When I write from the point of view of a child or a young person, I am trying to tell the truth as an adult voice sometimes cannot. We are so often wrapped in the garment of trying to reassure ourselves that we are not afraid.
I take a real interest in the possibilities of teaching - including the practice of bringing creative writing, and serious reading, into the classroom. I am persuaded that since language is alive, much of the challenge has already been met by the poets and novelists we read.
Through language, we can tell the truth and hear the truth spoken, just as we can be deceived. Sometimes it's a painful realization: we can be lied to. As I write, I think of myself as putting my eye under oath, so that what I write is the truth about my characters.
When my main character in 'Heat' climbs the tower, the highest diving platform, hoping to resume competitive diving after an injury, I am there with her, sensing the cold grit under her instep. The details are what matter - they are the experience.
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