Sounds fun, huh? Build a website, write a little bio about yourself, put some pictures up, talk about your book. But it is so NOT. Turns out, it’s really hard. Mostly because I have to imagine what you would like to know if you’re reading this.
Sure, there’s the usual stuff you might wonder like: Where I was born (Los Angeles), or what I studied in college (Philosophy), or whether I have a pet (a dog, Ripley) or how tall I am (not very), or what jobs I’ve had (lots!), and what my worst job was (peeling potatoes at a nursing home), or my best job (teaching 9th grade English) or even what my sign is (Capricorn), but all that seems a little dry to me. Maybe if I had run away from home and joined the circus when I was twelve (the way my Uncle Mike did) I’d have a lot more to say.
Maybe instead you’d like to know why I set my book in the Caribbean. It’s one of my favorite places in the world. I love to be on, in or under the water, and the best water anywhere is the Caribbean Sea. I thought it would be nice to spend some mental time there by writing about it and getting to make stuff up.
I love the ocean. I love being on an island and when I was a kid, even though I was truly a city kid who grew up right in the middle of L.A., my parents were divorced and my brother and I spent our summers in a lot of different places.
The summer I was thirteen, we stayed on the island of Barbados and spent that whole summer vacation snorkeling, swimming and sailing. I still do those things, and also scuba dive, but it was that summer, and the kids in my classes, that made me want to write The Problem with Paradise. That summer turned out to be one of the best of my life, but boy, I sure didn’t want to go. I was so mad, just like Casey, because – and I’m sure you get this -- at thirteen all I wanted to do was spend time with my friends, in my world, not miles away on some island with my little brother.
Because I have a little brother, you might wonder if Casey’s little brother, PJ, or Mike for that matter, are based on my own little brother. No. PJ is actually based on my former dog, a very talkative beagle. Mike seemed like a nice brother to have so I made him up. I haven’t been back to Barbados (and I’m sure it’s a lot different now) but I have spent a lot of time in the British and U.S. Virgin Islands. Tartuga, which I also made up, is based on those islands.
Another thing you might ask me about is what other things I like to do. Mostly I like to read. And eat. And go to the movies. Also talk. Otherwise I like to be outdoors, which you can see in these photos of me doing things I like to do in places I like to be -- except that one in the snow where you can tell I’m kind of in shock. It was 17 degrees and I was at 10,000 feet, which is really cold, and really high altitude for a California girl who lives at sea level and likes to swim in the ocean.
So that’s it from me. Thanks so much for reading this and, especially, for reading my book – or for planning to read it :-)
If you have a question, or if you would just like to write to me, please do – it would be great fun for me to know something about you. Just click that button that says Contact.