Three Quick Questions – Janeen Brian #21

All through October, Alphabet Soup is celebrating turning three. We have heaps of writers and illustrators stopping by to answer THREE QUICK QUESTIONS and today’s visitor is Janeen Brian, poet and author. Her books include Shirl and the Wollomby Show and Columbia Sneezes!, and many more …

Shirl and the Wollomby Show (cover)  Columbia Sneezes (cover)










1. Where do you like to write?

My favourite place to write is still my office, although I’ve tried many other places. It’s where my brain associates the act of writing best of all. I can jot down ideas or brainstorm while in bed or on a couch, but in my office I can spread work out on a central table or concentrate totally at my computer. My office has all sorts of photos and writing memorabilia in it, so it’s very much my place of enjoyment as well my writing.

2. Can you name a book you’d recommend to our readers?

I read children’s and adult’s books all the time, but I’ve just finished re-reading a book by Gary Paulsen, called Hatchet. First printed in 1987, it’s had many reprints and I think it’s a classic. The blurb reads: When a 13 year old city boy crash lands in the Canadian wilderness all he is left with is a hatchet—and the need to survive. From now on he learns everything the hard way …

It’s a wonderful read, gripping, powerful and realistic. I shared it with my grandson, which made it doubly enjoyable.

Hatchet (cover)
Janeen Brian recommends Hatchet by Gary Paulsen

3. Can you offer a word or phrase that kids could use for inspiration if they have writer’s block?

Here’s a command phrase that might kickstart inspiration: ‘Don’t come any closer!’

Find out more about Janeen Brian—visit her blog, and her website.

© October 2011 “Three Quick Questions with Janeen Brian” by Rebecca Newman (Alphabet Soup magazine)