While at the American Christian Fiction Writers Conference, I had an opportunity to meet Amanda Barratt, a 16 year old author who was attending her second ACFW conference. Amanda is very quiet, but focused on what she wants. She’s dressed in a business suit and appears much older than her 16 years. I talked to her about her writing.
Barbara Vey: What age did you start writing?
Amanda Barratt: I was about 12.
BV: What genre do you like to write?
AB: My favorite is historical romance, Edwardian and Regency for ages 18-21.
BV: So, no Young Adult for you. It sounds like you’re writing New Adult (personally I think it’s a dumb term). Do you ever think about writing YA?
AB: Not really. I’m more interested in older characters.
BV: How many books have you written so far.
AB: So far I’ve written 7.
BV: You’ve got quite a head start. What kind of feed back do you get from editors and agents?
AB: I already have an agent. Editors are very acceptive of me and my work and many have requested manuscripts.
BV: What do you do for fun?
AB: I love reading and watching British movies.
BV: Who are your favorite authors and books?
AB: Jane Austin, the Brontes and I love Downton Abby.
BV: Well, who doesn’t. What do your friends at school think of your writing?
AB: I am home schooled, but there are some classes that we get together in groups for. Most of the kids are curious about what I do and I belong to the Great Lakes Chapter Critique Group. My mom is my editor.
BV: Do you use your friends in your stories?
AB: (smiles shyly) Sometimes.
BV: Do you ever cast your characters when you write your books?
AB: I think of Colin Firth when he was in Pride and Prejudice, a young Gregory Peck, Ramola Gari and Zoe Boyle.
BV: How are you enjoying the conference?
AB: I’ve gone to several different conferences and I learn something new every time I attend.
BV: Thanks for taking the time to talk to me and good luck with your writing.
AB: Thank you…it’s been fun.
I think I need to talk to more young authors. The whole world it out there waiting for them and the sky’s the limit. I remember being that age and thinking anything was possible.
Bottom Line: “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” ~ Agatha Christie