Susha Golomb, author of Magic Sucks and Out of Place, with a third book on the way, has a secret wish to hide away, and just write! (I can sympathise, me too!) But so many of us out here, myself included, love to hear from the authors behind the great books on our site, so Susha agreed to provide an interview.
Here’s what Susha has to say about her writing process:
– 1. When did you first start writing?
Like many children’s writers, my writing career began when my five year old asked (nagged) me to write down her favorite story. The retelling of the story we called Mommy was a Mermaid was the only way our little girl would allow us to wash her hair. Once begun, the written story took over, growing bigger, demanding more and more time. Having an audience of one who laughed out loud at every joke was the carrot that kept me working my butt off and happy about it.
– 2. What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
It’s all about the reader. What do I want? I want to write stories that kids love to read. I am still working for that carrot.
– 3. What is your writing process?
I am a travel writer. I go to a new world, I try to learn everything I can and then I try to show you what I saw. The stories come later. When I finish a book, I take out everything that isn’t about the story. But I could never find the story if I didn’t thoroughly explore and learn everything I can about the people and the places I visit while I am writing.
A lot of the boring stuff that I take out happens because I am also an anthropologist. My anthropologist half is always thinking about what makes us human and all the different way there are of being human. Writing about different species helps me explore the boundaries of what we can be. It is not a coincidence that Miriam Mermelstein is forced to figure out how to get along with some very alien people (parents and children count as different species).
– 4. How did you learn to write?
Reading. I learn the most from bad writers. Analyzing a great story, not so much. It is a skill I leave to students of literature and to critics. I am a reader first and a writer second.
– 5. What kinds of books do you like to read?
I grew up reading science fiction and it is still my favorite genre.
– 6. Why don’t I have a biography or a picture of myself?
Let me answer that question with two more questions:
– – 6a. If you could have a super-power, what would it be?
When I was young I was consumed with the desire to fly. I daydreamed about it and I dream–dreamed about it. When I fell in love, I desperately wanted to be telepathic, but just with my husband. Everybody else? TMI. But for a long time now, and perhaps always, I have wished for invisibility. I love going to parties but I hate talking to people. Invisible. Perfect. The perfect solution to The Writer’s Dilemma.
– – 6b. What is The Writer’s Dilemma?
There are many writers who suffer from this condition. When I was making the cover for Magic Sucks, I kept trying to get the cover designer to make my name smaller. I would have made my books anonymous, but there is too much competition. Look around. There are lots of writers who don’t post pictures or biographies. We dream of living alone on a mountain, or in the woods, or on a boat. No interruptions, just writing. But without other people to interact with, most of us eventually dry up and run out of stories. That is The Writer’s Dilemma.
I don’t have a website, but you can email me at susha.g at bellsouth.net.
Susha Golomb’s books on this site are available here: