Interview with Donna L. Peterson, Author of The Misadventures of Phillip Isaac Penn

Donna L. Peterson is the author of the humorous title The Misadventures of Phillip Isaac Penn.  She dropped by the virtual offices of Manga Maniac Cafe to chat up her book.

[Manga Maniac CafĂ©] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less. 

I’m often silly.  I solve many problems with the use of humor.  I am passionate about writing, history and photography.  And I love kids of all ages–even us big ones!

[MMC] Can you tell us a little about your book, The Misadventures of Philip Isaac Penn?

My book takes you on a weekly adventure with Phillp Isaac Penn (Pip).  He has to deal with angry adults and annoying kids, all of which help to create the comical situations that propel him from one adventure to another.

[MMC] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?

I used to write short stories for the children in our school who were having difficulties dealing with different types of personalities.  The teachers started reading them to their classrooms, and suggested I put them into a book.

[MMC] What have you learned about yourself through your characters?

I’ve learned that by using humor, we can all laugh at our own shortcomings, and many difficult situations can be defused by laughter.

[MMC] What was the most challenging aspect of writing the book?

Since my characters basically wrote themselves, the only difficulty was staying in the right tense.  I often have my character reflecting on what already happened.

[MMC] Which of your characters are you most like?

Probably Pip.  Which is odd, since I was a goody good when I was young.  But, I often tried to do the right thing and would end up starring in my own "Misadventure".

[MMC] What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

Just write about whatever you know best, or enjoy the most.

[MMC] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?

It was when I read "The Diary of Anne Frank" when I was about 12 years old.  I shared so many of her thoughts and dreams.  It inspired me to keep a journal throughout my teenage years, and that truly helped me through those awkward times.

[MMC] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?

I’m into photography.  A few years back, I had my own darkroom where I’d develop pictures in black and white.  But now I’ve gone digital, and my darkroom is my office where I spend time writing.

[MMC] Thank you!


The Misadventures of Phillip Isaac Penn is in stores now!  You can order a copy from your favorite bookseller, or by clicking the handy widget below.

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