Monday, June 24, 2013


I love blog hops! My friend, Cheryl Malandrinos, asked me to participate in this “blog hop interview.” The idea is this: She sent me some interview questions, which I answer, and then at the end I tag 2 other writers who will in turn answer the same questions on their blogs next week.

1. What are you working on right now?
I am re-editing a middle grade historical novel I wrote two years ago.
I am also working on writing a fourth picture book.

2. How does it differ from other works in its genre?
These books will be a series.

3. What experiences have influenced you?
Having taught middle school for 15 years and now high school influenced much of what I write.

4. Why do you write what you do?
I write mostly trilingual children’s books in English, French, and Spanish with all three texts on each page. I am totally committed to writing in this fashion because I want to expose young children to a foreign language. I want to make it easy for parents and educators to have access to a book with all three languages as opposed to buying three different books.

5. How does your writing process work?
My writing process is very simple. I get an idea and I start writing. I hate outlines. To me, an outline stifles my creativity. I do several re-writes. I am a very intuitive person; I usually know when a manuscript is ready for submission.

6. What is the hardest part about writing?
I am very bad with grammar and punctuation. I am not a native speaker of English, so I often get very frustrated with making sure I do not have too many errors. Honestly, it is a major job finding the right individual to edit my work.

I find it very difficult making edits. It is hard to make changes after having poured your heart and soul into a manuscript. A part of me dies when I have to do re-write. It has taken me two years to rework the historical middle grade novel because the writing instructor told me to start over again.

7. What would you like to try as a writer that you haven't yet?
I would love to write a non-fiction book one day.

8. Who are the authors you most admire?

Alexandre Dumas. He is Haitian like me. I have read all of his novels in French. I also love Anna Maria Matute, a Spanish novelist from Barcelona Spain. She is the most prestigious voices in contemporary Spanish literature.
Ana María Matute, is mostly known for her sympathetic treatment of the lives of children and adolescents, their feelings of betrayal and isolation, and their rites of passage. She often interjected such elements as myth, fairy tale, the supernatural, and fantasy into her works. In her novel, Primer Memoria, she chronicles the lives of children who have been victimized and their fear of becoming adults.

9. What scares you?

I have many phobias. I am afraid to drive on the freeway. My husband does all the driving. I am able to drive to and from work since I do not need to take the freeway. I am afraid of snakes and have a fear of heights.
From a writing point of view, I am terrified of making too many grammar errors. I think this fear comes from when I was in catholic school. One nun in particular always made me feel stupid, because she often gave me a hard time about my writing. I learned to speak English fluently in six months, but it took me a lot longer to learn how to write well. My native language French is so different from English; consequently, it took me a while to learn the nuances of English grammar.

I want to extend a huge thank you to Cheryl, for inviting me to participate in this blog hop.

 Please check out Cheryl’s post here:

I am tagging the following authors:

Posting June 26th – Cynthia Reeg at What’s New With Cynthia Reeg:

Posting the week of the 24th – Tracey M. Cox at A Writers Blog by Tracey M. Cox:


  1. Great interview, Nicole. Sorry I am late in stopping by. Crazy week all around. I think you do a great job with your writing considering English is not your native language.

    I don't think I knew you were also working on a MG historical. I have one that I've been tinkering with for a while now. We should chat more about that.

    Best wishes and thanks for participating.

  2. Well, heights and snakes are my two big phobias. And Nicole, my problem is with punctuation also. I just had Nancy Carty Lepri edit my book. She is very patient and She is quite organized, and at the end sends you the book formatted and edited. Your new books sound wonderful for children. Wishing you much success.

  3. Hi Chery and Nicole, so nice to learn more about you and your process. I'm also more intuitive as a writer. And my grammar is also intuitive, but I have all the grammar books at hand, too! Blessings for much success!

  4. I am a native speaker and grammar and punctuation continue to be a challenge for me too! Good luck with your middle grade!

  5. Thanks ladies for stopping by. You made my day!

  6. I enjoyed this interview, Ladies. All the best of luck with the mg novel and continued success to you both!

  7. Thanks Nancy! I appreciate you stopping by.