Toen ik hoorde dat ik naar de YALFest persdag mocht was ik door het dolle heen. Praten met een van de geweldige auteurs, wie wil dat nou niet?! Ik kreeg een interview met Donna Freitas, waar ik erg blij mee ben. Ik vond veel ideeën die ze aandroeg in Unplugged erg interessant, en daar zal ik het in mijn recensie meer over hebben. Ik besloot dit interview niet alleen te doen en vroeg Joost mee om op te treden als mijn partner in crime. En wat ben ik blij dat hij mee is gekomen! Op zijn blog staan de vragen die hij aan Donna gesteld heeft, dus die zou ik zeker even bekijken als ik jullie was. In true Joost fashion heeft hij dingen gevraagd over Pokémon, Harry Potter en meer. Het was prachtig. En dan nu het interview!
Het was een interview van een half uur lang, dus het interview is ook pittig lang. Daarom heb ik besloten om hem in twee delen te doen. Daarnaast heb ik besloten om Donna’s woorden niet te vertalen. Vertalen is ontzettend tricky en je verdraait heel makkelijk wat iemand gezegd heeft. Dit is mijn eerste interview, dus ik weet nog niet of jullie toch liever hebben dat ik het vertaal. Als dat zo is hoor ik het graag in de reacties!
“You’re All The Feels! I love that, that’s a good title!”
First of all, how are you liking the Netherlands?
Oh, I love it! I have been eating some really good food and cookies. I go find all the bakeries. I like to eat a lot, and I’ve found a lot of excellent bakeries. I have eaten a lot of sugary things! I’m going to be on the hunt for some pancakes. And I’ve learned the word for this thing I love, “poffertjes”? So I’m really excited about those. I’m like a food person, so I really go for the food. I’ve been having so much fun! Utrecht is so cute. I enjoy wandering around, and all the canals.
Your novel, The Tenderness of Thieves, has a character called Handel. That made me laugh for a second. You see, Handel is a Dutch word. It means trade. And in Unplugged, there of course is a character called Trader. So they basically have the same name. Were you aware of this?
Oh, that is so funny! I was not aware, because I did not know that handel means trade. I was thinking of the composer when I was writing the book. But thank you for letting me know! Wait, if there was a Dutch version, Handel’s name would be Trade? (Eline: And Trader would be Handelaar) Oooh, so he’s Handelaar and you’ve got Handel? (At this point, Donna Freitas seemed really mindblown)
When reading your website, I found that you’ve also written middle grade novels about gymnastics as you were a competitive gymnast. I’ve got to ask. Were you any good?
(You were a competitive gymnast?) I was! (Were you any good?) Well, I think so, I did pretty well! I was a really serious gymnast, I used to practice about six hours a day. It was my whole life, and I competed and wanted to go to the Olympics, the whole thing. And then, as I got older, I got an injury, that’s why I quit. When I quit it was very hard, but I also suddenly had a life! Because I had no life as a gymnast. So like, my first dance, my first everything was after I quit gymnastics. My first social life.
There also was a book about figure skating. Were you a competitive figure skater too? I already pride myself when I get through the day without tripping over my own feet, so that would be incredibly impressive. Also where did you get the time. Also how.
Nooo, nooo noo noo! I wasn’t a figure skater! I did get a figure skater help consult me. I do like figure skating. I like to watch it. But I don’t skate myself. I do think both Gold Medal Summer and Gold Medal Winter are my most popular books in the US.
Now is the time to admit that I love films about gymnastics. I love them so darn much. They tend to all follow the exact same plot, where the girl gets into an accident and can’t compete so finds another passion and ends up being torn between the two, yet there is something really relaxing about that. Do you enjoy films like that too?
Oooh, have you seen The Cutting Edge? Do you know that movie? *GASP* If you haven’t seen it, you have to see the best skating movie ever! You have to watch it. The Cutting Edge, there’s like four of them. But you have to watch them in order. They get worse and worse and worse, but The Cutting Edge is like one of my favourite movies ever. Best skating movie.
Your books all are very different in genre and audience. Is this difficult to do? Do you ever write a scene for a middle grade novel that ends up feeling too old, or a YA scene that feels too young?
No. When I start a book, I am totally immersed in that book. It is the story that I am telling at that time. I do feel like that for me, when people ask what it is like to write, I almost feel like it is acting? I write in the morning, and I feel like my job is to get into the character and into the world of the book and write from there. So the other books I have written feel so far away and totally other. But I do like to play with different worlds and different characters. Unplugged is very different from Tenderness of Thieves and Gold Medal Summer, but I like exploring, I guess. All kind of different places.
Dit was het eerste deel van het interview! Donna Freitas is echt geweldig , en ik heb eindeloze liefde voor dit interview. Vergeet niet naar Joost’s blog te gaan, want het is zo mooi niet normaal. Het tweede deel komt snel online, dus stay tuned!