Interview with Lloyd Jones

Lloyd JonesName: Lloyd Jones

Date of birth: 23 March 1955

Place of birth: Lower Hutt

Now living in: Wellington

What is your favourite food?

Seafood, and virtually anything sweet: ice cream especially.

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

As a kid I was known as 'Jones the bag of bones'!

What was your most embarrassing moment?

There are too many to remember. Covering Philip Rush’s Cook Strait swim as a reporter, and eating by mistake his bananas and biscuits rates highly.

How do you relax?

Walking, tennis, swimming, reading, films.

Who inspired you when you were little?

The sports stars of the day.

Book Cover of Napoleon and the Chicken FarmerWhat were you like at school?

Very quiet - there but not there. I only came alive for sport.

What was your favourite/most hated subject at school?

I didn’t like Science much, and was indifferent to every other subject.

What was the book you most loved as a child?

Oscar Wilde’s Fables; The Silver Sword by Ian Serraillier; Emil and the Detectives, opens a new window by Erich Kastner; Rod Laver’s biography.

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

My forebears from England and Wales, if only to tell them it all ends well.

Who is your favourite author/children’s author?

Roald Dahl, Charles Dickens, opens a new window, Robert Louis Stevenson, opens a new window.

Why did you want to be a writer?

I wanted to talk back at the world. I also wanted to reinvent it.

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

I like it best when I’m on the move - on a bus, in a tram, walking - I always have a pen and notebook with me.

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

The best thing is the great satisfaction that you are creating something out of nothing. The worst thing is when you are aware that you are not achieving what you set out to do.

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

I can’t imagine my being that person who didn’t write.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Dream and read as much as you can. Think about what the writer is trying to do, and how they are going about it. Read aloud - you get the sense of the writer’s voice and rhythm. And when you write something be sure to read it back aloud. Don’t be afraid of failure. Most writing results in failure.

Read some books by Lloyd Jones
More information about Lloyd Jones

This interview is from 2002.

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