Coffee and Conversation with Edie Hemingway

Monday, Monday! Hello friends! Today is a good day. Why, you ask? Because we get to spend some time with yet another one of our amazing faculty members for the Lucky 13 Conference. Registration closes this Friday the 13th. I know, spooky, huh? If you need to catch up on all things MD/DE/WV regional conference, go to Laura’s blog post here (she makes my job so easy!).

And now back to the subject of amazing faculty members. I’m super excited to welcome our former co-regional adviser and all-around lovely person, Edie Hemingway! She will be presenting “The DOs, DON’Ts, and MAYBEs of School Visits” for our PAL members in a breakout session.


Edie  earned an MFA from Spalding University, Louisville, KY and is co-author of two Civil War novels, licensed by Scholastic Book Fairs and optioned for films.  Her most recent MG novel, ROAD TO TATER HILL won a 2009 Parents’ Choice Gold Award and was named to the 2011/12 NC Battle of the Books list. Edie currently teaches in both Spalding University’s MFA program and McDaniel College’s Graduate Certificate Program in Writing for Children and Young Adults.


And now that Edie is all settled in, let’s get started. First off, what’s your favorite coffeehouse beverage?

Hot tea the British way with milk and sugar



And your favorite snack?

A handful of salted cashews


What was your favorite book as a child?

Anything by Elizabeth George Speare, but particularly The Witch of Blackbird Pond and Calico Captive

I’ve made no secret of this – The Witch of Blackbird Pond is one of my all-time favorites!

When did you decide to be a writer?

In 4th grade when I won my first writing contest.

What advice for beginners do you wish you would’ve followed?

I think I just wish I had actively pursued writing at a younger age.

A lot of us can relate to that!  So, what is your favorite writing how-to book, technique, or website that have helped you improve your craft or provided inspiration?

Writing Alone and With Others by Pat Schneider

Where’s your favorite place to work?

In my writing cabin

IMG_6393 Copying-1

Folks, I’ve seen the inside and it is lovely! I have total writing-space envy.

So, if you followed the career path you chose for yourself in high school, what would you be doing for a living now?  

Teaching Special Education

You’ve been locked in a bank vault Twilight Zone style, so you finally have time to read! Your glasses are fine, (whew!) so what’s the first book you crack open?

Sena Jeter Naslund’s newest release:  The Fountain of St. James Court or Portrait of the Artist as an Old Woman



For one day, time travel is a reality and you have the opportunity to visit any famous deceased author you want. Who do you pick?

Mark Twain—I think he was way ahead of his time.


You magically find a $100 bill in your box of cereal. In what frivolous way would you spend it?

Go out to dinner with my husband.

What is your favorite quote?

“If a story is in you, it has got to come out.”  William Faulkner

If you could sum up your best advice for new writers in only four words, what would they be?

Two words:  Embrace revision!

The simple truth.

It’s time for the lightning round—no more than four words per answer!

Do you . . .

Outline or wing it?  Mostly wing it

Talk about works-in-progress, or keep it zipped?  Talk to family and close writing friends

Sell by proposal or completed draft?  Completed draft

Prefer writing rough drafts or editing?  Editing

Dread marketing/blogging or love it?  Dread it

Read Kindle or traditional books?  Both

And finally, what’s your favorite:

Time to work?  Morning

Music to listen to while writing?  I can’t write when listening to music unless I’m specifically writing a scene in response to music.

Writing tool?  I can never completely give up a pencil and notebook.

Pair of shoes?   My jambu sandals

Guiltiest pleasure?  Macaroni and cheese

Line from a movie?  “Tomorrow is another day.”—Gone With the Wind

You go, Scarlett! Classic.

Thanks so much for stopping by, Edie and again, for everything you’ve done for our region. It’s going to be great to see you at the conference!

Have a wonderful day writing and illustrating, friends!

About Susan Mannix

Susan worked as a biomedical research editor for the Department of the Navy for fourteen years and has been a member of SCBWI since 2007. She writes young adult and middle grade novels. When she isn’t writing, she spends her time doing all things horses, including attending her teenaged daughters’ many competitions. Susan lives in Maryland on a small farm with her husband, two children, an adorable black lab, two cats, and three horses.
This entry was posted in Conference Information, Interviews: Authors. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Coffee and Conversation with Edie Hemingway

  1. I loved reading this about Edie and seeing her wonderful writing cabin!

  2. Janet Smart says:

    Oh, I would love to have that writing cabin! I found a $100 bill once. I still have it in the secret compartment of my jewelry box. I need to splurge on something.

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