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: Remy Lai, author of the MG graphic novel/prose hybrid, PIE IN THE SKY (Henry Holt, 2019).
What is your idea of perfect happiness? Sipping bubble tea and hanging out with the people I love, and my dogs.
What is your greatest fear? Losing people (and dogs) I love.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? When something good happens, I automatically get on tenterhooks waiting for the doom that must come to balance it all out.
What is the trait you most deplore in others? Two-facedness. Is that a word? <It is now, Remy 🙂 M.R. >
Which living person do you most admire? Hayao Miyazaki.
What is your greatest extravagance? My dogs. Their vet bills cost a ton. Also, I learned to drive and got a car simply because I wanted to take them places. Before that, I was happy to take public transport. To be fair, before the dogs, I lived in a city well served by public transport.
What is your current state of mind? Busy.
What do you consider the most overrated virtue? Extroverted-ness. Introverts are cool too, okay.
On what occasion do you lie? To protect someone’s feelings.
Which words or phrases do you most overuse? But like . . . I don’t know how to say it . . . Don’t roll in poop! (that’s to my dogs).
Besides writing, which talent would you most like to have? The ability to be not totally awkward in social situations.
What do you consider your greatest achievement? Sticking to what I want to do despite others telling me I couldn’t/shouldn’t.
If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be? Totoro.
What is your most treasured possession? My sketchbooks.
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery? When no one believes in you.
What do you most value in your friends? Kindness.
Who are your favorite writers? Diana Wynne Jones, Haruki Murakami, Yangsze Choo, Shaun Tan, and many more.
Who is your hero of fiction? Totoro.
Which historical figure do you most identify with? The Monkey King. Wait, that’s a mythical figure.
What is your motto? “Have fun.”
REMY LAI studied fine arts, with a major in painting and drawing. She was born in Indonesia, grew up in Singapore, and currently lives in Brisbane, Australia, where she writes and draws stories for kids with her two dogs by her side. She is the author of the critically acclaimed Pie in the Sky. Her next graphic novel/prose hybrid, Fly on the Wall, is available on May 12, 2020. Learn more about Remy on her website and follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.