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Monday, October 28, 2013

Monday Discussion: What One Question Do You Want To Ask an Author?

Well today is the day, I am interviewing Ernest Cline via Skype at 10:30am Chicago time for Berwyn Reads!  We are recording the interview and will have it up on our You Tube Channel for everyone to see by the end of this week.

But the real audience for this interview is the students at Morton West High School who read the book and submitted questions as part of their English classes.  The kids were asked to submit questions for the interviews.  I spent last Wednesday going through the dozens of questions I received (yay kids, great job), rearranging them, and putting them into a general interview order.

I will only ask their questions. The students will then view the interview in their classrooms.  I am excited for them to see their questions answered by Cline.

But first, I also want to take a moment to talk about the questions themselves.  I was very impressed with the questions I received.  Yes I got a few stinkers, but very few.  Most of the questions were about the setting, the characters, and author purpose.  When you see the interview you will get a sense of those. They were all well done.

However, there were other questions that were among my favorites.  These were a little less obvious. Things like:

  • Where do you like to write?
  • What was the hardest thing about writing this book? What was the easiest?
  • Do you really think the world will become as bad as you write it?
These questions made me think.  These kids had one shot to ask Cline something, and a few of them really went outside the box.

I was inspired by them to ask myself-- what would I ask if I could only ask an author of a book I just read and enjoyed only one question? 

That’s a lot of pressure and a great question for us today.  So for today’s Monday Discussion I thought we’d all have a try at this one?  If you had one chance to ask any current living author one question, and one question only, what would it be?

I’ll go first.  I have thought about this for awhile and I think I would go with: 
What would you write if you had no deadlines, not contracts to fulfill, no worries about how it would sell?
I would love to know for many bestselling authors what they secretly want to write-- a different genre, poetry, stories, etc.... I hope to find out what inspiration lies at the heart of their life as a writer with this question.

What about you? Let me know, and look for my interview with Cline later this week.

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