The world starts to exist, for Americans, when we are in conflict with a place. And then all of a sudden, Afghanistan pops up on the TV screen and it becomes a place. And it exists for three weeks, and then it disappears into thin air.
A man who cooks is very sexy. A woman who cooks is not that sexy. Because it's associated in our mind to the domestic cliche of the woman.
Kids are smart: don't underestimate their bull detector. Contemporary kids have access to a lot of information, so don't even try to fool them. I have never been more nervous about my research than when writing for young adults because they pick up every single error.
If I can write it, I can cope. And I've been writing many books, but in every book, I try to explore something in my own soul that I need to solve, I need to understand.