Deb Potter lives in New Zealand, which is just above Antarctica, but isn’t quite as cold. She grew up roaming the farmland and forest on the outskirts of her town and in the summers she swam in a huge lake that was made out of a blown up volcano. She's one of four authors writing the You Say Which Way books.
Deb started her working life as a reporter, which gave her the chance to ask lots of questions and she has never gotten out of the habit. Deb is interested in the evolution of stories. When she first played with an eReader she couldn't wait to make stories that didn't have to start at A and finish at B.
Potter read her early work in school libraries and classrooms to learn about the cognitive process of choice and get advice and criticism from readers.
"I was really lucky that I could connect with an audience before I'd ever published a book. It was a great way to find out what worked and how readers approach choice."
She found that simply writing a large selection of choices and endings didn't cut it with modern day readers.
"Kids are smart consumers of story and meaning."
'Once Upon an Island' was the first You Say Which Way book Potter wrote. It is set on a remote island in New Zealand which Potter visited a long time ago.
"Most kids don't get to go outside and take risks anymore. The book offers a chance to do that. It's a bundle of fantasy adventures that start in realistic ways - catching a ferry, going fishing or heading out to explore. Kids take pleasure in making choices and being autonomous."