Interview with Maria Polson Veres

What do most people not know about you?
I’m good at target shooting, I’ve read all the Harry Potter books multiple times, and I brake for yard sales. I’m a quiet and soft-spoken person most of the time, but stick a microphone in front of me and I’ll come right out of my shell.
When did you start writing?
I can barely remember a time when I didn’t write. I started scribbling poems and stories in grade school and never stopped. I grew up to major in English (of course!), and most of my day jobs have somehow connected to my literary habit. I’ve been a proofreader, copy editor, magazine publisher, writing teacher... the list goes on.
What inspired you to write books of writing prompts?
It all started as a homeschooling project that somehow got out of hand. When I homeschooled my daughter, I couldn’t find writing topics that inspired her, so I began making up my own. Then it occurred to me that other people might find the prompts helpful, too, so I put them together into e-books.
What else have you written and published?
I’m the author of two poetry chapbooks, with a third one in progress. I’ve published poems, stories, and nonfiction in more than 50 magazines and anthologies.
What books and authors have inspired you?
There are too many to name! I have a soft spot for YA fiction, especially fantasy. I already mentioned my Harry Potter crush. The Lord of the Rings is also near the top of my list. I also love memoirs and diaries—Anne Frank’s diary was inspired me to start my own journal at age eleven. As far as books on writing, I recommend The Writer’s Book of Days by Judy Reeves and Writing Alone and With Others by Pat Schneider.
How do you spend your time when you're not writing?
I love having quiet time at home with my husband, our daughter, and our assorted pets. I exercise almost every day—something that might surprise the kids who picked me last for teams back in middle school! I also love playing piano and spending time in nature.
What makes you smile?
Our backyard chickens. Hugs from my kid. Real letters in the mailbox. My birthday. Anything chocolate.
What kind of name is "Veres" and how is it pronounced?
It’s Hungarian. (My father was born in Hungary and came to America as a young adult.) Here in the U.S., I pronounce my name to rhyme with “Paris.” In proper Hungarian, it has an “sh” sound on the end and rhymes with “cherish.”

Over the years I’ve seen my unusual name mangled in all sorts of creative ways. The best/worst spelling so far is “Veerzz.” Sometimes people misspell it as “Verses.” Since I write poetry, I always smile at that one.
What advice do you have for other writers?
Don’t wait for inspiration to strike. Set a regular writing schedule, show up, and the muse will find you. If the muse doesn’t find you, write anyway. So what if it’s terrible? You still put something on the page, and that’s a better use of your time than watching “Bob’s Burgers” reruns. Just keep writing. Keep showing up. Good things will happen. I promise.
Published 2014-12-12.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Amazing Writing Prompts for Kids
By
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 10,690. Language: English. Published: November 18, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Children's Books » Writing
Never stare at a blank page again! This treasure chest for young writers is packed with more than 200 fun, imaginative ideas. Choose from serious topics, silly topics, fiction “story starters,” and more.Use the prompts for daily journaling or as jump-starts for longer pieces. With something for everyone, Amazing Writing Prompts is an ideal resource for beginners and experienced writers alike.
Amazing Writing Prompts: Homeschool Edition
By
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 10,690. Language: English. Published: October 29, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Education and Study Guides » Home schooling
Finally, a collection of writing prompts just for homeschoolers! This treasure chest for young writers is packed with more than 200 fun, imaginative ideas. Prompts are inclusive and suitable for students from a variety of backgrounds. Use them for daily journaling or to jump-start longer pieces. Authored by a veteran homeschool mom, Amazing Writing Prompts is ideal for writers of all skill levels.
Writing Prompts for the Harry Potter series
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Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,790. Language: English. Published: June 16, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Education and Study Guides » Study guides - Literature
Invent a new Hogwarts ghost, describe a ride on a broomstick, write Quidditch commentary from Peeves’s point of view…. These are a few of the magical writing ideas in Writing Prompts for the Harry Potter Series. Perfect for homeschoolers and classroom teachers. 113 prompts.
Writing Prompts for The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe
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Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,000. Language: English. Published: June 16, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Education and Study Guides » Study guides - Literature
Once readers find Narnia, they never want to leave. Extend their stay with these imaginative writing ideas based on C.S. Lewis’s classic fantasy novel. Prompts are closely connected to the text and include a wide variety of writing topics.
Writing Prompts for Hatchet
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Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,280. Language: English. Published: June 16, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Education and Study Guides » Study guides - Literature
From creating a wilderness survival guide to expressing opinions about hunting, Writing Prompts for Hatchet offers a wide variety of writing ideas based on Gary Paulsen’s action-packed novel. Prompts are closely connected to the text and designed to encourage critical thinking skills.
Writing Prompts for The Giver
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Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,590. Language: English. Published: May 8, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Education and Study Guides » Teaching methods & materials / language arts
This booklet contains 50 thought-provoking writing prompts that will deepen readers' understanding of Lois Lowry's classic novel, The Giver. Use the prompts for daily journaling, longer assignments, test questions, or discussion starters. With something for every writer, Writing Prompts for The Giver is an ideal resource for homeschoolers and classroom teachers.