Name: Penelope Todd
Date of birth: 1958
Place of birth: Christchurch
Now living in: Dunedin
- What is your favourite food?
- Coriander. Pineapple lumps.
- Do you have a nickname and if so what is it?
- No, but I often get called Mum.
- What was your most embarrassing moment?
- I remember flushing the loo on my uncle’s boat the wrong way (carelessly…) and breaking it. Trouble was we were sailing off Fiji and the boat had to be docked until a new and expensive part could be flown out from Auckland…
- How do you relax?
- I’m relaxed most of the time. If I need more I read or go to sleep.
- Who inspired you when you were little?
- My four strong horse-riding girl cousins from Makarora.
- What were you like at school?
- What was your favourite/most hated subject at school?
- Favourite: Year Eight cooking
Most hated: Year Eight sewing
- What was the book you most loved as a child?
- My friend Flicka by Mary O'Hara - the only book/s I read twice.
- Which person from the past would you most like to meet?
- Jesus, to clarify a few, no alot of, things.
- Who is your favourite author/children’s author?
- Adult: Margaret Atwood’s hard to beat. And Maurice Gee.
Children's: a few NZ writers, David Almond, Philip Pullman.
- Why did you want to be a writer?
- To say all the things that'd been composting/unsaid for forty years.
- Do you have a special place where you write your books?
- The sunroom’s the place. It’s everybody’s space but when they go to school it’s mine.
- What’s the best thing and worst thing about being a writer?
- Best: finding things out as I write, feeling solider and realer because of it.
Worst: getting stuck or distracted or discouraged.
- If you weren’t a writer, what would you like to be?
- A postie or tramping track guide or sweet shop attendant or puppy exerciser.
- What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
- Just do it.
This interview is from 2005.