Author Chat: Rhonda Hayter (author The Witchy Worries of Abbie Adams)

While in New York this past May I had an opportunity to meet and talk with the Class of 2K10 YA Debut Authors.  This was a lot of fun and I met some wonderfully talented women including my guest here today, Rhonda Hayter.  Rhonda and I had a little time to chat one on one and she presented me with a signed copy of her book, The  Witchy Worries of bbie Adams(SQQQQUUUEEEEEEEE)!

Please welcome to Book Journey, the lovely and talented Rhonda Hayter.

Rhonda Hayter

Rhonda, welcome.   I always start by asking, how do you take your coffee?

Rhonda:  By the gallon.

Good to know –  will keep the coffee pot on!  Have you been a long time reader?

Rhonda:  I always talk about this in my school visits just to horrify the children but where I grew up there was no TV.  It was in northernmost Canada in a place called Labrador and at that time, it was too remote to get a TV signal up there.  It was also thirty degrees below zero a lot of the time, so reading was the only game in town. Much of my growing up was spent huddled on a heating grate, buried in books.

Rhonda in her home office where everyone leaves her alone....except their dog, Kitty.

I was a book girl too Rhonda, I Almaty preferred books to tv.   What is one of the first books you remember falling in love with?

Rhonda:  I think it might have been the Pippi Longstocking books.  I ordered them through the book clubs at school and devoured them the day I got them. Pippi was so wild and free, without parental supervision and she could go anywhere and dress however she pleased.  Of course I was happy to have parents and all…but it was really fun to think about.

When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

Rhonda:  I actually always wanted to be an actor.  I started off as one but well..not in what you might call a hugely successful way.  I spent so much of my life yearning for that and riding the ups and downs of it all, that I almost didn’t notice that I wanted to write too…although I always did.  It wasn’t until I finally gave up my acting (or it gave me up)  that I noticed that writing gave me exactly the same kind of seat-of-the-pants/living-in-the-moment thrill that acting did.

I recently finished reading The Witchy Worries of Abbie Adams.  Abbie is a delightful character and I enjoyed getting to know her.  Was this the book you thought you would write?

Rhonda:  I never actually thought of writing a whole book before Abbie but it just came pouring out of me. I had a fifth grader in the house at the time, and I was immersed in his life and his voice and his concerns….and that’s just the book that materialized.


Rhonda and her youngest son Ethan ( the inspiration for the character of Munch)

There are a couple of references to Harry Potter in the book.  You mention Abbie has a poster of Hermione on her bedroom wall and later there is a reference to Hogwarts.  I am a big Potter fan.  What is your Harry Potter connections – love the books, love the movies?  Both?

Rhonda:  My older boy Duncan is 16 now, so he was exactly the age to be ready for each book as it came out. It was such an incredible part of his childhood, waiting for the next installment…showing up at midnight at Barnes and Noble on the day it was to be released, watching him be completely consumed by it until he powered through to the end…and then passing it around the family, and reading it aloud to his younger brother…until he was finally ready to read it alone.  And the movies always came out right around Duncan’s birthday in November so that was always momentous too.  (Although I had to take him into the lobby for some of the scary parts of the first movie.  I have such an affection for the whole experience that Harry Potter gave our family, books and movies combined.

I love that connection your family has to the Potter books!  I heard a rumor that Abbie may be showing up in a future book…. hmmmm, is this true?

Rhonda:  Well I can tell you that she’s going to share a very big secret with her best friend Callie…and complications will arise.

Is there a fictional character that you would like to hang out with?

Rhonda:  I like that question!  Let me see. I’ve always been a monster Jane Austen fan, and I’d just love to swish around in long dresses exchanging witty observations with Elizabeth Bennett or the Sense and Sensibility gals.

Rhonda's hang out buddy, Elizabeth Bennett

It was so fun to meet you at BEA this past May.  I enjoyed hearing that you were part of the Class of 2k10 debut authors group.  Can you tell us a little more about this group?

Rhonda:  I LOVE that group.  We’re all published in YA or MG for the first time this year. I always liken it to my pregnancy yoga class— you’re united in fellowship with people at a unique and magical moment in their lives. We network and cross promote and all that, but more importantly, we have become friends and great support for each other. That was one of the things that made BEA such fun, getting to meet everyone in person, after having chatted almost every day over the Internet for months. We were all CRAZY about each other!

I can not let you leave without asking you to share a little known fact about yourself.

Rhonda:  Oh dear, let’s see.  I guess something that’s a little unusual is that I didn’t learn to drive until I was in my late 30s, when I moved out to Los Angeles.  I look at my 16-year old learning now and I realize that what it really takes is a teenager’s blithe unawareness that anything bad can ever happen.  At the time I learned, that ship had long since sailed and I felt exactly as if I was getting into the Electric Chair to be executed every time I strapped myself into the driver’s seat.  I’m better now….but I still ain’t good.

That is a great fact Rhonda!  Thank you so much for stooping in and chatting with me today!

Thanks so much for having me Sheila. This was fun.


Rhonda and I, May 2010, New York

Please stop in and see Rhonda at her website as well as at the  Class of 2k10 website.

10 thoughts on “Author Chat: Rhonda Hayter (author The Witchy Worries of Abbie Adams)

  1. Oh, I’ve been itching to read this book…love that cover and how it portrays the character as someone quirky and amazing.

    Adore Rhonda’s office! It looks so cozy and as if creativity would thrive there.

    Thanks to both of you for a great chat.

  2. Great interview Sheila ! Rhonda seems like a very simple and down to earth person, is that so ?
    I have not been able to get a hold of her book but after this interview I will try to do so.
    I guess you really enjoyed this interview…..I surely did !
    See you !

  3. Rhonda, you hail from some place I hope to visit one of these days. Have made it to PEI and Cape Breton Island. Love that area. I’ll just make sure the trip takes place in the summer.
    Great interview. I’ll have to check to see if the library carries THE WITCHY WORRIES OF ABBIE ADAMS. Hopefully they do, but there have been complaints about too many book with witches, vampire, werewolves, dragons, etc. Some people are still complaining about Harry Potter.
    Best of luck with the books. This could be a nice series for those middle schoolers.

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