I write Middle Grade books and my favorite thing to do is help young people write or connect them with a great book. I'm also a pretty big fan of spicy food and both chocolate and coffee or any combination of chocolate and coffee, but please, don't make my chocolate or coffee spicy!
I grew up in Ohio, but I've been living in Singapore for almost 15 years! Which is perfect for spicy food, but also kind of not because it's super hot here ALL year around and it makes me sweat! On the other hand, it is nice to swim on Christmas!
Writing books is something I've done since I was little. I used to create cardboard covers and even give myself Newbery Medals.
I continue to write today because it's fun to create situations and events for characters and see how they'll handle them. Sometimes my characters are funny or smart or brave-- those are all things I don't always feel when I'm faced with difficult problems. I also like letting my characters get into trouble-- no, not because I'm mean, but because we ALL get into trouble. It's fun to imagine yourself in a story.
Characters and stories also open our eyes to new things, places, foods, problems and ideas. That's the best part of writing, knowing your reader is gaining empathy.
Don't give up! My eldest two children wouldn't read a single book I suggested from the time they were 6 to 13. Now, we share books and discuss them. It doesn't have to get expensive. We spend a lot of time at the library!
I try a few things when I'm feeling blah. First, I'll reach for a book I love-- sometimes an old favorite, sometimes a book I've recently read. If that doesn't work, I embroider, crochet or sew. Using my creativity in a completely new way sometimes lets my thoughts reorder. If nothing else works, I binge Netflix.
What's typical? My week is full Monday to Wednesday so my writing is in all the in between moments I have during the day. Thursday I have to catch up on housework, but I set a time limit and get done the most crucial things and leave the house when my time limit is up. I treat myself to coffee and a croissant and write until school pickup time. Fridays I work at home and do my best to make sure I've met my weekly goals before Saturday.