Mundie Moms

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Zig Zag Blog Tour with Patricia Reilly Giff

Zig Zag Kids, Book #1 Number One Kid and Book #2 Big Whopper, were released on August 10th. Recently we had the chance to interview Patricia.

What motivates or inspires you to write children's book?

I read my way through childhood,
through my mother’s favorites, my father’s, even my grandmother’s; I devoured every book in the children’s section of our small storefront library.

Imagine what it was like years ago, to teach a group of fifth graders who were beginning readers. All we had were ancient copies of a reader called LUCK AND PLUCK, and not even enough copies for every child. Sometimes I read to them, leaning up against the classroom door, not sure in those days, if I was permitted to do that.
It seemed inevitable that I’d become a reading teacher, that I’d work with kids who had reading problems for most of my teaching career. It seemed inevitable that I’d want to write books for them. But I didn’t know how to begin.
I’d been teaching for ten years on a snowy morning… joking with my husband Jim that I was going to write a book: “I’ll spend my days in my robe drinking hot cocoa, and writing from morning till night.”

Home from school that afternoon, I walked into the kitchen. Jim had knocked down the wall between two closets.
Arms out, he showed me: I had a place to write.
How could I disappoint him!

Of course I didn’t drink cocoa as I looked out at the snow, but every morning, I wrote before I went to teach.
How hard it was in the beginning. I wanted to give up dozens of times. But I’d think about how much Jim believed in me; I’d remember all the kids I’d taught. They danced in front of my typewriter.
I can’t imagine my life without writing now. How grateful I am that Jim believed in me and that the children I taught keep inspiring me, even today.

Be sure to visit more of Patricia's ZigZag Kids Blog Tour:
Aug. 10 Cynsations
Aug. 13 Shelf Elf
Aug. 14 Mundie Moms
(two additional dates outside of the tour):

Thank you Patricia for taking the time to visit with us and to Random House Kids. Don't miss our review of Zigzag Kids on Mundie Kids here

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