Currently a high school sophomore, Paige Ashley Brotherton is interested in everything, but she always comes back to writing. She has competed nationally for rowing and is a state-ranking track runner during the winter. As an honor roll and arts magnet school student, Paige is excited for the possibilities of the future. Currently, her favorite books include The Candymakers by Wendy Mass and the Harry Potter series, while her favorite movie is The Intern. She loves drawing and reading, but every story inspires her to create more of her own.
SIX MINUTES WITH PAIGE ASHLEY BROTHERTON:
Joining LitPick today for Six Minutes with an Author is Paige Ashley Brotherton. She is the teenage author of the fourth book in Lady Tigers series, Avery Appreciates True Friendship, which releases on April 14th. It has received the LitPick Top Choice Book Review Award. Her mother, Dawn Brotherton, has authored the other books in the series. In addition to writing, Paige loves rowing and running track.
***How did you get started writing?
My sister and I played games together when we were younger, where there were characters with backstories and adventures. I’ve long-since outgrown plastic toys, but I do not think I will ever grow tired of storytelling. Writing is a way to make those stories permanent, and now that I record the adventures, I can go back and build upon the characters’ journeys endlessly. Most importantly, writing allows me to share my stories with others, just in case the characters I describe might be exactly the voice a reader needs to hear.
***Who influenced you?
Perhaps it’s cliché, but I am an enormous Harry Potter fan. J.K. Rowling’s writing style opened my eyes to what I love about writing: characters are the true spirit of stories. J.K. Rowling inspires me and influences my writing because she showed me what I love most about books, especially fantasy novels. The true magic of the Harry Potter series is how Rowling takes a completely unrelatable setting (a wizard school) and presents her readers with a marvelously relatable character as our eyes and ears for the adventure; it makes the audience feel like they are a part of the story themselves. The wonder of successful fiction authors like Rowling is that they prove no matter our setting or circumstances, we’re all more alike than we realize. Rowling is one of the reasons I love to write fantasy stories; I can imagine castles in faraway worlds that are full of people just like me.
***Do you have a favorite book/subject/character/setting?
My favorite book is The Candymakers by Wendy Mass. It’s the perfect cozy novel to read by the fire, with morals about friendship and bravery and other general good values; but most of all, it’s about point of view. In her book, Wendy Mass includes a quote that sums up what I believe to be the biggest message of her story: “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a private battle you know nothing about.” The Candymakers is (more or less) the same story told four times by the four main characters. The observations made by each narrator about the others are the same thoughts the reader might have—but they’re each proven wrong or at least expanded upon by getting to hear the voice of each person in the story. There is an unexpected twist to each character’s history that prompts the reader to see them in an entirely new light. I believe that nowadays, we can often be too quick to make judgements about others. There is so much more to a person than what we can see on the surface, if only we could think to reach out and ask.
***Where is your favorite place to write?
The exact place I write isn’t so important, as long as I am alone. I like to completely transport myself into whatever story I’m narrating, and I find that much harder when there are other people near me. Often, I like to listen to music while I write; usually it will be particular scores from my favorite movies that match the mood of whatever I happen to be working on at the time.
***What advice do you have for someone who wants to be an author?
To any hopeful author, I would recommend flexibility. If someone wants to be an author, it would be assumed that they love to write, which is wonderful, really, because good writing has so much practical application in the world. When we think of being an author, we generally first remember the famous novels or classic fairytales that are often the most fun to read and write. But not everyone can have success with such stories, so my advice would be to discover the beauty of writing in every outlet. I love writing essays, crafting exciting book summaries, and designing speeches for class projects. I haven’t always appreciated these other forms of writing, but I learned to take my favorite elements of my hobby and apply them to anything. There are thousands of places in the world in desperate need of a good writer, if only an author has the creativity to explore their wonderfully broad field a little more.
Paige, congratulations on the upcoming release of Avery Appreciates True Friendship. We love the advice you share about exploring a variety of writing outlets. It’s true that a good writer is needed in many facets, not just novel writing.