This might sound strange, but if it wasn’t for films – or should I say, one film in particular – I might never have realised I wanted to be a writer at-all.
When I was a kid, and people asked me what I was going to do when I was older, I’d immediately tell them I wanted to be a musician. Although I enjoyed writing, it was something I did for fun: the odd poem here and there; perhaps a few more pages than everyone else when we were asked to write a story for school. My life was taken up with piano lessons and junior orchestra (I also played the oboe), practise every day after school, concerts, and exams.
Then, during a summer holiday when I was thirteen years old, a film was released that was hailed as revolutionary for its special effects. Nothing like it had ever been seen before. In fact, it is still, as I write this, in the top twenty highest-grossing films of all time.
It was Stephen Spielberg’s JURASSIC PARK.
In that instant, everything I thought I knew about where my life was going to go took a new direction. I knew, in a way I’d never known before, what I was going to be. And it was all thanks to those dinosaurs.
These days, I’m still inspired by films. I love anything with a great story – the genre doesn’t matter. My stories always run through my head like movies as I’m writing them, so the more I watch, the better I’m able to ‘see’ the scenes I’m trying to construct and how they should play out. And although I don’t watch a lot of TV, I absolutely love Shane Meadows’s THIS IS ENGLAND 86. It’s so heartbreaking. So real.
Emma Pass grew up at an environmental studies centre near London, went to art school in Cornwall and now lives in the north-east midlands with her artist husband, where she has a day job at her local library. She's also minion to The Hound, a retired racing greyhound with whom she appears to have signed a contract in her own blood agreeing to attend to his every need – even if those needs include getting up at 3am to remake his bed because he's scratched it up so much he can't get back in it.
Emma is represented by Carolyn Whitaker at London Independent Books and her YA dystopian thriller ACID is out from Random House Children's Books in early 2013. You can find her blog here, and catch her procrastinating on Twitter here.