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Author
Judy_Blume
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
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questions

Thanks for all your good thoughts. Since I'm working on a first draft (and I dread first drafts - yesterday I actually fell asleep at my computer and I wasn't even tired -- what does that tell you?)I'm always looking for an excuse to take a break from what I'm supposed to be writing. So ask away -- if you have questions I'll try to answer them.
Even though my husband says "You're supposed to be dead before there's a book like this about your work," I think it's more fun this way. Actually, I'm sure of it!
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julietadams
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Registered: ‎08-07-2007
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Re: questions

Hello Judy,

This is so strange to be writing you.... I didn't even know that Barnes and Noble had a book club and I just stumbled upon it! Anyway, you have been my favorite author since I was a little girl, and I have now grown up to be a 4th grade teacher, still reading all of my favorites with my students. My all-time favorite book is "Just As Long As We're Together," and have read it dozens of times. My question to you is, what do you say to those who have thought some of your books to be "provocative," "inappropriate" for children to read? There have been several that our librarians have asked us to take off of our shelves because of parent complaints, but I, being the LOVER of them all :smileyhappy:, have a very difficult time with that... What is your advice?

Thank you so much,
Julie

(By the way, I always thought it was so cool when I was little when I found out that we share the same birthday :smileyhappy: You are who inspired me to love reading and hopefully I inspire each of my students everyday... Thank you.)
Frequent Contributor
Trillian
Posts: 30
Registered: ‎11-16-2006
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Re: questions

Judy, I have a very simple question for you (or maybe not so simple now that I think about it) -- do you have a favorite among your books?

(For the record, mine's Are You There God It's Me, Margaret -- but I suppose that's not a very original choice!)
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.-- Oscar Wilde
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kpeterson32
Posts: 1,053
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Questions for Judy Blume?

I don't have any particular questions either, at the moment. I would just like to thank you, Ms. Blume, both for taking this time here to visit with us, and also for all the books that you sent out into the world to be picked up by a kid who spent too much of her childhood looking for an escape.
---------------------------------
"Oooh, look, a Blibbering Humdinger!" -- Luna Lovegood
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Wildflower
Posts: 212
Registered: ‎12-31-2006
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Re: Questions for Judy Blume?

Ms. Blume,

I just wanted to let you know (even though I am sure that you have heard it countless number of times), how much you and your insightful books are responsible for my surviving growing up. I grew up with a mother who was severely and violently manic depressive and a father who was more like a grandfather (he was 22 years older than my mother and so he was 70 when I turned 13). I pretty much had to raise myself and if I had not had your books to read to let me know that some of the things I was experiencing were "normal", I don't know if I would have grown up to be the functional, well adjusted wife and mother that I am today. So, with a risk of sounding overly dramatic, but with extreme sincerity, I literally thank you for my life!

Sue
"It's never to late to be what you might have been" -George Eliot
Author
jenniferoconnell
Posts: 12
Registered: ‎07-31-2007
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Re: Questions for Judy Blume?

I have a question. I know that you have a new series for young readers coming out shortly, but do you plan to write any more novels for adults in the near future?

Thanks,
Jennifer
New User
princess_mia
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎08-08-2007
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Re: questions

Wow. You have no idea how cool this is!
My question is: was it harder for you to write in a guy's point of view in Then Again, Maybe I Won't? I am writing a story in a guy's point of view right now and I found it surprisingly easy!
I would like to add that I loved every single one of your books and they're absolute must-haves for everyone! The fist time I read a book of yours I was around eight and at that time, even the guys would read them because they were so good!
Lots of love,
Maria
Reader 2
MsBleuGenes
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎08-08-2007
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Re: questions

Hi Judy! Like everyone else, I am honored and thrilled to "talk" with you.

My question is: I, and I imagine most readers, keep turning your characters around in our heads long after we've finished reading the novel. The most obvious example would be Caitlin in Summer Sisters, but I often wonder "what's Michelle/Vix/Sandy/Katherine/Tony etc etc etc up to now?". Do you even wonder what happens to your characters after the book ends, or are you content with having told the story of this particular period in time?

