What can we expect from you in the future?
I write various genres, children's fiction, Young Adult fiction and non-fiction, special education resources for educators, children and parents. I have a few contracts at the moment to full-fill for Solstice, so working on the edits of two YA non-fiction books. Solstice has also contracted me and my colleague Archie Fusillo on the Italian version of our latest novel, Veiled Secrets - so that should be out later this year. I am also writing a YA historical novel that I hope Solstice may be interested in the future. How do we find out about you and your books? www.booksbyjosie.com.au or amazon.com How much of your personality and life experiences are in your writing? In every book I write there's a little or a lot of me which can be either from my childhood, or stems from various life experiences, even people who I have come across over my years can be morphed into a character. When did you first think about writing and what prompted you to submit your first ms? I first wanted to be a writer from age 9, and at age 13 I submitted my very first MS to Golden Books (and it was also my very first rejection!) Do you have a set schedule for writing or do you just go with the flow? I am not one who goes by timelines and deadlines, I need to go with the flow, so if it's not flowing, then it's not going! Do you feel humour is important in YA and why? Yes of course, even with the darkest of books I always try to incorporate humour. We all attempt to use humour in the tough times, it can give us a slight release from what we are going through. Even with my YA novel 'Sunlight' which is about a teen diagnosed with cancer, there is a lot of humour dotted here and there. Would you like to write a different genre than you do now, or sub-genre? I would love to write chic-lit. I guess I have dipped my toe into that genre with my published short story 'The Shortest and Longest Ever' - this gave me a taste and I liked it! I also hope to have a credit as a script-writer one day. Please tell us about yourself (family, hobbies, education, etc.) I have graduated with a post-graduate certificate in Creative Writing, live with my husband and our Siberian husky, Coca. My children are now adults, left home, married, fending for themselves. My husband and I love to travel, are coffee snobs and enjoy going to the movies. Do you have a favorite author? Favorite book? As a child my favourite author was Enid Blyton and I still collect her books. As an adult I really enjoy books written by Nicky Pellegrino who writes Italian themed novels - as I get older my parents country lures me in. Where do you see yourself in five years? Semi-retired, travelling, writing for not only literature but film and TV. How long have you been writing - have you always wanted to be a writer? Officially I have been writing for 17 years since my very first book was published. Unofficially I have been writing for 42 years since the age of 9 when I would self-publish my stories and put them into the school library. How many books have you written, how many have been published? 19 fiction/non fiction for children, YA & adults; ALL PUBLISHED by Australian and US publishers 36 non-fiction/fiction for children, adults, professionals on the topic of Autism and Asperger Syndrome ALL PUBLISHED by US & UK publishers. 5 contracted to write Which comes first, the story, the characters or the setting? anything can come first, can be a strong character of which I write the story around them, can be the setting where I will write characters into it. At times I can come up with a title, then have to write the book under it! What are the elements of a great romance for you? Fun, humour, flirting, whatever makes the heart go 'boom' 8-) What is the hardest part of writing/the easiest for you? The easiest thing is when I come up with the idea, the hardest is then I have to write the story! I am an ideas person, and don't really have the discipline and patience to sit and write the full story - although I've proven I can! Just don't have to like it ha ha What is the most rewarding thing about being a writer? Receiving fanmail, in particular from children who have enjoyed reading my work and are excited to tell me so. (see attached) Are there any words of encouragement for unpublished writers? Just WRITE!!! and attend as many writing classes, groups, conferences etc you can to learn more about the craft.