Interview with Ann K. Finkbeiner

April, 2012
Ann Finkbeiner

Quick Start


SS: How would you describe your life in only 8 words?

AF: Interesting, fattening, gratifying, tiring, sociable, worrisome, extremely pleasurable

SS: What is your motto or maxim?

AF: Don't choose, have both. Courage! Onward! Duck!


Questions About Books and Writing


SS: Who are your favorite authors?

AF: Marilynne Robinson, Peter Carey, Peter Taylor, Tracy Kidder, Flannery O'Connor, Virginia Woolf, Penelope Fitzgerald

SS: What are your 5 favorite books of all time?

AF: Robinson's Home, Robinson's Gilead, Kidder's Among Schoolchildren, Woolf's diary and letters, Fitzgerald's At Freddie's

SS: Is there a book you love to reread?

AF: Flannery O'Connor's letters

SS: Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?

AF: Keep an eye out for stories; never give up; rewrite with humility and until you hit diminishing returns

SS: What comment do you hear most often from your readers?

AF: That science stuff wasn't hard at all. It was kind of interesting.


What Readers want to know...


SS: How would you describe perfect happiness?

AF: Sunday afternoon in spring

SS: What’s your greatest fear?

AF: death

SS: If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?

AF: right here; Northeast Harbor, ME; Florence, Italy

SS: With whom in history do you most identify?

AF: never thought about it, no idea

SS: Which living person do you most admire?

AF: same as above

SS: What are your most overused words or phrases?

AF: nice, lovely, looking forward to it

SS: What do you regret most?

AF: my son's death

SS: If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?

AF: either singing or dancing

SS: What is your greatest achievement?

AF: writing the second book

SS: What’s your greatest flaw?

AF: sluggishness

SS: What’s your best quality?

AF: friendliness

SS: If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?

AF: I'm fine with what I am

SS: What trait is most noticeable about you?

AF: quietness

SS: Who is your favorite fictional hero?

AF: one of the kids in At Freddie's

SS: Who is your favorite fictional villain?

AF: can't think of one

SS: If you could meet any historical character, who would it be and what would you say to him or her?

AF: Shakespeare and I'd ask how the hell he did it.

SS: What is your biggest pet peeve?

AF: listening to movie plots

SS: What is your favorite occupation, when you’re not writing?

AF: reading

SS: What’s your fantasy profession?

AF: I'm doing it

SS: What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?

AF: courage, endurance, faith

SS: If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?

AF: pasta


General Questions


SS: What were your previous occupations?

AF: teaching junior high school gifted students

SS: What was/is your favorite job?

AF: writing

SS: Where did you go to high school and/or college?

AF: Naperville, Illinois

SS: Name of your favorite composer or music artist?

AF: Mozart

SS: What is your favorite movie?

AF: Wise Blood, but I never want to see it again

SS: What is your favorite television show?

AF: MASH

Get more on Ann K. Finkbeiner at SimonandSchuster.com

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