How long have you been writing?
I fell in love with writing literally as I learned to write. I remember the day I learned about brainstorming in first grade. I went to a birthday party later that day and lost a game of Hot Potato because my mind was preoccupied with the idea of brainstorming. I envisioned a topic with a brain spitting out all sorts of words related to it. It was an actual storm of ideas. How cool! Right then and there I was hooked. In the sixth grade we were required to write one creative writing every month. My teacher would often read my stories out loud to the class, and my classmates enjoyed them. I knew then whatever my future held, writing would be a part of it.
What inspired you to write For Always?
I dealt with a lot of death growing up and I wanted to write about someone like me, a protagonist that must overcome obstacles of chance and her own self-doubt. A girl who doesn’t see her true potential, but uses the experiences she has gone through to find a reserve of perseverance and strength.
Which of your characters do you relate to most and why?
Stephanie. We are a lot alike. We have some of the same hang ups, only she is much more confident and together than I was as a teenager. She is like the me I wish I was then.
What is a secret about Stephanie that nobody else knows?
Without anyone realizing, Stephanie hid Jordan’s initials, JB in each of her drawings, much like Marc Brown hid his son’s names in the Arthur books.
If your real life as a teenager was a Young Adult book, what would you, the main character, be like?
I would be like Stephanie. I drew from experience growing up in Brooklyn in writing For Always. While For Always is fictional, Stephanie and I share many experiences, such as calling a boy I liked to find out if he liked my best friend, going bombing on Halloween, even the smoky bus incident was taken from my teen years.
What book have you read too many times to count?
I’m not big on rereading books. Usually I will go back to specific parts and reread passages. Twilight would be at the top of that list, along with Evermore.
What is the best piece of writing advice you ever received?
Besides the stock answer of write every day, which is paramount, the other piece of advice is to not be so critical of my own work. My mentor in college reminded me often what he believed to be the worst piece he ever wrote, went on to be a blockbuster movie and made him millions of dollars.
What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
I find that even though I knew where I want to go with my characters, they often had a mind of their own and veered off in a different direction. I still get them where they need to be in the end, but the journey is theirs.
What do you like to do when you're not writing?
I love spending time with my family. If I’m not doing that you can probably find me at the gym in a yoga or Zumba class. Zumba! Zumba!
Thank you so much for stopping by our blog today! We look forward to your guest post here on Wednesday!
To learn more about Danielle Sibarium, visit her website. You can also find the author on Twitter.