Interview with Ben Galbraith

Ben GalbraithName: Ben Galbraith

Date of birth: 26 August 1980

Place of birth: Gisborne

Now living in: Gisborne

What is your favourite food?

Spaghetti Bolognaise

Do you have a nickname and if so what is it?

My friends call me Maggot (I think it’s because I’ve got white hair and pale skin).

What was your most embarrassing moment?

I’ve got heaps of them. When I was in Christchurch for a book signing, I was so nervous that I signed all the books with the wrong year!

How do you relax?

Surfing is really good. When I’m out in the surf all my stress washes away.

Who inspired you when you were little?

Clive Kelly, Peter Ireland (both artists) Bob Hansen, Gearge Walford (teachers) My parents collected art too, so I grew up with art all around me which inspired me.

Book Cover of The Three Fishing Brothers GruffWhat were you like at school?

I was quiet (I think) Maybe a little bit cheeky. I was always one of the smallest in my class.

What was your favourite/most hated subject at school?

I always loved art. I used to plead with our teacher to let us draw more. I never really liked maths. Maths was boring!

What was the book you most loved as a child?

According to my mother (she knows best) my favourite books were Mog The Forgetful Cat by Judith Kerr and Rosie’s Walk by Pat Hutchins.

Which person from the past would you most like to meet?

I reckon Dr Seuss would be an interesting person to meet.

Who is your favourite author/children’s author?

Roald Dahl

Why did you want to be a writer?

I didn’t really plan to be a writer, it kind of just happened.

Do you have a special place where you write and illustrate your books?

I’ve got a smelly, dark little room in the basement of our house where I keep my computer. It has all kinds of interesting bits and pieces stuck to the wall which help inspire me.

What’s the best thing and worst thing about being a writer or illustrator?

The best thing about being a writer and illustrator is seeing my books published. I also like reading them to kids. The worst is how long they take to get published!

If you weren’t a writer, what would you like to be?

I’m not sure. My father was a carpenter, so maybe I would have followed in his foot steps.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers or illustrators?

Some good advice for aspiring illustrators would be to draw as much as you can. Draw from real life subjects rather than photographs and magazines. For authors I’d say read, read, read!

Read some books by Ben Galbraith
More information about Ben Galbraith
Ben’s web site

This interview is from 2007

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