Q. How would you describe your life in only 8 words?
A. Critical things: family, friends, animals, nature, art, adventure.
Q. What is your motto or maxim?
A. Do the thing that scares you. Every challenge is an opportunity to stretch and grow.
Q. What’s your greatest fear?
A. For much of my life it was losing my parents. Now it's not having someone holding my hand as I die.
Q. If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?
A. The Antarctic Peninsula, surrounded by penguins and ice.
Q. What do you regret most?
A. Letting fear and insecurity about my artistic ability stop me from applying to art school when I was younger.
Q. If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?
A. Being an accomplished cellist or violinist.
Q. What is your greatest achievement?
A. Definitely taking part in the successful animal rescue effort following the Treasure oil spill.
Q. What’s your greatest flaw?
A. Let me get back to you on that one. Oh ya....it's procrastination.
Q. What’s your best quality?
A. My warm, friendly nature. (I chalk it up to my Italian heritage.)
Q. If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?
A. When I was young, I wanted to come back as a horse, because I thought they were beautiful, powerful and graceful. Now, I think I would want to be an albatross, so I could experience the freedom of effortless soaring over the vast oceans.
Q. What trait is most noticeable about you?
A. My friends and family would probably say it's my laugh.
Q. What’s your fantasy profession?
Q. What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?
A. integrity, kindness, generosity
Q. If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?
A. Chocolate. Is that wrong?
On Books and Writing
Q. What are your 5 favorite books of all time?
A. Illusions: Diary of a Reluctant Messiah, by Richard Bach Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal, by Christopher Moore Zoya's Story: An Afghan Woman's Struggle for Freedom, by John Follian The Red Tent, by Anita Diamant Shadow Divers, by Robert Kurson Sounding, by Hank Searls (O.K., that's six. So sue me.)
Q. Is there a book you love to reread?
A. Illusions: Diary of a Reluctant Messiah, by Richard Bach
Q. Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?
A. Believe in yourself, and never give up on your dreams.
Q. What comment do you hear most often from your readers?
A. That The Great Penguin Rescue is such an important and inspiring story. (People often compare it to Krakauer's Into Thin Air.)