One Dreamy Interview with Siobhan Vivian and Jenny Han


~post by Willa of  Teen Press Corp

TPC: You two obviously have written together before, so what made you want to write together?
SV: It was very self-serving. Jenny and I are actually real life best friends. And we lived around the corner from each other in Brooklyn, and we would write and hang out together all the time, and then I moved six hours away. And we had a talked about collaborating, but working on a series together was the perfect excuse for us to stay close.
JH: I completely agree.

TPC: What was the first story you remember writing?
JH: I wrote a lot of stories when I was a kid. One won a prize at my school.
SV: She beat out older kids!
JH: It was about a girl who wakes up one morning and her parents tell her her family is moving to New York and her sister’s name was Robin, and she was so excited, and ends up annoying her. That character [Robin] is based on my sister, and my sister shows up all the time in my stories. So, her sister was thrilled to be moving, and she wasn’t. I even illustrated it.
SV: Can I get a print-out copy?
JH: (laughs) No, I illustrated the book, and it was bound. One of the illustrations is of a ghost, because the character feels like a ghost in her school, because everyone ignored her.
SV: This is really mature!
JH: (laughs) And then, she wakes up, and it was all a dream.

TPC: (gasps)
SV: Now, this is a surprise to you now, but when you hear the title, it will all make sense.

TPC: What was the title?!
SV: It was called, “The Dream”.
JH: Yeah, I don’t think I fully understood the idea of a spoiler alert… (laughs)
SV: I have an answer to this you actually don’t know. When I was younger, I used to this thing where I had this stereo and if you put in a cassette and plugged in headphones, you could record yourself. I used to do my own radio show. It was called the Wakko Zacko Radio Show. I used to do all these different voices, and I would have different personalities. I would spend hours making different voices and talking to myself.

TPC: Did you want to be on a radio show when you were younger?
SV: I just wanted to do something where I was entertaining. I wanted to be a professional wrestler at one point.

TPC: Do any of the people you know make it into your books, and how much of them?
JH: My sister inspires me a lot, and she ends up in my books all the time. Sisterhood inspires me a lot, and she shows up from different times in our lives. I feel like sisterhood is a very interesting topic to write about.
SV: I would say yes, people from my own life and my own life ends up in my books all the time. And my friends from high school that whenever there’s a new Siobhan Vivian book out, they’ll find something from high school in it.

TPC: What is your favorite thing about Austin?
SV: That’s a hard thing to answer, because I love Austin. It’s my favorite city I’ve gone to for a book stop, and I could live in Austin in heartbeat. One of my favorite things – I discovered it this morning – is Hey, Tiger, and it’s delicious. I love Franks, I love BookPeople, I love Amy’s, I love Jo’s Coffee. I just love Austin. I really love Austin.
JH: My favorite thing about Austin is Friday Night Lights. When I was here for ATBF a few years ago, a couple authors and I went out the football field and took pictures at night, and posed. I had to go back the next morning and get daytime pics too. But I love Austin.