Interview with Wanda Cowley

Wanda CowleyName: Wanda Cowley

Date of birth: 7 September 1924

Place of birth: Auckland

Now living in: Waiheke Island

Who inspired you when you were little?

My mother

What is your favourite food?

I like all sorts of fruit especially picked from the tree and all sorts of vegetables fresh from the garden. Haggis is a special treat.

What was your most embarrassing moment?

When I first heard this strange voice on tape and realised I was listening to myself.

How do you relax?

Listening to music; reading.

What were you like at school?

Not very confident although in secondary school I used to knit socks for soldiers under the desk when I thought the teacher wasn’t looking.

What was your favourite/most hated subject at school?

Favourite: writing stories and poems

Didn’t feel strongly enough to hate anything although I struggled with algebra.

What was the book you most loved as a child?

"Seized by Brigands". I read it until it fell to pieces. I think we lost the pieces when we moved house.

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

The composer Mozart because I think he would be a fun person as well as a great musician.

Who is your favourite author/children’s author?

I have so many authors I love to read it’s hard to know where to start. I can’t really choose one above another.

Why did you want to be a writer?

It just seemed to happen because I love story and language and the music of words.

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

Yes, I’m lucky to have a special room where I keep all my reference books, files and folders.

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

The best thing is the actual writing process; fashioning the story or poem.

The worst thing is an empty letterbox when I’m waiting to see if an editor likes my work.

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

I can’t imagine not being a writer but I would like to play an instrument, maybe flute or autoharp.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Read Read Read. Write Write Write.

Read a short story by Wanda Cowley
Read some books written by Wanda Cowley

This interview is from 2002.

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