Andrea Wang is coming to The Wandering Jellyfish Bookshop Author Signing Fair from 1-2 on December 4th! She is an award-winning author of books for young readers. Her titles include picture books The Nian Monster, Magic Ramen: The Story of Momofuku Ando, Watercress, and the middle grade novel The Many Meanings of Meilan. Get to know Andrea with these fun interview questions, check out her website, and stop by the store to say hi and snag a copy of her books!
1. What got you into writing and what genres inspired you in your early writing career?
I was a total daydreamer and bookworm as a kid, so writing stories was kind of a natural extension of that. I loved reading fairy tales, fantasies, and mysteries when I was young. When I started to write seriously as an adult, those were the genres that probably inspired me the most.
2. What was the greatest challenge you dealt with while writing your book and what advice would you give to young writers?
Both my recent books, Watercress and The Many Meanings of Meilan, focus on the main character's emotions and internal journey. For Watercress, I think my greatest challenge was finding the heart of the story. In The Many Meanings of Meilan, though, I struggled with balancing all Meilan's inner world with enough external action to keep the plot interesting and moving forward. I would tell young writers to not be afraid to write about big emotions!
3. What purpose do you find in your writing? In other words, why do you write?
A lot of the time, I write to process my own emotions and experiences. Putting fictional characters through similar situations helps give me emotional distance and allows me to work out their motivations and actions -- and in turn hopefully understand myself better and figure out how I can change. :) I also really like to explore random bits of history that I find fascinating, like who invented instant ramen!
4. What is the question you wish people would ask during interviews?
Do you have to have talent to become an author? No! Good writing can be learned -- it just takes practice (a lot of practice). But it definitely takes persistence to become a writer and/or a published author -- you have to keep honing your craft and submitting your work, despite the inevitable obstacles and rejections.
BONUS LIGHTNING ROUND
Favorite procrastination snack and/or activity?
Eating chocolate and potato chips! Yes, together.
Would you rather write in a secluded lighthouse or in a cabin in the woods?
This is hard because I love both the ocean and the forest. As long as it's quiet and there aren't storms or rampaging beasts, I'm good with either!
Book or movie you could read or watch repeatedly?
The Joy Luck Club, in both forms.
Pen, pencil, typewriter, or computer?
Computer and lots of pens in fun colors. My current fave are the Pilot Frixion pens because they're also erasable. I make lots of typos on both screen and paper!
What’s your favorite One-True-Pairing (favorite fictional romantic relationship)?
While I do love Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet together, I think Austen's other couple, Captain Wentworth and Anne Elliot from Persuasion, is my favorite OTP.
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