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Thursday, 16 October 2008
Getting to Know Susan K. Schank
Topic: Author Interview

There has been an unavoidable change in schedules for the next few days.  I apologize to those who was looking forward to Truth and Intimacy--hopefully I can do that at another time.  I do have an interview with a wonderful author to share with you today--I hope you enjoy it!!

 Susan Schank the person: 

1.      What three words do you think describe you as a human being?

 honest, passionate, advocate

2.      How do you think others would describe you?

Talks ALL THE TIME!  But is a good listener, too.  Caring, a cynical optimist, stands up for what she believes in.

3.      Please tell us what you are most passionate about outside of writing.

My daughter and husband.  Without them I am nothing.

4.  Do you have any pets?  If so, introduce us to them.

Yes, I have a chow/shepherd mix dog named Cossette, a corn snake named Ruby, and a zebra finch named Zeke.  My daughter has a fish named Molly.  No, it is not a mollie.  It is a beta.  A male.  Whatever…… 

5.  What is your most precious memory?

The birth of my daughter.


6.  What is your most embarrassing memory?

Stumbling over my chair in college Lit class while making my exit on the last day of class.  Right after I had told the professor, as well as the entire class, what I thought of his teaching and grading techniques.  Not a graceful moment, but certainly an impressive one.

7.   If you weren’t a writer, what would you be doing with your life?

I would be a lawyer.  I love to research and debate.

8.      In two paragraphs or less write your obituary


Passionate is how you would describe Susan.  Susan worked hard to be the best mother, wife, and teacher she could be.  She was passionate about children, about the goodness of people, about education truly being the path to freedom and independence.  She was an advocate for those less fortunate and for causes she believed in.  Susan tried to make a difference with her words and wrote to inspire.  Her passion will be missed.

Susan Schank the writer: 

9.  Can you describe the time you realized you were indeed a “real” writer?

Absolutely!  It was the day I received my box of “Tera’s Dawn”, my first picture book.  “Tera’s Dawn, Author, Susan K. Schank” was printed on the side of the box.  VALIDATION!  From a BOX!  I still have the box.

10.  What is going on with your writing these days?

I am working on a couple of picture books, finishing an article in which I interviewed a young TV celebrity, and making character profiles for an adult novel that seems to be banging around in my head.

11.  What are your future goals for your writing?



I would like to write full time, for both children and adults.  And find a great agent!


12.  Can you describe a typical writing day for you?



Working as a full-time librarian in an elementary school doesn’t leave much time for a typical writing day.  I often write on my lunch break, especially if I have a deadline on a project.  I also work writing in while waiting for my daughter during her tumble and gymnastics classes.  Weekends and summers provide time to write, too.  I just fit it in when and where I can.


13.  Why do you write?



I write as a way of speaking.  I write to inspire, to share, to entertain.  Sometimes I write simply to vent, which often turns out to be some of my most passionate work.  But mostly, I just write to get the stories out of my head!

14.  What writer most inspires you?  Why?



I can’t pick just one!  But TWO I can think of are Jane Yolen and Cynthia Rylant.  I adore Jane’s writing and how diverse her topics and styles are.  Also, I spent a week with her in a picture book workshop hosted by the Highlights Foundation.  Just Jane and eight participants.  A PHENOMENAL experience.  She is such a wonderful, warm, sharing person.  I admire Cynthia Rylant’s writing.  It is so lyrical.  I enjoy both her picture books and chapter books.  And who doesn’t love Henry and Mudge?!

15.  How do you define your writing?



Depends on what I’m writing.  Funny, contemplative, informative, thought provoking.  Sometimes full of pathos….


16.  In one sentence—what do you want people to say about your writing in fifty years?



“She wrote good stories.”

Susan Schank the details: 


17.  Can you tell us where to find more information on you? Website?  Blog?



Sure!  Please visit my website at  And my Face Book page.

18.  Is there a place where readers can reach you?

Yes, there is an email link on my site.


19.  Can you list all your book titles so people can look for them?


* “Tera’s Dawn”, Purple Sky Publishing, 2008.

* “Gilda Can’t Gallop”, Living Waters Publishing, forthcoming.


*Poem-“Grow a Story” is the second-place national winner featured in the national Half-Price Books Store “Say Goodnight to Illiteracy Bedtime Story Book”, 2006. 

* Poem-“Just After You Were Born” featured in Miracles of Motherhood: Poems and Prayers for New Mothers, June Cotner Books, 2007.

* Devotionals-“Love Her” and “Respect” featured in A Cup of Comfort Devotional for Mothers Adams Media Corporation, 2007


20.  For new readers—what can they expect when they read your book(s)?


It depends on which book they are reading.  My picture books tend to be either quiet, soft stories, or situation comedy.  The adult books I have contributed to are all prayerful. 

In conclusion: 

21.  Take as much space as necessary to speak to our readers—what would you like them to know about you and your writing?


I am mom, wife, teacher, singer, librarian, Girl Scout leader, volunteer…..

My life is very full and extremely rich.  Family is the most important thing in the world to me.  Without them I am nothing. 

As for my writing, my life provides the soil from which my words grow.  Sometimes they grow tall and strong, sometimes they need a bit of fertilizer to help them along.  My critique group provides invaluable advice, encouragement, and LOTS of laughs!  Writing isn’t easy, it takes time and dedication.  But it IS worth it!

Posted by joyceanthony at 12:01 AM EDT
Updated: Thursday, 16 October 2008 12:47 AM EDT
Post Comment | View Comments (1) | Permalink

Thursday, 16 October 2008 - 9:38 AM EDT

Name: "Ron Berry"
Home Page:

Ah a fellow childrens writer. Nice to meet you. The ultimate job for a writer, a librarian. Add to that being a teacher and childrens books are automatic almost.

I agree with you on the importance of family and even more so, extended family.

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