1. Did you always want to be a writer? No. I've always been a reader, but it took me until high school to realize reading gave me some writing skills, too.
2. Plotter or Pantser? Pantser. I like to make a really, really rough first draft, read through it, and then make a plot chart. Maybe someday I'll try plotting (insert evil laugh here)...
3. Best day job you've ever had? I like teaching. I get awesome students who play lacrosse or do magician stuff or snowboard near-professionally, and I can help them learn to express themselves on paper!
4. Fictional character crushes? Maybe...Batman? Well, the one from the TV show Batman Beyond. I don't know. I don't form crushes on fictional characters easily, even if I do like or admire them.
5. Besides writing, what's your best talent? I can paint pictures on my wall. Oooh! And I'm pretty good at reading really fast. Also, I can eat good food, and sometimes make it, if I'm given the recipe.
6. Any hobbies? Playing with children takes up most of my day. I like gaming on occasion, and painting. The only thing I set aside time to do, though, is write.
7. Do you listen to music while you write? No. I tried that once. I get distracted.
8. Who are your biggest literary influences? Hm. Growing up I had a limited selection from our library, but I fell in love with Patricia Coombs, Roald Dahl, and E.B. White pretty young. Then I read a lot of books by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman, Tamora Pierce, Patricia Wrede, Shel Silverstein, and Jerry Spinelli. Chaim Potok hooked me on literature. As an adult I've discovered Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman, and lots of literary stuff by Edmund Spenser and John Milton and Marilynne Robinson (who once rode in my car!). I could go on forever, actually--those are just a few names that popped into my head. I'll stop now, though.
9. Why do you write in the genre that you do? My first genre love as a reader was fantasy. I've written literary, realistic fiction (that's what you do in MFA classes), but I'm a lot more excited when I add magic.
10. What's a word that bothers you a lot to hear misused/overused? I dislike it when people use "loose" when they mean "lose." Oh! And I once had a student write an essay about the Lake Powell Dam called "The Lake Powell Damn." That one actually made me laugh pretty hard--and he laughed, too, when I gave it back to him.
I'm supposed to tag other people, but I'm only going to tag Sophie Morgan. Mostly I just want an excuse to link to her blog, because she is a very cool critique partner. Feel free to tag yourself, though, and let me know in the comments if you answered the question--I always love hearing about other writer's processes!