What is your earliest memory? Moving to a new house when my family moved from Young in Southern NSW to Glen Innes in Northern NSW. It was a rented house and there was wallpaper with a pattern of parrots.
What influenced you to start writing? Being a reader and loving playing with language influenced me.
What do you find inspiring? Reading other books is a constant inspiration and knowing writers whose work I admire inspires me.
What inspired you to write this book? A little boy at the pre-school attended by one of my kids missed his best friend who had gone away. He called out to her every afternoon, standing in the garden of the school.
What was one of the best things that happened because of this book? Meeting Freya Blackwood and discovering a friendship and a really lovely professional partnership. Also working with a new editor, Margrete Lamond who has now edited the following three picture books Freya and I have done – and we’re working on two more.
Which books do you recommend people to read? Picture books because they show the way written text and illustration can combine to create a story. They aren’t just for little kids.
Who do you really admire? The Governor of NSW: Professor Marie Bashir. She’s now an elderly woman but she always speaks about children and young people whenever she addresses groups. She clearly cares about people. I admire her enormously.
Do you collect anything? Books!
What else would you like to write a book about? World War One. The mind set about war was so different then from now and the tragedy wreaked on little towns across the country was huge. I’d like to explore that.
What are you working on next? Freya is in the middle of illustrating ‘The Cleo Stories,’ a book about a little girl who is wonderfully imaginative. It will be published next year.
Read my review of ‘Amy & Louis’ here.