I have had the privilege of interviewing Kerry Madden. Author of Gentle's Holler (see review here), just published: Louisiana's Song (see review here), and in the works: Jessie's Mountain.
Who (of your characters) was your favorite/most fun to write?
Well, I love writing Livy Two, of course, the voice of the Weems' family, but I had a lot of fun writing Grandma Horace, Uncle Buddy, and Jitters, especially in the third book, JESSIE'S MOUNTAIN, which has just gone to copy-editing. Jitters, the copycat, gets her time to shine in book three.
Which character do you identify with the most?
I think either Livy Two or Louise...I was a reader like Livy Two, but terribly awkward and shy like Louise when I was growing up. So I think I feel closest to them.
Did you want to be a writer all your life, if not, what did you want to be?
Writing was the only thing I was good at or least folks said said so...I really thought I would be a playwright in college and managed to be a minor-minor one for a long time, but with having kids, I turned toward fiction. And then I found that I loved writing children's novels - they were my salvation as a child since we moved so much. Judy Blume, Lois Lowry, Betty Smith, Mark Twain, and so many more...
There are a lot of characters in your books, how did you come up with all their names?
My husband has a cousin, Gentle, so that's how I came up with the name, Gentle...He also had a great Aunt Zilpah somewhere...I love old southern names...Louise became Louisiana...Livy Two was Addie for about a minute...I just played with names...And I wanted something simple for the parents - Tom and Jessie.
If you could meet any person in the world, who would it be?
Harper Lee. I would love to meet Nelle Harper Lee. I'm just home from a trip to Monroeville, Alabama and it was like stepping back in time to see that oval-shaped courthouse and imagine those characters again.
Thank you so much Kerry Madden, I really appreicated you taking time to do this with me! Please visit her at : www.kerrymadden.com