Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Author Interview: Lianne Simon

Today I'd like to welcome author Lianne Simon here to talk about her novel, "Confessions of a Teenage Hermaphrodite".

Thanks for stopping by, Lianne, and for being brave enough to share five things about yourself that we might never guess. The floor is yours!

(1) ADHD and bad IQ scores

Back in the third grade, our class was given standardized intelligence tests. Our teacher gave us each a test booklet and a multiple-choice answer form for each section. For each question the answer form had a row of boxes. We were supposed to pencil in the box for the correct answer.

After answering the first three questions on one of the sections, I got bored. So I started playing with the answer form. It was made from multiple sheets of paper, connected at the top and bottom. When I spread the sheets apart, I discovered that inside there was only one box for each question. My first three answers were each in boxes on the inside page. I thought that was neat. So I marked the rest of my answers so they’d be in the boxes too.

In about ten minutes I was finished, so I played with my pencil until my teacher walked back to see what I was doing. “Are you finished already?” she asked, amazed.

“Yes, ma’am.”

She gave me a dubious shake of her head, but didn’t say anything until the test was over. She was rather surprised when my results came back—IQ 161. The put me in with the smart kids after that.

(2) Swapping twins

As a child, I was small and frail. I have this genetic thing going on, you know. At nine, I could share clothes with my six-year-old sister. People thought we were twins. We thought that was funny, because my six-year-old brother really was her twin.

(3) Aviatrix adventure

I learned to fly in a Piper J-5. It’s an old taildragger airplane with tandem seating. Most of my instruction was out of Sunset Strip, a small grass field in northern Ohio. My instructor was an ex-military pilot who was always pulling some emergency or other. Just so I’d be comfortable in any situation. After I got my license, I bought an Aeronca Champ, another tandem-seat taildragger. It didn’t have an electrical system, so someone had to hand prop it. No radio either, so I used this little hand-held unit.

Since I had to travel to Texas for graduate school, I decided to fly the Champ down to Waxahachie. That’s about 1200 miles in an airplane that cruises at about 55 miles an hour. I’d stop every few hours for fuel, or food, or whatever. Then ask someone to prop the plane for me. Everything went well until I was near Sulphur Springs, Texas. Then the engine lost oil pressure. The temperature climbed. The engine power faded. The airplane started losing altitude. I kept thinking there’d be a nice place to land just past the next clump of trees. But there wasn’t, so I landed in a small pasture. With cows. I’m not sure who was more frightened. See the photo up top!

(4) Motorcycles and young ladies

A bit of a wild child in college, I got stopped once for weaving through rush-hour traffic on a motorcycle. Probably riding side-saddle. Okay, so it wasn't the brightest way to stay alive. The officer screamed at me, face red, little flecks of foam at the corner of his mouth. When I started crying, I pulled off my helmet, shook my hair loose, and blubbered something like, “I’m sorry, sir.” He stopped swearing and just stared for a moment. Then he shook his head, got back in his car, and drove off.

(5) INFP—The Dreamer

Y’all know Myers-Briggs? INFP—Introvert, Intuitive, Feeling, Perceiving. I’m the same personality type as the protagonist in my book. The last time I went overseas, I arrived in Edinburgh at dusk. With no reservations. I like to just...go. Have an adventure. My husband doesn't consider adventures any fun. He likes to plan everything.

Endorsed by one of the leading researchers on Disorders of Sex Development, Confessions of a Teenage Hermaphrodite is a young adult novel, an authentic portrayal of the issues faced by an intersex teen.

Jamie was born with a testis, an ovary, and a pixie face. He can be a boy after minor surgery and a few years on testosterone. Well, that’s what his parents always say, but he sees an elfin princess in the mirror. To become the man his parents expect, Jamie must leave behind a little girl’s hopes and dreams.

At sixteen, the four-foot-eleven soprano leaves home school for a boys’ dorm at college. The elfin princess can live in the books Jameson reads and nobody has to find out he isn’t like other boys.

When a medical student tells Jamie that he should have been raised female, suppressed childhood memories stir. The elfin princess can thrive, but will she risk losing her family and her education for a boy who may desert her, or a toddler she may never be allowed to adopt?

Lianne Simon's father was a dairy farmer and an engineer, her mother a nurse. With two brothers and one sister, she grew up in a home filled with love and good books. Frail and tiny, Lianne shared toys and clothes with a sister three years her junior.

While seeking answers to her own genetic anomalies, Lianne met a family whose daughter was born with one testis and one ovary. As a result of that encounter she spent more than ten years answering inquiries on behalf of a support group for the parents of such children.

Lianne and her husband live in the suburbs outside Atlanta, where she writes, tutors, and performs volunteer work.

Author website: www.liannesimon.com

Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/Confessions-Teenage-Hermaphrodite-Lianne-Simon/dp/0985148209/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1337908838&sr=1-2

Publisher link (for ebook purchases): http://museituppublishing.com/bookstore2/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=362&category_id=6&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=1

1 comment:

So... inquiring minds want to know: what do you think?