Three Questions With Laura Toffler-Corrie

In each installment of "Three Questions With," we get to know a different writer, musician, or illustrator by asking three questions about their work, process, and interests. Today we're chatting with Laura Toffler-Corrie, author of PJ Our Way selection, The Life and Opinions of Amy Finawitz.

Is Amy Finawitz based on anyone that you know?

To be honest, Amy is the me I am in my head. By that I mean I’m often tempted to say the kinds of things she would say, but worry that Amy’s sense of humor might be perceived as a little abrupt for casual acquaintances. But when I’m talking to family and close friends, I’m exactly like her. They often say to me, “That remark sounds like something Amy would say!”

What gave you the idea to write a book in email and play form?

When I was Amy’s age, my best friend and I liked to write short letters, plays and poems to each other. It was a fun way to share our experiences, gossip about people and make observations about our lives; a lot like the way people text each other now. When I started writing ‘Amy Finawitz...,’ I thought about using the same format. It seemed like a great way for a character to communicate so that the reader felt like her best friend. The more I wrote, the more natural it felt for me to tell the story that way.

What inspires you as a writer?

Hearing from readers! It’s a great feeling to know that someone has connected with one of my books and that it’s made him or her laugh, think or feel something. It’s also inspiring for me to take walks or ride my bike during twilight. It’s such a pretty time of day and feels peaceful and a little magical to me.

Laura Toffler-Corrie is the author of The Life and Opinions of Amy Finawitz. She holds an M.S. in school psychology, as well as an M.F.A. in dramatic writing from New York University. She and her family live in South Salem, New York.

PJ Our Way lets tweens pick their own free Jewish chapter books and graphic novels each month. Sign your 9-11 year old up at


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