The Proust Questionnaire, popularized by the French essayist and novelist Marcel Proust, is said to reveal a person’s true nature through a series of probing, soul-searching questions. In the hot seat today, Reina Luz Alegre, author of the MG debut, THE DREAM WEAVER (Simon & Schuster, 2020).
What is your idea of perfect happiness I could write a very detailed essay in response to this question, but literally keep imagining a cheesecake as I type… So, lol, I guess my short answer is cheesecake? With a graham cracker crust. And maybe some milk chocolate chunks baked in. Oh, and whipped cream on top. Yes, cheesecake. Yummy.
What is your greatest fear?
Speaking my worst fears into existence. G-d forbid, somehow making them come to pass.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? I have been informed by loved ones who shall remain nameless that I may, sometimes, occasionally, nag. But out of love! Because I want to help!
What is the trait you most deplore in others? I really don’t like it when someone is intentionally mean. Especially if they don’t later apologize or somehow try to make amends.
Which living person do you most admire? I admire anyone who does a small or big kindness quietly behind the scenes, without expecting anything in return, not even a thanks or congrats.
What is your greatest extravagance? Flavored coffee. Maybe cheesecake after this interview, see above!
What is your current state of mind? I tend to worry, but I want to be optimistic too, so I try to work on staying as positive as I can.
What do you consider the most overrated virtue? Following every trend. Just because something is popular doesn’t mean it’s necessarily the right thing for you personally, or even the right thing at all.
On what occasion do you lie? I may have once told a cranky toddler going through a picky eating phase that veggies were actually (surprise!) cookies! Who doesn’t want to eat a broccoli cookie? Even yummier than cheesecake!
Which words or phrases do you most overuse? I can’t think of any specific words or phrases, but I know that I will sometimes repeat myself to try to drive a point home (see nagging above—I should probably work on that!).
Besides writing, which talent would you most like to have? I wish I knew how to skate or rollerblade. It’s on my list of things I hope to learn someday!
What do you consider your greatest achievement? My family and my writing.
If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be? Maybe a dolphin? They’re smart and they seem so carefree, swimming and frolicking about in the sea.
What is your most treasured possession? Family photos, and the outfits/makeup I think/hope are flattering, or at least not un-flattering.
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery? All-consuming feelings of sadness, grief, pain, anger, etc.
What do you most value in your friends? Being able to talk things out. Empathy. Sense of humor.
Who are your favorite writers? So many! Jennifer Weiner, Nic Stone, Gloria Chao, Sofia Pasternack, Anika Fajardo, just to name a few!
Who is your hero of fiction? As a kid, I really loved Nancy Drew. She was so confident and capable and solved every case, no problem.
Which historical figure do you most identify with? None? I haven’t done anything nearly fabulous enough… yet!
What is your motto? “If there’s no harm in it, just try!”
REINA LUZ ALEGRE lives in the Miami area with her family. She’s dreamed of becoming an author since the second grade, and grew up to work on various other professional dreams—including as a freelance journalist and lawyer—before debuting her first novel, The Dream Weaver. When she’s not writing, Reina loves to read, sing, and salivate over baking shows. Learn more about Reina on her website and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.