You've already told the story of this summer twice in Millicent Min, Girl Genius and Stanford Wong Flunks Big-Time. What did you discover about it (or about Emily) in So Totally Emily Ebers?

Emily surprised me. On the surface, and in the other books, she was very bubbly and lighthearted. But when I began writing her story, I discovered how hurt she was over her parents' divorce, and how she went to great lengths to hide her hurt -- even from herself. Also, because Emily is such a loving and loyal friend, her takes on events are so different from Millicent and Stanford's books.
I was especially shocked to find out what happened to Emily during the two weeks-ish that she doesn't appear in the other two novels. And I learned that if you want a best friend, or a girl friend, then Emily Ebers is the one!

Emily's father was a rock star with the one-hit wonders the Talky Boys. Who were your favorite bands in the 1980s? Any memorable shows?   

Ooooh, you would ask me that! Let's see. I liked The Culture Club (Boy George has a great voice). And I loved the song Careless Whisper by George Michael, who had been with Wham! I was a huge Madonna fan and I liked Spandau Ballet. Later, I found out that Princess Diana loved Spandau Ballet, and I thought, "we are so totally alike!" 

I used to go to a lot of concerts and I remember seeing Hall and Oates, and Earth, Wind and Fire, and George Benson, and Melissa Manchester, and Christopher Cross, and Michael Franks, and . . . hmmmm, I should probably stop now or we'll run out of space!

You have a popular blog at As a writer, what do you get out of being part of an online community?

For me, blogging is a chance to interact with friends and fans, and to meet new people-- without having to change out of my pajamas. When I blog, I don't worry about spelling or grammar, I just sort of blabber away and it's so much fun. I also like to post interesting things (well, things I think are interesting) like photos of me exploding marshmallow Peeps in the microwave. 

I try to blog about writing and what it's like to be an author, but I usually end up getting carried away. That means that odd and audacious things usually end up in my posts. However, I do write a lot about the other authors I hobnob with, and I have FABULOUS contests with celebrity judges and nice prizes. Plus, I include lots of photos of things my puppy has destroyed.