In this installment of my weekly Interview series, writer Brett Jonas answered some of my pressing questions about her life! In case anyone’s confused – the name Brett can be both male and female!
My American counterpart has given some rather thought-provoking answers to my interview, so make a cup of tea and sit down to learn more about this Goat Milk Kid from Indiana.
Let’s get started! Where are you from? Do you still live there?
I’m from Southern Indiana, where I live on a farm with my seven younger siblings and our 40+ dairy goats, making and selling goat milk soap.. We’ve lived here for eleven years – I was born in Virginia and lived in New Jersey for several years. I love Indiana though! It’s been great for my family.
When did you realize you ‘had’ to write? Was there something specific that happened to you?
Well, in the beginning it wasn’t a “had” to write. One of my friends was doing Camp NaNoWriMo in June 2012, and she practically forced me to do it with her. Since this was before Camp Nano had flexible word counts, and I’m a highly competitive person, I wrote 50k words that month. While that first novel was (is) TERRIBLE, and I never want to see it ever again, it was the first thing I’d ever written for fun, and I realized that I wanted to keep doing this. Three years later, I’ve written over 300k words! I think the moment when I first realized I “had” to write was the day one of my characters began yelling at me because I wasn’t getting to her story fast enough. I miss the days when they were quiet and did what they were told. LOL
What’s your favorite genre to read? Do you write in the same genre?
My favorite genre to read, without a doubt, is fantasy. My first loves were the Narnia books, the Lord Of The Rings books, and books by authors like Shannon Hale, Gail Carson Levine, Jessica Day George, and Patricia C. Wrede.
When I was younger, (maybe ten years old?) my brothers and I would make our own swords, bows, and arrows, and we would pretend that we were fighting alongside Legolas, Gimli, Aragorn, Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy… and we could do it for hours. Our playground became a pirate ship. Underneath our front porch became the mines of Moria. The circle of eight trees in the back became a forest full of tree houses. The swings on our swingset became horses, and as we pumped our legs and waved our swords (which is quite hard to do at the same time) we could become a different person, if only for a little while.
Now that I think about it, that’s probably why I write fantasy. It all started when Mom read the Chronicles of Narnia out loud to us and we began imagining.
When somebody reads your work (current or future), what do you want them to say/feel?
I want to inspire kids the way the books I mentioned above inspired me. I want my books to be the reason why a kid is standing in his/her backyard with a stick, dueling with an imaginary foe. I want my books to be the reason why their Mom can’t find them – because they found a new hiding place so they could read in peace. I want my books to be the one that they pass along to their friends and/or siblings, because they want someone to imagine with.
I’ve got my work cut out for me, huh?
What’s a genre or type of book that you’d really like to write one day?
I’ve always thought it would be fun to write a contemporary romance – but I wouldn’t know what to write if I didn’t have magic, or dragons, or royalty. Even in books where I don’t intend for there to be magic, (because creating a magic system is extremely hard,) it manages to show up anyway. One of my characters will do something that can only be explained by magic and I’m left yelling at the keyboard, knowing that once they’ve decided they want to have magic, there’s nothing I can do to stop them.
A decade from now, where do you see yourself?
Since I’m the kind of girl who doesn’t even have a plan for next week, this question is surprisingly hard. I don’t know… I guess I’d be a mom, raising a bunch of kids, homeschooling them, and writing on the side. My Mom (who isn’t a writer) has warned me that being a mom and also being a writer will be hard, but being a writer is hard anyway. LOL
If you could have a dinner party with three fictional characters, who would you invite?
Oh, gosh, this shouldn’t be this hard. I really can’t decide! I just sat here for ten minutes and couldn’t narrow it down to twenty – much less three. There are so many amazing characters out there!
You can choose one fictional world to live in for the rest of your life. Where do you go?
If I thought the above question was hard, this one’s even harder. Would I get to marry someone from that world?
Maybe I’d choose Narnia? That’s my first instinct, but there are so many other amazing worlds out there. If I thought about this, it would take me days and days to even bring the list down to twenty fictional worlds, so I’m just going to say that I don’t know. (It would be even harder if I got to marry someone from that world. LOL)
If you could erase one book from your memory, what would it be, and why?
The first book that I wrote – because it’s horrible. No, really, it’s that bad.
What’s your favourite book/series of all-time?
What’s with all the hard questions here? LOL I have absolutely no way on earth to narrow this down. I have read some amazing books in the last week alone – there’s no way I can name one for all time. Sorry. No can do.
And finally, where can people find you on the internet?
You can find me on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest as BookSquirt, and I blog (very rarely… but I do blog!) at http://booksquirt.com. If you’re really curious about me, you can check out http://goatmilkstuff.com, which is our family’s business, and there’s a ton of stuff about me and my family there. I also run our family’s blog at http://goatmilkstuff.com/blog, and I blog there almost every day. 🙂
Thanks for having me on your blog, Brett! (Wow, it feels weird to type my own name for someone else. LOL)
Thanks Brett (that doesn’t sound weird at all) for answering my hard questions! Feel free to drop a comment below, if you liked this interview!