Tiger Blog

An interview with Steve Smallman
Monday, 30 November -0001
Posted On 2012-11-16 11:16:46 |  Last Update 2012-12-28 15:53:10 |  Read 4166 times | 0 Comments

Little Tiger picture book author Steve Smallman gets a grilling, and tells us all about life as a writer, what he loves about Christmas, and why his granddaughter thinks he's a little bit silly!

In your new book, Puppy’s First Christmas, Puppy and Cat are really close friends. Do your pets at home get along with each other just as well?

Our cats and dogs have always got on very well. However, our cat Rosie does bop Stanley (our border collie) around the ear when he sticks his nose up her bottom. (Which is fair enough, don’t you think?)

You've said before that you try to write like a child would. How do you like to get into the mindset of a child? Do you ever get told off by your family for being too silly?

Sadly, I don’t have to try very hard to get into the mindset of a child; I think it’s my mind’s default setting! My family don’t usually tell me off for being silly anymore they just ‘tut’ quietly and roll their eyes a lot. But my three year old granddaughter, Scarlet, often says, “You are a bit silly, Granddad!”

A lot of your stories are from the perspectives of animals. Do you find that the world is more interesting from an animal’s point of view?

I think that whether the character I’m writing about is a person or an animal you have to try and see the world through their eyes. A worm and an elephant for example would see the same scene in a completely different way. But whichever animal is the character, I always try to see the wonder of the world around us, it is pretty amazing!

How do you like to spend Christmas? What’s your favourite thing about it?

I love to spend Christmas at home with my family. It’s getting harder to get everyone together as my family gets bigger and bigger but the best thing for me is having all the people I love squished into one busy, bonkers house on Christmas Day. It’s not peaceful but it is fun!

What’s the best thing about writing books for children?

This is a hard one. There are lots of things I like about writing books for children. One of the best things about it is that you can make anything happen in a story. And when you share it with children, even if only for a few minutes, your story can let them escape into a whole new world that has come out of your imagination! And that’s pretty special!

If you could drive a Monster Dumper Truck for the day, where would you go and what would you do?

I’d load it up with all the stuff that’s piled up in my garage and take it to the tip!
OR I’d drive it around the country picking up naughty monsters and then dump them all somewhere dark, damp and smelly! (That’ll teach them!)

If you had to pick a favourite book of yours, which one would it be and why?

I’m still most fond of The Lamb Who Came for Dinner. It‘s the one that I most enjoy reading out loud. It’s a bit of a rollercoaster of a story and it seems to appeal to children and adults alike!

In Dragon Stew, the five Vikings are always looking for a new adventure. If you were a Viking, what would you do for fun?

Being a bit of an arty wimp, I don’t think I’d enjoy fighting dragons or anything too dangerous. But I’d love to carve cool dragon’s heads out of wood to go on the long ships! (I would have enjoyed having tea and cake with the dragon! Told you I was a wimp!)

What’s your favourite part of your job?

I think my favourite part of my job is that it doesn’t feel like a job at all! I love writing and reading my stories, drawing pictures, painting on other people’s walls and generally showing off, and the fact that I get paid for doing it is...brilliant!

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