Interview with Pamela Allen

Cover of Who Sank The Boat?Name: Pamela Allen

Date of birth: 3 April 1934

Place of birth: Devonport, Auckland

Now living in: Auckland

What is your favourite food?
I love stewed tamarillos (tree tomatoes when I was little).
Do you have a nickname and if so what is it?
What was your most embarrassing moment?
Can’t tell you - it’s too embarrassing.
How do you relax?
Sleep. I love it.
Who inspired you when you were little?
I can’t remember being inspired. I don’t think we used the word.
What were you like at school?
I think I was very ordinary.
What was your favourite/most hated subject at school?
I was good at "drawring".
What was the book you most loved as a child?
I remember crying over Peter Rabbit (by Beatrix Potter).
Cover of Nana's ColoursWhich person from the past would you most like to meet?
My great grandfather. He was left an orphan as a little boy and through his own efforts ended up owning a printing business.
Who is your favourite author/children’s author?
Margaret Mahy.
Why did you want to be a writer?
I thought I could be an illustrator then I discovered I could write - I was a writer because I found I could do it.
Do you have a special place where you write your books?
Yes. I have a separate building now in the bush - I call it "my space."
What’s the best thing and worst thing about being a writer?
The worst thing is that you can feel very alone.
The best thing is you can make children laugh.
If you weren’t a writer, what would you like to be?
I wanted to be a potter (in the 1950’s in NZ).
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
If you want to be a writer - Read. Read until you recognize a good book. Then don’t give up too easily.

Read some books by Pamela Allen
More information about Pamela Allen

This interview is from 2002.