Emily Ecton on staying up late, NPR & the word ‘snort’

Emily Ecton stops by the store this Saturday, February 17 at 6 p.m. to discuss her new chapter book, The Ambrose Deception. It’s a must read for kids and adults alike! Check out Emily’s answers to the BookPeople Questionnaire below. 

emily ecton

BP: What are you reading these days?

EE: I’m not reading much right now because I can’t really read other books while I’m working on a first draft. But some books that I read recently that I really enjoyed were Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero, Artemis by Andy Weir and The War I Finally Won by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley. I’m also really looking forward to reading The Night Garden by Polly Horvath.  


BP: What books did you love as a child?

EE: I loved so many books when I was little, I could never mention them all! I was a big fan of Tove Jansson’s Moomin books and the Oz books by L. Frank Baum, as well as Elizabeth Enright’s books and Edward Eager’s Half Magic series.


BP: What’s the hardest thing about writing?

EE: One of the hardest things is keeping new ideas that I’m excited about to myself. When I come up with an idea for a story I want to tell everyone, but if I talk about it too much I’ll kill the idea. So I have to keep my mouth shut until I’ve gotten a good portion of it on paper.


BP: What’s the best thing about writing?

EE: For me, working on a book is like putting together a puzzle. The best part is the feeling you get when all of the pieces come together and you know how everything in your plot is going to work.


BP: What’s your favorite word?

EE: I don’t know if I really have one! Maybe the word snort? I had to cut a lot of snorting when I was revising The Ambrose Deception.


BP: What’s a sentence you’ve loved and remembered from a book?

EE: The first one I always think of is the opening sentence from I Capture The Castle — “I write this sitting in the kitchen sink.” (Well, that and “Ook” from The Librarian in the Terry Pratchett books.)


BP: Do you have any weird writing habits?

EE: Is staying up too late at night writing weird? I tend to do my best work after most people go to bed, which can really wreak havoc on my schedule.


BP: Who are your literary influences?

EE: Writers like Zilpha Keatley Snyder, Lois Duncan, John Bellairs and Agatha Christie were probably the most influential in terms of how I think about plotting.


BP: What’s your favorite place to write?

EE: I’m pretty boring — I just like to write at my desk at home. But when I was working for NPR, I had to teach myself to write wherever I happened to be because we travelled so much.


BP: What would you be doing if you weren’t a writer?

EE: I’d like say I’d be something like a wildlife photographer, but I’d probably still be working in public broadcasting in some way.

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