Thanks (for reading this, and for writing so many books that I have loved reading).
http://msbleugenes.livejournal.com/
Author
Judy_Blume
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
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Re: questions

Thanks, MsBleuGenes --
I always hope my readers will come away thinking about my characters. But surprisingly (or maybe not?) once I've finished the book, that's it for me. I may pick up the book years later and find myself surprised by what I knew then, or thought I knew. I'll let it take me back to the place I was when I wrote it, but I never wonder about my characters or long to continue their stories.

Okay, there are a couple of exceptions. Right now I'm doing 4 chapter books about a brother and sister, The Pain and the Great One, characters that started out in a picture book I wrote years ago. I've always wanted to revisit these kids in a longer format so I could get to know their friends and family.
Author
Judy_Blume
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
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Re: questions

Thanks, Maria -- I liked writing in Tony's voice in Then Again. At the time there was all this talk about women couldn't write from the POV of a boy or man, and vice versa; blacks couldn't write about whites; as if we couldn't get into each other's heads and experiences. I've never liked rules. Tell me what I can't do, and I'll try to do it! (Well, not all the time, and not about everything) But when it comes to writing my only rule is, If it works, it works. I didn't get into a guy's head and write from the male viewpoint again until Summer Sisters. But once I let the guys in that story have their say the whole book came together.
Author
ConnieAnnKirk
Posts: 5,472
Registered: ‎06-14-2007
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Re: questions

Hi, Judy!

I'd like to ask what you think of young adult novels today compared to when you "broke in" with your novels? Better? Worse? Any authors whose work you partiularly admire these days?

Thanks a bunch!

~ConnieK
~ConnieAnnKirk




[CAK's books , website.]
Author
Judy_Blume
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
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Re: Questions for Judy Blume?

That's a hard one, Jennifer. I have a notebook filled with characters and ideas for another novel for adults. I've been carrying it around with me for a couple of years. Will I ever write it? I like the idea of writing it. But don't know if I will. When I think about it, I think -- three years to do another novel! My husband jokes, So - what else do you have to do? I think - pain, torture, anxiety. I swore I'd never do it again after Summer Sisters. That one almost did me in. That's why I wanted a change of pace. Right now I'm working on the 3rd book in the Pain&Great One series and I still have one more book to go. After that, your guess is as good as mine.
Author
Judy_Blume
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
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Re: Questions for Judy Blume?

Thanks so much! I'm glad my books spoke to you when you needed them.
Author
Judy_Blume
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
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Re: questions

I tell the kids who ask, it's like asking a mother which is your favorite child. An impossible question to answer. But thanks for asking!
Author
Judy_Blume
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
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Re: questions

Thanks, Julie!
Can't believe the librarian is asking you to remove books from your classroom library. Librarians are supposed to be the defenders of intellectual freedom! I could write a book about this subject. Well, I have - kind of -- check out my website: judyblume.com Go to censorship and click on the intro to Places I Never Meant to Be. Better yet, get a copy of the book from B&N and read the essays, all by authors who have found themselves being challenged or banned from a school or library. Unbelievable! You'll get lots of info. I'll be launching a new website on August 28 I hope! (That's the pub date for Soupy Saturdays, my new chapter book) with even more info including a What Can You Do link (re censorship). Sounds to me as if your librarian is trying to avoid trouble, rather than standing up to those parents who come in with complaints. She/he should have her policy in place -- that is, there should be a school policy for handling complaints. NCAC.org (National Coalition Against Censorship) can give you more advice. And post a message on my website if you need assistance in handling this problem. Thanks for standing up for the kids in your class, for their right to read. Remember the book that one parent doesn't want her child to read may be the perfect book for another child.

