Author Interview: Catherine Jinks

Catherine JinksCatherine Jinks is an award winning Australian author with over THIRTY books to her name. Her list of awards makes for incredibly impressive reading … the Victorian Premier’s Award, the Aurealis Award for Science Fiction, the Australian Ibby Award , and the CBCA Book of the Year Award a gobsmacking THREE times! Wow!

Catherine’s latest novel has just been released by Allen & Unwin. A Very Unusual Pursuit: City of Orphans is an intriguing novel set in Victorian London, and the first of an exciting new series. My Book Corner is very excited to invite Catherine to answer our questions …

Tell us about you in 25 words or less

I’m only interesting inside my head – on the outside I’m just a middle-aged, middle-class mother with no exciting jobs or divorces behind me.

What makes you happy?
A beautiful garden on a sunny day.

Where have you always wanted to visit, but haven’t made it to … yet? 
Comic-con in California. I just don’t know if I could take the crowds – or the expense.

Where is your favourite place to write? 
I only write at my desk at home. It’s the old postmaster’s desk from Hubbards, Nova Scotia, and it has a lot of pigeonholes full of reproduction medieval statuary.

If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?
Not the climate. In other words, I’d like to change climate change.

What’s the best thing about being a published author?
Letters from fans. (Mostly message-board postings, these days.)

Who or what inspires you?

What is your worst habit?

Your favourite word(s)?
‘But’. It’s so useful.

What was the inspiration behind your latest book, A Very Unusual Pursuit?
It was probably Charles Dickens and Sherlock Holmes, in the broadest sense, though the spark of the idea happened because I was thinking about how hard it was to write books about ten-year-olds set in the present day; children are marginalised in the western world because they’re regarded as ‘valuable’, whereas in Victorian London they were a big part of the economy, and were therefore present everywhere – even pubs. I was musing on the kind of jobs they used to do when I suddenly came up with the notion of a door-to-door monster slayer. 

Just for fun

Tea or coffee?
     I wish. Caffeine’s become a no-no for me…

Paper books or e-books?     Paper books except when travelling, when the e-reader is a Godsend

Vegemite or Marmite?     What’s Marmite?

Write or type?     Keystroke.

Poetry or prose?     Prose. I don’t understand poetry.

Beach or bush?     Neither, unless I’m staying in comfortable digs.

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