for three days, and had a cameo appearance as the lunch lady who serves Melinda mashed potatoes in the cafeteria.
Are you happy with the final product of the book and the movie?
I think Jessica Sharzer, the director, did a remarkable job with very few resources. Showtime dictated the change to the ending – there was nothing anyone could do about that. But I thought Kristen Stewart and the other actors gave great performances. And I was thrilled to hear so many of the lines from the book make their way onto the big screen!
Where do you find inspiration for your novels?
From my readers.
What is your favorite of your books?
I don't play favorites. This way my characters don't gang up on me.
Who are your favorite authors?
Neil Gaiman, Elizabeth George, Deb Heiligman, and Charles Dickens.
Which authors have influenced you?
I really have no idea. Probably someone who studies literature could figure that one out.
What advice do you have for aspiring teen writers?
1. Don't let anyone tell you that you cannot do this.
2. Be nice to your parents, because if you want to be a published author, you'll probably wind up living with them after college. For a decade.
3. Real writers revise their work over and over and over. Just sayin'.