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Author Chat with Jon Scieszka


About the Author Chat

Who: Jon Scieszka, popular author.
What: Questions to Jon Scieszka were submitted. Responses posted weekly.
Where: NYPL's "On-Lion" for Kids.
When: April 1998
Why: To celebrate National Library Week, April 13-18, 1998.

Books by Jon Scieszka

published by Viking Children's Books, a division of Penguin Putnam Inc.

  • The Time Warp Trio
  • The Good, the Bad, and the Goofy, illustrated by Lane Smith. (J FIC S)
  • Knights of the Kitchen Table, illustrated by Lane Smith. (J FIC S)
  • The Not-So-Jolly Roger, illustrated by Lane Smith. (J FIC S)
  • Tut, Tut, illustrated by Lane Smith. (J FIC S)
  • 2095, illustrated by Lane Smith. (J FIC S)
  • Your Mother Was a Neanderthal, illustrated by Lane Smith. (J FIC S)
  • The Book That Jack Wrote, illustrated by Daniel Abel. (J PIC S)
  • The Frog Prince, Continued, paintings by Steve Johnson. (J PIC S)
  • Math Curse, illustrated by Lane Smith. (J FIC S)
  • The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales, illustrated by Lane Smith. (J 398.2 S)
  • The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by A. Wolf as told to Jon Scieszka, illustrated by Lane Smith. (J PIC S)

Answers from Jon Scieszka

Alex, New York: Are you going to make a sequel to the math curse?

Jon Scieszka: I was thinking about a science book sequel to MATH CURSE, then decided to do a goofy fables book. It's going to be called SQUIDS WILL BE SQUIDS, and will be out in September.

Clara, PS 41, NYC: When are you going to write more Time Warp Trio stories. I really like them, especially Tut Tut. Thanks.

Jon Scieszka: I just finished the next Time Warp - SUMMER READING IS KILLING ME. It should be out this summer (of course).

Crystal, J.H.S. 43: What kind of things do you like to do when you are setting home alone?

Jon Scieszka: I like to read, and listen to music, and watch cartoons, and sit in my chair and just think about stuff.

Dennis, Staten Island NY: What gave you the idea to write Math Curse?

Jon Scieszka: I taught math for about 6 or 7 years and all of my kids gave me great ideas for thinking about the whole world as a math problem. I also thought it would be great to show people that you can have fun with math.

FSTS, Donnell Central Children's Room: Please drop by the Central Children's room and tell us a story when you're in the area.

Jon Scieszka: I love the Donnell Children's Room. I used to hang out there all of the time and read books for research.

Ed, Staten Island, NY: Are you planning to write any more Time Warp Trio books? What will it be about? By the way, I love your books!

Jon Scieszka: I just finished the latest Time Warp -- SUMMER READING IS KILLING ME. It will be out this summer. And now I'm working on IT'S ALL GREEK TO ME.

Evan's Mom at P.S. 175 in the Bronx: My son read to me THE STINKY CHEESE MAN. It made us both laugh. Thanks for a very funny book. I want to know how to pronounce your name. Is it a Polish name?

Jon Scieszka: Scieszka is definitely a Polish name. And you pronounce it like "SHEH-ska". Happy Reading.

Giulia, Holy family school, Jamestown: How do you get your ideas for your books?

Jon Scieszka: I get my ideas from other books, my kids, kids I've taught, kids I've learned from, watching movies, playing with my cat, talking to my wife, staring out the window, and about a million other places. But what turns the ideas into stories and books is sitting down and writing and re-writing and throwing away writing and writing some more. That's the hard part.

Jasper, I. S. 195: What made you write your books?

Jon Scieszka: I write books because I love to make kids laugh.

Jahmar: Why did they put the Big Bad Wolf in jail because he sneezed and blew down the houses?

Jon Scieszka: I guess some people didn't believe Mr. Wolf's sad story.

Jeremy, P.S. 2: What kind of books are you working on now?

Jon Scieszka: Lane and I just finished SQUIDS WILL BE SQUIDS -- a book of goofy fables -- that will be out in September. And the next Time Warp -- SUMMER READING IS KILLING ME -- will be out in the summer.

Louis, Kinnert, NY: How did you get the idea for the Time Warp Trio books?

Jon Scieszka: The Time Warp guys are a lot like kids I used to teach.
I just wondered what would happen if they could travel through time.

Martin P.S. 125M: How do you get your ideas?

Jon Scieszka: I get my ideas from the kids I used to teach, reading books, being a dad, and staring out the window.

Princess, P.S. 92: Why couldn't the wolf go to the store to buy sugar?

Jon Scieszka: Mr. Wolf didn't buy sugar from the store because he thought his neighbors would be kind enough to share.

Tinisha, P.S. 92: What do you eat for breakfast?

Jon Scieszka: I like fruit and a cup of coffee for breakfast. But I usually steal some of my son Jake's Honey Nut Cheerios or his pancakes.

Tomasena, PS 51, New York City: Will you and Lane Smith do another picture-book together any time soon? (Please.)

Jon Scieszka:Lane and I just finished a book called SQUIDS WILL BE SQUIDS -- a book of goofy fables that will be out this coming September.

William, P.S. 197: Can you make me a book like Cinderella that continues?

Jon Scieszka: A book that continues the story of Cinderella? That's a great idea. You should write that because it's your idea.

Yudith, Talmud Torah in Edmonton: What's the name of the cat in the story of PETER AND THE WOLF?

Jon Scieszka:I don't think I know the name of the cat in Peter and the Wolf. But I suppose I could always ask Mr. A. Wolf.

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