Writer for Saturday Night Live (this was back in the late 70s); tennis player (during the era of Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe); teacher of the deaf (I was addicted to Helen Keller biographies); and a concert violinist (even though I did not play the violin). Mostly, I just wanted to be smart. When did you realize you wanted to be a writer/illustrator? Two words: Judy Blume.
Maybe not earliest, but Massachusetts circa 1972: playing Matchbox cars in the windowsill, catching ladybugs in the kitchen, and singing Karen Carpenter tunes at the top of my lungs.
Wetting my pants on the street coming home from first grade—while the neighborhood bully stood there laughing at me.
Going to Woburn Public Library in Papa’s shiny, red Ford truck.
History. I was terrible with dates. (Although I later married a history teacher, so go figure!)
Getting a contract for another book.
Home office, library, the diner, and any Starbucks with an available outlet.
Five top spots: eavesdropping on unsuspecting strangers; analyzing dreams; re-reading my old diaries; talking to my kids and their pals; and reading anything from the newspaper to junk mail.
Cady from my novel REWIND and Madison Finn from my book series of the same name.
My agent or editor.
Total night owl. I often work after my kids go to sleep.
Hummus, warm pitas, grapes, and chopped salad with all the trimmings.
Dogs. No contest. I’m allergic to cats.
When possible: the beach. More likely: my backyard.
My kids when we’re being super-silly; Monty Python; and Conan O’Brien.
Anything from BLUE by Joni Mitchell
Elizabeth Bennett, Pippi Longstocking, and Juno (from the movie).
Falling from a great height. And furry spiders.
May, when I plant in our garden.
Anything on Bravo, especially Project Runway and Top Chef
A genie. That way, he (or she) could grant any wish for me at any time—including making my husband, kids, and anyone else appear at will.
Renaissance Italy. Or into the future—just for a little while--to see what’s coming.
“Trust Laura and her perceptions of things.” My college adviser wrote that on a file card for me nearly 20 years ago, I still have the coffee-stained and torn card framed on my desk.
Come on! I couldn’t stop. Physically impossible. My brain would implode.
Three things: my optimism, my creativity, and my work ethic.
Not getting enough sleep.
My attention to detail.
My kids. No doubt. Hands down.
Anywhere as long as I am with my kids and husband. (Having a pen and paper in hand is a bonus, of course!)
Dance. Gourmet cook. Sigh. So many things!
Two of my girlier-girl moments: in high school in was featured in a Seventeen magazine story and later I was a debutante.
Rainstorms; highly competitive games of Scrabble and Boggle; crossword puzzles; really good books; really trashy magazines; classical music; and Venti, decaf, iced, hazelnut Americanos from Starbucks (I’m drinking one right now, actually).