Alice Blog

About Alice

comment:

Hello! My name is Rhiannon, and I am a senior at the University of Pittsburgh. In one of my classes we are writing notes/letters to writers whose work we admire.

I wanted to reach out to you because your Alice series shaped my life in high school. I started reading when Alice’s high school years were released. I fell in love with Alice and cared more about her life than my own at times! I shared the books with my friends and we had a system where I read one, lent it to my best friend, and she lent it to another one of our friends. Then we’d all get together and talk about Alice! I remember your novels shaping my imagination and inspiring me to write and I just want to say thank you. You are one of the most influential authors in my life who motivated me to pursue writing and a career working with YA literature.

 

Phyllis replied:

How wonderful to hear from someone interested in YA literature. The first Alice book I wrote really begins with her in fifth or sixth grade.   I only decided to turn her into a series when my editor agreed that I could make her a little older in each book.  I didn’t want to get stuck in a sit-com where she is in the same class and situations as she faced in grade school.  I’ll have to say that I became emotionally involved in her too–laughing at her antics with Lester, and crying when there was a death among her friends.  Thank you for taking time from your own busy life to write to me, and best of luck in your own writing!

project questions

comment:

I am reserching you for my famous hoosier project and I need to know where you went to middle school, high school, and collage. thank you for your time! By the way I love the shiloh series and am getting ready to read the rest of your books but do you have any suggestions for a place to buy a shiloh stuffed animal? Thanks for your books and time!

 

Phyllis replied:

By the time we moved from Indiana to Illinois, I was entering seventh grade.  I went to junior high (middle school) at Washington School in Joliet, then Joliet Township High School, then Joliet Junior College, and the next two years of college at American University in Washington, DC.   I’m sorry, but I don’t know where you would find a stuffed Shiloh animal, but I imagine any little beagle would do.

Shiloh

comment:

In the chapter when he gave the rotten food to Shiloh why didnt he feel sick?

Phyllis replied:

I don’t think that anyone gave rotten food to Shiloh.  Old food may be stale or discolored, but that doesn’t mean it is rotten.  Marty cares too much for Shiloh to give him something that would hurt him.

Read in a specific order?

Comment:

I have a student close to finishing Shiloh. She is wondering if there is a specific order to reading the rest of the series or if the order isn’t important to the overall story line.
Thank you!

 

Phyllis replied:

I’m glad you asked.  Although each of the four books could be read at any time, it’s one continued story, so it’s best to read them this way:  Shiloh,  Shiloh Season, Saving Shiloh and A Shiloh Christmas.

Thank you!

comment:
I live in Rockville, MD. I’m currently about a month away from my high school graduation and will be attending the University of Maryland, just like Alice. I’ve been reflecting a lot lately on my childhood and what has shaped me to become who I am today, and your Alice series has come to my attention. I grew up reading your books and found such a connection to Alice’s personality and life story (especially considering she grew up so close to me!). Your books perfectly capture what it is like to grow from a girl to a young woman and I want to thank you for writing with such honesty. I am so grateful to have had a character like Alice that accompanied me through the confusing stages of puberty, my parent’s divorce, friendship drama, boyfriends, and letting go of childhood. So, again I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the gift that is your writing.
Phyllis replied:

It’s wonderful to know that Alice could be your friend as you were growing up.  I  hope that the University of Maryland will be a good fit for you, and imagine you will be able to write about some adventures of your own.  Best of luck!  Thank you for taking the time to write to me.

Famous Hoosier Report

comment:

Hi! I am a fourth grader and have chosen you as my famous Hoosier for my Famous Hoosier Project for school. I love reading your books, especially the Boys Vs. Girls series. I was excited to find out that you were born in Indiana! After you were born, how long did you live in Indiana? Thank you for taking the time to read this!

 

Phyllis replied:

I was born in Anderson, Indiana–then we lived in Muncie for awhile–then back to Anderson.  We moved to Illinois when I was starting the seventh grade.  I’m glad you’re enjoying the Boys Vs Girls books.  Those all take place in my husband’s home town, Buckhannon, West Virginia, though I call it Buckman in my books.

We absolutely LOVED it!!!

Comment:

We just finished reading your book, Shiloh, as our class read aloud, and we absolutely LOVED it!!! What a talented writer you are! Are you going to write another book soon about Shiloh besides the other three books you have already written about him? We plan to read Shiloh Season next.

Phyllis replied:

I think I said everything I had to say about Marty and his dog in the four books I’ve written about them.  I’m so glad your class enjoyed them, and I’m glad you’re reading them in the order they were written, because it’s one continued story.