Name: Kate De Goldi
Date of birth: 18 August 1959
Place of birth: Christchurch
Now living in: Wellington
- What is your favourite food?
- Do you have a nickname and if so what is it?
- My family call me Kaf which is a corruption of Kath which is short for Kathleen - my actual name. My full name is Kathleen Domenica DeGoldi. I was named after both my grandmothers, one Irish, one Italian.
- What was your most embarrassing moment?
- There are many thousands of these, but I still remember with a red-hot horror the time I was caught by the principal, Sister Helen, laughing in the cloakroom with a friend, and promptly wet my pants with fright - in front of the big kids.
- How do you relax?
- I walk long distances; I read and listen to music; I talk on the phone to my sisters and friends. I sleep.
- Who inspired you when you were little?
- My first and most influential teacher, Sister Barbara. My piano teacher, Dorothy Buchanan. A friend of my mother’s who read and collected children’s books.
- What were you like at school?
- Variable. I had inspired moments and undisciplined times. I was incorrigibly talkative and worked, by nature, at what I enjoyed, rather than what was required.
- What was your favourite/most hated subject at school?
- My favourite subjects were writing and History and English Literature.
My least favourite was French language.
- What was the book you most loved as a child?
- There were many - Anne of Green Gables; One hundred and one dalmatians; Little Old Mrs Pepperpot; The night the rain came in; The family from One End Street - I could go on for pages.
- Who is your favourite author/children’s author?
- There are a number: Jan Mark, E.L. Konigsburg, Gene Kemp, Barbara Willard, Alan Garner, Jane Gardam, Betsy Byars, David Almond, Louis Sachar, Jerry Spinelli, Karen Hesse.
- Why did you want to be a writer?
- To recreate the pleasure reading gave me.
- Do you have a special place where you write your books?
- In my office which is actually a walk-in wardrobe (rather appropriate for a writer, I thought - given C.S. Lewis). I have a long desk and a computer and a view of the bush.
- What’s the best thing and worst thing about being a writer?
- The best thing is the imaginative freedom.
The hardest thing is when one’s ideas (which always seem brilliant) translate imperfectly to the page (which is 100% of the time).
- If you weren’t a writer, what would you like to be?
- An opera singer.
- What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
- Just do it. And when you’re not doing it, Read to see the way others do it.