Host Dick Gordon is an enthusiastic interviewer though sadly it is apparent that the only Funke book that he has read is Dragon Rider. Call-ins from listeners provoke some very interesting discussions about the role of fairy tales and fantasy in childhood. I am continually amused by grown ups' obsession with "darkness" in children's books as if it is something new.
There is lots of insight into her writing. When asked where her characters come from she said:
The funny thing is, the more I am a writer the more I don't know where I get my ideas from and the characters really "come up." Sometimes I have the feeling I get into my writing room and they are already sitting on the desk and I have no idea where they came from.
Cool things I learned:
- Her publishers told her that German works would not sell in England or the USA so she paid her cousin to translate her books into English and they sold. Her cousin did Thief Lord but Anthea Bell translates her books now. Funke praises Bell's intuitive feel for the rythym and wit of the stories.
- Brendan Fraser did the Inkspell audio recording. I knew Funke was a fan of his Dragon Rider reading. I have read that she wants him for the role of Mo in the movie version of Inkheart.
- Grownups cannot believe that Dustfinger is most kids' favorite character in Inkheart.
- Funke warns readers that the scary bits get worse in Inkspell which will be published in Sept. 2005.