Saturday, January 07, 2006

Author: Louis Sachar

Nice interview with Texan Louis Sachar in The Austin American-Statesman.

The characters in your books have gotten older in recent years. Do you think that tracks your experience watching your daughter grow up?

Maybe I've just gotten older, but it used to be when I wrote about kids, I would just identify with whatever grade they were — third-, fourth-, fifth-graders — and then not look at them as little kids because kids don't think of themselves as little kids; their concerns are real to them and their feelings are real to them. But adults can look down at them and say, "How cute." And I never used to do that.

But now, as my daughter's gotten past that age, when I look at third-, fourth-, fifth-graders they all just seem so little to me. I think I would have trouble writing about very young kids again, and that's part of the reason I chose to write about Armpit, who is 17. My daughter probably was 16 when I started writing "Small Steps."

Does she give you feedback on your books, like "Oh, a teenager would never say that."

Not really. She told me how to spell "dawg." If I had somebody call somebody "dawg," I spelled it D-O-G. She said, "No, it's D-A-W-G."

Do you ever think about writing adult novels?

I'd like to. But I always feel a lot more confident writing for kids; whenever I try to write for adults I feel like I try too hard or something, to be too profound, like I've got to have something deep or new to say.

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