My ultimate goal with my writing is to provide a child an escape hatch from their reality. I want them to climb into someone else’s life where they don’t feel pressured to act nice or choose right from wrong. I want them to just piggyback the main character and imagine what it would be like to experience new and different things.
Congratulations on the publication of your middle-grade novel, The Weaver. What inspired you to write it?
Thank you. The Weaver was inspired by the name of my online critique group, Silver Web. I was sitting in front of my computer one day, casting around inside the cobwebs of my mind for a story idea. I had the main page of my critique group on my screen and we have this awesome web graphic. I thought, “Spiders weave webs like we weave stories. We’re word weavers.” That thought grew into me imagining living in a town where people speak in story.
Tell us something about your protagonist, Mary. What kind of girl is she and why do you think young readers will love her?
Poor Mary is suffering through her third year of Novice Word Weaving. At eleven years old, she stands head and shoulders taller than her eight year old classmates. To make matters worse, her mother is the most revered word weaver in town. When Mary meets a strange little creature that grants her a wish, she thinks her troubles are over. Except instead of weaving a better tale, she is weaving odd little yarn charms to accompany her still pathetic tales.
I wanted to create a character that wasn’t really different from her friends, but felt like she was nonetheless. I suspect that “not fitting in” is one of the number one worries of children (and many adults) so I think they will relate to poor Mary who worries that being an inept storyteller makes her stand out like a sore thumb. And they should really feel her plight when she is suddenly knitting strange yarn charms, which really do make her different.