Why did you decide to write the story in a sort of prose poetry form? Was it just to give Ivan a believable voice, or was there another reason?
I am not entirely sure. I tend to look at structure before I look even at plot,* which is probably why plot is a struggle for me.** I think about what the book looks like and how it feels.*** Maybe that discipline is helpful for me in terms of finding the right words.
But when I look at big sprawly novels, sometimes… my husband just finished [writing] 500 pages. I marvel at it, because it’s so symphony and I’m so chamber music.**** I just don’t think that way, and it seemed really appropriate that since I was working with an animal voice that it would be small and poetic.
Read the rest of the interview at School Library Journal’s Meet the Latest Newbery Winner: How Katherine Applegate Created a Modern-Day Classic
** oh, yes
*** yes siree