Oh, and happy Feb 12!
Author
Judy_Blume
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
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Re: Questions for Judy Blume?

thank you!! It means a lot.
Author
Judy_Blume
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
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Re: questions

Hi Connie,
The 70's (when I started writing, along with Norma Klein, Richard Peck, and others) was a great decade for YA fiction, though there was no YA category then -- not even when I wrote Forever (which is why my publishers called it my first adult novel -- it never was and never was supposed to be).We called what we did writing for young readers. I've always hated having to fit into a category. And if you take all my books you'll only find one or two that would be published as YAs today. Forever. And maybe Tiger Eyes. For a long time YA books were out of style. Nobody wanted to publish them. They were considered a thing of the past. Then suddenly, they were hot again. There are a lot of good writers writing YAs today. I'm not naming names because I don't want to leave out anyone whose work I admire. The question I always ask is this -- if Catcher in the Rye were published today would it be published as a YA?
Melissa_W
Posts: 4,124
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Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: questions

I had an I (heart) Judy Blume post on the other thread, but since questions are here I though I'd move over to this thread. When I started reading Everything... I didn't realize I forgot how many books you wrote - Deenie, Forever..., Starring Sally J. Friedman, etc. I always remembered Blubber because I identified so much with both Linda (I was teased a lot because I was both a dancer and pretty geeky) and Jill (I tended to stand back when other kids were teased - in retrospect, probably not very nice of me but at the time I didn't want to give the bullies more ammunition). Are you there God, it's me Margaret gave me the vocabulary I needed so I could talk to my Mom about growing pains.

So thanks. :smileyhappy:



Judy_Blume wrote:
Thanks for all your good thoughts. Since I'm working on a first draft (and I dread first drafts - yesterday I actually fell asleep at my computer and I wasn't even tired -- what does that tell you?)I'm always looking for an excuse to take a break from what I'm supposed to be writing. So ask away -- if you have questions I'll try to answer them.
Even though my husband says "You're supposed to be dead before there's a book like this about your work," I think it's more fun this way. Actually, I'm sure of it!

Melissa W.
I read and knit and dance. Compulsively feel yarn. Consume books. Darn tights. Drink too much caffiene. All that good stuff.
balletbookworm.blogspot.com
Author
ConnieAnnKirk
Posts: 5,472
Registered: ‎06-14-2007
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Re: questions

[ Edited ]
Hi, Judy--I have another quick question:

Forgive me if I'm missing any of your titles, but I know you are most (always?) known for your realistic fiction. Have you ever considered writing fantasy? If not, why not?

Also, you were one of the early supporters of J. K. Rowling in the days when the Harry Potter books were getting banned all over the U. S. Have you kept up with the popular series, and if so, what do you think is the reason for Rowling's phenomenal success?

Thanks!

~Curious ConnieK

p.s. LOVE the Vineyard--wish I were there now!

Message Edited by ConnieK on 08-08-2007 09:11 PM
~ConnieAnnKirk




[CAK's books , website.]
Author
ConnieAnnKirk
Posts: 5,472
Registered: ‎06-14-2007
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Re: questions

[ Edited ]
Thanks, Judy--I think I know what you mean about not wanting to have one's work pigeon-holed into categories. Interesting question on _Catcher_. I wonder the same thing about Plath's _The Bell Jar_.

[p.s. If you want to quote the message you're replying to (i.e. so it looks like this post), you can click the gray box marked "Quote Post." Then space that down and type a reply above it.]

~ConnieK



Judy_Blume wrote:
Hi Connie,
The 70's (when I started writing, along with Norma Klein, Richard Peck, and others) was a great decade for YA fiction, though there was no YA category then -- not even when I wrote Forever (which is why my publishers called it my first adult novel -- it never was and never was supposed to be).We called what we did writing for young readers. I've always hated having to fit into a category. And if you take all my books you'll only find one or two that would be published as YAs today. Forever. And maybe Tiger Eyes. For a long time YA books were out of style. Nobody wanted to publish them. They were considered a thing of the past. Then suddenly, they were hot again. There are a lot of good writers writing YAs today. I'm not naming names because I don't want to leave out anyone whose work I admire. The question I always ask is this -- if Catcher in the Rye were published today would it be published as a YA?



Message Edited by ConnieK on 08-08-2007 08:59 PM
~ConnieAnnKirk




[CAK's books , website.]
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