About Jacqueline Preiss Weitzman
Q. What is your birthdate?
Q. Previous occupations
A. I worked as an interior designer for jails and prisons!
Q. Favorite job
A. Writing children's books.
Q. High school and/or college
A. Roy C. Ketcham High School in Wappingers Falls, NY; Vassar College; and finally Parsons School of Design
Q. Name of your favorite composer or music artist?
A. The Beatles
Q. Favorite movie
A. Out of Africa
Q. Favorite television show
A. Now: The Big Bang Theory Then: The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Q. How would you describe your life in only 8 words?
A. If I could just sit down to write...
Q. What is your motto or maxim?
A. Don't go ANYWHERE without a book!
Q. How would you describe perfect happiness?
A. Sitting comfortably on a quiet beach with a book I don't want to put down, all the time knowing that my family is happy, my house is clean, and there is world peace.
Q. What’s your greatest fear?
A. Don't get me started. I am the author of Superhero Joe after all!
Q. If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?
A. On that beach with world peace!
Q. With whom in history do you most identify?
A. Anyone with the best palaces.
Q. Which living person do you most admire?
A. I have to say it -- my mom.
Q. What are your most overused words or phrases?
A. "I'll do it!"
Q. What do you regret most?
A. Not taking more chances... and knowing this, not taking more chances!
Q. If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?
A. The nerve to take more chances.
Q. What is your greatest achievement?
A. My two boys.
Q. What’s your greatest flaw?
A. See "regrets."
Q. What’s your best quality?
A. Well, it's not my hair!
Q. If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?
A. If I could be any person, I would like to be Audrey Hepburn. Her life was both admirable and glamorous.
Q. What trait is most noticeable about you?
A. My very large smile.
Q. Who is your favorite fictional hero?
A. When I was a young girl, my favorite fictional hero was Tottie from Rumer Godden's A Doll's House, but I would have argued with that she wasn't fictional at all!
Q. Who is your favorite fictional villain?
A. Dolores Umbridge. She just freaks me out!
Q. What is your biggest pet peeve?
A. People who talk at you and not with you.
Q. What is your favorite occupation, when you’re not writing?
A. Being a mom.
Q. What’s your fantasy profession?
A. Broadway performer.
Q. What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?
A. Intellectual curiosity, kindness, and a good sense of humor.
Q. If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?
A. Pasta... no, chocolate...well, how about CHOCOLATE pasta?
On Books and Writing
Q. Who are your favorite authors?
A. If I narrow my focus to just contemporary children's picture book authors I'd have to say 1. Bob Graham - "Let's Get a Pup!" Said Kate is great on SO many levels; 2. Jane O'Connor never ceases to surprise; 3. I find Brian Selznick's innovation along with his old fashioned sensibility just beautiful; 4. I wish I WERE Lauren Child; and finally 5. the brilliant and poetic non-fiction writer Doreen Rappaport. Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Marin Luther King, Jr. should be its own national holiday!
Q. What are your 5 favorite books of all time?
A. Just sticking with books for children (and this is just the beginning of a long list!):1. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg2. A is for Annabelle by Tasha Tudor3. The Twenty-One Balloons by William Pene du Bois4. The Little Bear books by Else Holmelund Minarik5. The Doll's House by Rumor Godden
Q. Is there a book you love to reread?
A. I have re-read The Book Thief three times and on each reading find it new and emotionally overwhelming. I have also re-read the books on my favorites list numerous times. And then there's Pride and Prejudice...
Q. Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?
A. Listen to your editor!
Q. What comment do you hear most often from your readers?
A. "You know what I'm afraid of?"