Author Revealed

About Paige Toon

Q. What is your birthdate?

A. 3/12

Q. Previous occupations

A. Before I became a journalist and then an author, I had summer/temping jobs as a waitress, receptionist, in customer services and in telemarketing, so I know to always leave a tip and to be nice to people on the phone, no matter how annoying they may be!

Q. Favorite job

A. Being an author, of course! And I love being a full-time mum – it's the only reason I could bring myself to leave heat magazine, because I loved that job!

Q. High school and/or college

A. Mt Barker High School in Australia, then Altwood School in Maidenhead, Berkshire, followed by the University of Greenwich in London.

Q. Name of your favorite composer or music artist?

A. U2, Blur, The Verve... Don't have a favourite.

Q. Favorite movie

A. Strictly Ballroom, Dirty Dancing, The Notebook, Twilight, The Hunger Games – can't choose!

Q. Favorite television show

A. Kath & Kim – hilarious! An Idiot Abroad 2, Alan Carr's Chatty Man, Never Mind The Buzzcocks and The X Factor are all recent must-see TV shows for me.

Revealing Questions

Q. How would you describe your life in only 8 words?

A. Australia, England, heat mag, author, wife, mum, Cambridge

Q. What is your motto or maxim?

A. Think the worst and you'll be pleasantly surprised

Q. How would you describe perfect happiness?

A. Seeing my children laugh at each other – pure, unadulterated bliss!

Q. What’s your greatest fear?

A. As a mother, this will always be anything bad happening to my children – my overactive imagination has been known to keep me awake at night!

Q. If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?

A. If I could click my fingers and go to Australia in an instant, I would love to give my parents, brother and the rest of my family a hug, and go for a cup of tea at the houses of my oldest friends – I miss them.

Q. With whom in history do you most identify?

A. I wouldn't have a clue! Someone with a tendency to be a little melodramatic, probably.

Q. Which living person do you most admire?

A. Too hard to say – my husband is impressing the hell out of me at the moment as he's designed our new house. Massively respect my dad who became a racing driver against all the odds – and my mum, who had to watch him risk his life while caring for two little kids – so many drivers lost their lives back in those days. And my brother, who's a top menswear designer in Australia and who is so creative and cool - he came up with the titles for some of my books, too. Cheers, bro!

Q. What are your most overused words or phrases?

A. 'That behaviour is completely unacceptable!'

Q. What do you regret most?

A. I wish I hadn't invited the idiot around who let my pet budgie out of his cage when I was a teenager. Our dog Mishka caught him - with her teeth. Trixie was the coolest bird ever. He said loads of words, and would use inflections, so he'd say: 'good, good, good, NAUGHTY, BAD boy!' You could teach him to say pretty much anything. He used to climb into my dad's cereal when he wasn't looking and kick the cornflakes around. The day I got braces on my teeth, he nearly fell off my finger backwards, he was so shocked when I opened my mouth - hilarious!

Q. If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?

A. I wish I could play the piano and guitar really well, or be fluent in another – actually, make it several – languages.

Q. What is your greatest achievement?

A. Apart from being Indy and Idha's mum, it would have to be getting a book deal - which was one of the happiest days of my life. Writing a book a year while still being a full-time mum can be a challenge, but I know how lucky I am.

Q. What’s your greatest flaw?

A. Thinking I know best when (very, very rarely, ha ha) I don't.

Q. What’s your best quality?

A. My mothering (and hopefully not smothering) nature!

Q. If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?

A. It'd be fun to be a successful actress with a killer body to go with it. But only for a while – I like my life! Actually, scrap that, I'd like to be a bird so I could fly. Yes, I know I sound like an eight-year-old, ha ha.

Q. What trait is most noticeable about you?

A. People have said it's my smile. But plenty have taken the mickey out of my laugh!

Q. Who is your favorite fictional hero?

A. Edward. Sigh. Or Jake... Swoon.

Q. Who is your favorite fictional villain?

A. Lex Luther from the Superman movies. Kevin Spacey did a good one! That Superman was pretty hot, too...

Q. If you could meet any historical character, who would it be and what would you say to him or her?

A. Anne Boleyn. 'Don't marry him; he's going to lop off your head!'

Q. What is your biggest pet peeve?

A. I'm pretty intolerant of incompetence. I also get annoyed with the daily calls from telemarketers. At our old house in London they always used to ask to speak to Mrs Shambalah - who? Now they're always electronic recordings so you rush to the phone and have to slam it down in disgust.

Q. What is your favorite occupation, when you’re not writing?

A. Am I going to bore you with the 'being a mummy' answers? Sorry, but it's the truth!

Q. What’s your fantasy profession?

A. Secret agent. Sometimes I miss working in the heat office, too, but being a full-time mother came first.

Q. What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?

A. Kindness, sense of humour, honesty

Q. If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?

A. Pasta with tomato, basil, mozzarella and parmesan.

Q. What are your 5 favorite songs?

A. These change all the time. A few years ago when I wrote Lucy and Johnny, it was: Radiohead's Talk Show Host, The Verve's Bittersweet Symphony, U2's With Or Without You, Kingmaker's You And I Will Never See Things Eye To Eye, and The Killers' When You Were Young. But I wrote The Longest Holiday listening mainly to songs like Kal Lavelle's Shiver (this reminds me of Leo), Ellie Goulding's Anything Could Happen, Ai Se Eu Te Pego! which has a fun Latin feel, Youth by Daughter, and a few of James Arthur's songs which he performed on The X Factor!

On Books and Writing

Q. Who are your favorite authors?

A. I love chick-lit so Marian Keyes is my all-time favourite – especially The Other Side Of The Story – and Lisa Jewell is great, too. I also love the teen/adult crossover series by Suzanne Collins, Stephanie Meyer, JK Rowling and Philip Pullman.

Q. What are your 5 favorite books of all time?

A. Everything by the authors mentioned above, but I also loved Helen Fielding's Bridget Jones's Diary, Arthur Golden's Memoirs Of A Geisha, Carolyn Parkhurt's Lorelei's Secret, Dan Rhodes' The Little White Car, and Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones.

Q. Is there a book you love to reread?

A. I would read Stephanie Meyer's Twilight series again, and I can't wait to read the Harry Potter books to my children when they're a bit older.

Q. Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?

A. If you're not enjoying writing it, chances are your readers won't enjoy reading it, so if you're stuck, start afresh or move onto another scene you want to write instead.

Q. What comment do you hear most often from your readers?

A. How could you do that to us, ending Johnny Be Good in that way! Please write a sequel!!! So I did...

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