February 27, 1966 
Salem, Oregon, U.S.
|Occupation||Novelist, short story writer, screenwriter|
|Genre||Young adult, fantasy, science fiction, children’s literature|
|Notable works||Skeleton Creek Saga, The Land of Elyon Series, Atherton Series, Atherton Thirteen Days to Midnight, and Elliot’s Park Series|
I'm a relic, and things were a lot different when I was fifteen and sixteen. There were no cell phones, no laptops… I learned to type on an actual typewriter.
I took English courses in college, but I don't have an English degree. I have a degree in economics.
My job as an author is to tell the story in the best way possible, to make it flow seamlessly and get the reader to keep turning the page.
'Skeleton Creek' is like nothing you've ever read before because it's a book and a movie at the same time.
For kids, multitasking electronically is common. But they are totally focused. You can tell a good story, and they listen.
There's something really fun about being scared, and I guess that was at least part of why I wanted to film certain scenes from my new book, 'Skeleton Creek.'
I travel to a lot of schools, and I see firsthand that while we do still have a lot of traditional readers, we don't have as many as we used to. And we're missing an awful lot of kids entirely… Do I want to get rid of the Internet? Obviously, I don't want that because of all the amazing things it brings.
When I was a kid, I used to love it when one of my friends would jump out from behind a door and try to scare me. I always did the same thing in response.
Don't get me wrong – I love books! I just think a video has a bigger bang when it comes to a good, old-fashioned adrenaline rush.
I'm a visual thinker, thrill seeker, and I'm easily distracted. I see everything I'm writing, and I think it naturally affects the pace of things.
Getting to the point where I was ready to write a book has been about a 20-year journey of being, really honestly, too afraid to try – which I think is pretty common for people who are trying to write a large piece of fiction.
Like most people, there are things I love about Amazon. It's cheap, it's fast, and it's at my doorstep. But Amazon will never replace the important role my local indie plays in my community.
I wasn't really conscious about 'The 39 Clues' movie when I wrote 'The Black Circle.'
Yes, we're pretty into books around my house. We have lots and lots of books around. We have TV, but really no one ever watches it.
There are so many ways to tell a story. With multiplatform books, we are reimagining what literacy can be.
They wouldn't let me into Germany from 1998-2000 because I bumped into the chancellor's daughter on my skateboard.
I remember all the way back in high school thinking about writing books. And, in fact, I've written a lot of stories. I've got dozens of stories I've written that no one's ever seen.