Rebecca Stead, the author of our October book, When You Reach Me, had this to say in response to questions from NOBC members Chris H and EM:
A question for Ms Stead: How much did you draw on your own or friends experience when you created the character of Miranda and Sal? Or, are there other characters that you relate more closely with?
Posted by: Chris H| Monday, October 18, 2010 at 11:19 PM
When You Reach Me is set in the time and place of my own childhood (1970s New York City), and I relied heavily on memory while writing it, using all sorts of details that had been stored in my mind for years and years. Many of the characters in the book are based on actual people I knew (or still know, in some cases), although, as I wrote the story, many of these characters claimed their own personalities. I used Miranda’s voice to express what I affectionately call the “weird inner thoughts” I remember from childhood, and I absolutely identify with her most of all.
Hi Ms. Stead, seems you are very interested in the scientific concept of people existing in other places and times. Have you done a lot of
research on the idea? To open up our thinking about our world, outer
space, the universe is interesting. Thanks for sharing your interests
in your books!
Posted by: EM| Tuesday, October 19, 2010 at 10:05 AM
Time travel is a fascinating subject, I think. It’s a logic game with a lot of dramatic appeal. On a scientific level, however, it goes right over my head. I did attempt some research on the subject, but lacked the basic understanding that a real discussion requires. I absorbed a couple of basic ideas, such as the notion that traveling to another time might involve a sort of “faxing” process that recreates rather than physically transports. And, in the course of writing this book, I had to resolve a basic question for myself: Can the past be changed? I think that as we get older, we ask ourselves these “big questions” less and less often, and it’s a shame.
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