May 17, 2011

Interview with author Tom Angleberger

Hello! I got the pleasure to interview author Tom Angleberger, author of The Strange Case of Origami Yoda and Horton Halfpott. And without further adieu, here goes the interview.

Benji: How do you get the ideas and inspiration for your book?
Tom Angleberger: Well, the idea from Origami Yoda came one day when I saw a picture of an origami Yoda on the Internet. It was the famous one folded by Fumiaki Kawahata.
Since I am a HUGE Star Wars Fan and a long-time origami folder, I was really interested. But it was too hard for me to fold Kawahata's version.
So I created my own very simple Yoda. It turned out to fit on my finger like a finger puppet.... and the idea for the book was born!

Benji: At what age did you start writing? Drawing?
Tom Angleberger: I can't tell you when I started drawing. I've enjoyed drawing for as long as I can remember, though I have often been frustrated by not being able to make a drawing look the way I want it to.
In the 7th grade I started writing a comic strip about cowboys that ride snails. The next year I started a novel, which I never finished. But since then I've almost always been trying to cook up something.

Benji: Who are some of your favorite authors?
Tom Angleberger: For adventure: Lloyd Alexander, John Christopher, Grace Lin, John Claude Bemis.
For comedy: Helen Cresswell and Daniel Pinkwater.
You should be able to find books by most of these authors at your library. (Maybe not Helen Cresswell.)

Benji: Can you tell us anything about your new book, the sequel to Origami Yoda, Darth Paper Strikes Back?
Tom Angleberger: I'll tell you a secret that is still Top Secret.... Origami Princess Leia will be in the book!!!! (Sort of).
Also, I have to warn you that this story is going to be rough! Harvey has brought Darth Paper to school and has caused serious trouble. Not all of it is funny, either.
The book begins: "It is a dark time at McQuarrie Middle School..."

Benji: Do you have any advice for kids who want to become writers or artists?
Tom Angelberger: Give it a try! It's a great job! But it's a bit tough to make a living at it, so be prepared to take other jobs. I worked as a reporter for many years before selling my first book.

Benji: At what age did you become a Star Wars fan?
Tom Angleberger: Six. That was when the movie first came out. When the toys came out, my first one was C3P0. I still have him and many more.

Benji: Anything Else you would like to tell us about your books, your life or in general?
Tom Anglerberger: Well, I'd love to mention my latest book, Horton Halfpott, which is a wacky mystery set in huge castle. It's got action, thrills, chills, spills, pickles and Shipless Pirates!*
*And a bit of underwear.

Benji: Thank you, Tom! Tom is a great writer, visit his website at


  1. That's so cool! You got to INTERVIEW him!!!

  2. Yes, Sean. He's a pretty cool guy and this was a experience I will never forget!


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