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Little Willow
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Interview: Laura Preble

All too often, the word "geek" is used as an insult. I prefer to consider it a recognition of smarts. The Queen Geek Social Club novels celebrate and empower smart girls. I got author Laura Preble to channel her inner geek while discussing robots, writing, and ComiCon.

How did you come up with the concept of the series?

I was told to consider doing a "chick lit" book, and I generally don't like the genre. But then, one night at 3 a.m., I woke up with the title in my head. I figured, hey, geeks can be chicks too. Why shouldn't I write chick lit for them?

Do you consider yourself to be a geek? If so, do you have an especially geeky talent or a geek specialty?

I am a total geek. My special talent is naming all of the original Star Trek episodes as well as being a huge fan of the Harry Dresden TV show, which only lasted one season. My specialty is probably bad science fiction movies, pre-1970, and collecting literary action figures.

Which of the Queen Geeks most closely resembles you as a teen?

I only wish I had been as cool as any of them as a teen. I was so shy, I used to hide in the basement of the library where I worked, reading Fantasy and Science Fiction magazine, hoping no one would look at me. I guess I was physically most like Elisa, but emotionally more like Amber. Kind of an emo girl without the style, with a weight problem.

Shelby, the narrator, has a very interesting household. Her father created a robot named Euphoria who is extremely maternal. If you had a robot, would you make it task-oriented, human-like, or both?

I would totally want a human robot rather than a task robot. I like talking to people, and talking to something I made would be even more fun.

In the first book, the girls send Twinkies to a modeling agency because they think the models are too skinny. How can we encourage young woman to have healthy perceptions of themselves?

I got the idea for the Twinkies from a girl on my campus who wore a T-shirt she made that said SUPERMODELS: EAT SOMETHING! I think we can encourage girls to be themselves and to shoot for being healthy, not being thin.

In the second book, Queen Geeks in Love, the girls travel to ComiCon and don very unique superhero costumes. Have you ever been to ComiCon?

I go every year. I don't usually dress up, though, because I am too busy telepathically communicating with the other people from my planet. Plus, as an alien, I don't want to draw attention to myself.

If you were a superhero, what superpowers would you want?

Hmmm...I should wish for the ability to grammatically correct billboards, but...what I'd really like is the ability to take on any shape. I would LOVE to try living as Arnold Schwarzenegger for a day, and then command people to build me a real rocket or something!

Will there be additional titles in the series?

Yes, the third book, PROM QUEEN GEEKS, is finished and is coming out in the fall of 2008. I don't know if there will be other books after that, but I have another project almost completed that's not in the series, so I'll keep writing either way.

What are your ten favorite books of all time?

Since I like to cheat, I'll count some of my favorite series as one book.

In no particular order:
1. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
2. Lamb by Christopher Moore
3. The Harry Dresden series by Jim Butcher
4. Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
5. His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman
6. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
7. The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
8. Another Roadside Attraction by Tom Robbins
9. Anything by Kurt Vonnegut
10. Angeles (a novel I wrote but haven't published. It's like my child in the attic, but I love it so!)


Open the lockers at QueenGeekSocialClub.com

Read my article entitled Nerds.
Tags: books, interviews
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